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  1. #1
    Peddlin' Around Detroit Motorad's Avatar
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    What Widgets to Carry for the Tool-Challenged?

    The good news is my new bike is at the LBS, and my new wheels are at my house. The bad news is a chipped distal-tip of right fibula three weeks ago. The good news is I've finished wearing a cast for three weeks to heal the bugger. The bad news is a follow-up, second cast today, for three more weeks. Why didn't somebody brief me that you forget how to walk when turning 50?

    So, three weeks to fine tune any remaining logistics. Worst case logistics for now would be for weekday (joint & solo) rides at Willow Park (Michigan) and weekend solo rides at Kensington Park (Michigan). I've got the basics: a bell, mini-pump, water cages, spare tube, patch kit, tire irons, a small seatpost bag (about 50 cubic inch volume), handlebar bag for food-clothes-wallet-cell phone, and basic first aid stuff. Being a boy scout in a previous life, I also got a Leatherman non-bike-minitool:
    < http://www.swissknifeshop.com/Leathe..._p/l830200.htm >.

    I'm having difficulty figuring what tools should be carried for a new bike with Shimano Dura Ace components. I can not comprehend what tools should be carried. The only two biking tools I have acquired over the years (and have ridden very little) are:
    1. Park MT-1: Very compact & light, but probably not much leverage in tight spots.
    * Hex Wrenches: 3mm . . . 4mm . . . 5mm . . . 6mm . . . 8mm
    * Socket Wrenches: 8mm . . . 9mm . . . 10mm
    * Regular Screwdriver

    2. Park AWS-9: Longer hexes, but less choice of selection, and no socket wrenches.
    * Hex Wrenches: 4mm . . . 5mm . . . 6mm
    * Regular Screwdriver
    * Philips Screwdriver

    So, on one hand I'm not riding to Africa. On the other hand, I could be the only biker on early mornings in Kensington Park, about 40 miles from my house. Along with the Leatherman multitool in my seatpost bag, what are recommended minimalist bike tools I should always have with me?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I generally just carry enough stuff to fix 1 flat tire. When I ride my fixed gear, I don't even carry that.

  3. #3
    Senior Member RoMad's Avatar
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    I carry enough tools to change a flat, adjust seat and handlebars, always have a snack bar of some kind, my C02 inflator, $10.00 and always my cell phone to call for a rescue if needed.

  4. #4
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    I have a different set-up for my mountain bike than my road bike. Maybe I shouldn't.

    For my mountain bike, I carry a Topeak Alien II, which is a bit heavy but has pretty any tool that you would ordinarily need. I also carry CO2 cartridges, spare tubes, patch kit, and sometimes duct tape, used a lot on the trail for snapped frames, broken bones and the like.

    For my road bike I carry a spare tube, tire irons, patch kit, and a tiny little tool with a few hex wrenches. If I snap a CF frame, I don't think duct tape will fix that.

  5. #5
    Senior Member CrossChain's Avatar
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    Generally, I carry as "permanent" bag items: tube, patch kit and 1 lever, 3 inch piece of tube for tire boot, a tiny envelope for hand cleaning, couple of gel packs, couple of appropriate size hex wrenches (I don't like the "sets"...too heavy and too many but good for garage use), a copy of my insurance card and driver's license, rolled up $10 bill in case I make landfall at a Starbuck's.

    I may add other stuff to my jersey pockets depending on distance, weather, etc.

  6. #6
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    I have one of these - just $3.95 and I threw it into an order where I was already getting free shipping. It has come in handy a couple of times. Pretty light.

    http://www.nashbar.com/profile_morei...u=18237&brand=

  7. #7
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    I carry a Crank Bros Multi-17 tool. They have a Multi-19 tool out now, but I don't think there's anything more on it that would be useful to me.
    I just went and looked at my recumbent and touring bikes. Not a single thing on them that would need a socket type wrench. Everything is an Allen hex. If your bike only uses Allen hexes, then you don't need the sockets.
    You have tire irons? I'm hoping those are plastic, since the metal ones have actually dug into the rim on bikes of other people I ride with. Always use plastic ones. If they are breaking on you, use them spaced closer together and/or try the Pedro's levers, they're stronger.
    If you use Shimano SPD clipless pedals, you'll need a 3mm Allen to adjust them.
    Silver Eagle Pilot

  8. #8
    Happy Rider
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    For riding close to home, I carry enough to adjust a seat, tighten a loose bolt, adjust a derailer and fix a flat or two--I've fixed as many as 3 in 20 miles. I think a small role of electricians tape is good also to put a piece over the hole in the tire if you are riding high pressures.

    If I'm touring, I carry a lot more.

  9. #9
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dchiefransom
    You have tire irons? I'm hoping those are plastic, since the metal ones have actually dug into the rim on bikes of other people I ride with. Always use plastic ones. If they are breaking on you, use them spaced closer together and/or try the Pedro's levers, they're stronger.
    Oops. I use metal irons. I'm going to change over. You learn a lot on this site

  10. #10
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    I need all the help I can get on hills, so I like to keep the weight down.

    1 tube wrapped in small rag, patch kit, 3 plastic tire irons and a frame pump.

