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This guide contains important information regarding bicycle assembly. It is intended to be a convenient general reference only. It is not intended to be a complete or comprehensive manual covering all aspects of bicycle assembly or safety.
The tools you will need to assemble the bike include:
- Socket wrench
- 4, 5, 6, and 8 mm Allen wrenches
- 15 mm open-end wrench or adjustable wrench
- Wire cutters or scissors
- Phillips and flat blade screwdriver
- Box cutter or knife
- Air pump
Step 1: Unbox the Bike
Remove the bike from the box. Be careful of the staples in the box when removing the bike. Cut any zip ties that are holding the parts together and remove packing material that’s wrapped around parts. Lay all the parts out, so that you can see each one. It’s a good idea to make sure all the parts are there before starting to assemble the bike. Note: You can use the box the bike came in to build it on, so you don’t scratch your floor.
Step 2. Attach the Handlebars
If you have a bike stand, this is the time to clamp in your bike. Although it’s easier to assemble using a stand, you certainly don’t need one. To attach the handlebars, unscrew the stem bolts and set aside along with the top cap of the stem. Put the handlebar in the stem, making sure it is centered. Apply a small amount of grease to the bolt threads. Replace the top cap and hand thread the bolts back into the stem. Next, using your allen wrench, tighten the bolts evenly in an x-pattern making sure you keep the stem cap even as you tight the bolts. It is suggested that you line the handlebars up with the forks. Lastly, torque the bolts to make sure they are tight.
Step 3. Install the Seat Post
Now it’s time to install the seat post. Apply a small amount of grease on the inside of the seat tube or on the seat post, and insert the seat post into the seat tube. Align the seat so the nose runs parallel with the frame and tighten the bolts on the seat clamp.
If your bike has a quick-release, unlock the lever and insert the seat post. Tighten the adjusting nut until the lever, when closed, holds the seat post firmly in position. You can always adjust your seat into the perfect position later on, but always make sure the minimum insertion mark is not visible above the seat clamp.Step 4. Install the Front Wheel
First, remove the plastic protective caps on the wheel if you haven’t already. If you’re not using a stand, flip the bicycle over and inset the front wheel into the fork dropouts. If you have disc brakes, make sure the rotor sits between the caliper pads. Unscrew the nut of the quick release and slide off one of the springs on the axle. Put a light amount of grease on the treads. Starting on the side with the brake rotor insert the axle through the wheel. Slide the spring back onto the axle with the narrow end toward the hub and thread the nut by hand.
As you continue to tighten the nut, open and close the cam lever checking for tension on the cam. Once resistance is met, close the lever toward the frame to prevent snags when riding. Make sure the wheel is centered on the fork.
Step 5. Install the Pedals
To install the pedals, start by greasing the threads of each pedal. Use either an appropriate wrench or pedal wrench to attach one peddle to each crank arm. You can use an open-end or adjustable wrench if you don’t have a peddle wrench. Look for an "L" and "R" on your pedals to determine which one is for the left and right side. The right pedal will tighten clockwise, but the left pedal will tighten counterclockwise, which is the opposite of a regular bolt.
Step 6. Pre-Ride Assembly
Now it’s time to flip the bike back over to do some pre-rides tests and fine tuning. Let’s start with the handlebars. Looking straight down on your stem to make sure it is lined up with your front tire. With the side bolts on the stem loosened, you can gently tap the tire with your foot to line the tire up with the stem. Once they are lined up, tighten the bolts on the side of the stem. You can check your assembly with a couple tests: A push test, by applying pressure in both a downwards and upwards direction on the handlebars. And a twist test, by holding the bike and twisting both the handlebars and stem laterally.
Check that the seat is secure by pulling up and down on the nose and back of the saddle, then twisting laterally. Check your brakes by pulling on the brake lever(s) and check that the lever(s) do not bottom out.
Now let’s pump the tires up. You can find the recommended PSI to inflate the tires on the side of the tire. Never go over this recommended pressure because it can damage the tire. Lastly, go around your bike and torque all of the bolts to the manufacturers specifications to make sure everything is tightened properly. Now it’s time to enjoy the bike you just put together yourself!