Wednesday 13 May 2015

Tools and Tires for the Road

There are a small number of tools one should take on any tour. I think it goes without saying that the bike has to be in top shape prior to any ride. It is impossible to know if a component is going to fail while on the road in the middle of nowhere, however, for a tour you also need to check every component for wear and tear. I had to ride two days without a full functioning rear derailleur on my last trip. It didn't show sign of too much wear yet it failed. That was a tough two days!

I've put a quick short list together so your can see what is on board when I travel. The photos also show minimal essentials that you may like. I should mention here also that I took far too much photography equipment on the last trip. The extra equipment was just far to heavy. I find myself taking in the sights and making road distance rather than stopping to record the moment. I will be taking far else on the 2015 trip. Today there are maybe who take a video recorder on board filming the days events. If I had the option I would take one, first for the adventure and secondly in case there was an accident, it would be recorded
First everything goes in water tight containers. I use old plastic coffee cans for most, with labels the contents. These are a good fit for my panniers and keep things sorted. The BoB Trailer bag is water proof. So let me take you through this list. Below is a photo showing most.

First (not shown) are tires. this is my choice
You want the lest rolling resistance as possible yet have good strength and durability. As I am using the trailer and rear panniers plus my body weight I need a wider tire on the back to take the load.
Rear: Schwalbe Marathon plus with Smartguard. (The blue strip of extra rubber)  2.0
Front: Schwalbe Marathon Racer 1.5. This is a slightly lighter duty tire, but as a front it would  
be a good way to keep rotational weight down. 
Also, (not shown) is the rear axle. BoB trailer has a quick release and solid axle end. I will use a solid axle for the extra material to help prevent breakage. There is no need to use a quick release.
Now to the photo.Clockwise:
1. Bike lock, you will need an additional one if using a trailer. BoB Trailer do have a wire mesh type
cover that locks also if the extra security is needed.
2. Tire tubes and patch kit.
3. Red Zeppelin and extra CO2 cartridges (Not shown, manual tire pump). I DO NOT recommend the Air Kiss CO2 inflator, they fail to easy. Happened to me in the middle of HWY 8... Not fun!
4. Chain lube (Not shown, chain tool)
5. Break and shifting cables
6. Bike Wrench
7. Tape, electrical or Duct tape.
8. Align key that is needed and not on the tri-set\
9. Tire levers
10. Extra spokes for both front and back. 3-5 should be ok. I broke 4 hitting a bridge on my last trip.
11. Spoke wrench
12. Tri-align key set
13. Tri-socket set
14. multi-tool
15. Head lamp
16. Cog wrench, pictured just above the spokes and out of the shot. In the event you break spokes on the cog side of the rear you will need this to get the job done.

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