    Only time I carry tools is if I am experimenting with some adjustment(s). As CC noted, multi tools are too heavy, the proper hex wrenches will suffice. Most multi tools include about a pound of tools that don't even fit your particular bike.

  11. #11
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    I love the Park MT1. It can get you through just about anything, and it's very easy to use. compared with the Topeak I used to have. The only thing the Park lacks is a corkscrew and a beer opener. Also two tubes, tire levers, some way to inflate your tires, and a cell phone.

    I agree with Louis and CC--it is extra weight, but I'm a cyclo-tourist at heart don't worry too much about the extra, um, ounces. Otherwise, I wouldn't be eating chips and drinking beer as I write this.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  12. #12
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    Hey, JT, welcome back.

    Doh ...I forgot to mention a cell phone.

  13. #13
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    Topeak multi tool (Alien I think), spare tube, Presta adaptor, four inch folding knife, tire removal tool, IPA pads and large bandage.
    Roccobike BF Official Thread Terminator

  14. #14
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    Oops, I also forgot that I carry the Park Tire Boots. I usually have about 5-6 of them. They are like the Park instant tube patches, only much bigger.
    Silver Eagle Pilot

  15. #15
    Hypoxic Member head_wind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dchiefransom
    I carry a Crank Bros Multi-17 tool.
    I have a Crank-17 too but have great difficulty using the chain breaker.
    I bought a Park IB-3 to replace it but haven't used it yet. It _looks_ as
    though the chain breaker will be more usable. Having broken chains
    and (in separate incidents) gotten them jammed between the chainring
    and frame I'm not comfortable w/o the chainbreaker.

    If you need the chainbreaker, what next?? To put the chain back
    together you will need either a Shimano (10 speed??, 9 speed?? it matters)
    pin or a master link. I favor Wipperman Connex links. The large Leatherman
    will be considered by many to be overkill, but using a baby Leatherman I
    bent the plier end trying to snap the excess piece off a Shimano 9 speed pin.

    If any of this calls for clarification then holler.

  16. #16
    Senior Member further's Avatar
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    cell phone, credit card, ID with emergency info including blood type
    I have the key, to escape reality....Get on your bikes and ride

  17. #17
    Seņor Wences jwbnyc's Avatar
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    I really dislike those combo tools. I have a drawer full of them. They are no fun to work with that's for sure.

    I carry a Topeak Toolbar, which is basically a screwdriver with extra bits and tire levers, a pack of Park Super Patches and a Topeak Micro Rocket.

    That's all folks.

    I would just carry the real thing - separate tools that is - if I was really going off the edge somewhere.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Motorad
    Along with the Leatherman multitool in my seatpost bag, what are recommended minimalist bike tools I should always have with me?
    Here's what I carry for 30 mi + rides: driver's license, health insurance card, credit card, keys, handkerchief, $10 or $20, cell phone, small flat screwdriver not too fine, allen wrenches (6mm, 5 mm, 3 mm), small 13 mm open end, triangle socket wrench, tubular tire, pump, chain tool. For Mrs. Road Fan I add some tire patches, glue, and Eldi tire irons. She wouldn't have tubulars.

    I need to be able to optimize saddle and 'bar positions, adjust brakes and derailleurs, fix flats, get back in my car/house, phone, and be identified in case of emergency. Sometimes keep warm.

    Road Fan

  19. #19
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Weak Link
    Oops. I use metal irons. I'm going to change over. You learn a lot on this site
    If you get the bead released fully, I can't see how te plastic ones are getting broken, it's not supposed to need taht much force.

    Road Fan

  20. #20
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    I dislike using the multi tolls- even for just adjusting something on the bike whilst out. Road bike wedge has tube- irons- repair kit and a set of the allen keys that I use on the bike and a screwdriver that has both Flat and Phillips on it. Mountain bike has basically the same. Only exception to this is if I have carried out some major repair or adjustments to the bike since the last ride- Then I will take the tools that I used on the repair/adjustments. Just in case I have not set it up properly.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  21. #21
    Bike Curious.... bobby c's Avatar
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    I carry a bow and a quiver of 6 arrows. I was always told that if you ever got lost, just fire a shot in the air every 1/2 hour until help comes. This means I've got 3 hours worth of arrows.
    Last edited by bobby c; 06-27-07 at 07:15 PM.

  22. #22
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobby c
    A carry a bow and a quiver of 6 arrows. I was always told that if you ever got lost, just fire a shot in the air every 1/2 hour until help comes. This means I've got 3 hours worth of arrows.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Road Fan
    If you get the bead released fully, I can't see how te plastic ones are getting broken, it's not supposed to need taht much force.

    Road Fan
    Some tires seem to just not be made for certain rims. Armadillos are now better than they used to be, and some Continentals are very hard to get off, even with the bead loose inside the rim.
    Silver Eagle Pilot

  24. #24
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    First aid kit, MT-1, tire levers and patch kit. All I need. bk

  25. #25
    OnTheRoad or AtTheBeach stonecrd's Avatar
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    I only carry flat repair tools as well. This include tire levers (plastic), patches, spare tube, tire boots (a couple pieces of old tire cut to fit inside the tire in case of major rip in the tire) 3 CO2 cartridges and a cell phone for when all else fails.
    The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard and the shallow end is much too large

    2013 Noah RS

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