Biking Essentials

What do you bring on your bicycle rides?

Back when I got back into cycling, and then to commuting by bike, I didn’t have any fancy tool kit. I just put together a basic set of things that I thought I needed to fix anything on the bike and get home safely or at least, get to the nearest bicycle shop. Below is a photo of that kit.

I had a flashlight, set of hex keys, an adjustable spanner, a pump, patch kit, set of tire levers, a swiss army knife, all put inside an Oakley pouch I found on the road. I’ve had the swiss army knife way before I got a bike, so I never needed a specialized cycling multi-tool. This kit has saved me many times from flat tires, broken cables, and tightening loose screws.

Fast forward to today, I no longer bike to work, but I often ride longer distances with friends. And I have updated my bike kit from what is shown above.

Here is what I often bring nowadays. It includes a Topeak Alien II, 2 spare inner tubes, patch kit from Decathlon, zip ties, tire levers, a flashlight and alcohol spray. I included my wallet which was not in the old photo.

The Topeak Alien II is one of the best bicycle multi-tool. It was given to me by a relative and it has since replaced the swiss army knife. It has *everything* you need to work on your bike.

I always bring 2 spare inner tubes, one of which is always brand new. It’s sort of a backup of the backup. Tubes in the photo are for the Brompton.

I updated my patch kit to one from Decathlon. It has patches, sand paper, a rasp, but no levers.

I took the tire levers from my old kit to this new one. It is steel and much sturdier than plastic ones. I feel more confident using them on the beaded tires of the Brompton.

A flashlight for riding at night or early mornings. This is my edc flashlight. I chose this model because it uses standard double A batteries which are available everywhere. I use Eneloop rechargeable batteries and they are very reliable.

Zip ties. For emergencies where you need to secure something fast. I also have some duct tape on the bicycle pump. (Not in picture as it is secured to the Brompton’s rear triangle).

Alcohol spray for sanitizing my hands and wallet that has my identification cards, atm, and credit card. You never know when and where you might need some cash.

I put them all inside a saddle bag from Decathlon. The wallet and alcohol spray goes in my pocket for quick access. The flashlight is mounted either on the handlebar or my helmet via d.i.y. mount using an old inner tube.

These are the essentials. If the weather forecast predicts rain, I add ziploc bags for my phone and wallet, and a waterproof jacket, also from Decathlon. Decathlon is truly a kuripot biker’s paradise. 😊

For hydration, I use a Camelback Podium 21oz bottle for short rides, and a Zefal Hydro 1.5 liter hydration backpack.

Of course, in our current situation, a facemask and face shield is also essential, depending on your local government units.

Did I miss anything? What are in your cycling kits?

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