It’s easier than ever for Londoners to learn new bike skills. With YouTube videos and online manuals a-plenty, DIY cycling-enthusiasts have a wealth of knowledge at their fingertips. But sometimes getting together with others to get your hands greasy is just what you need. Luckily there are loads of workshops in our fair capital for every cyclist.
From basic maintenance to building your own wheel from scratch, here are our top picks for cycling workshops in London.
Basic and Intermediate Maintenance – Look Mum No Hands! 49 Old St, EC1V 9HX
Every cyclist needs to know the fundamentals of bike repair, and the experts at whimsically named, Look Mum No Hands! are on hand to teach you the basics and beyond.
Both basic and intermediate maintenance workshops are 4 hours long and run on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. At £75 a pop, they’re not cheap, but these guys know their stuff. The basics go over wheel replacement, puncture repair, brakes, gear adjustment and more. They’ll give you a free tool kit to boot, along with all the fresh coffee you can stomach.
Intermediate courses will see you adjusting bearings, bottom brackets, headsets and hubs, as well as learning how to make a wobbly wheel run true. No more being stranded at the roadside (or suffering the wrath of taking your bike on the Tube).
Bike-fitting – Hackney Bike Workshop Hackney City Farm, E2 8QA
The lovely folk at Hackney Bike Workshop give up their time for free to teach self-help maintenance classes twice a month, but as of March this year, they’re offering pay-what-you-can bike fittings at all of their workshops.
Often only a service for serious racers, bike fittings are a bespoke service that work with you and your current set-up to find your best possible ride. They’ll look at equipment positions, your physical attributes, any injuries you might have and work on particular issues you’re having when cycling. It aims to improve your comfort, health and aerodynamics. It’s one of the only bike-fitting services tailored to commuters, so well worth a visit.
Women and Gender-Variant Only Workshop – 56a Bikespace 56a Crampton Street, SE17 3AE
A new venture for London’s collective DIY-repairs hub is a maintenance and fix-up workshop for female and non-gender binary cycling enthusiasts. The aim is to provide a relaxed environment for like-minded women and gender-variant to come together, share information and be sociable. The sessions are run on a weekly basis from 4.30-7.30 starting on 28th January.
Wheel Building – London Bike Kitchen -28 Whitmore Road, N1 5QA
For the true enthusiast, your very own chance to reinvent the wheel! Well, sort of. This workshop runs over the course of two evenings and will teach you all you need to know about building your own wheels. You’ll tackle spoke length and lacing a wheel on night one, then how to tension, true and dish a wheel on night two. They provide all necessary materials for you to practice on before you take the plunge and shell out on your own components.
Workshops are limited to four people, so you can be assured you’ll get plenty of support. They say all it takes is some ‘patience and positive determination’.
Cycling workshops in London are the perfect environment to learn in the company of those who share your passion for cycling. And as well as improving your bike, you might just pick up some new friends along the way.