Diamondback Owners Guide & Assembly Instructions

OWNERS GUIDE & assembly instructions
Please read carefully before riding
21 Point Pre-Delivery Inspection
Each item should be ticked by the mechanic undertaking the Pre-Delivery Inspection (PDI) and signed at the end
to certify that the cycle is being handed over in first class condition. All riders, including Mail Order customers, are
urged to make similar periodic safety checks for themselves, or have them done by a Diamondback Retailer, using
this list as a guide.
1. Fit all of the loose equipment supplied with the
bike and tighten pedals, toe clips and straps.
12Lubricate chain and suggest appropriate lubricant
to customer, depending on likely use.
2 Adjust wheel quick releases and position levers
correctly. Tighten wheel nuts, where fitted, and
explain the importance of correct chain tension
where necessary.
13Suspension bikes – forks only: sit customer on
saddle and demonstrate how to adjust the springs
where applicable.
3Spin wheels to check trueness, then test tyre
4Check that the saddle height and fore and
aft adjustment are correctly matched to the
5Check handlebar height and handlebar angle are
correctly matched to the customer.
6Make sure that the seat post and handlebar stem
are not extended further than the safety limit line.
7Tighten saddle clip, saddle adjustment bolt,
handlebar stem fixing, handlebar clamp bolt and
bar ends.
8Test brakes and check pad position, adjusting as
required. Check front brake is connected to right
hand lever. Check that customer can reach the
brake lever comfortably.
9Demonstrate effectiveness of braking system to
customer and explain the danger of pitch-over,
especially if the brakes are allowed to lock.
10 Check that the gears change cleanly and adjust as
11Show customer how to change gear and explain
that low gears should be used for climbing hills,
middle gears for the flat and high gears for
14Full suspension bikes: sit customer on saddle and
demonstrate how to adjust the rear suspension,
and then the front. Check that the bike is level
when the whole weight of the customer is placed
on the saddle.
15Check that any extra-cost equipment or any
accessories mounted on the bike before purchase
are correctly fitted and safe. Explain how to use
them to the customer.
16Hub gear bikes: explain to customer how to
disconnect gear cable and remove back wheel.
17 BMX bikes: test that steering can be rotated
through 360° without getting the brake cables
caught up (gyro models only).
18 Kid’s bikes: Sit rider on bike and check that the
rider can place both feet flat on the ground. Adjust
brake lever reach to suit individual customer.
Explain to parents and children that the use of
garage air lines is dangerous.
19 Frame Numbers (To be recorded by PDI
mechanic). See page 4 for location.
20 Explain the Diamondback guarantee and servicing
arrangements to the customer and ensure that he
or she is happy with everything before signing off
21Check chainwheel and crank bolt torque is
3. Know Your Bike
Quick Assembly Guide
8. Personal Safety
11.Steering, headsets
and Handlebars
13. Pedals
14. Quick Release Wheels
15.Saddle Adjustment
17. Brakes
26. Gears
31. BMX
39.Clothing & Accessories
Mechanic’s signature:
Customer’s signature:
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IMPORTANT - know your bike
Check that you use your bike correctly.
Please read these instructions carefully.
There are different European
Standards for bicycles depending on
how the bicycle is intended to be used.
For more detailed information and tips, including a comprehensive guide
to care and maintenance we recommend you read the owners guide in
You can check the table below what
type of riding your bicycle has been
designed for.
Diamondback bikes are fully adjusted and checked over at the factory. The
handlebars may be removed or assembled in the bike and turned through
90 degrees. the pedals removed and in some cases the front wheel will
have been removed too. It is a relatively simple operation to re-assemble
these parts, however if you do not feel competent to do this you should
ask someone who is, as it is important that these simple tasks are done
correctly for the integral safety of the bike. If in doubt consult a qualified
mechanic or cycle dealer.
Note: To find the correct BS:EN
standard for your bicycle please
refer to the label on the frame
Type of use for
which bike is
Permissible total
weight of rider +
BS: EN 14764
Trekking Bikes
Riding on roads and
tracks. Not for off
road or rough terrain
120 Kg (19 stone)
BS: EN 14766
Mountain Bikes
Off road, rough
terrain, cycle tracks
or road
120 Kg (19 stone)
BS: EN 14781
Racing Bikes
High Speed amateur
use on public roads
Not for off road or
rough terrain.
120 Kg (19 stone)
Please remove all packaging very carefully, especially if using a knife or
sharp blade. Take care not to scratch any of the parts of the bike or slash
the tyres.
We suggest that you keep hold of the carton in case you need to return
the bike.
IMPORTANT: Failure to use your bike in accordance with
the above recommendations could result in serious injury
• Allen key (s)
• Multi-spanner
• Pedals
• Reflectors
*Where applicable
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Preparing your bike for assembly
8. Seat tube
9. Down tube
10. Suspension fork
11. V-style brake
12. Disc brake
13. Rear suspension unit
14. Chain set axle bolt
1. Chain wheel set
2. Front gear mechanism
3. Rear gear mechanism
4. Handlebar stem
5. Seat post
6. Multiple sprockets
7. Top tube
Right hand
Safety Points
This sign is used in this booklet, wherever a
particular topic is safety sensitive or needs extra
care. Some of these items are specified in the
British Standard covering bicycles but many
others are Diamondback recommendations.
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Attaching the handlebars
There are two types of handlebar attachment in general use, the stem type (single bolt) and the threadless or A-Head
type (two bolts). In addition, some BMX bikes have a different arrangement.
Stem Type (Single Bolt)
Threadless Type (3 Bolts)
BMX Type
To adjust the saddle height,
loosen the clamp bolt using an
Allen key, spanner or the quick
release lever and adjust the
seat post to the required height.
Adjust the height of the saddle
so that when cycling along, your
leg will be slightly bent with the
pedal at its lowest point.
1 Remove the plastic cap
(if present) from the top of the
handlebar stem cap and loosen
the bolt using the 6mm allen key.
1 Using an allen key, loosen the
2 sides bolts (A) followed by top
bolt (B) and turn the handlebar
through 90 degrees.
2 Turn the handlebar and set at
90 degrees to the front wheel. Set
at the required height and
re-tighten the bolt.
2 Re-tighten all bolts fully so
there is no movement whatsoever
and the handlebars are securely
1 Loosen top nut, turn the
handlebar and set at 90 degrees
to the front wheel.
Important: When altering the
height of the saddle, you must not
pull the seat post out further than
the limit mark.
2 Re-tighten the nut fully so
there is no movement.
Important: Do not position the
stem outside the limit mark.
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Front Wheel
A. Models with Nutted Axle
Unhooking the
brake pipe
Re-linking the brake:
Locate the wheel axle in the fork
slots and ensure that the wheel is
central before fully tightening the
wheel nuts.
1 Squeeze the brake arms
inward in the direction of the
2 Locate the ferrule on the brake
pipe in the cut out of the bracket.
3 Apply the right-hand brake
lever to check for smooth
B. Models with Quick
Release (Q/R)
In order to fit the front wheel it
will be necessary to unhook the
brake pipe ferrule from the brake
arm bracket.
There are two ways of securing
the front wheel, (A) Nutted Axle
and (B) Quick Release
1 Take off the nut and one of the
springs and feed the skewer
(the other spring must be kept
under the head of the lever body)
through the wheel hub. With the
spring in place under the head of
the nut, loosely screw the nut on
to the skewer.
efficient operation of the brake.
2 Insert the wheel into the
forks ensuring that the wheel
is central. Open and close the
QR lever with one hand while
gradually tightening the adjusting
nut with the other until you feel
resistance in the lever when the
lever is pointing away from the
hub. Now close the QR by pushing
as hard as you can with the palm
of your hand against the side of
the lever marked ‘close’ until the
lever is in the position shown in
the pictures. When closed, the
Q/R lever must sit alongside the
fork blade. This minimises the
chances of it getting released
Disc brakes use 2 pads and these
are usually kept in place with
packing pieces during transit.
Remove the packaging from
between the disc pads making
sure that the pads are not
Models with
Disc Brakes
It is better if the bike is upside
down when fitting a disc brake
Fit the wheel in place with the
rotor plate between the 2 pads.
Follow previous instructions for
tightening quick release and
wheel nuts.
Important: Ensure the nuts and
quick release are fully tightened.
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1 Identify left and right pedals by
the letter R & L stamped on the
end of the thread.
For safety reasons it is very important that these are fitted correctly
as the photograph below. Depending on the type supplied, the front
reflector may be fitted to the handlebar or fork and the rear fitted to
the seat post or rear bridge (see photos below).
2 Identify left and right cranks.
Tighten pedal by hand into the
correct crank. Note the correct
3 Tighten the pedals by hand, then
using a spanner fully tighten in
the correct rotation.
• Correct pedal and crank
• Correct tightening rotation
• Do not cross-thread
• Always keep pedals tight
• Check and retighten regularly
Important: Be safe!
Before you ride check the following:
1 Tyres are inflated to the recommended pressure.
2 Brakes are functioning properly.
3 Axle nuts or quick release levers are tightened.
4Handlebar bolt(s) is tightened.
