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The Urban Biking Handbook: The DIY Guide to Building, Rebuilding, Tinkering with, and Repairing Your Bicycle for City Living Paperback – August 1, 2011


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The Urban Biking Handbook: The DIY Guide to Building, Rebuilding, Tinkering with, and Repairing Your Bicycle for City Living + One Gear: Converting and Maintaining Single Speed and Fixed Gear Bicycles + Zinn & the Art of Road Bike Maintenance: The World's Best-Selling Bicycle Repair and Maintenance Guide
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Quarry Books (August 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592536956
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592536955
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,921 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Charles Haine has been a bicycle mechanic for over a decade. He learned to fix bikes at a bicycle co-operative at Oberlin College, followed by stints at several bicycle shops in his hometown of Washington, DC, including Blazing Saddles and Citybikes, and time at both the Bike Spot and Bikecology in Los Angeles. He is currently the chairman of the Bicycle Kitchen, a non-profit bicycle education space in Los Angeles, California, where he has also been a volunteer for 7 years. He has taught beginning and advanced bicycle mechanics to countless numbers of both the general public and also other volunteers at the Bicycle Kitchen to help them hone their mechanic skills and better serve the community. In his spare time he gets into arguments about how to properly address brake squeak. Visit him online at http://www.bicyclekitchen.com.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 18 customer reviews
Maybe I was hoping for more detail, but it wasn't a disappointing read.
J. Sierra
This book is perfect for beginners who are looking to learn a ton of knowledge about urban cycling.
Josiah
If you ever went to Bicycle shop and overwhelm by the choices this book will clean up the mess.
Paul A. Vincent

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Michael P. McCullough on April 2, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a fun and quick book about urban biking with plenty of nice pictures as well. I've been cycling for the past 30+ years so there wasn't a lot of new info here but if you are just now becoming a cycling enthusiast this would be a valuable resource. There is a pervasive attitude throughout this book that the most expensive gear may not always be the best choice - so get sturdy mid range bike, learn how to modify it and fix it yourself - and jam econo.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jorge F. Garcia on July 9, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book might get you started with your own repairing and rebuilding... but it is (and once you get past the first few pages it admits) no DIY guide. I am once again excited about bikes, and I found the book to be a breeze to read. But it is only an appetizer... not a filling meal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Paul A. Vincent on December 8, 2012
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This book is an excellent read to gain more knowledge about urban bicycling. In the handbook has a lot of pictures and easy to understand material to educated everyone about types of helmets to buying a bike that fits your riding style. One thing I like about this the author does not try to talk over your head. Terminology is kept very simple for easier understanding. One of the best sections is describing the different types/styles of bicycles. The author kept the explanations simple and on point. If you ever went to Bicycle shop and overwhelm by the choices this book will clean up the mess. Also, this book writes about everything you will need to know about own a bicycle responsibly, from the types of locks to what hazards may lay in wait. This book does touch on some simple repair but nothing to complex ( this is not a repair book). If you are an expert to novice urban bicycle rider this book is a nice reference book to have.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By D. A. Kotzur on August 8, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is not a repair manual. Mostly general information for a non-cyclist. I would not recommend this to anyone who is looking for detailed instruction on repairing a bike.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nils Kelly on May 31, 2013
Format: Paperback
I'm not sure why I bought this book--it's a little pricey compared to some of the bike frame building books on Amazon. Maybe because I have just been getting back into tinkering with bikes after 40 years or so. It's a good overview, with clear color photos (probably explains the price diff), and has some useful task-based material in the later chapters.

I liked the section on p. 107 about the difference between number of speeds and range. I think a lot of casual riders are not clear on that. More gears can mean only finer, and not really useful, gradations within the same range as a humble 3-speed.

A couple of sentences on the previous page in the Drive Train section, attempt to explain front vs rear gears:

"The larger the gear is in front next to the pedals, the harder it is to pedal. It may be counterintuitive, because it's not the same for the gears attached to your pedals, but the larger the gear attached to your rear wheel, the harder it is to pedal."

What? Counterintuitive indeed!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B. Jones on February 1, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Seriously, any bike enthusiast, bike technician, or just plain bike rider should own this book. It's affordable and it covers a wide range of topics I would never have even considered researching on my own! I love it! If you want something specific to a certain field (like customizing bikes, or the different brands of frames) then get a subject specific book like that and keep this one as well. This book will give you the BASICS (+ a little extra) so don't expect it to contain EVERYTHING in the world about biking.

Btw, it's so easy to read. Lol, plenty of pictures too!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Andy on December 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
For me this was a complimentary reading to all the other books about bicycles I got. Fact is, as simple as a bike basically is as complex are the varieties of systems, types, and points of view out there, which don't fit all into one book. The more information one gets about the subject the better decisions can be made for a particular situation, and for that reason I recommend this book to all bicycle enthusiasts. For those who haven't purchased their first book, this is a good introduction to the bicycle world.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Josiah on September 15, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been living in a large city for a year now, and-after getting frustrated with gas prices and traffic- recently became interested in cycling. This book has been my guide to life, helping me choose the right bike, get the right accessories, and get the most out of every ride. This book is perfect for beginners who are looking to learn a ton of knowledge about urban cycling.
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