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How To: Zinn and the Art of (Modern) Road Bike Maintenance with New 5th Edition

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Zinn and the art of Road bike maintenance velopress lennard (1)

If you’re going to work on your car, you would probably consult something like a Haynes manual for the more difficult repairs. Having a detailed, specific guide to your vehicle is a huge help and a cheap way to make sure things go as smoothly as possible. There isn’t really a Haynes manual for individual bikes. There is however, Zinn and the Art of Road or Mountain Bike Maintenance. For years, Lennard Zinn has put together the best selling maintenance guide for all of your rides.

Clearly, bicycles have changed significantly over the past years, which means how you work on them has changed as well. It wasn’t that long ago that the idea of plugging your bike into a laptop for diagnostics seemed comical. In the 5th Edition of Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance, Lennard adds a number of modern repair resources along with all of the past knowledge to make a hefty reference with nearly 500 pages and 700 illustrations.

Check out what’s new in the 5th Edition next…

Zinn and the art of Road bike maintenance velopress lennard (2)
Photos c. Velopress

From Velopress:

What’s New in Zinn & the Art of Road Bike Maintenance, 5th Ed.:

  • More than 700 comprehensive illustrations and exploded views.
  • New chapter on electronic shifting covers maintenance, service, repair, and troubleshooting of all Shimano, SRAM, and Campagnolo electronic shifting groups
  • New chapter on disc brakes covers maintenance, service, and repair of all hydraulic and mechanical systems
  • New tech covered in depth: through-axle forks, SRAM eTap wireless shifting, second generation Shimano and Campagnolo electronic shifting, direct-mount sidepull brakes, SRAM X-Sync 1×11 cyclocross systems, tubular tire gluing tapes.
  • New troubleshooting charts
  • New master guide to press-fit bottom brackets
  • Also covered in the 5th edition: All derailleur shifting systems (5-speed through 11-speed); all bottom bracket systems (cone-and-cup through press-fit); all brake systems (including caliper, V-brake, cantilever, and disc); all headset, stem, handlebar and fork systems; wheelbuilding for all bikes including cyclocross and disc-brake wheels; special sections on cyclocross throughout including troubleshooting, maintenance, service, repair, and equipment selection; updated and expanded torque tables; complete illustration index and complete subject index.

You can pick up the 5th Edition from Velopress.com for $26.95, and likely from your favorite bike shop as well. Or, as a last resort, the anti-bike shop for under $20.

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Eric Hansen
Eric Hansen
7 years ago

The idea of a paper manual is about a decade deprecated at this point.

mudrock
mudrock
7 years ago

Still need manuals. Computers don’t take kindly to greasy prints all over them. Did Lennard update it to include the new T47 BB standard? Sram wireless?

Matt
Matt
7 years ago

Trying to decide if I have the mechanical acumen to give my own maintenance a shot. I feel like by the time you buy all the equipment needed plus $50 on road an Mtn manuals you’d be better off paying the LBS to get greasy for you.

Obviously, in the long run you’d save for repeated maintenance items. Can anyone recommend a good starter kit?

Slow Joe Crow
Slow Joe Crow
7 years ago

@Matt if you have enough bikes, and the inclination to do your own dirty work it pays off quickly. Zinn’s book actually has a section on tools for different levels of repairs and maintenance, plus some notes on work space and supplies.
For tools I’d lean towards the Pedro’s starter kit, because I prefer a cog wrench over a chain whip and it includes a cable cutter. Otherwise the the basic Park kit is good and the Lifu starter kits (sold as Ice Toolz, Spin Doctor etc.) are OK is you want to save some money. Also get a repair stand, it really helps with working on a bike. Besides that, you need cleaning stuff and a good floor pump.

Zinn or the Park Tools book are good and paper is better in the shop than a tablet or laptop.

