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Dr Bike's Checklist


Front wheel true (not buckled). No broken/missing spokes. Good rim.

Front tyre, good tread. No splits. cracks or holes. Pumped hard. Valve straight


Front hub No wobble. Turns smoothly. Wheel securely fixed


Front mudguard firmly fixed. No sharp mudguard stays


Front brake blocks correctly fitted. Not worn away


Front brake firmly fixed. Correctly adjusted.


Front brake lever comfortable position. Firmly fixed. Cable not frayed.


Headset/steering, no wobble. Correctly adjusted


Handlebars not distorted. Ends protected


Front forks appear true and undamaged


Frame appears true and undamaged


Rear brake lever comfortable position. Firmly fixed. Cable not frayed


Rear brake firmly fixed. Correctly adjusted

Rear brake blocks correctly fitted and aligned. Not worn away

Rear mudguard safely fixed. No sharp mudguard stays


Rear tyre good tread. No splits. cracks or holes. Pumped hard. Valve straight.

Rear wheel true. No broken/missing spokes. Good rim


Rear hub No wobble. Turns smoothly. Wheel securely fixed


Bottom bracket no wobble,  lock ring tight. Sufficiently lubricated


Pedal cranks straight


Pedals complete. Turning freely. Not bent

Chainwheel not bent. Teeth not worn

Chainguard firmly fixed. Not bent

Chain not too worn. Not slack. Lightly oiled not rusty


Gears properly adjusted. Lubricated sufficiently


Saddle safely fixed. Straight. comfortable height 


Rack/carrier/bags etc. Firmly secured


Front lamp white. Firmly fixed. Good light to front, not pointing upwards


Rear lamp red. Firmly fixed. Visible to rear, not pointing upwards


Reflectors clean and secure


Lights & reflectors  Correct height on bicycle

Checking your tyres

Check your tyres and remove any flints, grit and glass that may be embedded in them. If you have any larger cuts or splits then replace the tyres. This short video shows you the best way to check your tyres for little bits of stone that will gradually be pushed through the tyre and give you a puncture. It's better spend 10 minutes in daylight deflating the tyres and then squeezing them so flint and small cuts can be easily seen than at 3am in pitch dark and a howling rainstorm with 70 others standing around waiting for you.

Anchor 1

This is a good example of a split in a tyre that you'd see only if you deflated it and squeezed the tyre - this is big enough for the inner to poke through and go bang at exactly the wrong time. 


Here is a very small hole with a tiny piece of flint in. By inspecting a deflated tyre you will see this before a thousand rotations push the flint further into the rubber and it forces a hole in the inner tube - that’ll probably be at 4am on a cold night. 


And this is a cheap screwdriver that can be used to dig out the small stones - this particular one came in a Christmas cracker. The point has been filed to make it a bit sharper. It's easier using something like this if you're wearing gloves on a cold night. The string is to help find it in the toolkit.

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