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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 01-09-15, 05:39 PM   #1
Bakersb
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Tools/every day carry

When you guys are commuting to work/school/etc, what tools do you bring with you? I want to set up a section of my commuting pack dedicated to tools and general maintenance carry. However, I'm not sure about what I should bring. I'm having trouble finding a balance between a light load to over-doing it.

For sure I will bring tools for changing a flat. I have a singlespeed, so I'll bring a 15mm, tire levers, small pump, patch kit.

But what else do you guys carry with you, whether on person or in bag?

Thanks
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Old 01-09-15, 06:10 PM   #2
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Pretty much my standard kit:

15mm open end/pedal wrench
bike multi tool
Leatherman
pump
tire levers
Park Tool glueless patches
spare tube
non latex gloves
1oz bottle of hand cleaner,wrapped in paper towels,in a baggie
anti-biotic wipes
couple assorted bandaids
zip ties
spare blinky light
piece of old mailing envelope(for tire booting)

Actually,I generally wind up using most if the other stuff for folks who don't carry anything.
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Old 01-09-15, 06:30 PM   #3
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This is what I carry:

-a small 15mm wrench for my axle nuts
- 2 plastic tire levers
- 1 heavy duty metal tire lever
- chain tool
- a short piece of chain about 6 inches long
- few quick links
- mini bike tool
- 2 spare tubes
- mini pump
- few chain ring bolts
- a small chain ring wrench
- Leatherman Super Tool multi tool
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Old 01-09-15, 06:39 PM   #4
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I have a bag on each bike I use that holds a bike specific tube and a couple tire wrenches. Both bikes I use for commuting have a frame or mini pump. In the shoulder bag/briefcase I keep a cable, bike multi-tool and patch kit. I always carry a Leatherman Wingman multi-tool wherever I go. If that doesn't get it, take the bus.

Marc
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Old 01-09-15, 06:42 PM   #5
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I carry a cycling specific multi-tool or tool-kit, and a tube in a ziplock bag along with some sort of frame mounted pump. I can't remember the last time I patched a tube in the field. It's so much easier and faster to just put a new tube in. My plan is to save my punctured tubes and patch them all at once in a big patch party someday.
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Old 01-09-15, 06:51 PM   #6
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Pretty much everything needed to fix a flat:

Small crescent wrench (nutted axles)
Two spare tubes
Patch kit
Tire levers
Pump
Cheap brown cotton work gloves

Plus for minor adjustments, a folding allen wrench set

It's not much gear, so I keep a set with each bike, rather than having to remember to transfer the stuff from one bike to another.
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Old 01-09-15, 06:56 PM   #7
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I've got several bags that I might use and I'd always forget things if I had to pack them for each ride, so I keep the essentials in each bag: a multitool, tire levers, a pump, a patch kit and a spare tube.

The bag that I usually use for commuting has a good bit of storage so it also contains a small bottle of chain lube, some spare rim tape (someone here suggested it as an emergency repair for torn sidewalls), a small first aid kit, a few spare chain links and back-up lights. The multitool in that bag is a Crank Brothers multi-19, which includes a chain tool. Some of my other bags have very minimal multitools.

When I use my road bike I often gamble with just a small seat bag that has CO2 cartridges instead of a pump, though it bears emphasizing that this is a gamble.
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Old 01-09-15, 07:03 PM   #8
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My plan is to save my punctured tubes and patch them all at once in a big patch party someday.
I do that too. The last time I got around to patching them I had something like 25 of them in various sizes. I had them hanging all over the garage the weekend that I patched them. Now I've got a really big bag of spare tubes, which is nice. Also, I have a lot more confidence with a tube that I saw hanging fully inflated in the garage for several days than I would with one that I patched by the side of the road. Not all of my patched tubes held air for multiple days.

I still carry a patch kit in case the spare tube goes down, but I almost never use it.
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Old 01-09-15, 08:46 PM   #9
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Tools? spare tube, patch kit, pump. EDC? Kel-Tec P-32
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Old 01-09-15, 10:35 PM   #10
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I ride my touring bike everyday...Minus panniers(stuff sacks actually)....so it has 1 of everything it seems...
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Old 01-09-15, 10:56 PM   #11
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When I lived in the dorm and pedaled like a mile to class, not anything.

Same deal at my last job where I figured if I broke down I'd hitch, as there is only one road traveled only by people headed the same place.

At my current job, about five miles on MUPs and city streets, a kit about like what others will describe.

I did learn to keep my first aid kit in a plastic bag. It got rained on a few years ago and last year when I needed it, my bandaids were moldy. Yuck!
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Old 01-09-15, 11:22 PM   #12
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I have a little nylon stuff sack, smaller than a fist. It contains a pretty complete tool kit and I leave it in my saddlebag. It contains:
- Allen wrenches, short ones, in all the sizes needed for my bike (four, I think)
- Metal tire levers that are also hex wrenches, that fit the few hex fasteners on my bike.
- A very small chain tool.
- A spoke wrench.
- Patches, little tube of vulcanizing compound, small square of sandpaper.
- Spare derailleur and brake cables.
- Rolled up spare tube (used and tested).
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Old 01-10-15, 02:10 AM   #13
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Patch kit, tire levers, pump, allen wrench set, spoke wrench, spare batteries for the tail light, large black garbage bag, and for this winter a bivvy bag. My EDC kit in my pockets and on my belt include a flashlight, Leatherman, and locking pocket knife among other things.
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Old 01-10-15, 07:17 AM   #14
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I have a handlebar bag that holds:
- tire levers, patch kit
- multi tool
- 2 tubes
- universal spoke wrench
- chain breaker tool