5 Seat bolt is tightened.
Keep your reflectors clean CYCLISTS MUST BE SEEN .
Ensure pedal is tight up against
the crank when fully tightened
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Front mudguard
Personal Safety
(where applicable)
Take out the screws in the fork ends. Using these screws, loosely
fit the stays to the fork ends. Fit the mudguard bracket behind
the fork. Ensure all screws are tightened.
There’s no doubt that a certain
amount of equipment can improve
cycling safety, particularly at night.
On the other hand, however much
equipment you have, there’s no
substitute for cycling skills - see
page 10 - and a full awareness of
other traffic.
When you buy a cycle helmet, it’s
important to check that it’s
manufactured to a proper standard.
The minimum legal requirement for
any helmet sold in the UK and the
rest of Europe is that they are CE
certified and conform to the
EN1078:1997 European Standard.
Once a helmet has been in an
accident, it‑must be replaced. The
shell may have been weakened
and the liner will be less able to
absorb shocks. Remember that
some manufacturers offer free
replacement of crash-damaged
Fitting for suspension forks.
As for lights, you must have a front
and rear light marked to show that
they comply with British Standard.
Legally, you must not fit a flashing
light to a bike, though you can fit one
to your clothing if you wish to. Only a
few LED lights produce enough light
to comply with the British Standard,
even when they’re in the non-flashing
mode. This means they can only be
used as a supplement to British
Standard lights and mustn’t be used
on their own. If you find yourself
fitting new batteries too often,
consider fitting rechargeable lights
or a dynamo. Your Diamondback
Retailer will advise.
When riding in the dark, it’s a legal
requirement to fit and use a front
and rear light marked to show
that they conform to the British
Standard BS 6102/2. Clean the
lenses and reflectors every week
or so to keep them fully effective.
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LED rear lights
When buying a helmet, try out
several different styles and
different sizes within each style
as well. Select one that feels
comfortable and secure, that fits
well down on your forehead and
which has straps that lie well
away from your ears.
Check frequently that your lights
are as bright as they should be.
The batteries in particular need
changing frequently, so keep
spares at home and at work.
When replacing bulbs, especially
halogen ones, don’t touch the
glass at all.
Once you’ve got a good fit, adjust
the straps carefully, making
sure that the adjusters sit well
below the ears and don’t get
twisted. Many helmets also
have an adjustable nape strap at
the back of the helmet. Follow
manufacturers’ instructions.
Good lighting should be backed up
by other visibility aids. If a bright
yellow reflective jersey is too much
for you, wear a reflective belt,
preferably one that goes round
waist and shoulders. They’re very
effective at letting motorists know
you’re on the road.
To get a good fit, helmets have
either an exterior adjuster,
simple pads or inflatable side
pieces. Once adjusted, hold
the helmet upside down with
the straps out of the way to
make it easier to put on. Follow
manufacturers’ instructions.
You can also fit reflective material
to the bike itself. Large areas are
best but even small strips make
you more visible. It’ll stick better if
you clean any grease or oil off the
frame before fitting. Try to blend
the reflective areas in with the
shape of the bike.
LED bike lights usually have a clip
so you can attach them to your
clothing. There is also a switch to
select a steady or a flashing light.
They should only be fitted as a
back-up to a legal light, or to a
Most LED lights have a closefitting plastic case. To fit new
batteries, find the notch in the
case and prise the two halves
apart with a screwdriver. There
is no bulb as such. When putting
the case back together, take care
to avoid damaging or moving the
rubber seal.
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Riding Advice
snow, wind and fog can carry away the sound of approaching vehicles.
When conditions are really bad or an area is particularly congested be
prepared to walk your bike around roundabouts and difficult right turns.
WARNING: There is a risk of injury to the rider and to others if all necessary repairs
and adjustments are not made. Take every precaution to ensure safe riding.
Again, take extra care in the dark. Make sure your signals are in good time,
so motorists are aware of your intentions.
Carry out the checks listed on page 2 and also refer to ‘Know your bike’
section on page 3 so that you understand the type of use your bike is
designed for. If you have any problems refer them to your Diamondback
Retailer at once.
Make sure you are able to use your gears and brakes effectively and that you
can handle your bicycle safely in traffic. To‑familiarise yourself with the many
rules of the road, Diamondback recommend you obtain a current copy of the
Highway Code, available from Post Offices and most good bookshops.
Parents are urged not to let their children onto busy roads until they are
experienced cyclists. Diamondback recommend a training course such
as Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) National Cycling
Proficiency Scheme (for‑children of nine and above) or the in-school version
‘Cycleway’ for young children.
Indeed, all new or inexperienced cyclists are strongly recommended to take
a training course in cycling. Details may be obtained from schools, council
offices or Police stations.
Make sure you can see and be seen - front and rear lights, a rear reflector,
pedal and wheel reflectors are legal requirements. They should conform to
British Standard BS 6102. Carry spare bulbs and batteries if needed. Light
coloured and reflective clothing will help you to be seen - ask to see the
range stocked by your Diamondback Retailer.
We recommend that YOU DO NOT LISTEN to such devices while riding.
They distract your attention from the traffic around you and prevent you
from hearing approaching danger.
All the nuts and bolts on your bicycle bed-down in the first few weeks of use,
we recommend you regularly check your bike as per the maintenance section
on page 33.
The most important general riding skills you need to develop are keeping
track of what other road users are doing and working out what they are going
to do next. That way you can position yourself safely on the road and let them
know, by your road position, what you are going to do next. Do not follow too
closely behind other road vehicles or other cyclists and avoid riding up the
inside of traffic queues. Make use of “cycle lanes” where they are provided.
Always concentrate and keep a good grip on the handlebars at all time in
case you suddenly need to steer out of harms way.
Always take extra care when the weather is wet, foggy, windy or icy. Wear
warm waterproof clothing - in bright, reflective colours if possible. Ride
slowly and brake early, as stopping distances can be doubled or trebled.
Sudden braking could lead to skidding on hazards such as mud, gravel,
snow, etc. When it’s like that don’t just rely on hearing other traffic because
Bicycle travelling at approx 15 mph
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Steering, headsets
and handlebars
When you’ve got the saddle height and position right, you can fine tune your
riding position by altering the angle of the handlebars. On some bikes, you can
also adjust the height of the handlebars. Don’t forget that altering the angle of
an adjustable stem also alters the height of the handlebars.
Your back should be roughly 45° to the ground but this is not a hard and fast
rule. It’s also a good thing to have a slight bend at the elbow to help absorb road
shocks. In fact, most mountain bikes are designed to provide the correct back
angle and arm reach for the majority of riders. If you have a problem getting
comfortable, consult your Diamondback Retailer about altering the height of
the handlebars or even fitting different ones. Always check the alignment of the
handlebar stem with the front wheel, if you move anything else.
Steering play Too loose
To check the steering bearings, pull
the front brake on and wrap your
fingers round the top steering
bearing. Then try to push the bike
gently backwards and forwards,
keeping the back wheel on the
ground. If you can feel of hear any
movement the headset needs to be
Steering play Too Tight
While there should be no play
in the steering there should be
no stiffness either. This can be
checked by lifting the front of the
bike so that the wheel is off the
ground and turning the handlebar
with a finger. The wheel should
move smoothly right and left
without sticking. For adjustment
of steering bearings see the
appropriate section on the next
If there’s any free play in the steering bearings, you’ll get brake judder, judder
over bumps and steering wobble as well. Tight steering may also be a problem.
These are potentially dangerous so if you don’t feel confident about making the
adjustment, take the bike to your Diamondback Retailer.
As part of the 21 point Safety Check, make sure the stem clamp
bolts and the handlebar clamp bolts are all tight enough to
prevent the handlebars moving.
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Threadless headset adjustment
Threaded headset adjustment
Start by loosening the stem clamp bolts (A) just enough to allow the stem to
turn when pushed but not to swing freely. If the steering is too loose adjust
the bearings by tightening the top screw (B) until you can no longer feel any
movement. To adjust for tight
steering undo the top bolt slightly until the steering moves freely. You may
need to repeat the above process until the adjustment is correct.
First undo the top head locknut (C) using a suitable spanner. To correct loose
steering turn the screwed race clockwise slightly until there is no play. To
relieve tight steering, turn the screwed race (D) anti-clockwise a little. Once
adjusted re-tighten the top head locknut and test the steering. You may need
to repeat the above procedure until the adjustment is correct.
Height Limit Mark
Some models are fitted with a continental design of stem. Here, you remove the rubber bung at the top to
reveal a socket-headed bolt, then undo the bolt a few turns. Once it’s loose, raise or lower the handlebars by
holding the front wheel between your legs and twisting the handlebars from side to side. Don’t pull it out any
further than the limit mark shown by the arrow in the picture. Next, re-tighten the bolt and fit the rubber bung.
