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Christmas Gift Guide for DIY Cyclists and Home Mechanics

December 01, 2021
Christmas Gift Guide for DIY Cyclists and Home Mechanics

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.

Work Stand


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 to full re-builds, a sturdy work stand is well received.

Track Pump


If one thing is sure, it’s that tyres need air. The traditional floor pump, also known as a track pump, is essential 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 BBB and Giant, while more premium brands include Topeak, Lezyne, 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 such as the Lezyne Pressure Over Drive featured above includes 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 other 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 for the coming year is the Topeak Ratchet Rocket Lite NTX, which features a ratchet mechanism, TorqBits for 4/5/6 Nm, hex bits from 2mm through to 8mm, T10, T,15 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.

Chain Lubricant


There are hundreds of chain lubes on the market. Each product is 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.

Best known for their aftermarket components and chain rings, absoluteBLACK) burst onto the chain lubricant market in 2020 with its Graphenlube formulation that ensures drivetrains are kept both efficient, clean and quiet. The lube of choice of numerous WorldTour teams, including Team BikeExchange, absoluteBLACK claims its product saves up to 10 watts of drivetrain friction and lasts between 900-1800km per application when ridden in dry, low dust conditions.

We’ve tested the lube extensively and have found its longevity claims to hold water, so if you’re after a little something special for your or your giftee’s drivetrain, this is worth a look in.

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 workshop level (and that famous blue hue) cycling tools, the Park Tool sliding t-handle wrench set, or THH-1 for short, is our pick. Heat treated and chrome plated for durability, the eight-piece collection features 2, 2.5,3,4,5,6, 8 and 10mm hex keys with sliding T-handles and a durable holder. T-Handled hex keys are an excellent option for general bike maintenance, offering more leverage and versatility than a standard hex key. The set pictured here is undoubtedly more towards to premium end when it comes to price; if you’re on a budget, other options from the likes of Topeak, SuperB(/s/-/superb), and BBB(/s/-/bbb) are worth considering.

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, most 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 Muc-Off Family Bike Care Kit. The Family Care Kit is your ideal cleaning and detailing kit for those with a fleet of bikes at their disposal. It contains everything you need to keep your ride looking great. Based on the premium range of Muc-Off bike care products, this kit also includes cleaning sponges, brushes, and a microfiber drying towel for buffing a ride or a bunch of bikes to a showroom shine!

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 Park Tool Cassette remover. To complete the set, why not pair it with an aesthetically matching chain whip.

The Park Tool cassette tool includes an integrated pin for stability, and the dual compound handles feature extra grip, perfect for loosening stubborn lockrings. The durable and Lezyne chain whip is a shop quality item and 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, these essential items are sure to be a great addition to any toolkit.

Torque Wrench


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 PRO Team Torque Wrench is an extremely precise and versatile bit of kit. The kit features a 1/4” drive torque wrench ratchet head, chrome-plated chrome vanadium, Torx (T25 & T30), Hex (3mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm) bits. With a torque range of 3-15Nm and a durable case, this is one tool that will look inconspicuous under the tree and is sure to bring excitement.

Bike Grease


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. An all-around grease such as the Premium Grease from industry giant Shimano 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

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