If you are looking to save money on taking your bike to the shop, or just want to repair those odd squeaks, rattles and knocks from your bike you should consider setting up a good bike tool box.
There are a number of bike tool kits on the market, but what items do you really need?
Below is a comparison of some of the top Bike Tool Boxes at different price levels, first lets just look and see what items are required and should be considered essential.
This is a brief guide to the basic tools that you can use to build your tool box from, and that should feature in your first bike tool box:
This is needed to take the chain on and off the bike, and for repairing any broken links. Like most tools, you may never need one but when you do you will be grateful to have one in your box.
I also use a quick release links, this is great for taking the chain off the bike for cleaning. If you ride regularly you should clean the chain after a long ride and this makes the job simple.
These are used to take the rear cassette off the wheel. The Chainwhip stops the cassette moving, while the lock ring is removed. The good news is that if you run Shimano both road and MTB Lockrings are the same. You will need a different one if you have Campagnolo or Sram. Some kits come with the different options included.
HEX TOOLS / ALLAN KEYS
When it comes to hex tools, do not skimp on quality. Many bikes come with these to set up the bike, so you may have some lying about. I would never let these come in contact with my bike, they are liable to strip heads of the bolts making the job of maintenance much harder.
You should look at investing in a good set of T-Shaped hex tools (see image . These are nice and long allowing easy access to hard to reach bolts. They tend to have a good quality ball head, this means that you can use the Hex keys at a slight angle, again making the job more simple.
Usual sizes are 4, 5 and 6mm wrenches.
TORX DRIVERS: Similar to hex keys, these are essential for brake and rotor adjustments.
CHAIN RING BOLT TOOL: This is useful if you need to change or remove the main chain ring. A simple job such as replacing the bottom bracket will require this.
CABLE CUTTERS: These will be needed if ever a brake or gear cable needs replacing (quite frequent during the winter). If you have one with rounded blades, the can cut the cable clean with no rough edges.
PEDAL SPANNER: Essential for spinning on and off the pedals, for either transport or for swapping pedals over.
SCREW DRIVERS: Flat and Cross Head
Comparison of The Top Selling Bike Tool Boxes:[ultimatetables 1 /]