Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
reohn2
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby reohn2 » 6 Jun 2019, 1:05pm

nsew wrote:I don’t carry anything other than a few of the obvious smaller light tools. And a few of the obvious smaller light parts. What I do do (always wanted to type that), is carry out regular checks of cranks, pedals, hubs, wheels, headset, saddle, frame etc and all allen bolts. Done at your own leisure and convenience, it takes a few minutes and alerts you to any developing issues. Weighs nothing too.

:wink:
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irc
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby irc » 6 Jun 2019, 1:08pm

reohn2 wrote:My tyre boot is a 25cm length of worn out Vittoria Voyager Hyper tyre with the kevlar beads cut off,it's wrapped around my two spare tubes in the seatpack.


Good idea. Next time I wear one out I'll be cutting it up.

Vorpal
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby Vorpal » 6 Jun 2019, 1:26pm

For a one week tour, I don't usually do any significant maintenance during the tour. I make sure everything is in order when I set off. If I have to ride in any messy/mucky circumstances, I do my best to wipe the drive train clean, usually using paper towel or wipes from a petrol station, then put a little more oil on the chain. I don't do more than that unless the bike is really messy and I want to take it indoors or on a train. I deal with stuff that needs it en route, like punctures, loose bits, cables that feel sluggish, etc.

That's it.

As for what I carry, a bike multi-tool, a mini leatherman, a couple of inner tubes & patch kit, tyre levers, tyre pump, a power link & chain tool, a couple of cable ties, toe straps, twisty ties, a little gaffer tape, and a small adjustable spanner. I also tend to have a couple of strips of old inner tube and a couple of bike sized allen head screws with matching nuts. Depending on what bike I have and where I'm going, I may also carry a couple of spare spokes (usually taped to the rack), a schroeder/presta converter, and one or two other bits.

As a rule, I'm more likely to be using stuff to help other people than repairing my own bike.

I'm not inclined to carry a workshop with me. I'm touring. I want to enjoy myself, not carry an extra 2 kg of tools around. If it comes down to it, I'll take my bike to a shop and play tourist for a day or two.

Edited to add: I may need to bring a bit more, like a pedal spanner, if flying. I have not done that in a few years.
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yutkoxpo
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby yutkoxpo » 6 Jun 2019, 1:59pm

simonhill wrote:What always worries me with these posts is that they are likely to frighten off beginners or people who don't want to or can't do maintenance while on tour. Someone who is maybe a bit hesitant about doing a one or two week tour is likely to be even more put off by the thought that they must do a fair amount of maintenance.

Imagine buying a 2 grand bike from Thorn or Spa and then being told it will require maintenance after a week or so of touring. Imagine as well if you bought a washing machine, or car, or computer and was told you have to put your hand in the back every other week.

I hold that a good quality modern bike is a reliable piece of equipment. Read my post above for my experience, which is mirrored by a number of my touring partners.

Let's be pragmatic about what maintenance is really needed rather than what people like to do. Then we can spend our time encouraging people to tour, rather than putting them off with tales of all the (unnecessary) work that needs to be done to keep their bike on the road.

Hear Hear!

nsew
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby nsew » 6 Jun 2019, 6:34pm

Two maintenance issues on current ride after 2 + months. Excluding the Conti Travel Contacts that were chucked due to poor handling on curvy descents. Ironically neither could be addressed at the time due to omitting to bring the simple lightweight tools required. An oversight. First being the Brooks spanner - the B17 has been transmitting Morse code back to me since climbing in the heat. Addressed today by a young Italian mech who ended up fetching an array of spanners to tighten the bolt up. I’d stripped and re-greased everything else beforehand with no joy. Second being a pedal that had developed a very minor wobble since a loaded bike drop during an attempted robbery. I had left the 7 or 8mm socket and t-bar behind. That I can live with as it hasn’t worsened due to the Loctite 243 used on installation. Two small tools that I carelessly left behind.

Slowroad
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby Slowroad » 6 Jun 2019, 6:41pm

I take pretty minimal toolkit too - puncture repair kit, pump and inner tube, 2 or 3 allen keys depending on the bike, spanner depending on the bike. Multi-tool with chain breaker sometimes. Electrical tape has lots of uses. 20cm length of thick garden wire - useful for getting crud out of mudguards and holding the chain while being fixed (not need for that for ages).
Touch wood I've not had much go wrong bar punctures - screw came out of pannier rack a bit back so replaced it with one from front mudguard - replaced that with a bit of baler twine from a farmyard! So the previous idea of a few screws etc is a good one.
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simonhill
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby simonhill » 6 Jun 2019, 8:55pm

nsew wrote:. Second being a pedal that had developed a very minor wobble since a loaded bike drop during an attempted robbery. I had left the 7 or 8mm socket and t-bar behind. That I can live with as it hasn’t worsened due to the Loctite 243 used on installation. Two small tools that I carelessly left behind.


Why not go to a bike shop for that one? One visit and job done.

The borrowing of tools from shops or garages has hardly been mentioned, but it's not only a useful fallback, but also could save carrying so many tools.

I often go to bike shop etc, at end of my trip to get my pedals loosened. I can then remove with Allen key - this saves need for carrying a use once 15mm spanner.

nsew
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby nsew » 6 Jun 2019, 10:05pm

simonhill wrote:
nsew wrote:. Second being a pedal that had developed a very minor wobble since a loaded bike drop during an attempted robbery. I had left the 7 or 8mm socket and t-bar behind. That I can live with as it hasn’t worsened due to the Loctite 243 used on installation. Two small tools that I carelessly left behind.


Why not go to a bike shop for that one? One visit and job done.

