Know a cyclist who loves to tinker, always has a project on the go or merely is meticulous with their bike maintenance? Alternatively, do you know of a notoriously hapless rider, forever putting their bike and its components through long periods of neglect?
If the answer is yes, then the two-wheeled fanatics in your life are sure to appreciate any of the maintenance related gift ideas below. Read on for our picks of maintenance products every home-wrench or cycling enthusiast is sure to appreciate in their stocking this holiday season.
What is a workshop without a repair stand for the bike to be worked on? A good work stand should be sturdy, adjustable, fold away neatly for storage and have a clamp that won’t damage frames.
Options from leading brands such as Park Tool and Feedback Sports are perfect for more substantial duty home or portable shop use and are sure to last a lifetime. Ideal for use when cleaning, or undertaking maintenance tasks from basic, through to full re-builds, a sturdy work stand is sure to be well received.
If one thing is sure, it’s that tyres need air. The traditional floor pump, also known as a track pump, is an essential item in any cyclists toolkit.
A good floor pump will feature comfortable handles, a stable base, and an easy-to-use pump head that suits both Presta and Schrader valves. Great budget options are available from brands such as Azur, BBB and Giant, while more premium brands include Topeak, and Silca.
Alternatively, if the home-wrench in your life is working on many different bikes, one-up the traditional floor pump with a tubeless pump. A tubeless pump features an air chamber that can be preloaded with air. This ensures a tubeless tyre can be seated and inflated quicker and more efficiently than a standard track pump. Topeak, Azur and Bontrager are just a few brands to offer such a pump.
Bit Based Multi-Tool
Having a trustworthy multi-tool in your back pocket or spares kit is recommended for any cyclist. With cyclists continually on the lookout for maintenance items that are easy to use and compact, one-up the traditional multi-tool this holiday season with a bit-based multi-tool.
An evolution of the universally handy multi-tool, the increasing popularity of bit based multi-tools is thanks to the increased leverage and number of tools in a lighter and smaller package. Our pick is the Silca T-Ratchet, which features a ratchet mechanism hex bits from 2mm through to 6mm, T10, T20, and T25 Torx bits and two Phillips bits. The unit is housed in a sleek holder that’s equally at home in a jersey pocket as it is in the garage toolkit.
There are hundreds of chain lubes on the market. Each product seemingly suited to different applications and conditions and can include everything from solvent-based cleaners to waxes. As a consumable item, one can never have too much, and an all-rounder lubricant is always good to have on hand.
South African owned and made, Squirt chain lubricant is an advanced formulation that ensures drivetrains are kept both clean and quiet. Tested in arguably the most demanding MTB event in the world, the Cape Epic, Squirt products are formulated for a variety of weather conditions, including wet and dry.
Squirt features penetrating-cleaning-degreasing properties to remove grime build-up and assist lube flow throughout moving chain parts. The dry film coating leaves no wet residue or greasy dark stains. Its consistency also employs a reservoir effect to deliver lube into the chain’s moving parts while the bike is moving.
T-Handle Hex Key Set
A workshop won’t be much use without a staple set of Allen Keys. Often overlooked and undervalued, spoil the cyclist in your with a set of dedicated T-Handle hex keys.
Known for its value-packed cycling tools, the Topeak DuoHex is our pick. Heat treated and chrome plated for durability, the six-piece set features 2, 2.5,3,4,5 and 6mm hex keys with ergonomic handles and a durable holder. T-Handled hex keys are a great option for general bike maintenance, offering more leverage and versatility than a standard hex key.
Chain Maintenance Tools
As one of the most common wear areas on a bike, a bike’s chain is a consumable that should be wear-checked at routine intervals. Additionally, it should also be replaced regularly to ensure your drivetrain performs at its efficient best. The good news is that with the right equipment, checking for wear and replacing a chain isn’t all that difficult. Best of all, the tools required won’t break the bank!
When it comes to wear-checking, a basic chain checker such as the BBB BTL-51 is a simple and effective indicator for when, or if, a chain should be replaced. If a replacement is needed, then a tool like the Park Tool CT 3.2 or PRO Chain Breaker is a great gift. Park Tool’s CT-3.2 is made from cast-steel and famed for the effortless leverage it provides, while the smaller PRO tool emulates the features of premium Shimano professional tools.
When it comes to fitting a new chain, the majority of modern chains will use a removable master link to reconnect the chain. A set of master link pliers such as the Park Tool MLP1 or BBB LinkFix makes eventually removing that new chain a breeze.
For more information, check out our Guide to removing and replacing a chain
Cleaning / Maintenance Kit
Having chemicals explicitly formulated for bikes ensures that parts are not corroded or damaged, and are proven to leave the drivetrain cleaner, for longer. So why not top up the workshop with a fresh bar of cleaning products sure to get even the grimiest of rides [squeaky clean].
Our pick for value is the Krush Care Bucket. Designed by riders, for riders, the Krush Bike Care Bucket is your ideal cleaning and detailing kit. It contains everything you need to keep your ride looking great. Based on the premium range of Krush bike care products, this kit also includes 4 important bike cleaning tools to most effectively use the Krush range. What’s more, it all comes neatly packed in a wash bucket, nice!
Chainwhip and Cassette Tool
A chainwhip/cassette tool combination is something that needs a place in every home mechanic’s toolbox. Forgo the fidgety cassette tool of old and opt for an integrated unit like the PRO Cassette remover with matching chain whip.
The PRO Bike Gear cassette tool includes an integrated pin for stability, and the dual compound handles feature extra grip, perfect for loosening stubborn lockrings. The matching chain whip ensures the cassette remains in place during removal.
So if your giftee (or you!) is constantly alternating between wheels, or just want to build up your home mechanic skills, this essential item is sure to be a great addition to any toolkit.
A must-have for any home wrench, a torque wrench ensures that bolts aren’t too tight or too loose.
Designed for the precise torquing of bolts, preventing both alloy and carbon fibre component damage, the Feedback Sports Ratchet Torque Wrench Combo is an extremely precise and versatile bit of kit. The kit features a 1/4” drive torque wrench ratchet head, chrome-plated chrome vanadium Philips, Torx (T10, T20, T25, T30), Hex (2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm) and Extended 5mm Hex & T25 Torx bits. With a torque range of 2-10Nm and a neat padded case, this is one tool that will look inconspicuous under the tree and is sure to bring excitement.
Any self-respecting bike maintenance enthusiast should know all too well the importance of keeping components well lubricated and protected with grease.
Another consumable item, grease makes a great gift because every bike needs it but not every bike gets enough of it. An all-around grease such as BioGrease from Muc-Off is a versatile product that's sure to see plenty of use when added to any home mechanics arsenal. Alternatively, Morgan Blue Aqua Proof Paste is considered the top dog amongst shop mechanics, thanks to its long-lasting effect on any parts that shouldn’t move and are prone to making noise. Just tell the giftee not to use it on bearings, it’s a little too thick for that.
We hope this gift guide has helped steer you in the right direction for all things DIY maintenance. Want to see more choices? Check out the wide range of bike tools for sale on BikeExchange available from leading retailers across the country