Hi, my name is Mark. They call me Killa. I’ve been riding and working on bikes ever since I can remember. My friends know me as their mechanic. I’m the guy that fixes everybody’s flats out on the road or performs a quick adjustment in the parking lot before the ride. I work on bikes in my garage (Killa’s Garage, get it?). Anyway, I don’t do this for a living, but wrenching as a pastime has taught me utmost respect for the mechanics and fitters at the local bike shops. I think being a wrench is the coolest thing.

I’ve been wanting to share my observations on some of the more esoteric aspects of bicycles and cycling for some time. I finally have the time to make it happen. I plan to share what I hope you agree are interesting little details about cycling that I have picked up over the years from racing, riding, and working on my friends’ and my own bikes. I don’t plan to produce videos on how to change a bottom bracket, or step-by-step instructions for taping handlebars. If I see a particularly good video, I’ll link you to it. Go to Park Tools or Art’s Cyclery for excellent straightforward bicycle repair and maintenance videos. Stay here for everything you ever wanted to know about things like quick release skewer springs.

3 thoughts on “About”

  1. Purchased a Trek FSX6 this fall. When I rode it seriously the first time, I was surprised by the amount of noise coming from the Shimano 105 drive train. Clicks and clatter, changing depending on which gears I was in. More force means more noise. The bike has been reviewed and readjusted numerous times and no one can find anything amiss. I’ve got it on a Cycleops at the moment and the clatter is most noticeable on the large ring. When I crank the pedal by hand without resistance I can feel each tooth fitting into the chain with my hand. My problem is that I dislike noises I can’t identify and I’ve just spend two grand. Any thoughts?

    1. Hi Steve, this is a fun challenge, diagnosing noise via web chat. I’ll toss a few ideas out there. Please forgive me if I’m stating the obvious here goes in no particular order:
      – First, you say FSX6. Is this the “Trek FX Sport 6”? Does it have a 105 crank? Did you buy it new?
      – “no-one can find anything amiss”. Who has looked at it, bike shop mechanics?
      – are you trying to use the two inner rear cogs with the large chainring (or the two outer rear cogs with the small chainring)? Those combinations are not recommended. They put the chain at an uncomfortable angle. It makes more noise, and it wears the drivetrain out faster than necessary.
      Is there a gap of at least, oh, 1/4” between the upper jockey wheel on the rear derailleur and the cassette cog in every gear?
      – brand new drive trains are a bit noisier. They quiet down after a few rides as the machined edges on the sprockets get rounded.
      – is the cassette tight?
      – is it possible that the rear derailleur is adjusted one whole gear off? This will result in noisy operation in some gears and smooth operation in others. Do this. Shift to the small cog. Keep shifting until there are no more clicks in the shifter. Then shift one click the other way and see if the chain jumps to the second cog. If it takes two clicks to shift to the second cog, your cable is way too loose.
      Let me know if any of this helps.

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