The borrowing of tools from shops or garages has hardly been mentioned, but it's not only a useful fallback, but also could save carrying so many tools.

I often go to bike shop etc, at end of my trip to get my pedals loosened. I can then remove with Allen key - this saves need for carrying a use once 15mm spanner.


I have visited 3 independent shops with that intention but though the rapport with the Italians is better than with the French, the language barrier and the PITA fiddliness of the job have ultimately put me off. It’s a well lit table surface job. I should of added that I suspect the axle has bent as the locking nut hasn’t loosened an iota. It hasn’t worsened a few hard duty cols later and function remains satisfactory so I’m happy to leave as is until i can replace with a spare at home. That was long winded, I need to lay down.

dnrc
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby dnrc » 7 Jun 2019, 9:55pm

i haven't read any of the 3 pages of this thread

but just wanted to say, for a week's tour i wouldn't take any more tools/stuff than i would on a normal ride

i also wouldn't do any maintenance other than if something went wrong or started rattling

dnrc
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby dnrc » 7 Jun 2019, 10:02pm

This elaborates on my point. I bought a decent bike with decent components:

The idea that it won't last more than a week without maintenance is ridiculous





simonhill wrote:What always worries me with these posts is that they are likely to frighten off beginners or people who don't want to or can't do maintenance while on tour. Someone who is maybe a bit hesitant about doing a one or two week tour is likely to be even more put off by the thought that they must do a fair amount of maintenance.

Imagine buying a 2 grand bike from Thorn or Spa and then being told it will require maintenance after a week or so of touring. Imagine as well if you bought a washing machine, or car, or computer and was told you have to put your hand in the back every other week.

I hold that a good quality modern bike is a reliable piece of equipment. Read my post above for my experience, which is mirrored by a number of my touring partners.

Let's be pragmatic about what maintenance is really needed rather than what people like to do. Then we can spend our time encouraging people to tour, rather than putting them off with tales of all the (unnecessary) work that needs to be done to keep their bike on the road.

nsew
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Re: Maintenance and toolkit when touring

Postby nsew » 15 Jun 2019, 9:01am

Going thru my immediately accessible kit, thought I’d chuck this photo in the thread. There’s a few more bits that are buried, tube, 2 sets of brake pads, grease, first aid essentials, grooming etc that I can’t be bothered to pull out. 10000 mAh Redux. The foldable sunglasses are actually for reading - cheap, well made, from Belgium. The Petzl is the emergency services issue with elasticated string band - has proven itself for some years - with the all important stealth red. There’s one standard 5 mm Allen key for access to brake lever bolts. an Exped clear organizer - pricey but sturdy with glow YKK zipper. The neoprene electronics bag is Sea To Summit. Photo’s also a selfie for those of you that want to track me down. Buona fortuna.

https://youtu.be/8l5tMBLZwEQ
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Cyclewala
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Carrying spares - how far do you go?

Postby Cyclewala » 14 Dec 2020, 9:55am

Having done a handful of a 7-10 day UK/Western European tours, I've gradually got to a place where I think I'm covered for many tour spoilers.

Things like spare spokes, cables, brake pads, derailleur hanger, seatpost clamp, chain tool, spare links. I've even bought some fabric for panniers to patch possible rips.

I'm now thinking of longer, more remote tours (USA, Central Asia) and want to cover as much bases as is reasonable.

But, what is reasonable? What's the point at which you stop trying to cover all bases? I mean, the ultimate safe bet would be to have someone carry a spare bike in a van, but in the real world, where should one draw a line?

I've read of people carrying spares hub axles, saddle rail clamps/bolt, tent poles/ repair patches, spare tyres, panniers hooks.

It's a given that one is starting from a solid base: strong frame, wheels, racks and so on.

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mjr
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Re: Carrying spares - how far do you go?

Postby mjr » 14 Dec 2020, 12:26pm

I find it interesting that you're carrying spare spokes and seatpost clamp before a spare tyre. I think most tourers would put those in the other order. Are you carrying a tyre boot or something which could be used to hold a slashed tyre together long enough to reach a spare?

I think it depends where you're touring. In Europe, I decide that a tyre boot or wrangling the bike into a single speed to limp on to a suitable bike shop means I don't carry spare tyres or derailleur hanger. I'm also fairly cavalier about things like brake pads and cables, as I check/change them a few weeks before departure and I've got two sets of each anyway... I also like lots of slack in my plan to cope with such things, or to visit things and eat well, so 50 miles is the preferred maximum planned daily distance.

The one I um and ah about is whether to get one of those fibre spoke temporary repair things. I think my spokes are different lengths (some wheels are same both sides, but front/back and bike-to-bike) and it might help another rider in my tour group. But so far, I haven't yet bought one and I've limped home with a half-straightened wheel and the back brake QR open the only time I broke a spoke.
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Psamathe
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Re: Carrying spares - how far do you go?

Postby Psamathe » 14 Dec 2020, 12:39pm

I think it's an impossible balance and to an extent depends on the details of your bike. For example, when I tour in EU I do carry spare brake blocks despite loads of cycle shops everywhere because I have Hayes CX disk brakes and getting pads even in the UK is difficult (I've ended-up ordering then from Germany so far). And whilst they are unlikely to wear out I assume there is the possibility they might get contaminated and need replacing ... But then if I had BB7s I doubt I'd bother as I have the impression pads for them are far more widely available.

So must depend on exact configuration and countries you are visiting.

Ian

Bmblbzzz
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Re: Carrying spares - how far do you go?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 14 Dec 2020, 12:44pm

Why a spare seatpost clamp? It's surely one of the least used parts of the bike: once set, it's just there. Unless you're frequently taking the bike on buses/planes/etc?