Then, hold the wheel between your legs and check that the handlebars won’t twist in the frame. Check also
that the handlebar clamp is tight. Repeat both these final checks during the 21 point Safety Check
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If the pedals haven’t been fitted or you’ve removed them when storing
the bike, check which side they fit on. One pedal is marked L for the
left hand crank and the other R for the right hand crank. Don’t try to fit
them the wrong way round.
Don’t underestimate the
importance of the pedals. If they’re
not tight enough, if the toe clips
are loose, if the toe straps are
missing or if the pedals don’t turn
smoothly, it’s only too easy to lose
CONSULT YOUR Diamondback
You fit the R pedal onto the crank by turning the spindle clockwise. But
when fitting the L pedal, you turn it anti-clockwise. To finish the job
off or as part of your regular safety check, tighten both pedals with an
open-ended spanner.
Toe clips are fitted to prevent your foot sliding off the pedal as well as
to hold it in the correct position. That makes them a safety device as
well as a vital part of efficient cycling. It’ll take practice before you can
slip into them automatically.
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Quick Release
Torque settings
Diamondback recommend the use of a torque wrench, whenever working on
your bike. This will ensure that all nuts and bolts are tightened using
the correct amount of force, so preventing damage to components.
Before operating the quick release, open up the distance between the brake pads so that the tyre doesn’t get stuck
between them. To do this on V-style brakes, press the brake pads onto the rim with one hand while you pull the
metal cable pipe away from the brake arm with the other. With other cantilevers, you also squeeze the brake pads
together but then you slip the end of the short cable out of the brake arm.
Wheel centring
If you’re not sure that you’ve refitted the wheels correctly, or wonder if you’ve got them tight enough, consult your
Diamondback Retailer.
To remove the wheels, pull the
quick release lever, giving the
tyre a bang with your palm to
encourage it to drop right out.
If the wheel doesn’t drop out
easily, undo the nut a few turns to
release it from the safety recess
in the fork end.
To refit, insert the axle into the
forks or the rear of the frame.
Then use your thumbs to centre
the wheel rim. Finally, use the
palm of your hand to press the
quick release lever as close as
possible to the frame or the
When closed, the quick release
lever must sit alongside the
fork blade at the front and along
the chainstay at the back. This
minimises the chances of it getting
released accidentally. The Q/R
lever is usually marked open and
When refitting wheels, make
sure you centralise them in the
frame. With the front wheel,
the wheel rim must be an equal
distance from the top of each
fork blade. At the back, the rim
must be an equal distance from
both chainstays. If you hear a
rubbing noise after refitting
the wheel, check again to see
if you’ve centred the wheel
Note: The rear derailleur
automatically tensions the
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Saddle Adjustment
There’s no hard and fast rule for setting up the riding position on a bike. The
best starting point is to set the saddle height so that you can get the ball of
your foot on the ground while you’re sitting on the saddle.
When you have to raise the saddle, don’t lift it any higher than the limit mark.
There’s a danger that the seat post will break or fall out of the frame if you
do. Fit a longer seat post or buy a bigger bike if you need the saddle higher
than allowed by the limit mark.
There is also a fore-and-aft adjustment but you must only move the saddle to
another position along the parallel section of the saddle wire, marked by the
arrows below. Don’t try to force the saddle any further in either direction or
you’ll break the saddle clip. Be careful also when tightening the bolt under
the saddle or you’ll damage the alloy threads.
Start with the saddle right in the middle of the range of adjustment and try
a short ride. The main thing is to find an easy and comfortable reach to the
handlebar grips. But this also controls the angle of your body, so experiment
by moving the saddle a centimetre at a time until you find the best combination.
Check also that you’ve got a good view of the road ahead, without cranking
your head back at an uncomfortable angle. As for saddle angle, keep it moreor-less parallel to the ground.
If your bike is fitted with a shockpost that moves up and down to absorb
bumps, adjust the saddle a little higher than normal to allow for your
own weight. If you find that the shock post hits the bottom of its travel
quite often, even after adjusting it, your Diamondback Retailer will
supply you with a stronger spring, which should stop that happening.
Different springs are easy to fit - just undo the adjustment screw all
the way.
Saddle height adjustment
To alter saddle height, undo the
seat post clamp bolt at least two
turns. Then work the saddle from
side to side as you lift it up or push
it down. Finally, check that the
nose of the saddle is in line with
the top tube and re-tighten the
clamp bolt.
A quick release seat post clamp
must be tight enough to hold the
seat post in place on the roughest
terrain. With the quick release
lever fully open, tighten the
knurled nut as far as you can with
your fingers, then undo it one full
turn. Next, start to move the Q/R
It should be easy to move at first,
then harder as the lever gets
nearer to the frame, then easier
just before it hits the frame. Turn
the knurled nut anti-clockwise if
the lever is too tight to reach the
frame and the other way if it’s too
When altering the height of the
saddle, you must not pull the seat
post out any further than the limit
mark. If‑you do, there’s a danger
that the seat post will either break
or fall out of the frame when riding
over rough terrain.
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Fore and aft adjustment
Shock post
To adjust the saddle angle or the
fore-and aft position, undo the bolt
under the saddle a couple of turns
and move the saddle to its’ new
position, holding the clip together
with the other hand. Tighten the
bolt and test the new position.
When using a shock post, set saddle height a little above normal, then check
how far it sinks with your full weight on it. If it drops more or less than
half an inch, adjust the pre-loading to make sure you get the full comfort
To adjust the pre-loading, undo the clamp bolt and pull the shock post right
out of the frame. If you want the saddle to sag more, turn the adjuster two
turns clockwise. If you want it to sink less, try two turns anti-clockwise.
Clip type saddle
To adjust the saddle fore-and-aft,
undo one of the large nuts about
two turns, then tap the saddle
backwards or forwards with your
hand. If you want to alter the
angle, undo both nuts at least two
turns and click the saddle into the
new position.
Riding position
Adjust the height of the saddle so that when cycling along, your leg will be slightly bent with the pedal at its lowest
point. If the first time you use this riding position you feel that the muscles in the back of your leg are too stretched,
lower the saddle a few millimetres at a time until you feel comfortable.
Check that with the saddle in this position you can place the ball of your foot comfortably on the ground while
sitting on the bicycle.
This applies to most normal cycle use. Riders using Jump, Trials & other specialist bikes will have their own
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Checking Brakes
The first thing to check on either
cantilever or caliper brakes is the
amount of effort needed for an
emergency stop. If you have to pull
the lever more than halfway to the
handlebars, the cable should be
tightened .Next, check that the brake
pads are aligned with the wheel
rim and are not worn. If they’re not
aligned correctly or need changing,
see page 19.
If one of the wheels starts to rub
against the brake pads after making
any of these adjustments, check that
it’s correctly centred in the frame
and that the brake pads are centred
on the wheel rim. If the wheels and
brakes are correctly centred, the
wheels may be slightly buckled and
you should ask your Diamondback
Retailer to check this point.
Most models are fitted with powerful
long arm cantilever brakes, called
V-brakes. If they don’t seem to
be stopping the bike as quickly as
they should, check the alignment
and condition of the brake pads
and the position of the brake arms
- see page 20. If you have problems,
consult your Diamondback Retailer.
Tightening the cable adjuster
To tighten the cable, undo the lock
nut arrowed in the picture. Then
undo the knurled adjuster two
turns anti-clockwise and test. If
the brakes are OK, retighten the
lock nut but for the sake of safety,
always leave three full threads in
the brake. Ensure slots are not
all in line in order to keep cable
secure. This should be checked
Bike braking systems are so powerful that it’s easy to lock the wheels
and take a flyer over the handlebars. So before your first ride, stand
next to your bike and push it backwards and forwards, gently applying the brakes
so that you get an idea of the braking forces involved. Always apply the rear brake
a fraction of a second ahead of the front brake, especially in the wet.
Then ride round an empty car park for a while, constantly using the brakes so that
you get used to the amount of force needed to pull up smartly, without skidding or
locking the wheels. Again, this is particularly important in the wet.
On a wet road, it takes about 60% longer for bikes and most other vehicles to stop.
So when it’s wet, give everything else on the road a wider berth and be very careful
when threading through traffic. Above all, don’t snatch at the brakes - apply them
well before you have to stop and give the pads a chance to wipe the rims dry.
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V-style brakes
Check brake pads
When the pads are correctly
aligned, there will be a gap (arrow)
between the top of the pad and the
top of the rim. As the pads wear
down, check they don’t overlap
onto the tyre. Check also that
curved pads follow the curve of
the rim.
Now a check on pad wear. If there’s
a ‘wear line’, as on the pad at the
front, they’re OK until the line is
reached. If‑there’s no wear line,
change the pads when they reach
2 mm from the bottom of the
grooves, as on the back two pads.
V-style brakes are very efficient
and only need a very light pull on
the lever when properly adjusted.
If you have to reach too far for
the brake levers, you can bring
them closer to the handlebars
with a hexagon key or Philips
For maximum braking power,
check pad alignment and wear.
Check also that there’s an equal
gap between the pad and the rim
on either side. If there isn’t, adjust
the gap using the tiny adjuster
screws at the pivots.
