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So what's in your tool bag?

Old 07-05-22, 06:07 PM
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VegasJen
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So what's in your tool bag?

On all of my bikes I tend to carry one of those small tool bags that straps under the seat. I always have one spare tube, generally 2 CO2 cartridges with an inflator tool, two tire levers and a couple of Allen wrenches that fit my specific bike. I'm just wondering if there's anything else you guys carry I should consider adding to mine.
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Old 07-05-22, 06:59 PM
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Old 07-05-22, 07:02 PM
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One bike's tool bag has a CO2 inflator, the other two share a Pro Bike Tool mini pump. Each has a multi-tool. My old racing bike has a 5.5 mm or 7/32" Allen key for its seat bolt in the tool bag, plus an 8/10 mm wrench for its old-fashioned nuts. I'm relying on sealant for it at present, but carry spare tubes and tire irons on the other two.


Tool-kit lite

For myself, I add my asthma tooter, a handkerchief, and a mask, these days.
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Old 07-05-22, 07:07 PM
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2 spare tubes
mini pump
tire levers
chain tool
spare chain links
spoke wrench
multitool
15 mm wrench
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Old 07-05-22, 07:33 PM
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2 tubes, 3 CO2, inflator, Alien tool, boot kit,
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Old 07-05-22, 07:36 PM
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very mini/minimal tool with hex sizes & slot & phillips head
3 tire levers, one lever has 2 or 3 wraps of black duct tape on it - a great tire casing emergency repair and many other possibilities
Park GP2 tube adhesive patches
small reading glasses +2.50
2x 700c race lite tubes
a few small napkins to clean stuff/hands
gel pac or small pac fruit gummies
ten bucks (for coffee and muffin)
spare chain link (version depending on bike chain, I have both 9 & 10 spd bikes)
med insurance card photocopy/ID info - some years back, there was a 'sticker' you could put on your helmet, with all your important contact & med info - it lasted about a month - a good idea
I might print out a similar version, to fit my helmets and cover with clear flexible tape... having the info on a helmet, as well as in your saddlebag, might assure a quicker 'find', in the case that it is needed, and you can't direct the info search.

...cell goes somewhere else... usually a min-saddle bag which I attach to the front of the Handlebar...
Ride On - safely and without flats... LOL
Yuri
EDIT: I always carried a spoke wrench, however it recently wandered away... I need to find a good replacement - spoke wrench has come in handy quite a few times when a spoke decides to separate...

Last edited by cyclezen; 07-05-22 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 07-05-22, 07:37 PM
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In my tool bag:
- Multitool
- a couple of standard size Allen keys
- Chain tool
- Spare quick links
- Quick link tool (makes opening and closing quick links easy)
- steel tire levers
- needle nose pliers
- patches
- rubber cement

Additionally, I also carry a spare tube and a mini-pump attached to the frame. The only time I don't carry tools / pump is when I'm riding close to home and could easily walk home in the event of mechanical issues.
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Old 07-05-22, 07:58 PM
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This is a pretty slippery slope you're venturing out on, lol
Most of us carry the basics; flat repair, the "usual suspects" 4, 5, 6mm hex keys for simple adjustments/ repairs. I carry a mini chain tool and an extra quick-link in case I smash an RD and have to field-rig a single-speed to get home (particularly on the MTB and century rides)

There are some here who won't leave home without the capability to do shop-level repairs like pulling cranks and trueing wheels, but all you need is one forward gear, and one good brake to make it home to where the rest of the "good tools" are.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:08 PM
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I carry tire fix-it stuff, a pump, a multitool, and safety meeting supplies.

Last edited by Rolla; 07-05-22 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
This is a pretty slippery slope you're venturing out on, lol
Most of us carry the basics; flat repair, the "usual suspects" 4, 5, 6mm hex keys for simple adjustments/ repairs. I carry a mini chain tool and an extra quick-link in case I smash an RD and have to field-rig a single-speed to get home (particularly on the MTB and century rides)

