Folding Bike Blog

Replacing Grips: A Trick for the Sticky Ones

There are a few reasons you might want to replace your grips. There’s a wide variety of ergonomic shapes and different color options on the market. They’re easily customizable to add some flair to your bike, or you may be looking to replace them if they get worn from extended use.

The steps seem simple (slide off old grip, slide on new grip), but they’re often quite difficult to work with. Here’s a trick I picked up for replacing particularly stubborn grips.

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All you need for tools is a flat head screwdriver (preferably a relatively thin one), a can of WD-40 with the straw, and Windex or a similar window cleaner.

Montague Folding Bike Grip Removal

Grips can really stick to the handlebars and sometimes won’t budge from any amount of twisting or pulling. Take your flat head screwdriver and slide it in between the grip and the bar. This might scratch the bars slightly, but it will always be hidden by your grips. I wouldn’t recommend doing this on a carbon bar however, as even a scratch can weaken it.

Montague Folding Bike Grip Removal with Lubricant

Extend the straw on the WD-40 can and slide it in along the screwdriver as far as you can. Spray a small amount here at the far end of the grip, pull the straw out slightly and spray again.

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Once that lubricant is between the grip and the bar, twist and it should easily slide off. Be sure to wipe off the excess WD-40 with a rag or paper towel. You could slide the new grip on with remaining WD-40 but it takes a long time to evaporate and your new grip would not stay in place.

Instead, dry it off thoroughly and grab that window cleaner. Spray a small amount on the bare handlebar and slide the new grip on. The alcohol in the window cleaner will evaporate very quickly and allow the new grip to stick to the bar.

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I’d recommend giving it a half hour to an hour to dry before you ride it just to be sure the grips are secured. Your hands will thank you for a fresh pair of grips!

Montague Folding Bike with Oury Grips

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Posted in Accessories, Maintenance, Tutorial | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Spring Mountain Biking on a Folding Bike

This spring has been fantastic for mountain biking in the northeast. It took a while to warm up (it was cold well into april) but once it did it was like summer came early. With beautiful warm days and dry trails, our mountain bikes were calling to us.

The Montague Bikes team had some opportunities to get out and take our full size folding bikes off road. Many people may not expect a folding bike to be trail ready, but Montague is certainly the exception to the rule with full size wheels, a Rockshox or Suntur suspension fork, and a rigid frame that doesn’t break the tubing to accomplish folding.

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The Middlesex Fells is a reservation just outside Boston filled with ponds, reservoirs, and a wide variety of trails ranging from rolling doubletrack to rocky singletrack. It’s by far the closest and most accessible off road riding to the city.

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The Fells has a surprising variation in elevation as well which provides some great views.

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On the two highest points in the reservation are towers you can climb to get an even better vantage point.

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While this is unfortunately not our trail dog, there were lots of fury friends sharing the trails with us that day. I couldn’t resist documenting this guy’s Go Pro setup. I’d love to see that footage!

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Pit stop to take in the scenery. This area around the reservoir appeared to have been burned in recent years.

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From light paths…

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To rock gardens!

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Sometimes life behind bars is really tough….

 

One Comment

  1. Posted June 20, 2015 at 2:44 am | Permalink

    That dog’s GoPro is hilarious! WHich folding bike is that? Seems to be very durable in hard terrain.

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Posted in Adventure, Lifestyle, Recreation | 1 Comment

New to Bike Commuting in Cambridge, MA

I’ve always been impressed by people biking to work regardless of how bad the weather is.  Since I’m not really a ‘morning person’ and usually take a long time to wake up both physically and mentally, I used to commute by bus. It doesn’t take a lot of thinking: go outside, wait for the bus at the next stop, hop on and hop off. Theoretically, it should be easy and fast. The perfect way to slowly wake up and have a relaxed commute to work. That’s at least what I told myself for a long time.

As it turned out, commuting by public transit can be very stressful. Most of the time my bus was delayed or crowded. Sometimes it even never showed up. Although the distance between my home and the office is only about 4 miles, it can take 45-60 minutes to get to work with the waiting and the necessary bus transfer. Even though it enables me to stay in my physical comfort zone for a little longer by sitting down in a nice heated bus, I usually get to work mentally exhausted and stressed out. My concentration is gone and I’m often tired and listless. It was time for a change. A change to the world of cycling.

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I had my first bike commuting experience with the Paratrooper Pro. This mountain bike enabled me a quick and easy start into daily riding. Since we were still hanging onto the remnants of a historically snowy winter here in New England, it also kept me safe on the streets with it’s 2″ tires. When I was younger I used to ride my bike to school every day. I met with friends and together we rode all the way to school each morning, talking about the latest news in our daily lifes and having fun cruising through town. Getting back on the bike now brought up some great memories.

For safety reasons and as a tribute to my earlier cycling days, I’ve equipped my Paratrooper Pro with a funky ‘bell-pepper’. It always makes me smile when I hop on my bike.

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Of course, I picked one of the nicer routes to get from my home to work. It takes me along one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in Cambridge and is well-balanced when it comes to comfort level and terrain. One of the roads I take is Brattle Street which is lined with many beautiful and historic buildings. I really enjoy riding here, especially in the morning when the sunshine peaks through the old trees and adds a warmth and glow to the passing scenery. Furthermore I’m riding by the oldest university in the United States: Harvard.

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Pictured above is the house that served as the headquarters for General George Washington during the Siege of Boston from July 1775- April 1776. It later was the home of renowned 19th century poet, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

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I’ve been riding my bike to work now for over a month (it hasn’t been gone long, but the snow is finally melted now) and I can’t imagine going back to public transit or really any other kind of commuting. Instead of being dependent on the bus schedule, I can now decide when I want to leave the house. I don’t have to sit in a stuffy, crowded bus any more, and instead I get to enjoy the breeze and wind in my hair while riding.

I can feel my entire body and mind warming up and getting ready for the day while pedaling one mile after another. Moreover I have the freedom to take the route I decide to and make a stop wherever I want. I’m saving lots of money and time (about 30 minutes daily and $75 monthly with the bike!), and I’m doing something for my health every day. Biking to work is so much fun and it makes me feel energized and far more productive in my job. At the end of the day there’s nothing better to clear your head than a ride home in the sunset.

Anhang 1

4 Comments

  1. mpayton777
    Posted April 22, 2015 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I used to drive an UBER cab in Boston. I worry like crazy about bicycle commuters on those streets. I’m convinced that every single bicycle rider is destined to have a accident. And, that accident is likely to offer serious injury.

    Those street are simply too busy. There are just too many concerns to for each and every person involved in an exchange at an intersection, for instance. All of the drivers, each pedestrians, the biker, etc, etc; each person has a whole host of observations to process, and decisions to make so as not to be involved in an accident of some sort. It seems to me that breakdowns in those processes are inevitable and serious injury is always pending…..

    How do you account for that concern?

  2. Christopher
    Posted April 22, 2015 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    Don’t know what Montague has to say, but I’ve been riding in Boston for over 20 years and have not had a serious accident. The important thing to remember is that, as a cyclist, you will always lose. So you should always ride as if the car near you is going to make a dumb decision. It’s worked for me. Oh, and don’t blow off red lights. Cars don’t expect anything to be coming through the intersection when they have a green light.

  3. N B
    Posted June 12, 2015 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    I think you should move your “hot pepper” to the left hand… Would be hard to brake and ding the bell at the same time NO????

  4. Posted June 16, 2015 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    After 50 years of delightful experiences biking around
    town, some words of wisdom:

    Cars hate bikes.

    Ride on the sidewalk except on rare occasions.

    ct

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Posted in Commute, Lifestyle | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments