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A Two Minute Bike Maintenance Item that can Save You Untold Hassle and Cash…


February 2016

With spring coming up, I have a simple two minute (maybe less, I had to take photos too) maintenance tip that can save you from a HUGE hassle…

When we ride, what must we do, besides inflating the tires, every single ride?

We drink.  Whether it be water, some hydration mix or even Gatorade, we consume a lot of fluids.


We sweat a lot.


Okay, where does that sweat go?  Throw in some water and Gatorade and you get a pretty gnarly mix that trickles down over much of the bike.  One of the least looked after items on a bike are the bottle cage bolts and they take a tremendous amount of abuse, when you think about it.  If you recall, when I took my Trek in to get painted, after I stripped the entire bike down, there was still a bottle cage attached to the frame.


Those bolts are so fused to the bolt bosses that I didn’t want to risk breaking the bolt off or stripping the bolt head…  I had to let the pros handle it.  Well, that only has to happen once to me, because that kind of stuff can get expensive in a hurry.

This is what you’ll need…  Oh, and a paper towel too:



Break the bolts free, turning counterclockwise:


Clean off the bosses:


To lube the bolt threads, just stick the bolt in the nozzle and give the tube a little squeeze.  “Little” is the operative word there:


Install the bolts and look at that!:


If you’re lucky, as I was, your once plastic bottle cage will turn into a color-matched Blackburn carbon fiber beauty!  Gotta love it when the bike thanks you for taking care of it like that.

Next, tackle the second cage.  For this one I just did one bolt at a time (it’s a newer cage and the bike hasn’t seen one rain drop since that cage went on – I know it’s clean underneath):


Next, we put a dab of lube on our fingertip:


And lube the bolt head.  I do this because those rivulets of sweat, Gatorade and Perpetuem can turn into a pretty gnarly funk.  In fact, you’ll find, as I did, that those bolts are magic Funky Fluid Magnets:


Then take that paper towel and dab off the excess lube.  We do this because we don’t want those Funky Fluid Magnets to attract dirt and dust as well:


And there you have it…  Bob’s your uncle:


PS. That’s our Snopocalypse right outside the window there. We’re supposed to get got a foot today.  WOOHOO!


  1. Rat Catcher says:

    apparently only drinking beer solves this problem.

  2. thegraywolf says:

    Great write up, love the pics. Specialized just make awesome bikes

  3. Archetype says:

    Yup, good heads up there Jim. I’ve been using a ptfe based anti-seize on many pieces on the bike for years. Works like a charm!

  4. MJ Ray says:

    Don’t you check your brakes before every ride, then?

    And would copper slip be better to poly lube for that application?

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