Get Your Bike Ready for the Season
Guest Author: Gary Bradshaw
Has your favourite bike been sitting neglected in the basement or garage throughout the winter months? Going through this easy eight step tune-up will not only ensure your bike functions smoothly but will prevent any unnecessary wear and tear on your components.
- Wash your bike. The first thing to do is a general full cleaning of the bike to help identify what needs to be done. Use some degreaser to clean off the chain, chain rings and wheels on the rear derailleur. Use a wet rag to wipe off the braking surfaces on your rims and any grit that is accumulated on your frame.
- Check the chain for wear and replace it if needed.
- Check your brakes. Inspect the brake pads at their wear indicator lines. Replace the pads if they are getting thin. Give the wheel a spin to make sure the brake pads are not rubbing.
- Make sure your wheels are in good condition and true.
- Check and make sure your cables are in good condition. First inspect your brake and shift cables for fraying at the ends and proper tension. If you find nicks or fraying, replace the cable. If they are stretched, tighten them.
- Make sure your headset is properly tightened. First, turn your stem to make sure it moves freely and smoothly. “Drop the front end of the bike to see if you hear any rattle that would indicate anything in the headset is loose.
- Check that your pedals and bottom bracket are rotating smoothly. Before you jump on your bike, remove the chain from the chain ring. Rotate the crank and just feel how the pedals and bottom bracket are rotating. Removing the pedals and the BB to clean and lubricate them seasonally is also a good idea.
- Check your shifting. Go through all the gears and make sure the chain is not skipping. Make any final necessary adjustments with the barrel adjuster and finally lubricate your chain.
Bike Theft Prevention Tips
From Ottawa Police Service News Release
Take steps to enhance the security of your bikes:
- Use a sturdy bicycle lock (such as a U-Lock);
- Store your bike in a locked shed or garage;
- Register your bike on 529 Garage to let thieves and potential future buyers know the bike is registered and help police quickly locate and return your bike if it’s stolen.
Please report it! We rely on the public to help us identify those responsible; if your bike has been stolen you are encouraged to file a theft report online at www.ottawapolice.ca/onlinereporting. You can also help police by pre-registering your bike on the 529 Garage app.
Fun for Little Ones
As the pandemic continues, parents may be running out of ideas for things to do with little ones. Check out a few ideas (most are free) below:
- From Ottawa Public Library:
- Free Online Story Time (Zoom) – great for children 6 and under. Tuesdays at 10:30am and Thursdays at 4pm. https://biblioottawalibrary.ca/en/event/online-storytime-0
- Free Parent-Baby Connections (Zoom) – virtual Babytime program for children 0 to 18 months. Thursdays at 2:30pm. https://biblioottawalibrary.ca/en/event/parent-baby-connections-spring-2021
- From Orléans-Cumberland Community Resource Centre:
- Free Drop In Kids Space (Virtual) – every two weeks – themed and bilingual. Separate groups for children grades 1 to 3 and those grades 4 to 6. Tuesdays 4pm to 5:30pm. https://www.crcoc.ca/en/kids-space-drop-in/
- Free Drop In Youth Space (Virtual) – weekly – themed and bilingual Thursdays from 4pm to 6pm. https://www.crcoc.ca/en/children-youth/youth-space/youth-space/#main
- Free Virtual Baby & Me – Mondays from 1pm to 1:30pm: https://events-evenements.crcoc.ca/events-evenements/category/early-on-y-va/
- Free Interactive Circle Time. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10am to 10:30am. https://events-evenements.crcoc.ca/events-evenements/category/early-on-y-va/
- Other Virtual Options:
- Lego Vidiyo – a free app that allows kids to make music videos (there are some toys you could buy that go along with this app’s characters): https://www.lego.com/en-ca/themes/vidiyo/about?icmp=LP-SHQL-Standard-Vidiyo_Backstage_QL_About-TH-VDO-AW78HCL0VA
- Ottawa School of Art offers 1-day and multi-session art classes (some in person and some online options) for children and teens ($). Options like mixed media, drawing, sculpting, cartooning and animation. https://artottawa.ca/courses-camps/?campus=&focus=Children+and+Teens&semester=&category=&search_text=
- Some Museums offer virtual visits or activities!
- Canadian Museum of Nature: https://nature.ca/en/explore-nature/blogs-videos-more
- National Gallery of Canada: https://www.gallery.ca/
- Canadian Museum of History: https://www.historymuseum.ca/museum-at-home/
- Toronto Zoo: https://www.torontozoo.com/
- Bronx Zoo https://bronxzoo.com/virtual-zoo
- San Diego Zoo https://zoo.sandiegozoo.org/were-here-together
- Mo Willems is an American writer who collaborated with The Kennedy Centre to offer lunchtime doodling sessions. These recordings are available online: https://www.kennedy-center.org/education/mo-willems/lunch-doodles/
LRT Construction Headaches
There has been some discussion in the Association’s Facebook group about the intermittent disturbances being caused to many in our neighbourhoods who live near the LRT Stage 2 construction zones.
While it can feel good to vent and know that others relate to what you are going through on Facebook, the messages may not be seen by those who can do something to solve the problem.
If you are being disturbed by noise or vibrations after 11pm, you can report the noise or vibration complaint to Ottawa Bylaw by calling 3-1-1 or online: https://so311.serviceottawa.ca/selfserve/?reqId=2003002&lang=en
It may also be helpful to connect to our Councillor, Matthew Luloff, who has spoken about his efforts to minimize disruptions to his constituents on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/matthewluloff4orleans/ . Finally, you can read the most recent update on the project here: Project updates | City of Ottawa