The 6 Essentials
|| A flat tire turns a
short ride into a long walk unless you have the right
equipment with you to get back on the road.
six items are the essentials every cyclist should have
on their bike before they turn a pedal. In addition
to carrying a cell phone, these items should be considered
mandatory for every ride.
Less is more for your on-bike survival
kit. Carrying the smallest possible bag saves room, weight and
discourages you from bringing the kitchen sink. The same rules
as packing luggage apply here: If you use a bigger bag you'll
find a way to fill it. The smallest bag that will carry the
six essentials is the best choice.
The Jandd Mountaineering Mini Tool
Wedge is the smallest, most elegant and best engineered bags
for carrying your flat kit. It is pure function. The engineers
and designers at Jandd figured out how to make it just large
enough to fit the six essentials, but nothing else. The bag
mounts with simple velcro straps that almost never fail, as
opposed to the plastic"clip" style bags that break
frequently. The bag is small and unobtrusive under the saddle
and doesn't spoil the appearance of a racy bike.
Six essential survival tools will
give you the capability to fix at least two flats and get you back
on the road. Let's take a look at how they work:
||Buy the smallest bag that works.
Don't worry about keys, cell phones, energy gels. Those
things go in your jersey pockets. The bag stays on the
bike until you get a flat. Smaller is better.
||Lightweight, compact 12 gram Co2 cylinders
can inflate a 700X23c road tire to 110 psi with a little
gas left over. Two cylinders is enough for two flats.
Threadless cylinders are 33% less expensive than threaded.
||The UltraFlate and InstaFlate CO2 inflators
have replaced pumps. They are compact, lightweight, dependable
and much faster than pumps. There is less chance you will
damage your valve stem when using a CO2 inflator compared
to a pump. In almost every way, CO2 inflators are better
||Park's compact glueless patch kit is a
triumph of miniturization. About the size of 2 quarters,
there are five high strength, self-adhesive patches inside.
This is your second line of defense against flats, after
you've already used your spare tube.
||There are many varieties of tire levers
but our favorite are the cheap plastic imported variety
that come three to a little red plastic holder. We only
carry two in our bag: It's all you need. Narrow, compact
tire levers are easier to use than the oversized "Mountain
Bike" variety and take up less room in the bag.
||Be sure your spare inner tube is fresh.
An old innner tube could be abraded by tire levers, bag
straps or pinched by the zipper when closing your bag.
We carry a long, 60mm presta valve tube as a spare since
this tube will work as a replacement on any rim, regardless
of depth. If one of your friends with deeper section rims
flats he has a back-up tube he can borrow from you.
Learn how to use all this stuff
in our free fix a flat class!
Register by clicking
© Tom Demerly, Bikesport
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