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Sean says… How about bone conducting headphones?

July is basically all about my birthday. Which means more riding, and new toys such as these wireless, bone conducting headphones which are currently keeping me entertained on my daily Tour de France stage to work. (Because of course, July is also all about the Tour. In fact, some of you may even consider that more important than my birthday.) My wife Julia has been rightly concerned for years that as I crank up the volume on my ride home Read More...

Open To All: Fitting Brake Cables into Levers

We are getting into the fiddly end of our bike cables tutorials now. So far in this series we’ve defined the four different steps to cable fitting, and we are now at step 3: 1. Measuring and routing cable housing 2. Cutting and prepping the cable housing 3. Fitting the inner cable into the lever We’ve outlined the main two types of lever that you would come across most often when you attempt this cycle maintenance task below. Good luck! Drop Bar Levers WORKSHOP TIP: For different bike types Read More...

Sean says… Ride and drink coffee around Dartmouth

Recently, a small miracle happened – in that our son was in school, we had no students with us at the academy, and the sun was actually shining. On account of this, Julia and I ventured to the Gin Palace capital of South Devon, Dartmouth. It is really a very gorgeous place. A picturesque little town on the South Hams coast which makes a nice stopping off point on a longer ride from Cycle Systems Academy. Think bright blue sea views Read More...

New Zealand: Nelson and warm showers

Continuing with our New Zealand adventure… By the time we crossed the Cook Strait over into the South Island and drove the spectacular Queen Charlotte way, with it’s sweeping vistas over the Marlborough Sounds, we were already bouncing back and ready for some cycling again. Lucky for us that we were hosted by Andy Pettit – Nelson native and Cycle Systems Academy podcast fan. Andy is a cycling aficionado with a garage full of bicycles – plus luckily for us he Read More...

Open To All – Preparing Cable Housing

So by now, if you’ve been following our Open to All blog series, you will have a good idea of what types of cabling can be used on a bicycle, and how to best measure their length depending on where they are going. Still to do though, is to ensure that the cable housing that the cables travel through is adequately prepared. Best practice demands that you prepare the housing because when you cut it, the housing will be crushed Read More...

Open To All – The four step process to replacing bicycle cables

Here at Cycle Systems we teach our students to fit both bike brake and gear cables in a simple four step process. Knowing which step you are at can really help, and of course there are pitfalls along each one that we shall enlighten you about over the coming weeks. To replace a cable on your bicycle you must make sure that you: Measure the correct cable housing length before fitting Prepare the cable housing in the correct way Fit the cable properly into the Read More...

New Zealand: Wellington

The Lallys literally drove the road from Pureora Forest Park at the end of the Timber Trail,  to Wellington  – New Zealand’s capital city – in a strange state of ecstasy. Never had the family known such a high. It was strange to be so happy because really we only completed the first leg of the track. As cyclists, the Timber Trail had defeated us – and we were all disappointed not to continue. Especially as that second section is meant Read More...

The Timber Trail Part 2

And so to the downhill. The relief of reaching the final apex of the ridge of the Timber Trail and over that much awaited point to the down, down, down, was soon eclipsed by our surprise to hit some really pretty advanced MTB conditions. Sean compared the second half of the first part of the Timber Trail as a “red run without the technical trail features”.  Yet still the gravelly conditions and steep turns leant itself to some experienced riding. Pretty Read More...

Open To All – Understanding Cable Types

Today we kick off our “Open to All” tutorial blog series. This is aimed at the very beginner and reticent bicycle maintenance enthusiast. We’ll cover everything you need to know in this series, from braking and transmission systems, to how to get yourself back on the road when minor faults occur. Based on our passion that anyone can be a bike mechanic, this six month series will give you an in depth look at the basics. “Open to All” will leave Read More...

Spectacular MTB Riding on Our Doorstep

  Some of you may be reading my wife Julia’s blog about our recent mountain biking adventures in New Zealand (and if you aren’t, you can here. It’s gripping stuff.) However, it’s true to say that we are lucky in that we really don’t have to go quite so far afield to experience so spectacular and challenging riding – in fact, having a National Park on our doorstep gives us access to virtually limitless trails. Since the opening of a new bridge that Read More...

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