There are some here who won't leave home without the capability to do shop-level repairs like pulling cranks and trueing wheels, but all you need is one forward gear, and one good brake to make it home to where the rest of the "good tools" are.
Agreed, plus different people have different needs or desires (especially since this subforum can include road, mountain, gravel, etc.). In the day of smart phones and ride share apps, a strong argument can be made that a phone is all you really need unless you ride where there's no coverage. Others insist on being able to repair absolutely anything so that they don't ever have to cut a ride short. I can't remember the last time I actually needed my multitool, but it's nice to have it with me in case I want to adjust something (seat height, handlebar tilt, etc.). Flats happen, so I always have stuff to address that (different provisions are needed for clinchers vs tubeless vs tubulars).
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Old 07-05-22, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
very mini/minimal tool with hex sizes & slot & phillips head
3 tire levers, one lever has 2 or 3 wraps of black duct tape on it - a great tire casing emergency repair and many other possibilities
Park GP2 tube adhesive patches
small reading glasses +2.50
2x 700c race lite tubes
a few small napkins to clean stuff/hands
gel pac or small pac fruit gummies
ten bucks (for coffee and muffin)
spare chain link (version depending on bike chain, I have both 9 & 10 spd bikes)
med insurance card photocopy/ID info - some years back, there was a 'sticker' you could put on your helmet, with all your important contact & med info - it lasted about a month - a good idea
I might print out a similar version, to fit my helmets and cover with clear flexible tape... having the info on a helmet, as well as in your saddlebag, might assure a quicker 'find', in the case that it is needed, and you can't direct the info search.

...cell goes somewhere else... usually a min-saddle bag which I attach to the front of the Handlebar...
Ride On - safely and without flats... LOL
Yuri
EDIT: I always carried a spoke wrench, however it recently wandered away... I need to find a good replacement - spoke wrench has come in handy quite a few times when a spoke decides to separate...
There are different size chains between 9 and 10 speed? I'll have to look closer at my bikes. They all look the same to me.
As for emergency info, I had custom military-style "dog" tags made and I've laced one into my shoes. I also carry a photocopy of my DL with emergency contacts on the other side. That stays in a small waist pack I always ride with.
But what's with the spoke wrench? I'm not saying it's a bad idea, I just can't figure out what kind of failure you could have where a spoke wrench would help without any replacement parts. I posted this to learn from others.
Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
This is a pretty slippery slope you're venturing out on, lol
Most of us carry the basics; flat repair, the "usual suspects" 4, 5, 6mm hex keys for simple adjustments/ repairs. I carry a mini chain tool and an extra quick-link in case I smash an RD and have to field-rig a single-speed to get home (particularly on the MTB and century rides)

There are some here who won't leave home without the capability to do shop-level repairs like pulling cranks and trueing wheels, but all you need is one forward gear, and one good brake to make it home to where the rest of the "good tools" are.
What's an "RD"? I'm sure it's something simple but it's not clicking with me at the moment.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
Agreed, plus different people have different needs or desires (especially since this subforum can include road, mountain, gravel, etc.). In the day of smart phones and ride share apps, a strong argument can be made that a phone is all you really need unless you ride where there's no coverage. Others insist on being able to repair absolutely anything so that they don't ever have to cut a ride short. I can't remember the last time I actually needed my multitool, but it's nice to have it with me in case I want to adjust something (seat height, handlebar tilt, etc.). Flats happen, so I always have stuff to address that (different provisions are needed for clinchers vs tubeless vs tubulars).
See, I never ride with my phone. For one thing, I have older bikes and most of them aren't worth as much as a replacement phone. Second, I don't really have anyone around here to call. All my family and friends are back east. I'm kind of on my own out here.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasJen View Post
There are different size chains between 9 and 10 speed? I'll have to look closer at my bikes. They all look the same to me.
As for emergency info, I had custom military-style "dog" tags made and I've laced one into my shoes. I also carry a photocopy of my DL with emergency contacts on the other side. That stays in a small waist pack I always ride with.
But what's with the spoke wrench? I'm not saying it's a bad idea, I just can't figure out what kind of failure you could have where a spoke wrench would help without any replacement parts. I posted this to learn from others.

What's an "RD"? I'm sure it's something simple but it's not clicking with me at the moment.
In my younger days I have been known to 'pop' spokes, and it's always a distance from home. Sometimes you can still ride home with the brake 'open', but on low spoke count wheels, it may not be possible... I'm not breaking spokes as much as I did when younger, and the wheels seem to hold up better.
Usually on training wheels, which always had way more miles than race wheels...
Spoke wrench allows you to 'adjust' the wheel, temporarily, soz you can limp home...

8 , 9 ,10, 11 all should use proper quick links - since they are different widths
in emergency you could use a 9 spd link on a 10 spd chain, and a 10 spd link on 11 - so you can limp home...
RD - rear derailleur FD - front de...
bike acronyms
I always recommend carrying your cell for emergencies, especially if you're riding solo and especially if a female
if you can;t find a good carry on the bike, then in a ziplock baggie in your jersey pocket - some won;t carry anywhere BUT in the jersey pocket.
best scenario is you carry it for years, and never need to use it.
Ride On
Yuri
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Old 07-05-22, 08:46 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
In my younger days I have been known to 'pop' spokes, and it's always a distance from home. Sometimes you can still ride home with the brake 'open', but on low spoke count wheels, it may not be possible... I'm not breaking spokes as much as I did when younger, and the wheels seem to hold up better.
Usually on training wheels, which always had way more miles than race wheels...
Spoke wrench allows you to 'adjust' the wheel, temporarily, soz you can limp home...