New rim
On most bicycles the brakes work by pressing on the wheel rim. This gradually wears the rim wall away. If the rim wall
gets too thin it may fail allowing the tyre to come off the rim - which is potentially dangerous.
Worn rim
To prevent this occurring there are two ways of checking when a rim has come to the end of it’s useful life and should
be changed:
A “wear-line” on the outside of the rim in the form of a groove. When this groove has been worn away the rim should be
changed. A special cavity inside the rim. The rim should be changed when this starts to appear as a slot in the sidewall.
During winter, the rims can become very greasy. So to maintain full braking power, clean them with an Extreme
Degreaser, if the brakes don’t seem to have their usual bite.
Special cavity
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V-style and Cantilever Brakes
If the 21 point Safety Check has revealed that the brake pads are worn down
to the wear line or close to the bottom of the grooves in the pad, don’t delay
fitting new ones.
New brake pads
V-style brakes
To remove the old pads, try to identify how they’re fixed to the brake arms. Two
different designs are shown on the opposite page but once you loosen the fixing
bolt, usually low down at the back of the brake arm, you should be able to pull
the old pads out quite easily. Although in some cases you’ll find it easier if you
remove the wheel first.
When fitting the new pads, take a moment to work out how they go. If‑the pads
are curved, they must follow the curve of the rim. On the other hand, if there’s
an arrow on the side of the pads, it must point forwards. And there must be at
least 1mm between the top of the pad and the top of the rim, as shown on page
19. When you’ve checked all these points, tighten the fixing nut but leave it loose
enough to allow you to do two more adjustments.
The first of these is toe-in. This means that when the brakes are applied, the
front of the pad hits the rim before the back does. Then, when the moving wheel
rim drags the brake pad forward, the brake arm bends a little. So the rest of
the pad reaches the rim smoothly, without juddering or snatch. Sometimes a
‘pip’ of rubber at the back of the pad helps you to gauge the 1 to 2 mm toe-in
normally recommended. In other cases, a special gauge is supplied with the
pads but it’s often just a matter of eye.
If there’s no gauge to help you
set the toe-in, aim to position
each pad so that there’s a 1 to 2
mm gap between the back of the
pad and the rim, There’s no need
to measure it exactly, so long as
the gap is exactly the same both
V-style brakes work best when the
brake arms are almost upright. If
the brakes look wrong or don’t
work well, there’’s probably too
much inner cable showing between
the brake arms. If you suspect this,
undo the cable clamp.
Once you’ve got the toe-in right,
pull the brake lever and bring the
pads up close to the rim. Then
adjust the angle of the pad so
that it contacts the rim square on.
Finally, tighten the fixing nuts and
check all three adjustments.
Then make sure that the cable is
completely free. Push the brake
arms into a more upright position
and lightly do up the cable clamp.
Check that there’s enough room
for the wheel between the pads
and tighten the cable clamp
The second adjustment concerns alignment with the wall of the rim. You must
adjust the pad so that it touches the wheel rim square on when the brakes are
applied. This ensures that the largest possible area of rubber is in contact with
the wall of the rim, so you get the best possible braking.
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How pads are fitted to V-style brakes
This type of pad fixing is similar to the one used on caliper brakes. The main
difference is the use of two curved, interlocking washers each side of the
brake arm, which allow the pad to be moved in any direction. You need a
hexagon key for the fixing nut.
On the other common design of pad fixing, you need a spanner to undo the
nut at the back of the brake arm. The dished washer, shown in the enlarged
inset picture, allows you to adjust the pad in all directions.
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Disc Brakes
It is better if the bike is upside down when fitting a disc brake wheel.
Disc brakes use 2 pads and these are usually kept in place with packing pieces
during transit. Remove the packaging from between the disc pads making
sure that the pads are not displaced.
High performance models are fitted with disc brakes to ensure powerful and
consistent braking under all conditions. Brakes which work on the wheel rim
only work properly when the rim is clean and dry. In rain or mud, the brake
pad tends to slide over the braking surface rather than gripping it. So not only
does braking performance fall off badly, you can never be sure just how much
it is affected.
Disc brakes, on the other hand, have larger pads that can easily wipe any water
or mud off the disc. This gives you consistent levels of braking, whatever the
weather or the surface conditions. In addition, the mechanism presses the pad
much more firmly against the disc.
Remember that the gap between the pad and the disc is very small. So‑when
correctly adjusted, the brake pads rub very lightly against the disc. In fact you
should be able to hear a light scraping noise when you spin the wheel. This
means that you get the full braking effect with only a short pull on the brake
lever. But the small gap also means that when fitting wheels with disc brakes
to a bike, you must slide the disc into position between the pads, before you fit
the wheel to the frame. If you don’t, there’s a slight possibility of either jamming
the pad against the disc or preventing the caliper moving.
To remove a front wheel with a disc
brake, turn the quick release lever
to the open position and let it drop
out. If it seems stuck, undo the
adjuster nut a bit. When refitting
the wheel, lift it carefully into place
and re-adjust the quick release.
To fit new brake pads, you next
have to free the inner pad holder
from the caliper body. So locate
all three fixing bolts and go round
undoing each one half a turn at
a time. This method of working
will prevent any distortion of the
To fit a new cable, hold the back
of the cable clamp with a spanner
while you loosen the cable clamp
with an Allen key. This is also the
first step when you have to strip
down the caliper to free it off or
when you want to fit new brake
When you have removed all three
bolts, gently prise the pad holder
away from the caliper body. The
pad is held in place with a tiny
spring, so prise this away as well.
Be very careful, as the spring can
fly in any direction.
The small gap between the pad and the disc also makes it vital to keep the disc
absolutely straight and true. So don’t ever kick it, let it bind on a rock or get
damaged in any other way. If the disc does go out of true, it’ll rub much more
heavily on the pad and must be replaced without delay.
As for maintenance, disc brake pads should be replaced every 2 to 3,000 km or
when they have worn down to 6.3 mm in thickness, whichever comes first. If you
don’t, the steel backing will eventually score the disc. But when you do fit new
pads, and whenever you find that you need to pull the brake lever a lot further
to stop quickly, you must adjust the gap between the pad and the disc. The only
other maintenance job is to apply a little copper-based anti-seize compound to
the caliper mounting pins every so often.
Refer immediately to your Diamondback Retailer if the disc gets scored or
distorted or you hear any unusual noises, especially screeching or grinding
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You can now shake the pad out of
the holder. Check the thickness of
the pad to see if it needs replacing
and clean any dust out of the
pad holder and caliper body. You
must not inhale the dust, so use
multilube for this part of the job.
When properly located, the pad
holder is a snug fit on the face of
the caliper body and there should
be an even gap all the way round.
Re-fit all three Allen screws next,
going round tightening them a
quarter or a half turn at a time.
Fit the new pads into the pad
holder and caliper body, holding
them there with the springs.
However, they don’t hold the pads
in place very firmly and the pins
on the pad holder are a tight fit in
the holes in the caliper body, so be
The caliper body is held onto the
fork leg by two pins but it must
be easily moveable. If it seems
to be fixed, strip the caliper down
again and take care to fit it all back
together again evenly. Finally,
adjust the brake pads.
Adjusting brake pads
Brake Pads
There are many types
and shapes available
specific to the make
and model of brake
please consult our
You need an 8 mm ring spanner
and a 2.5 mm hexagon key for
this job, which is best done with
the bike upside down. First, locate
the adjuster at the fork end of the
brake arm. Hold the central bolt
still with the hexagon key while
you undo the lock nut about a
Turn the hexagon key clockwise
until the pads scrape the disc when
you spin the wheel. Next, turn the
hexagon key anti-clockwise half a
turn so that the pads only scrape
the disc very lightly. Holding the
hexagon key still, you tighten the
lock nut and then apply the brakes
4 or 5 times. You should still be
able to hear a very light scraping
but if you can’t hear anything or,
on the other hand, the scraping is
very noticeable, try adjusting the
pads again.
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On sports bikes, the calipers are
fitted to the frame with a recessed
hexagon nut. Clean any dirt out of
the socket with a bit of cloth before
you try to undo the nut. Most are
fitted using a simple nut and
washer, which you mustn’t leave
To fit new brake pads to calipers,
check with your Diamondback
Retailer for the correct type and
size. Then remove the old pads by
undoing the fixing bolt and turning
the brake pads on their side. Try
not to disturb the centring of the
These brakes are fitted to most sports
and utility bikes. Some are made of
steel, some of alloy as shown here.
But they all work in exactly the same
way, apart from the dual pivot calipers
fitted to some sports bikes.
When the brake pads start to wear,
you can bring the brakes back to top
performance by tightening the cable
adjuster one or two turns. The only
other regular maintenance needed
is to oil the caliper every month with
Bike Lube where indicated by the
arrow on picture 2.
Otherwise check pad alignment
and wear, as described on Page 18
whenever you do a 21‑point Safety
Check. However, it’s not always easy
to centre the pads exactly, so have
a couple of goes. If you have trouble
getting these adjustments right,
consult your Diamondback‑Retailer.
There are various brake blocks
available please refer to the
website for details.
There must be an equal distance
between the brake pad and rim
on each side. So loosen the fixing
bolt, hold the caliper in a position
where the pad to rim gap is equal
and re-tighten the bolt. The arrow
indicates the lubrication point.
Fit the new pads, tighten the fixing
bolt lightly and set the toe-in and
alignment as on page 19. Then
fully tighten the pad fixing bolt.
If the pads keep moving as you
tighten the bolt, hold them in the
jaws of an adjustable spanner.
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Checking the
All the power that you generate with
your legs passes through the chainset
and the bottom bracket bearings,
which means that the hexagon bolts
holding the cranks onto the bottom
bracket must be kept very tight.
Diamondback recommend using a
torque wrench but a long hexagon key
will do. You won’t be able to tighten
them enough with a standard one.
If you ever hear a creaking noise from
the bottom bracket, it may be a sign
that one or other of the crank bolts
need tightening. Don’t ride a bike with
creaking cranks or you’ll damage
them and it’ll be impossible to ever
tighten them properly again. From
time to time, it’s also worth checking
that the bolts holding the chainrings
to the cranks are tight.
Most models are fitted with a sealed
bottom bracket to prevent water entry
but eventually, the bearings will start
to wear. This causes movement or
play that will affect the gear change
and waste your energy, so make
regular checks.
To tighten up the crank bolts,
grasp one crank firmly with one
hand to hold the chainset still.
Then apply as much force with a
torque wrench or hexagon key as
you can with the other. Don’t forget
to tighten the other crank as well.
Before you check how tight the
chainring bolts are, it’s worth
undoing each one in turn and
coating the thread with copperbased anti-seize compound before
refitting. This prevents corrosion
and stops the bolts seizing up.
2 When you’ve tightened both
crank bolts, check that the thread
of both crank bolt covers is lightly
coated with anti-seize grease.
Then tighten the covers, where
fitted, with a pin spanner so they
won’t come out while you’re
Check the crank bolts for tightness
by holding one crank absolutely
still while you try to move the
other. one. Test for movement from
side to side as well as backwards
and forwards. Then apply the test
to the other crank.
Checking bottom
To test for wear in the bottom
bracket bearings, take hold of
the ends of both cranks and
try to rock them from side to
side. If only one crank seems
to move, it’s loose on the axle
and the crank bolts should be
tightened up before you ride
the bike again.
On the other hand, if both
cranks move sideways the
same amount, the bottom
bracket bearings have got
some play in them.
Sometimes the bearings
can be adjusted to eliminate
this play but if it’s a modern,
sealed bottom bracket, the
whole thing has to be replaced.
In either case, it’s a job for
your Diamondback Retailer.
However, depending on how
much you use your bike, it’s
unlikely to need doing for
several years.
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Gear Changing
Indexing adjustment
There are two different types of gear changer. Those fitted to the right hand
side of the handlebar control the rear gear. This moves the chain across the
six, seven, eight or nine sprockets on the back wheel. To help you keep track of
which gear you are in, they are usually fitted with an indicator. When the rear
changer is working correctly, gear changes are almost silent and go through
very quickly. However, it’s always best to change gear well before you start
struggling to keep the speed up. It also helps to take a little pressure off the
pedals and change a maximum of three gears at a time.
If a changer is fitted to the left hand side of the handle bar, this controls the
front chainwheel gears.
Don’t try to changer gear when the bike is standing still or coasting downhill.
In addition, don’t try to take a gear changer apart, just give them a quick
squirt of Multi lube over the exterior of the moving parts and then wipe off the
surplus. As for rotational changers, leave both lubrication and fault finding
entirely to your Diamondback Retailer.
If gears are slow to change up to top gear or tend to jump off when you
select bottom gear, try tightening the cable adjuster half a turn. If that
doesn’t work, try another half turn. If there’s still a problem, check the
basic adjustment, as shown on page 28.
Don’t ride a bike with badly adjusted gears. If you can’t rely on finding the
right gear every time, if the chain keeps jumping off or you’re stuck in a
high gear, it’s only too easy to lose control.
AND REMEMBER: bottom and the rest of the low gears are for
climbing hills. Top and the other high gears are for descents.
At the back wheel, the small sprocket is top gear,
the large sprocket is bottom.
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Easy-Fire shifters
Gear selection
On some bikes, the lever for
changing gear upwards has a
large thumb grip. To change up,
reduce the pressure on the pedals
but keep them turning. Then push
the lever once or more, depending
on how many gears you want to
Rotational changer
To change downwards, hook your
forefinger round the bottom lever,
pull it upwards until it clicks and
then release it. If you want to
change more than one gear, pull
the lever two or three times but
again, keep pedalling. while you
do so.
The idea of a rotary
changer is to allow you
to change gear with a
simple wrist movement.
When changing up, take
a firm grip on the inboard
end of the hand grip drop
your wrist, clicking the
changer once for every
gear that you want to
change through on the
right. The LH may be a
friction shifter.
If you find it awkward to use this
type of changer, or cannot see the
gear indicator, try adjusting its
position on the handlebars. Just
loosen the bolt on the handlebar
clamp two turns and twist the
whole changer assembly.
To change down, lift your
wrist and then grasp the
rotary part of the hand
grip. Then click down
quickly but smoothly.
However, if you want to
change from top to near
bottom gear, it’s best to do
it in two stages, pausing a
second half way.
Using the small chainring and
small sprocket together causes
excessive chain crossover . . .
. . . as does using the big
chainring with the biggest
sprocket. Use these gear
combinations as little as
possible, otherwise the chain and
sprockets will wear out faster
than they should.
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Making Adjustments:
Shimano derailleur
(back wheel removed for clarity)
When your gears are running properly, you should be able to select any gear first
time. There should be almost no noise, either from the chain running over the
sprockets or when you change gears. If there’s a clicking or a clacking noise in
any gear, try tightening the cable slightly - see page 26. Try lubricating the gear
cable as well.
On the other hand, if the chain starts to drop off the chainwheel or it feels as if it’s
trying to jump off the largest or the smallest sprocket, clean the chain and both
gear mechanisms with an Extreme Degreaser. Then check all the adjustments,
as shown. here.
This is also a good time to check the jockey wheels for wear. On Shimano, the
top jockey wheel should have a little bit of sideways movement but the bottom
one should not. On SRAM, both jockey wheels should be free of any play. But all
jockey wheels should turn smoothly, quietly and with very little drag, so clean and
grease them if they don’t. And ask your Diamondback Retailer to fit new jockey
wheels if that doesn’t do the trick.
If you can’t get the gears to change smoothly and precisely, get your Retailer to
check if the cables need replacing and that the gear mechanisms and frame are
not damaged in any way.
To set up Shimano gears correctly,
let the chain down onto the smallest
sprocket. Try turning the H adjuster
either way until the chain runs
almost silently when you turn the
pedals. Then undo the H screw
another half turn anti-clockwise.
Test the change from the smallest
sprocket to the next. It should
click up and down without delay.
If it doesn’t, give the cable adjuster
half a turn anti-clockwise. Then
test the top to bottom change and
adjust the L screw if necessary.
Remember, at the back wheel:
The smaller the sprocket, the higher the gear. So adjust the screw marked
H for High. The larger the sprocket, the lower the gear. So adjust the screw
marked L for Low.
But at the chainwheel :
The larger the chainring, the higher the gear. So adjust the screw marked H
for High. The smaller the chainring, the lower the gear. So adjust the screw
marked L for Low.
Next, turn the pedals slowly and
use your thumb to push the gear
inwards against the spring, lifting
the chain up onto the big sprocket.
Adjust the L screw until the chain
runs almost silently, then let it
jump back down onto the smallest
Keep on increasing the cable
tension half a turn at a time until
the top to second change works
really well going both ways. Finally,
flick up and down the whole range
of sprockets several times, as fast
as you can, just to check.
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Sram derailleur
Front Changer
Adjust the H screw so that a line
through the centre of both jockey
wheels hits the outer edge of the
smallest sprocket. Then press the
gear inwards with your thumb and
adjust the L screw so that the jockey
wheels line up exactly with the largest
1 If the chain cage is more than
1 mm from the biggest chainring,
slacken off the bolt on the clip a
little. Then drop the front changer
until it is as close as the indicator
shown here. The outer chain cage
must also be parallel with the
Stiff link
Sometimes, you may notice a
little jerk of the pedals that
happens in every gear. It won’t
happen every turn of the pedals
but roughly every two and a half
This is caused by one link of the
chain stiffening up, so it must
be loosened off. Clean the chain
first because it’ll be a filthy job
otherwise. Then turn the bike
upside down and turn the pedals. As you watch the chain running over
the jockey wheels, you‘ll easily spot the link which doesn’t run through
the chain cage smoothly but which jumps or kicks a little.
This is the stiff link, so flex it from side to side with your thumbs, until it
loosens up. If this does not work, ask your Raleigh Retailer for advice.
Chainwear Indicator
Ensure you fit the correct type of chain.
