The Best Ways To Carry Your Essential Tools On Your Bike

by | Mar 6, 2024 | Bike Setup, Bike, Featured, Skills & Setup, Sports

Easy and efficient methods of carrying the essential tools that you need for a mountain bike stage race.

With a host of great mountain bike stage races on the horizon such as the KAP sani2c and ABSA Cape Epic, we’re going to help you make sure that you have all the essentials you need handy on your bike for the unfortunate event of a mishap on the ride.

Mountain bikes are complex machines these days and can require some weird and wonderful tools to keep them running. Most of the common quick fixes don’t require anything too expensive to take care of but if you want to be prepared for a range of potential problems, that could mean some pricey tools and spares. Most stage races will have on-site mechanical support but stock is limited and often quite expensive so it is safer and cheaper to make sure you’ve got your own spares.

Enter The 2024 Sani2C
Big stage races like the KAP sani2c are coming up soon so you bette get your gear in order! Don’t let poor preparation ruin your experience. (c) Kelvin Trautman

For starters, let’s just run through the list of essentials that you may need with you:

On the bike:

  • Tape and cable ties for quick fixes.
  • Chainbreaker tool and spare quick link
  • Plugs, mini pump and CO2 canister
  • Multi tool
  • Spare tube and tire lever
  • Spare tubeless valve
  • Spare battery for AXS derailleur or dropper post
  • Chain lube
  • Small knife or a multitool with blade and plier
  • Spare derailleur hanger
  • Spare gear cable

In the tool Box:

  • Spare tires incase of a major failure
  • Spare derailleur for parts or a complete replacement 
  • Spare chain for links or a full replacement
  • Brake pads, especially for rainy and dusty conditions.

Top methods for carrying tools on the bike

Plugs, mini pump and CO2 canister

2 methods we would recommend for keeping your tire plugs loaded and close at hand are the Ryder Slug Plug and the Sahmurai Sword. The Sahmurai Sword sits in the end of your handlebars ready to go and the slug plug can either be attached to the bike via one of the many nifty attachments whipped up by Ryder Innovations or tapes to cockpit or frame as you desire.

The Best Ways To Carry Your Essential Tools On Your Bike
Slide the Samurai SWORD into your bar and and rip it out to quickly plug a tire when needed!

Spare plugs can be attached to the other component of the Sahmurai package, the reamer that slots into the opposite bar end. As for the Ryder setup, you’ll have to keep your spare plugs in a tool pouch or elsewhere that suits your setup.

Carrying a minipump isn’t the easiest thing to do discreetly. OneUp’s EDC 100cc Pump has the best volume to weight ratio of any pump on the market (according to them) and can be paired with their EDC tool to include the storage of your Multitool, tire plugs, chainbreaker, CO2 Storage, and quick links. It can be mounted to your bottle cage for on-the-bike storage or popped into a frame storage hatch or kept in your pocket. If you’re not taking a pump with you, we’d recommend carrying 2 or 3 CO2 canisters per rider.

Chainbreaker apparatus

Your multitool may have its own chainbreaker mechanism built in but if you’ve got a more compact tool, that may not be the case. One of the most discreet chainbreaker and multitool setups we’ve seen is the Giant Clutch system that slides into the inside of your crank spindle. It uses a small magnet to stay put and houses a chainbreaker system, quick link storage, and a small multitool as well.

The Best Ways To Carry Your Essential Tools On Your Bike
Giant’s Clutch crank tool slides into the spindle of your crank to be out the way but there when you need it.

Another popular hack is to tape your quick links to your bike’s brake cables near the lever for easy access. No harm in having a couple sets stashed on your bike as they don’t weigh much at all and you could even then help out a fellow rider on the route.

Spare tube and tire levers

The popular storage plan for your spare tube is to tape it to the frame of your bike somewhere out the way of flying rear wheel debris. You can include your tire levers in this little bundle attached to the bike as well. If you’re not a big tape fan, there are plenty of frame straps out there that allow you to strap the tube to your frame or you could look into bottle cage attachments such as the Ryder Kinetic Cage or Lyne Holy Rail (also used for a couple bottle mount on a single attachment point).

Other great solutions

For keeping some of your essentials on your body, a pair of Cargo Bibs such as you can get from Ciovita give you quick access to a bunch of pockets on your body that keep your tools secure and close at hand.

Wrapping tape around your handlebar or seatpost (non-dropper) is a handy and simple way of making sure you have a bit on hand for odd repairs like broken shoes and such. You can also tape a couple of cable ties to your frame or stash them with your Sahmurai inside the handlebar.

To keep the hard metal multitool out of your pocket, you’ll be able to find plenty of bottle cage mounted multitool options to suit your needs at a local bike shop.

For keeping an extra dose of chain lube on you we’d recommend the Ryder Luberetta as it is compact, sealable, and helps administer just the right amount of chain lube without mess.

Ryder'S Luberetta Is A Great Christmas Gift For Your List / Bicycle Drivetrain Care Maintenance
The Luberetta is compact and simple to use for re-lubing your chain on the fly!

Lastly, a small tool pouch like that from Forza Accessories is helpful for keeping your odd bits and bobs together and can slide into your shirt or cargo bib pocket.

As you would likely have figured out by now, there are a multitude of ways to carry the essential tools and spares needed with you on the bike. We have shared some of our personal favourites here but you can also chat with your friends for helpful tips and tricks or see what useful systems are on the shelves of your local bike shop!

To explore the other aspects of bike setup, head over here.

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