I have the same brand bag on all my bikes filled the same way...

oh, I also have a pump strapped to the frame...
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Old 01-10-15, 10:23 AM   #15
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I carry pretty much what's been mentioned but I also carry a couple of spare screws for my SPD shoes.
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Old 01-10-15, 10:39 AM   #16
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I carry pretty much what's been mentioned but I also carry a couple of spare screws for my SPD shoes.
That's a good idea. I've never had that one but I can see how it could happen, I've had a sort of similar problem snowboarding.
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Old 01-10-15, 10:39 AM   #17
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2 tubes, multi-tool, tire lever, small bit of chain, chain pins, 4 Co2 Cartriages, tire boot
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Old 01-10-15, 10:53 AM   #18
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I travel light these days, multitool, the usual flat stuff etc. I've never needed any chain links nor the chain tool so I even leave that off.

Some things that I don't carry, but sometimes feel like I should: lighter, Mylar space blanket, flashlight, wipes, spokes, chain oil. Reading glasses. De-icer would have been smart a few times last winter. First aid that I could have used a couple of times: bandages, Tylenol, sling, gown (what they charge for that stuff in ER would make it worth it)
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Old 01-10-15, 10:57 AM   #19
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Pretty much as described above, including an Allen wrench for my carbon fiber seatpost because it seems to slip a bit. I then learned that you're suposed to use a torque wrench which I now carry, but have not used because the torque wrench apppears to have solved the problem.
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Old 01-10-15, 11:21 AM   #20
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Pretty much as described above, including an Allen wrench for my carbon fiber seatpost because it seems to slip a bit. I then learned that you're suposed to use a torque wrench which I now carry, but have not used because the torque wrench apppears to have solved the problem.

Add some carbon seat post paste and that should address that slipping. It did for me.
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Old 01-10-15, 11:29 AM   #21
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I don't carry any tools, but my commute is only 3 miles. If I got a flat I could probably walk the remainder of my commute faster than I could swap the tube and ride there.
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Old 01-10-15, 11:40 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
- few chain ring bolts
- a small chain ring wrench
Is this something peculiar to SS bikes? I've never heard of anyone having to deal with chainrings on a ride. Do the bolts come loose or break?
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Old 01-10-15, 11:59 AM   #23
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My kit looks pretty much like most, I carry a small saddle bag with:

CO2 pump w/extra cartridge - small, light, and only for roadside emergencies. I used to carry a frame pump, but my bike now wont work properly with one, and most mini-pumps are garbage. If it takes me more than 2 cartridges to fix myself, I probably have more pressing issues than a flat tire.
Tire levers - I like the yellow Pedros levers, they are nice and wide and haven't broken yet.
New tube - I would carry a used tube, but I can never get it rolled as tightly as a new one fresh from a box, so a used one won't fit in my bag easily.
Patches - just in case. I prefer the Park Tools glueless patches. They are cheap, come in a tiny plastic box that protects them, and have a little piece of sandpaper rather than the metal scraper thing. Just sand the spot for a second, wipe it off, and stick a patch on. Super easy to use, and I have yet to see one fail.
Mini-tool - I think mine has 4 allen wrench sizes, flat and phillips screwdrivers, and a couple other things that I havent used yet.
Batteries for my lights - I made a point to make sure that my headlight and taillight took the same kind of battery, and I carry enough to replace one or the other.
During winter I also carry light gloves and a beanie, assuming that I don't leave already wearing them. I like using the fleece liners from a pair of snowboarding mittens - they keep me warm and pack easily.

On work days, I also carry a water bottle and a coffee travel cup. Gotta have my Joe!

With a single speed a pair of nitrile gloves would be a good idea, but my commuters all have deraillers, so I can get the wheel on and of pretty easily without getting too much grease on my hands.


Ultimately, I think the big factor to what you carry is going to depend on how far you ride everyday, and how far your route takes you from help. I dont carry nearly as much as some people here, but I am also never more than a 15 minute walk from either home, a train station (which the one closest to my office even has a bike shop for commuters), or a bike shop. If things get really jacked, I would be able to get help rather quickly.

If my commute took me over the hills and through the woods though, I would probably carry more stuff. Things like a chainbreaker with a couple extra links of chain, spoke wrench, and a frame pump start looking more practical.

If I was abandoning civilization and going on a self supported tour, I would carry an extra rear-derailler, extra spokes, a folding tire, 2-3 tubes and 2-3 patch kits, extra water, raingear, extra brake/shifter cables, etc.
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Old 01-10-15, 12:04 PM   #24
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I then learned that you're suposed to use a torque wrench which I now carry, but have not used because the torque wrench apppears to have solved the problem.
If you end up feeling that you still need to carry a torque wrench you might look into a Ritchey Torque Key. It would be safe for a CF seatpost and a lot lighter than a full blown wrench.

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Is this something peculiar to SS bikes? I've never heard of anyone having to deal with chainrings on a ride. Do the bolts come loose or break?
That is the very first time that I have ever heard of anyone ever doing that, for any bike. I never had a problem with that being peculiar to any SSFG bike that I've ever owned.
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Old 01-10-15, 12:50 PM   #25
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For commuting: Mini Morph pump, self-adhesive patches, tire levers, 1 boot, 2 tubes (for each size tire), multi-hex tool, small general multi-tool, chain breaker, quick link, zip ties, velcro, rag. Basic first aid stuff, too.
No ***, unlike a previous poster.
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