Single Speed
Now check that there are 3 chain
rivets between the point where the
chain leaves the biggest sprocket
and where it first touches the top
jockey wheel. Adjust the B screw if
necessary. Finalise adjustment as
in pictures 3 and 4 on page 27.
Turn the L screw clockwise if the
chain tends to get thrown off the
small chain-ring. Turn the H screw
clockwise if the chain tends to
come off the big chainring. Turn the
adjuster screws anti-clockwise if
the chain doesn’t climb easily onto
the chainring.
5-8 Speed
9 Speed
10 Speed
A chainwear indicator tells you if the chain has
stretched. If you ride with a stretched chain you will
prematurely wear out your chain rings and casette
and in extreme cases it will cause your gears to slip.
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To make the best of your suspension bike, it must be
set up to take your own individual weight and riding
style into consideration.
Suspension forks
Select one convenient point on the
fixed part of the forks and another
on the lower, moveable part and
measure the distance between
them. Then, while someone holds
the handlebars level, check that
your riding position is roughly
Bounce up and down to settle the
suspension, then measure the
distance between the two points.
Take that figure away from the
first one to give you the amount
the suspension goes down (sags)
when you sit on the bike.
The amount of sag should be
about 30% of total fork travel.
If it’s less, the forks are too stiff
and you should turn the adjusters
anti-clockwise. Do the opposite if
it’s well over a third. Then repeat
steps one and two to check the
The objective is to adjust the strength of the springs so that when you put your
weight on the saddle, the bike sinks down or sags about thirty per cent of the
total spring travel. That is the total distance that the forks or the rear triangle
will move.
The only problem with suspension on bikes is that over big bumps, all the spring
travel can get used up. The moving part will then crash into the fixed part - a
situation called bottoming out. This will destroy the suspension if it happens
too often, so avoid crashing into potholes. It‑can also happen when the front of
the bike pitches upwards and it reaches the other end of the suspension travel.
This is called rebound. However, adjusting the suspension for thirty per cent sag
minimises the amount of bottoming out because it allows for the rebound.
Where only the forks have suspension, again go for the thirty per cent sag. When
you adjust the forks, whether the bike has sprung forks only or full suspension,
make sure you adjust both legs equally. If you don’t, the legs will wear unevenly
and become distorted.
As for riding technique, try to develop a smooth pedalling style to stop the bike
bobbing around. And when climbing hills, change to a lower gear earlier than
you would otherwise. That way, you should be able to stay in the saddle and
so keep the back wheel glued to the ground, not bumping around in mid air,
wasting a lot of effort.
If there’s not enough adjustment to get the right amount of sag, talk
to your Diamondback‑Retailer about fitting alternative springs. In
addition, get your retailer to grease the forks every six months, or
sooner if the corrugated gaiters get damaged.
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Rear suspension
Go back to Step 1 again and
measure the sag on the rear
suspension with your weight on the
saddle. The most convenient place
to measure is usually between the
centres of the mounting bolts at
each end of the suspension unit.
When you have completed the
adjustment process, the bike
should sag equally front and rear.
If it doesn’t, re-adjust the front or
rear units as required. But the real
test is riding the bike and working
out how to set it up to suit your own
personal style.
Rear suspension sag can be
reduced by turning the adjustable
spring seat clockwise. Or
increased by turning the spring
seat anti-clockwise. Keep testing
and adjusting the spring until you
get the amount of sag right.
The heart of the rear suspension
is the pivot. Diamondback use a
large pivot with built-in protection
against the wet. But it still pays
to keep the pivot area free of dust
and mud, and also lubricate it with
Bike Lube occasionally.
If you cannot achieve the required
amount of sag you may need to fit
a different stiffness spring.
After a few weeks use . . .
While preparing this bike, your Diamondback Retailer will
have checked all twenty one points in the list on page 2.
This is to make sure that your bike is safe, that you know
how to get the best out of it, and that it’s adjusted to fit
you. But over the first few weeks of use, the whole bike
will settle down. As a result, the gears may need tweaking,
some nuts and bolts may need tightening and you may
well need to check the adjustment of the saddle and
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BMX Bikes
BMXs are designed for maximum bike control at slow speeds. The frames
are built for strength rather than speed and the basic design does not vary
a lot, although there are various styles of riding. Only one size of frame is
normally available, though the saddle adjusts up and down to cater for riders
of varying height.
When setting up the back brakes,
screw the adjuster in as far as
possible. Then loosen off the
straddle wire yoke and position it
about half an inch from the frame
and retighten, The idea is to allow
the longest possible straddle
Now check the cable assembly just
below the handlebars. Make sure
that the middle plates are free to
move. Adjust the brake cables so
that both moving plates are an
equal distance apart at their ends
and level with the ground.
Release one end of the straddle
wire and run it round the yoke. If
it won’t reach, fit a new straddle
cable and repeat. Refit the straddle
cable to the brake arm, tension the
straddle wire with pliers and then
tighten the clamp bolt.
Test the tension on the top
section of the rear brake cables.
If they’re slack, increase the
tension using the cable adjuster
near the brake lever. Then test the
back brake, tightening the cable
using the adjuster on the frame if
Some BMX riding styles and practices place an extraordinary load on the
frame and mechanical parts. Riders should therefore read the guarantee on
page 42, which covers normal off road riding only.
There is only one gear on these bikes, so the best way to change the gearing
is to fit a larger or smaller sprocket. However, basic BMXs use a one piece
chainset, so you can’t change the gearing anyway. Higher up the range,
they’re similar to a normal cotterless chainset and it is possible to alter the
Maybe the hardest part of a BMX to understand is the braking system. Most
BMXs are fitted with compact U brakes front and back. However, many tricks
involve spinning the handlebars, which would be impossible without a special
device called a Gyro or an Oryg. This features a back brake cable that splits
into two near the brake lever. The cable adjusters screw into a loose plate at
the top of the headset with the nipples located in the middle plate. A second
pair of cables connects to the middle and lower plates but join into one again
before reaching the back brake. When you spin the handlebars, the stem and
headset revolve but the cable mounting plates stay still.
It nearly always requires a fair bit of trial and error to get the brake cable
adjustment right. So if you have trouble, consult your Diamondback Retailer.
He will also be able to supply a replacement for the special rear cable.
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Safety Point
When any bike is being ridden on the road, including
any BMX, the law says it must have two independent
brakes, both of them in working order.
Some ‘U’ brakes may be fitted with
a cable pipe that fits into a socket on
one of the brake arms. Occasionally,
check that the cable pipe moves
freely and that the straddle wire is
as short as possible. Alternatively a
simple cable adjuster may be fitted
at the end.
Lift the chain at the mid-point
of it’s bottom run. Chain tension
is correct when you can lift it
12mm. To adjust, undo the wheel
nuts, move the wheel to it’s new
position, check it’s central and
finally, tighten the wheel nuts a
little at a time.
Diamondback strongly endorse this point and urges
all riders to comply with the law.
It is important that all four bolts are tightened by the
same amount (diagram 1) shows the stem and the four
bolts looking from the top and indicate the order in
which they should be tightened.
The bolts should be tightened one full turn at a time so
that the gap between the top plate and the stem body
is equal all the way around the stem (see diagram 2).
Diagram 1
6 When front or rear pegs are
fitted, you’ll have to use a socket
set with a 250mm or 300mm
extension to tighten up or undo the
wheels nuts. This is not the easiest
task but if you get somebody else
to steady the handlebars, that’ll
To prevent distortion of the
handlebar clamp, undo one nut
half a turn, then the diagonally
opposite one the same amount.
Undo the other two nuts in a
similar way and continue half a
turn at a time. Tighten up using
the same method.
Diagram 2
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It is extremely important that your bike is checked and serviced at regular
intervals to ensure its reliability and especially that it is safe to ride.
Cleaning and lubrication also forms an important tool in the proper
maintenance of your bike and this is covered in more detail immediately after
this section.
Some servicing and repair tasks require specialised
knowledge and tools. Improper adjustment may result in
damage to the bike or may lead to a serious accident. If you
have any doubts consult your cycle dealer.
The following checks are suggested: Before you ride - Check:• Wheels are tightly secured.
• Tyres are inflated to correct pressure (indicated on side-wall of tyre). Also
check condition of tyres for cuts etc. (Note: It is a good idea to carry a
puncture repair kit or spare inner tube, tyre levers and pump with you).
• Handlebar, stem and headset locknut are tight and that the steering
turns smoothly.
• Brakes – Squeeze levers to ensure sufficient pressure can be applied
without the lever touching the handlebars. Also ensure brake blocks are
aligned correctly with rim and the blocks are not badly worn.
• Brake cables are not frayed at the end.
• Gears operate correctly.
• Wheels are running true by spinning them. You can also check that
mudguards, if fitted, are correctly adjusted at this time.
• Saddle is adjusted to the correct riding position and the seat pin is
After long or hard rides or at least every month of regular use –
Check same points as above + the following: •
Clean, degrease and lubricate your bike.
Cranks, bottom bracket fittings and pedals are tight.