Joe
Joe
7 years ago

@Matt, check out the latest GCN video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ue7YPySIShg) and their series of basic maintenance here (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUdAMlZtaV1333Cy1QnIZwqDXj1q0Ooyy). Also, @Slow Joe Crow is right, once you make a small investment in the tools and a work stand, it will pay off quickly.

However, the biggest reason I started doing my own maintenance is because I broke a chain on a ride and was totally screwed, I had a multi-tool with a chain break attachment, but I didn’t know that at the time or how to use it. Doing your own work will save your a** from time to time.

Matt
Matt
7 years ago

@Slow Joe Crow thanks so much. this was exactly the info I was looking for. I definitely see the appeal of a paperbook. I have tried watching videos on youtube while trying to hold my bike up and do the repairs which wasn’t too efficient. drivetrain and disc brake work scares me, but I am sure with practice, it’s doable.

Think you may have sold me. Happy Holidays all.

Albert
Albert
7 years ago

Another reason to be your own mechanic is that not only does it save time (taking it to the shop and the queue needed to get it worked on) but I trust myself best. I also am willing to spend more time to get it just right rather than pretty close. It also provides a sense of satisfaction that you can repair it on your own. Most people can do it if they are willing despite how non-mechanical one is.

chup
chup
7 years ago

it surely helps on sleepless nights. sweet dreams are made of this.

TypeVertigo
7 years ago

@Matt
Drivetrain and disc brake work, at least for mechanical systems, is actually pretty straightforward in my experience. Don’t let it deter you. YouTube does help a ton; I downloaded a few videos on my phone and keep them for reference just in case.

It’s the more involved stuff like hub maintenance, press-fit bottom brackets and replacing cables on frames with internal cable routing that I currently balk on – I leave those up to the local bike shop because I don’t have bearing press tools or cup and cone wrenches. These are pretty specialized tools and aren’t exactly cheap.

In any case, any reference like Zinn’s book or Park Tool’s book is welcome if it means more people become a little more self-reliant in terms of at least basic bike maintenance.

David
David
7 years ago

Highly recommend all riders learn maintenance. Supporting local shop is great but being competent to fix or trail tune bike is also great. I have 25 years into collecting pro shop tools and even built a shop building out back to support the habit. Just fully rebuilt/repaired a terralogic fork for a friend so you can learn anything. Shop mechanics are folks that practice more but it’s not magic. Try it out.

Ajax
Ajax
7 years ago

I used to have an older version of this book back when the Internet was still young. It was a great book and certainly I would buy the new one if not for the advancement of YouTube videos. There are tons of how-to videos on websites like YouTube, Vimeo, and others that actually SHOW you how to repair whatever it is you need to repair. Even though I still have the older Zinn Maintenance book, it is far easier to view a video online and see how it’s done, rather than reading about it and figuring it out.

Zinn needs to move out of the book model and instead invest in making videos. He actually has a couple videos online, one of which he talks about a sprocket wrench tool he designed with Pedro’s and another one he discusses S&S couplers. His videos are actually very informative and he is well presented on camera. He is missing a huge opportunity by sticking with print media. The GCN guys started a couple years ago and already have a bigger footprint online than 20+ yr veteran Velonews. Print media is a dieing money source.

John
John
7 years ago

@mudrock: SRAM eTap: yes. T47 BB: no.

(Probably not enough lead time between the T47 announcement 6 weeks ago and the publishing cutoff date.)

Phillip Barzune
5 years ago

Interesting, but not everyone is able to own the most up-to-date bicycle. Most of us who want to learn how to repair and maintain our machine, need information on ( how should we phrase it? ) LESS modern, top-range bicycles.

If we could afford a 2017 high-tech model, we could also afford to have complete maintenance from a well-endowed shop.

If we’re looking to buy a book, to learn how to properly maintain or (in extremis) ,repair our machine, then we probably aren’t riding a $15,000 , 2017 model.

Apparently, anyone who could use this book could, as well, hire a factory-trained mechanic to teach them the full technique of maintaining their ( undoubtedly) superb ride.

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