Bike derailleur – comprehensive guide to using it correctly

Bike derailleur - comprehensive guide to using it correctly

Many people mistakenly believe that a bicycle is equipped with a bike derailleur to speed up the ride, but in fact, the maximum force that a person can produce is only 0.4 horsepower.

A bike derailleur is just a tool to help people use this maximum horsepower with ease.

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    Definition of bike derailleur

    A bike derailleur is a device that changes the transmission ratio of a bicycle by changing the size or position of the chain and gears to change the speed.

    Simply put, a bike derailleur is used to regulate the relationship between your pedal power and the speed of your bike.

    Benefits of bike derailleurs

    Generally bicycles are used in the city and there are actually a lot of slopes in the city. What are the top 5 city electric bike?

    For example, sometimes you may feel your pedals suddenly become heavy, and there are often more slopes than you can judge with your eyes.

    This is where a bike derailleur comes into its own.

    If you have a bike derailleur, you can ride with ease by switching to lighter gear. Of course, this method can also be used when there is a headwind.

    Benefits of bike derailleurs

    Derailleurs also have the advantage of helping you reduce your physical exertion when you are not feeling well.

    For example, when you have a cold, you can’t exert yourself too much, so if you ride with lighter gears you will feel relaxed.

    There are also flexible bike derailleurs for women when they are physically weak, for students when they are tired from exams, for older people and so on, so there are really too many benefits of bike derailleurs.

    Classification of bike derailleur

    External gear-shaft

    Adopting a tower-shaped multi-stage tooth plate, through a chain with different tooth plate values, to obtain a wide range of transmission ratios.

    Advantages: Easy to maintain, transmission effect is clearly visible

    Disadvantages: The structure is basically exposed, easily affected by dust and foreign objects, resulting in damage.

    External gear-shaft

    Internal gear-hub

    The internal gear-hub structure is integrated into the bicycle hub to change the transmission ratio through transmission between gears with different numbers of teeth.

    Advantages: The structure is sealed, not affected by the outside world, generally do not need frequent maintenance.

    Disadvantages: Complex structure, thicker and heavier shell.

    Internal gear-hub

    Correct and efficient operation of bike derailleur

    If the gears are too light, the rider’s pedaling force will be uneven, and if the leg force is too heavy, the rider’s buttocks will not be able to sit stably on their best bike saddle.

    And also, because the leg force is too large, and then makes the pedaling posture change, affecting the smoothness of the pedaling action.

    There are many beginners at the beginning of the lack of training, the legs lack sufficient muscular endurance, the use of heavy gears can have a greater power to move forward.

    Because the muscles can not withstand the pressure of the situation, resulting in knee joints or muscle strains, and other sports injuries, beginners should be measured from their physical condition, not because of the pursuit of speed and forced to use gear.

    Beginners should evaluate their physical condition and should not use heavy gears to ride too long a distance in pursuit of speed.

    Correct and efficient operation of bike derailleur

    Under different road conditions with the appropriate gear ratios

    Some beginners in the purchase of vehicles often like to rely on their own riding habits and preferences to adjust the front and rear bicycle gear ratios.

    We should choose to suit their own preferences and in order to achieve the most efficient pedaling output is the main.

    Flat road

    On a flat track, the front disc is usually a small disc with a rear disc 17 to 21.

    If riding in a favorable wind, the rider can adjust the front disc to a large disc, while the rear disc can be freely matched to achieve the effect of high-speed cruising.

    Rapid uphill

    In the riding plane section, if there are short slopes in front, such as bridges and hilly terrain.

    The rider can rely on the inertia of the riding plane section to rush up, the front gear disk can be maintained in the position of the large disk, while the rear gear disk should be changed according to the road conditions.

    Under different road conditions with the appropriate gear ratios


    As in the uphill section, it will increase the load on the rider’s legs when pedaling, resulting in excessive resistance to the legs.

    In this case, the gears of the rear disc should be adjusted, and the gears should be adjusted one by one at the beginning to find the most suitable gear gradually, and then with the experience of riding, it will be easy to find the right gear for yourself.

    When riding continuous uphill sections, long distances and steep terrain, the rider should change gears according to the terrain.

    Usually the front disc is adjusted to a small disc, while the rear disc keeps changing gears to match the changing terrain.


    Beginners riding continuous downhill sections, the primary principle should be to maintain an average pedaling frequency and efficiency, to avoid affecting the rear of the vehicle is the main.

    The front disc can be adjusted to a large disc, while the rear disc can gradually lower gears, do not be greedy for fast and do not adjust.

    If there are sudden conditions or sharp curves that lead to brake failure, it will probably lead to serious accidents.

    When experiencing the downhill situation

    In fact, there is no such thing as the right time to change gears in the process of riding.

    After all, everyone’s physical conditions are different, and riders should listen and feel their own way of riding to change gears.

    Simply put, if you feel resistance while riding, you should change gears, and if you pedal too hard, you should lighten the gears, and vice versa.

    Maintenance of bike derailleur

    Regular maintenance and cleaning are key to keeping the transmission running properly.

    Gears and chains should be kept well lubricated to prevent rust and wear.

    If you notice that the transmission is not moving smoothly or making unusual noises, it may need some adjustments or repairs.

    Maintenance of bike derailleur


    Understanding how bike derailleurs work and how to use them can make you more comfortable riding.

    As long as you are skilled in the use of derailleurs, you are all set to experience the joys of cycling.

    Hi, I'm an experienced writer about mechanic and an expert on bike and e-bike tech who appreciates practical, beautifully-engineered things. And of course, I love cycling.
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