Tyre wear and general condition for cuts, glass, thorns etc.
Spokes are not loose or broken. These need to be attended to
before the bike can be ridden again and you would probably need to
get these done at your dealer.
• Hubs are running smoothly.
Every 12 months
Before you start make sure your bike is thoroughly clean and degreased.
Unless you have a good knowledge of bikes, we suggest that you take your
bike to your local dealer for a full service. If this is not feasible we suggest
you use the following checks: • Frame and forks for any damage or cracks.
• Wheels are true. Replace or repair if necessary.
• Brake tracks on rims are not badly worn. Also clean and degrease see page 18.
• Brake levers, brake adjusters + cable and nipple attached to lever is in
good order. Any sign of wear on cable to nipple joint replace inner wire.
• Brakes - Brake blocks – Replace if excessive wear is evident. Re-set
• Chainwheel teeth – These wear, especially if it is an alloy chainwheel
and the same chainwheel ring is used most of the time. Worn
chainwheels can significantly affect gear changing.
• Chain for wear and stiff links, clean and re-grease chain or replace
if necessary. Chains stretch with use and should be changed before
causing excessive wear of the chainwheel or sprockets (approximately
every 1500 – 2000 miles or every 2 years if riding approximately 25
miles per week).
• Cranks are attached securely.
• Front shifter and rear derailleur for wear and especially check the rear
derailleur in respect of straightness and the Jockey wheel.
• Bottom bracket fittings for wear and disassemble and re-grease or
replace if required.
• Headset moves smoothly by turning wheel. Also check side movement
by applying the front brake and try rocking the bike. If any movement
is found, the headset may need cleaning, adjusting and re-greasing or
the bearing may need replacing or even a complete new headset may
need fitting.
If in doubt always consult a bike dealer or qualified mechanic.
Please note that these schedules are suggestions, frequent and heavy
use of your bike such as off road riding will require more frequent
Remember good maintenance will prolong the life of your bike and
components and ensure yours and other peoples safety. Always use
genuine replacement parts for safety critical items such as brakes.
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How to rectify a problem with a cycle whilst it is covered under the Diamondback warranty:
In the first instance, refer back to the retailer you purchased the bike from. If you purchased your bike from a shop which is not local to you, or over the internet,
go to www.diamondback.co.uk to see our dealer locator. Select the Diamondback dealer of your choice and contact them to request that they undertake the
work required.
What is covered under warranty is specified in this booklet (Page 42).
Frames and components of bicycles
can be subject to high stress and
extreme wear conditions.
Different materials - especially
Aluminium and Carbon fibre react to
stress in different ways and may fail
If the design life of a component has
been reached it may fail without
warning. Any scratches, cracks
or change of appearance in highly
stressed areas should be checked
carefully and if in any doubt the
components should be replaced. You
should pay particular attention to
frames, forks, handlebars and stems,
seatposts aluminium cranks and
wheel rims.
Bike Storage
Front/rear wheel nut
220–225 24.8–25.4
Handlebar to stem bolt including 4 bolt) 150–155 17–17.5
Seat bolt – recessed type bolt
100–105 11.3–11.7
Saddle clip to seat pin
Handlebar expander bolt
140–145 15.9–16.4
Saddle clamp – allen bolt type 150–155 17–17.5
Handlebar100–120 11.3–13.5
Seat clamp bolt (Welded frame)
Cotterless crank main axle bolt nut
Suspension models Suspension shock unit / Frame pivot(s)
150 - 200 17.5 - 22.5
WARNING: Wipe off all grease before
use. Make sure that rims and brake
blocks are totally free from grease.
When your bicycle is not in regular use we suggest it is stored upside
down to protect the tyres, or hung from securely mounted padded
hooks. Care must be taken to ensure that the cycle is not damaged, eg
cables pinched or paintwork scratched. If the bicycle is to be stored upright,
protect the tyres by keeping them regularly inflated.
If storing for some time, protect chrome parts by smearing them lightly with
grease. Keep grease off plastic parts.
Badly-fitted mudguards are a major safety hazard. It’s only too easy for
them to shake loose and get entangled with the wheel. If the wheel then
jams, you’ll come to a dead stop and be unable to stay upright.
So make sure mudguards are properly fitted. Use spring washers to prevent
the frame mounting screws coming loose and tighten the stay to mudguard
fixing during the 21 point Safety Check. The same applies to luggage racks.
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Regular washing followed by oiling and greasing prevents wear and so keeps
your bike running smoothly. It also ensures that the energy you put in is used
to propel the bike and not wasted in unnecessary friction. Don’t leave out the
washing part of the job because oil is much less effective when it’s mixed with
even small amounts of dirt. On the other hand, don’t overdo things because
surplus oil attracts dirt and that means more wear.
A bike chain runs in the open and has more moving parts than the rest of your
bike put together, so a weekly or fortnightly squirt with a high quality aerosol
like Dry Chain Lube is vital. Don’t let the lubricant run onto the wheel rims,
brake pads or tyres and wipe up any that does. If‑you’ve been plunging through
deep water splashes or riding through heavy rain, it’s best to clean the chain
before re-oiling. You can use a chain cleaning machine or Dirt Attack Extreme
Degreaser applied with a toothbrush or a special chain brush and wash off with
water and an old sponge.
Dry off the chain with a clean rag, not paper, because that will shred and
possibly clog the chain. Apply the chain lube next, allowing the first lot to soak
in, then give the chain a second coat a few hours later. Lightly lube gears and
brakes at the same time.
Avoid overspray on rims and disc brake rotor surface.
Most bike bearings are protected against water but not water under pressure.
So wash your bike while it’s standing upright on its wheels and use a sponge
and a bucket of warm water plus detergent or car shampoo only. Rinse with
clean water, taking extra care to rinse all traces of detergent off the brake pads
and wheel rims. Finish off with a clean, dry duster. Your bike is now ready for
oiling and greasing.
Apart from the safety items, perhaps the most important part of
maintaining any bike is to keep the chain clean and well lubricated.
Unfortunately it’s also the dirtiest but a chain cleaning device helps to
keep the mess under control.
When you plan to ride in extreme conditions, perhaps
very rainy weather or deep mud, consider using one of
the water resistant lubricants. However, you must clean
the chain first or you’ll simply form an abrasive paste.
NEVER use a pressure washer on your bike
or put it through a car wash.
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Raleigh recommended
Multi Lube - all points bike
spray. For light lubrication,
freeing parts that are stuck
together and cleaning.
w Chain Lube - formulated to
get right into the moving parts
of bike chains. Less messy than
other chain lubricants.
Extreme Degreaser for cleaning chains either
directly or using a chain cleaning
machine. Also works well on disc
brake rotors, wheel rims and
drive systems.
w Grease - for‑packing hub
and bottom bracket bearings.
Waterproof but inclined to
thicken up over time. Do not ever
use on rotary gear changes.
Lubrication Intervals
WEEKLY - Multi Purpose Spray or Bike Lube
MONTHLY - Bike Lube and Dry Chain Lube
PERIODICALLY - Clean and pack with fresh Grease
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Tyres and Tyre Care
Punctures should only be an occasional nuisance on a properly maintained bike.
If you find yourself regularly getting out the puncture outfit, something is wrong
and you should hunt down the basic cause, rather than go on suffering. Among
the possibilities are not keeping the tyres pumped up enough, badly worn tyres,
tubes that have been repaired too often and picking up thorns and flints when
riding across country.
To remove a tyre, undo the valve
nut if fitted, then move to the other
side of the wheel. Push back the
tyre wall with your thumb and
insert the first tyre lever. Pull the
lever downwards and hook onto a
spoke. Repeat with the other tyre
As you fit the third tyre lever,
the middle one will fall out, then
repeat the process if necessary.
Once the tyre is loose, pull the
lever around the rest of the rim to
free the remaining part of the tyre,
ready to pull the tube out.
Pull the tube out and repair the
tube, then check inside the tyre for
foreign bodies. Take care to avoid
cutting your fingers. Pump the
tube up lightly and push the valve
back through the hole, checking
that it’s straight.
When the tyres are too soft, you’ll get snakebite punctures. These are caused
by the tube getting nipped between the ground and the wheel rim. Always
remember to inflate tyres to the pressure indicated on the sidewall of the tyre
and repair any slow punctures.
Worn tyres must be replaced but if you want to increase puncture resistance
and tyre life, consult your Diamondback Retailer about fitting tyres with Kevlar
carcasses. Your Retailer can also tell you about what types and sizes of tyre can
be used safely on your particular bike. If you go for directional tyres, fit them
with the arrow on the side wall pointing forwards.
Finally, if you tend to get a lot of punctures caused by small, sharp objects like
flints and thorns, the solution is Slime tyre sealant. This is a green liquid which
you feed into the tube and which stays liquid until you get a puncture. A small
amount of Slime is then forced out through the puncture, which then solidifies
and seals the puncture.
