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When it comes to taking on the care and maintenance of your beloved bicycle, nothing beats having the proper bicycle tools in good shape and located right where you can find it. Not being able to find a tool can be extremely frustrating. And, you may not even be able to get out onto the road or trail without it. The old adage of “a place for everything, and everything in its place” is right on when it comes to home bicycle repair.
*Buy a cheap tackle or bait box to put your bike tools in and keep the box in a designated place (maybe in the garage next to your bike).
You should carry a basic set of bike tools in their seat pack regardless of whether you're a pro at fixing your bike or not. Even if you feel you know little about your bike, you'd be surprised sometimes what you can accomplish when you have a breakdown and your only other alternative is to hit the road walking. Be prepared for the worst.Your basic set of tools should include:
• allen wrenches
• box wrenches
• hub wrenchs
• chain remover
• spoke nipple wrench
• tire tube patches
• headset lockring wrench
• mini pump
• third hand
There are some bicycle adjustments that are too hard to accomplish without a helper. That's where the third hand comes in.
The third hand is a tool used to hold brake shoes closed while adjusting your cable. It's designed to be used with all brakes, caliper, and cantilever. Best of all, it is so inexpensive and incredibly easy to use.
One of the best things about setting up a home workspace for bicycle maintenance is that most of the bicycle tools you'll need don't cost very much. And, if you're on a budget, its easy to start slow and buy a few things at a time.
Organize your buys by category. For instance, one month buy all the tools you'll need to take care of your wheels. Next month, you can buy what you need to take care of the gears. By doing it this way, you are able to take control of your bicycle one section at a time.
If you look online for a list of tools you'll need to maintain your bicycle, you'll be surprised at how long the list can be. There's a tool for everything and those prices can add up. To start your collection, start off by buying tools for parts that need frequent maintenance and slowly build up to lesser-used tools.
*A number of manufacturers make a multi-tool that can handle a wide variety of repairs while keeping your clutter under bay.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|