Don’t Leave Home Without It

A basic road repair kit for the benefit mainly of newcomers as a reply to a friend who confessed that the only on the road repair option was his I-phone to call for the team car or his credit card for a taxi.

The absolute minimum to take with you on any ride consists a puncture repair kit, 2 replacement inner tubes and a pump. It is easier to just replace a tube and carry out the repair when you get home but when you remove the tube you should inflate the punctured tube to find the hole. Noting the distance from the valve carefully, feel around the inside of the tyre to see if the cause ( thorn, flint or glass) is still present and remove it. No point in replacing with a new tube to puncture again.

With all this new kit at the very least try changing a tube at home to see how difficult it is to remove with tyre levers and inflate with the pump to make sure you are confident. ( Chances are if you have all the kit with you a cycling Samaritan may well help you out on the road)

As an alternative to the humble pump the new kid on the block is the Co2 inflator with cartridges, these will inflate a cycle tyre to 100psi

Another item for the kit is a pair of latex disposable gloves to keep grease off your hands and clothes.

A Toe Peak multi-tool http://www.wiggle.co.uk/topeak-mini-20-pro-20-function-multi-tool/ which provides most of the tools you will need on the road including a chain pin tool/breaker.

And while we are on about chains another useful addition to your puncture repair is a quick link that can be used in case of a broken chain on the road.

Without a quick link trying to splice a chain on the road can prove a tricky operation but with a few spare links it is a bit easier if a few simple steps are followed. The main point when breaking the chain links is not to push the pin all the way out but just enough to release the link, this is difficult to do on the road and the secret here is to practice using the tool on an old chain first, with a bit of practice you can count the number of revolutions needed to move the pin enough to release the link without detaching the pin from the side plate. This will make the repair easier, keep the pin aligned and give yourself a fighting chance of a successful repair.