7 Important Tools to Bring on an Exciting Bike Tour
Going on a bike tour is exciting, but not when something breaks down and you do not have any tools to fix it. In order to be prepared, you need to bring some tools with you, but not so much that they will only weigh you down.
Tool Kits Depend on the Tour
In listing the tools that you should bring, you need to identify first the kind of trip that you are going to make. Will it be one-day solo event or will it be a longer bike tour with some buddies?
Each kind of trip involves different scenarios as well as different kinds of repairs that you might have to perform on your bicycle.
If you are planning to go on a one-day trip, then most likely you will need to do some minor repairs only. These may include repairing a punctured tire, replacing a brake shoe, or re-installing your bike pedals.
It could also involve carrying out some minor adjustments to improve the fitting and overall functionality of your bicycle. On the other hand, if your tour will take several days or more, then you might have to do other types of repairs, such as replacing your headset, hubs, pedals, and gears.
You can also expect to do some wheel repairing and rebuilding, if you hit rocky terrain. In any case, it would also be a wise idea to make a list of all the things that could happen to your bike along the way.
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Essential Tools that You Should Bring
To address such scenarios, there are some essential tools that you should definitely bring, regardless of whether you will be riding for a day or several days.
You do not need to bring everything in your tool box at home, or else these would just slow you down. To be truly prepared for your trip, remember to pack the following things with you:
Of all the things that you should be prepared for, a flat tire is perhaps the most important one. You never know when a flat tire would happen, but you can always be ready for it by bringing a patch kit, plus a mini pump and some tire levels.
Without these tools, you might end up trying to hitch a ride or walking for a long way, which we definitely do not want to happen!
Investing in a good pump is much better than buying an inexpensive one that doesn’t work well. Look for a pump that is small enough for you to carry around yet strong enough to put air into the tires effectively.
You might need to check out and try several pumps first before you find a good one.
As the term suggests, a multi-tool is a single piece of equipment that can carry out multiple functions. A good multi-tool usually includes a chain breaker that is able to break as well as re-couple your bike chain. It should also have screwdrivers and an emergency pedal wrench.
Aside from these, your multi-tool must also contain Torx keys, wrenches, and spoke keys that come in different sizes. Just make sure that the sizes of these tools are compatible with your bike parts.
You never know when you will need to use a spoke wrench, so it is best to carry one around. Using a spoke wrench, you can make the necessary adjustments to keep the wheels of your bike turning.
In any case, if your bike needs a major repair, this tool can help you at least until you reach the nearest bicycle repair shop.
Other than tools, you will need to bring some spare parts with you. These should include a variety of bolts, nuts, and washers in different sizes. You should also have a spare inner tube that matches the tubes that are already installed in your bicycle.
Moreover, it would be a great idea to bring spokes, specifically one for the front wheel, a couple for the rear wheel drive side, and another for the rear wheel non-drive side.
Do not forget to carry some replacement brake shoes, gear inner cables, and brake inner cables as well. Likewise, bring some cable end caps, a spare chain link and a replacement chain link that matches your bicycle chain.
One way to keep your bike running smoothly is to make sure that is is lubed regularly. This is because when a chain is dirty, it makes a grinding noise that could be very annoying indeed! Fortunately, a quick wipe using a rag and some amount of lube should take care of the problem.
Furthermore, when it comes to bike chain problems, a small bottle of lube and some rags may be the only things that you will need.
If you lube the chain and cassette regularly, then it might not be necessary for you to bring a replacement chain at all. In addition, lube is a must-have if you plan to go out in the rain or ride over dusty dirt roads.
This may sound like an insignificant thing, but even a small amount of duct tape can go a long way.
Duct tape can be used for emergency repairs or simply for holding things together, at least temporarily. Grab a small piece of card, wrap some duct tape around it, and you’re good to go.
How to Buy a Tool Kit?
You have to consider the type of bike and skill levels of your children when buying a tool kit for their bikes. You can also start building a tool kit starting from the basics and add more tools, as needed. You may also buy a pre-made tool kit from Pedro’s or Park Tool.
Keep these tips in mind, too, so that you can save money yet still get quality tools. You don’t need plenty of tools in a bike tool kit but you have to buy the right kinds. Start with the basic tools (e.g., combination wrenches and multi-tools) and build them up.
You have to avoid impulse buys of trendy tools. Save money by making a checklist of the must-have bike tools and sticking to it
You may also check online resources and ask the experts about these matters. You will find, for example, that many bike tools aren’t suitable for children’s bikes – skip on them. You can also spread out the cost when buying two or three tools at a time.
Aside from preparing your essential tools kit, the best thing that you can do before you go on your bike trip is to have your bicycle checked. Does it need a new chain or a brake pad? Do you need to lube the brake cables, chain rings, tires, and rims?
The more well-maintained your bike is, the less likely you will encounter any problems on the road. In any case, you should still bring a good set of tools before you go on your way. This way, you can be free from worry and simply enjoy your bike tour!