Flat tyres can also be caused by poor repair technique, often when the tube
gets pinched between the rim and the tyre lever. So make sure the end of the
tyre lever sits on the rim and not the tube or you can also get slow punctures
by using poor quality patches or using them without care. The solution here is
to use Skabs glueless patches and always prepare the surface of the tube with
the abrasive paper supplied, before applying the patch to the tube.
If you can’t find a slow puncture, pump the tube up lightly and dip it in a bowl of
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Tuck the tube into the tyre, making
sure it’s not folded. Next, refit the
valve nut (Presta valve only) to
prevent the valve moving, leaving
the nut slightly loose. If you’re
using tyre levers, use your thumbs
to refit as much of the tyre as
T o replace the tyre using the lever,
push the tyre wall back with your
thumb and hook the lever over the
rim. Once a section of tyre is back
over the rim wall, pull the lever
round the rim to lift the rest of the
tyre into place.
< Shock Pump
•Precision 1.5” industry class gauge
•Fine tuning pressure bleeder valve
•2 stage non-leak valve release system
•Swivel hose for easy engagement
•Compact design
< Alloy Floor Pump
•Sturdy handle
•Kraton grips
•Patented dual head
•Super tough base
Tyre choice
1DBX tyre - the most versatile BMX tyre available in different sizes.
2A tyre designed specifically for MTB off road riding size 26 x 1.95.
Valve Type
< Slime Bottle 4oz/8oz
Slime Tyre Sealant
prevents and repairs
punctures up tp 2mm in
tube tyres. This high quality
tyre sealant is non toxic,
environmentally friendly,
and Slime is easy to install
an remains effective for up
to 2 years
3Semi slick combination for on and off road.
4Commuter/trekking puncture resistant.
There are two main
types of valves in use.
Schrader (car type)
and Presta which has a
valve nut and needs to
be hand tightened. Most
pumps can be used on
both types.
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Clothing and Accessories
In good weather, you can cycle short distances in ordinary clothes, without
any great problems. Although if your bike is fitted with toe clips, it’s usually
worth wearing light trainers so that your feet fit into them properly. Don’t do
it the other way round and take off your toe clips so that you can wear bulky
shoes - your feet will slip around on the pedals and that’s a definite safety
There is now a choice of styles in specialist cycling clothing. First there’s the
traditional style, based on tight stretch fabric. Then there’s a different, more
relaxed look that attracts less attention but is still highly effective on the bike.
Most of the clothing in this category is made from fabrics designed to absorb
sweat from the skin and lift or ‘wick’ it to the surface, where it evaporates
more easily. That way you’ll stay drier and the increased rate of evaporation
will keep you cooler too. These fabrics are nearly all synthetic, so they’re also
easy to wash.
Constructed using lightweight
breathable fabric
Total protection against the
elements with essential features to
make your riding experience more
enjoyable. This italian designed
jersey has insulating and breathable
fabric, rear pockets, silicon gripper
and fine double needle stitching.
As for waterproofs, you’re more likely to get wet from condensation on the
inside rather than rain coming in from the outside. So go for jackets and
overtrousers made from specialist materials that allow sweat out, without
letting water in.
There are still some cycling shoes around that can be used with ordinary
pedals and toe clips and straps. But once most riders have got past the stage
of riding in ordinary trainers, nearly all now go for clipless pedals. These have
a cleat on the sole that clicks into a spring device in the pedal. So the foot is
securely attached to the pedal but can be disconnected by a swift twist of the
Always carry a puncture outfit, a spare tube and a few basic tools - but
where? A wedge-shaped pack that fits under the saddle is ideal but don’t
allow the straps to dangle or they might catch in the wheel. Larger sizes are
also available.
However, there are several basic systems on the market, with variations, and
hundreds of different designs of shoes and pedals too. So you need the advice
of your Diamondback Retailer in this area, although average riders are best
suited by a rubber-soled shoe that allows you to walk properly and silently. In
the top racing shoes, you can do neither !
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Bike Security
All year round, good cycling gloves
have a wide range of benefit,
keeping your hands clean and
protecting them against twigs
and thorns when riding across
country. In addition, gel padding
in the palms helps to absorb road
Most models are fitted with bottle
cage mounts as standard but
the bottle mountings can also
be used as a neat way to fit a
mini-pump. Just undo the fixings
with a hexagon key, thread them
through the holes in the pump
clip and refit.
For occasional use, or for
frames that won’t take standard
mudguards, you can usually fit
a clip on mudguard to the down
tube or seat post.
There’s no escaping the fact that
saddles cause more discomfort
than any other part of a bike.
Padded shorts and leggings are
one solution but under liners do the
same sort of job and can be worn
under leisure clothing.
Thousands of bicycles are stolen
each year, so if you want to
keep your bicycle, never leave
it unlocked in a public place.
Deter thieves by using a lock
that resists bolt cutters, such
as a hardened steel chain
and padlock or D-lock. Your
Diamondback Retailer will stock
a comprehensive range of locks.
Always lock through the frame
and rear wheel, and front wheel
if possible, then secure to a post
or other immovable object. Do
not leave your bicycle in dark
secluded areas where thieves
have more time to work. Take
easily removable items such as
lights and pump with you.
Rear carriers can be used for
mounting luggage panniers or
some specific fitting child seats.
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Traditionally when you purchased a bike, it came with a stamped out spanner
which was supposed to cover all types of maintenance required on your
purchase. Today’s bikes tend to be more complex and as such, there are many
tools available for the task in hand.
Getting Started
Today’s equivalent to that stamped out spanner is the hex key multi tool. Most
modern bikes now use metric hex or “allen” key fittings. The most common
sizes of these are 4, 5 and 6mm. This is normally enough for tightening
handlebars, stems and seat posts. These tools often include screw drivers too
which are used for derailleur system adjustments and fine tuning brakes.
A chain splitter will allow you to sort broken links, and to fit and shorten new
chains, cassette and freewheel removers are used to replace these items
as they wear, and are required if spokes need replacing in the rear wheel.
A spoke key is a useful tool for keeping your wheels spinning true. Finally,
if you’re going to fit your own inner brake and gear wires, why not have the
satisfaction of a clean cut of the wire by investing in some quality cable
cutters fit for the purpose? (Pliers are not the correct tool)
You will also need some tyre levers, a wheel nut spanner (if the bike does not
feature quick release levers) this will be enough to get you riding. Don’t forget
to take a pump and spare tube/puncture repair kit if you’re going far from
The professional
For some people, there comes a time when they want to create their own
professional workshop either for their own satisfaction, or for a local club
house. If this sounds like you, then why not look at the combined ranges from
Cyclepro and Unior. Here you will find specialist frame preparation tools such
as bottom bracket shell facing tools and head tube reamers. Quality tools
don’t come cheap, but if used correctly you could still be using them in 10
years time.
Home Mechanics
For most people, a broken bike means a trip to the local bike shop mechanic.
However, for those of you that like to tinker a bit and get your hands dirty, you
can be sure that Diamondback offers a tool for the job in its comprehensive
range. Here are some pointers for those wanting to get to know their bike a
little better.
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UK and Eire Guarantee
Length of Guarantee
Diamondback bikes supplied to customers in the UK and Eire are guaranteed against manufacturing defects or defects in materials used from the
date of original purchase for periods of:
Frames and non-suspension forks:
5 years
Suspension forks and all other components:
1 year
Guarantee Conditions
This guarantee will apply provided the bike has been cared for, maintained and used in accordance with the instructions as set out in the
Diamondback Owners Guide and has not been fitted with parts other than a spare part recommended by a Diamondback dealer. This guarantee does
not cover normal wear and tear, alteration, accident, misuse, improper maintenance or neglect such as corrosion due to storage outdoors or damp
conditions or commercial use (e.g. hiring).
Diamondback bikes are guaranteed for normal riding within the activities for which they were designed. However failures or damage occurring
during participation in activities such as “wheelies”, stunt riding or jumping are not covered by this guarantee.
Diamondback will bear the cost of replacement parts for all claims made in accordance with this guarantee. Additionally reasonable labour charges
incurred within one year of the date of original sale will be borne by Diamondback provided that proof of purchase is supplied and an approved dealer
has processed the claim.
How to claim
In the event of a guarantee claim contact your original dealer or place of purchase.
Registering your Guarantee
The Diamondback Cycle Protection Register ensures that, should your bike be stolen, your
ownership can be quickly verified and you can be traced if your bike is later recovered.
Register online and receive 5% off your next order
Terms & conditions apply. See website for details
IMPORTANT! Please complete this section
2 Mrs.
1Your Title
1 Mr.
Miss. 5
Other title (Dr., Rev., Major.)
First Name
Model Name
Model No.
2. Date of Purchase
3. Bicycle Frame Number*
To register your guarantee by post please complete the form and send in an envelope to:
*Please write your unique frame number here. See page 4 for location. If the frame number is unclear, please ask your
Diamondback dealer or the police to stamp your postcode onto the frame and make sure you have told us your postcode.
Visit your local Cyclelife store
for a total cycling experience
Photos in part from the
Haynes Bike Book.
© J.H. Haynes & Co. Ltd
and Raleigh, 1999
www. raleigh.co.uk