"The Bike Itself."
You have the bike. You have your gear. You have a way to carry your gear. You even have some good clothing for the ride.
But, there are certain things that make life easier on the adventure and there are certain essentials you’ll need to deal with possible road side repairs.
First and foremost is a flat tire / basic repair kit. This is what I always bring on camping trips or other longer solo rides.
- 2 Spare tubes
- 1 Vulcanizing rubber, glue type patch kit (not the stick on patches, they are unreliable)
- 1 Mini pump and valve tool. Many tube have removable valves and every so often you get one that is a bit loose and wants to come unthreaded in certain types of mini pumps.
- 2 Tire levers
- 1 Tire boot kit such as the Park TB-2 kit
- Gerber/Leatherman or some similar type of multi tool that includes pliers and scissors
- A few feet of duct tape
- Bicycle multi tool
- Compact chain breaker
- 2 replacement quick links for the type of chain I have
- Small bottle of chain lube if out for multiple days or in wet weather
This SHOULD cover the small emergencies you may encounter on the road.
Some additional items that you may consider if out for multi day or longer trips:
- Fiberfix spoke repair kit or spare spokes
- Stein mini cassette lockring removal tool
There are also a few components that are usually an upgrade over stock parts on a touring bike that provide some very cool solutions.
Dynamo hub and light:
These days I view this as an essential for any touring bike. While the quality of rechargeable battery lights has gotten really good you are at the mercy of access to a source to charge. A dynamo light system eliminates that need to recharge by powering the light off the rotation of the front wheel. The technology that goes into these systems has radically improved in the last few decades and it is now possible to power a very bright light with minimal drag on the front wheel. Best of all most dynamo powered lights are designed for road use and their light output and beam pattern is optimized for this use and works far better than a simple spot pattern that most rechargeable trail style lights generate.
Dynamo light systems have also come down in price quite a bit as well with a decent light being well under $100 and the dynamo hub or wheel starting at around $175.
If you are using a dynamo you also have the ability to charge various electronic devices. From GPS computers to smart phones there are now several options for USB charging devices that wire into your dynamo hub and light system. The best way to use one is to charge a battery brick while riding then use the brick to recharge your device when you arrive at the campsite.
Once just a thing for trail riding, tire manufacturers are starting to make more tubeless tires for use on touring bikes. These tires drastically reduce the chances of getting a flat without relying on a heavy and slow rolling overbuilt tire casing. There is a bit more up front cost in these system and servicing them is a little different than a conventional tube type tire, but the net benefit is substantial. These systems allow for a much more efficiently rolling tire, a smoother ride and drastically less flats regardless of riding conditions. In a pinch you can always use an inner tube with them as well.
Our first overnight camping trip is on June 6th.
Come by Saturday, May 20 from 2-4pm. for our free class, sign-up below.