9 Essential Items for the Everyday Cyclist
1. Floor Pump
The floor pump is an absolutely necessary item for anyone getting into cycling. The important features are the acceptance of multiple valve types, a pressure gauge, and quality construction.
2. Chain Lube
Chain lube is essential to keeping your bike's chain, cassette, and chainring running smoothly. Make sure you have a bottle of this handy at your home.
The next two are pretty essential if you want to keep your bike clean and ensure the parts last as long as possible. Soaking your chain, cassette, derailleurs, chainring and crank in degreaser for a few minutes will aid in the cleaning process. Don't let grime and grease build up for too long.
4. Hard bristle brush
Brushes such as this are often used to clean floors and bathrooms. It just so happens that they are great for cleaning chains, cassettes and cranks as well. This coupled with some degreaser will get your components sparkling clean.
5. Bike repair stand
Not only does a repair stand make it much easier to clean your bike, it obviously serves it's intended purpose well. This stand makes it much easier to do at home repairs. It is essential if you want to do repairs at home...
6. Torque wrench
The single most important wrench for a bike, the torque wrench. This wrench will make sure all your bolts are not too tight, or not too loose, depending on the recommended newton meter. Make sure to spend a little extra on a quality torque wrench. Remember, a torque wrench is only as good as its calibration.
Just as important as lube, but used less often. Grease will keep moving parts running and will also prevent metal on metal sticking. Make sure your bottom bracket and other necessary bearings are well greased at all times. Also make sure places like your seat post are greased so they do not get stuck in the bike.
8. Tire levers
Nothing can ruin a day like getting a flat tire and not having the necessary equipment. Whether you are out on the road or in your garage, tire levers are a must. They make it easier to get your tire off and back on while replacing tubes and tires.
What good is a long ride without a nice beer at the end. The jury is still out on whether beer is good to have after a long workout, if it's a good source of carbs, etc, etc. One thing is for certain though, there is nothing like a refreshing beer after a long ride.