If truth be told, I’ve become a lax mechanic since owning a Rohloff. Internal gear hubs will do that to you. My Rohloff has run faultlessly for the years I’ve owned it, bar a change of bearings after many thousands of miles of rugged use.
Now that I’m back with derailleurs, the price I pay for my slothfulness is a worn chain, cassette and middle chainring… to the tune of a hundred greenbacks. I used to sing the praises of maintaining clean cogs and rotating chains regularly on a long tour, both of which will eek countless adventures out of your drivetrain, and help keep your bills down. Now that I’m riding derailleurs again, I better take my own advice and pull my socks up.
Still, if I have to spend cash on my bike, I like to do so in a shop like Flagstaff Bicycle Revolution, Arizona.
In my mind, this is how a bicycle shop should be. It offers a wide, idisoyncratic range of bikes and parts to suit all budgets – high end full sussers and utility bikes alike. A choice of $70 WTBs, or $20 CSTs. A sofa for lounging about on, wifi on hand and good music. Friendly, helpful staff. For those in need of their pre-ride caffeine fix, I’m told the coffee is the tastiest in town.
Best of all a bicycle tourist like me (with only a multitool to my name), the Bicycle Revolution offers a full equipped workstation to install your own parts. Yep, you read that right. Work stand, wheel truing stand, headset press, cone spanners, allen keys, crescent wrenches are available for free… Add to this an impressive selection of bikepacking kit, and even a couple of fat bikes for rent, and you have yourself a bike shop that stands out from the ordinary.