8 , 9 ,10, 11 all should use proper quick links - since they are different widths
in emergency you could use a 9 spd link on a 10 spd chain, and a 10 spd link on 11 - so you can limp home...
RD - rear derailleur FD - front de...
bike acronyms
I always recommend carrying your cell for emergencies, especially if you're riding solo and especially if a female
if you can;t find a good carry on the bike, then in a ziplock baggie in your jersey pocket - some won;t carry anywhere BUT in the jersey pocket.
best scenario is you carry it for years, and never need to use it.
Ride On
Yuri
Oh. Ya, the RD was simple but it just wasn't clicking for me. I've had an off day today.

What do you mean "pop" a spoke? Does it break? I can't say I've had a spoke break on me, except if the threads rusted/corroded and snapped when trying to tighten or loosen. I can't recall a spoke ever breaking while I was riding.

Ya, there are strong arguments for carrying a phone when you ride, especially for females. One of the things that p!$$ me off and I just don't understand is why I can't have a second (or third) phone that works on my primary number. I would be much more receptive to getting a cheap, throw-away phone if I could just put it on the same number But that's a whole cell phone service can of worms there.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasJen View Post
On all of my bikes I tend to carry one of those small tool bags that straps under the seat. I always have one spare tube, generally 2 CO2 cartridges with an inflator tool, two tire levers and a couple of Allen wrenches that fit my specific bike. I'm just wondering if there's anything else you guys carry I should consider adding to mine.
in addition, a couple of nitrile gloves and a small Swiss army knife
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Old 07-05-22, 08:52 PM
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CO2 canister, inflater, one tire lever, one tubolito, one multitool.

phone is always on the bars, 100% of the time. anything that can’t be fixed quickly by me with the above is a Uber ride. key or card key (depending on whether I rode from office or home) in a pocket, and that’s it.
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Old 07-05-22, 08:56 PM
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My current tool bag on my daily driver is rather extravagant but quite useful. It is a set of the bits I need from PB-Swiss in a magnetic holder from Reitz Industries on the Etsy with a Snap-On magnetic bit ratchet. I also carry a Crank Brothers Speedier Lever, inflator, patches (both glueless and glued just because) and co2 cartridge. I also carry around a pump and will probably continue refining it to what I need.

The important thing to a tool kit is something you know how to use and that is practical for your usage. If you are going out for longer rides you might want more tools but if you are doing shorter rides you might need less stuff. However having tools you don't know how to use is pretty useless and having tools that are cheap and do a poor job are equally useless.

If I was going for a folding multi-tools the Crank Brothers M10 is by far my favorite but the bit driver is quite nice.
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Old 07-05-22, 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasJen View Post
There are different size chains between 9 and 10 speed? I'll have to look closer at my bikes. They all look the same to me.
As for emergency info, I had custom military-style "dog" tags made and I've laced one into my shoes. I also carry a photocopy of my DL with emergency contacts on the other side. That stays in a small waist pack I always ride with.
But what's with the spoke wrench? I'm not saying it's a bad idea, I just can't figure out what kind of failure you could have where a spoke wrench would help without any replacement parts. I posted this to learn from others.

What's an "RD"? I'm sure it's something simple but it's not clicking with me at the moment.
Ask any first-responder, and they'll tell you that shoes (and other items) often get separated from a person who's been hit by a car. This is a better option.
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Old 07-05-22, 09:30 PM
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I have allen keys, 1 spare tube, patch kit, chain breaker, mini pump, adjustable wrench, mini long nose pliers, sand paper, 2m plastic twine straw rope, 5 pcs zip tie, and rag.

I didn't need a tire lever as it would seem it is relatively easy to remove and install 700c tires on my rims without using any tool, just my hands.
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Old 07-05-22, 09:41 PM
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I like the idea of the nitrile gloves. I always wear riding gloves when I'm out but I don't like getting them funky with grease or road grime. I should put some nitriles in my pouches. Thanks for that.
Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
My current tool bag on my daily driver is rather extravagant but quite useful. It is a set of the bits I need from PB-Swiss in a magnetic holder from Reitz Industries on the Etsy with a Snap-On magnetic bit ratchet. I also carry a Crank Brothers Speedier Lever, inflator, patches (both glueless and glued just because) and co2 cartridge. I also carry around a pump and will probably continue refining it to what I need.

