Whether you’re riding to work or cycling for fun, there are a number of things that every cyclist should know before they hop on their bicycle.
Here is a rundown of seven must-knows for adventuring on two wheels, from how to change a tyre to the best way to track your ride data.
Know how to change a tyre
First up is knowing how to change the tyres on your bicycle, a must-know in case something goes wrong on the road and you get a flat
- Use the palms of your hands to get the first side of the tyre onto the rim, lifting the whole tyre over the rim edge.
- Install the inner tube. One top tip is to add a little air first to prevent the tube being pinched by the tyre while you are installing it. Don’t add too much though as this will stop the tyre beads from meeting the deepest part of the rim.
- Install the other side of the tyre into the rim. Start opposite the valve and work your way around each side, leaving the last bit of tyre around the valve.
- Use the palms of your hands to pull the whole tyre up, rolling both sides of the tyre over the rim edge bit by bit.
NOTE: don’t forget to check your tyre pressure before you ride. We recommend about 35 to 45 psi (to measure this use a pump with a PSI/Bar gauge).
Know the traffic
Something you may want to consider when going for a ride, especially if you are cycling to work, is pre-planning your route according to the traffic on the roads. There are a range of software and app options available for this. The most obvious is Google Maps. Maps shows you the congestion on any given road, changing in real time to match the traffic conditions.
Wear the right gear
The importance of staying visible on the roads is fairly well-known, and there are plenty of great high-vis options out there.
But you may also want to consider the practicality of the gear you are wearing. One of our top tips is to choose a jacket that has zipped-up pockets where you can keep your phone or wallet and know that it won’t fall out as you cycle.
It’s also important to consider comfort - is the fabric of the cycling gear you are wearing, or the design of the helmet, breathable? Will you get too hot? Do you need gloves and if so, full mits or fingerless? Do you prefer tight-fitting or loose cycling clothes? Etc.
Track your ride
This is actually a feature of our MODMO app, so if you are a Saigon+ user (this feature is specific to Saigon+ ebikes) you will have access to a wide range of tracking options by hooking up your bike and monitoring it on your phone. Through our app you will be able to track detailed information on your screen, from calories burned and your battery’s charge, to your average speed and the C02 you’ve saved.
You can also set goals to reach as you ride, like distance travelled or speed, and even compete on a leaderboard of MODMO users.
Our app has many more features to it, from battery monitoring to a comprehensive anti-theft system. It is currently compatible with our Saigon+ ebikes only. Check out our app page for more and find us on Google Play or the App Store.
Regularly check your battery
Another tip is to make sure you’re regularly checking and taking care of your battery. We would recommend that you don’t charge it while you sleep or when you are not at home, and if you live in a cold area try not to leave it outside with the bike as lower temperatures will reduce the battery capacity.
You may also want to get into the habit of checking your battery every time you ride to make sure you have enough charge to keep your lights on. Check your rear light while you’re there to ensure that it isn’t obstructed by clothing and that it’s working properly.
Adjust the saddle for a comfortable riding position
We would recommend that you check your saddle height, tilt and distance from the handlebars before you ride to make sure that you are comfortable. Without doing this, you may end up with a lot of strain on your back and joints.
First, stand over the bike with your legs on either side, place one of your heels on a pedal and push it to the lowest position until your leg is almost completely straight, and adjust the saddle height so that it sits just under your crotch.
Next, check if your saddle needs to be moved forwards or backwards - move the pedal to 3 o’clock and look at the position of your knee. You want it to be resting directly above your forefoot.
It’s also important to adjust the tilt. Try to get it perfectly level with the ground, or if this causes pain or discomfort adjust it until it feels right.
Check out this article for more on how to fit your MODMO ebike.
Know how to lock you bike
Finally, make sure you know how to safely lock your bicycle when you’re out and about. You want to make it as inconvenient as possible for a thief to steal your bike or parts of your bike, if not totally impossible.
We would recommend using two bike locks to secure each of your wheels to the frame by looping them inside the spokes of the wheels and around the part of the frame that is next to them. You may also want to lock the seat to the frame by looping a lock under the seat.
There are many types of lock you could choose from but we would suggest that you don’t use a cable lock - better to use more secure D-locks or chain locks. Keep the lock off the ground and try to get the tightest fit possible, facing the lock keyhole downwards to make it as hard to access as possible.