The important thing to a tool kit is something you know how to use and that is practical for your usage. If you are going out for longer rides you might want more tools but if you are doing shorter rides you might need less stuff. However having tools you don't know how to use is pretty useless and having tools that are cheap and do a poor job are equally useless.

If I was going for a folding multi-tools the Crank Brothers M10 is by far my favorite but the bit driver is quite nice.
For those of you that carry pumps, is there a reason you prefer a pump over a C02 inflator?
Originally Posted by koala logs View Post
I have allen keys, 1 spare tube, patch kit, chain breaker, mini pump, adjustable wrench, mini long nose pliers, sand paper, 2m plastic twine straw rope, 5 pcs zip tie, and rag.

I didn't need a tire lever as it would seem it is relatively easy to remove and install 700c tires on my rims without using any tool, just my hands.
What's the sand paper and twine for?
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Old 07-05-22, 09:46 PM
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I carry quite a bit.

Multi tool w/ chaintool
Patch kit
glueless patch kit
tire irons
electric inflator
glucose tablets
phone and battery bank since my phone is my bike computer

I have broken a spoke and the wheel is untrue enough that it rubs the brake, so I used a spoke wrench to loosen a couple of spokes so it was straight enough for me to ride home with the caliper opened.
I had only used the chain tool helping someone else, until this year when I had my chain fell off the granny gear when downshifting, and the chain got caught between the bottom bracket and crank under the granny gear. I had to use the chain tool to break the chain, unjam it and put it back together.
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Old 07-05-22, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclist2000 View Post
I carry quite a bit.

Multi tool w/ chaintool
Patch kit
glueless patch kit
tire irons
electric inflator
glucose tablets
phone and battery bank since my phone is my bike computer

I have broken a spoke and the wheel is untrue enough that it rubs the brake, so I used a spoke wrench to loosen a couple of spokes so it was straight enough for me to ride home with the caliper opened.
I had only used the chain tool helping someone else, until this year when I had my chain fell off the granny gear when downshifting, and the chain got caught between the bottom bracket and crank under the granny gear. I had to use the chain tool to break the chain, unjam it and put it back together.
Thank you for explaining the spoke thing. I could not figure out how that helped. Makes sense now.
Do you carry glucose tablets because your T2DM? Or just for energy on long rides?
When you guys say "tire irons", what do you mean? Levers? Or something different?
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Old 07-05-22, 10:42 PM
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Phone and AAA card.

Then add most of the most frequently mentioned items above.
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Old 07-05-22, 10:59 PM
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My Bianchi Eros carries the least: just a spare tube and patch kit. (A full-size frame pump rides along the seat tube.) My fixed-gear adds a PDW 3wrencho for the rear axle nuts, and it can be a tire lever if anyone around me needs it.

My rando bike carries the most tools, since it has the most fasteners and takes me on the longest rides: spare tube (or two), patch kit, allen wrenches in 2/4/5/6mm, spoke wrench, couple feet of duct tape in a small roll, some zip ties, and a pair of fingernail clippers. The bike has a couple of 8mm, 9mm, and 10mm fasteners here and there, but I just double-check that those ones are secure before long rides, rather than taking that many more wrenches with me.
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Old 07-05-22, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasJen View Post
I like the idea of the nitrile gloves. I always wear riding gloves when I'm out but I don't like getting them funky with grease or road grime. I should put some nitriles in my pouches. Thanks for that.
For those of you that carry pumps, is there a reason you prefer a pump over a C02 inflator?

What's the sand paper and twine for?
I'm the sand paper! JK!

Sand paper for patching tubes so the glue sticks better. Twine and zip ties holding stuff together in case they break or if I have to remove broken parts and have to secure them on the rack. I often use twine to secure things on the rack because they're much lighter than bungee cords.

I also use the twine as "poor man's" substitute for a proper bike stand. If you've dealt with bikes for a very long time, you'll eventually experience that even if you lean the bike against a wall, there are times it can still fall over with surprising ease or with very little disturbance, especially when the front wheel is steered off the wall on its own or by other people passing near the bike. The twine's job is simple, tie the front wheel to the down tube to keep it from turning. It's makes bike a lot harder to fall while leaning against a wall and also prevents the bike from rolling if the ground or the floor is inclined. I sometimes do it on rides if I have to make a short stop and get off the bike.
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