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"Must have" gear for new cycling family

Old 08-21-19, 06:46 PM
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isuhunter
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"Must have" gear for new cycling family

What do you guys suggest as must have gear? Our family is getting into riding and want to be prepared for single person or family rides.

Are insulated water bottle worth the money? What do you suggest for brand/style?
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Old 08-21-19, 08:09 PM
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We (wife, kids, and I) have a variety of bottles, including some Polar and Camelbak insulated bottles, which are a little big, but sure keep things cool and hold a lot. I have a smaller non-insulated Specialized “Purist” or something that fits like a glove in my road bike cage, and I really like those.

I’d also say get some good padded gloves. Have had Gore, Pearl, Giro... they’re all good.

If someone has an under-seat bag that’s helpful too.

And make sure you have a good, solid pump with a gauge on it that can deal with both Presta and Schrader valves.

Tire levers and spare tubes also = a good idea!
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Old 08-21-19, 08:22 PM
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Any specific pumps you recommend? I’d like a floor and on bike pump.

Thanks!


Originally Posted by Charliekeet View Post
We (wife, kids, and I) have a variety of bottles, including some Polar and Camelbak insulated bottles, which are a little big, but sure keep things cool and hold a lot. I have a smaller non-insulated Specialized “Purist” or something that fits like a glove in my road bike cage, and I really like those.

I’d also say get some good padded gloves. Have had Gore, Pearl, Giro... they’re all good.

If someone has an under-seat bag that’s helpful too.

And make sure you have a good, solid pump with a gauge on it that can deal with both Presta and Schrader valves.

Tire levers and spare tubes also = a good idea!
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Old 08-21-19, 10:02 PM
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Matching cycling jerseys.
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Old 08-22-19, 06:27 AM
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Helmets, band aids - when my kids (and their friends who often came along) were little they were amazingly gifted at hitting things, running into each other, falling over, etc.

Pumps - I've had good luck with Topeak floor pumps but when I was pumping up tires on lots of kids bikes each weekend I bought a cheap electric garage tire pump kinda thing - worked great.

Good routes - with our kids I found rides went much better when there were rest stops where there was something for them to play on or explore, vs. just sit around and eat/drink. Back in the 1990s I wrote a book "Family Bicycling in the Washington Baltimore Area" to highlight routes we found that worked well that way. Your town might have a bicycling club that can give you information if you don't know of such routes
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Old 08-22-19, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by jpescatore View Post
Helmets, band aids - when my kids (and their friends who often came along) were little they were amazingly gifted at hitting things, running into each other, falling over, etc.
That made me chuckle.

OP: Topeak makes good carry-along pumps. The Road Morph G is a favorite among many who tour unsupported. It has a pressure gauge and is designed like a mini-floor pump. The downside is it's relative size. Believe it comes with a mounting bracket.
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Old 08-22-19, 06:59 AM
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On the bike I use a Zefal HPX-4 frame pump. We all have fat tires and it fills them quickly. In the garage I use a Blackburn something or ither floor pump, with an integral gauge. For either, there are lots of good options out there.

A way to carry things is important, whether it's an under-the-saddle bag, a rack/trunk bag, a basket, or whatever else suits your fancy. I like having extra capacity in case we go into a shop or otherwise pick things up along the way.

Ways to carry water are important. Everyone should be able to carry at least one water bottle for themselves. Insulated bottles are nice, but I just use a simple stainless steel bottle.

I think a bell is a very good thing to have. All of our bikes have a Japanese Crane bell. My own bike also has a little jingle bell hanging from twine, for a little less "insistent" ding.

There's a million cool things you can attach to your bike. Kids may find different things important than adults. Have fun with it.
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Old 08-22-19, 10:05 AM
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Lights, front an rear.
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Old 08-22-19, 11:54 AM
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Maybe some sort of fitness/mapping cell phone tracking app on everyone’s phone.

Dan
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Old 08-22-19, 12:05 PM
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A place to stop for ice cream
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Old 08-22-19, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
Lights, front an rear.

Light recommendations ?
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Old 08-22-19, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
A place to stop for ice cream
Oh man yes! I love me some rocky road!

Root river bike trail in Minnesota always had some great ice cream stops growing up.
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Old 08-22-19, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by _ForceD_ View Post
Maybe some sort of fitness/mapping cell phone tracking app on everyone’s phone.

Dan
Thats a good idea! That would make mom excited to see the progress.
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Old 08-22-19, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Light recommendations ?
I have Bontrager Ion 100 for front daytime and a Bontrager Flare R for the rear.

Rally bright and usb rechargeable.
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Old 08-23-19, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Light recommendations ?
This is good enough for almost all rear light purposes and great value:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

My front light--I don't do any off-road at night riding, this is really only for visibility purposes, not to light your path:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 08-23-19, 07:07 AM
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Oh, and speaking of cell phones, I have found this thing extremely useful. In addition to my phone, I pack a folding lock, a battery charger and a protein bar in mine, and the touch screen works fine through the cover so you can control your apps during the ride. Great price if you need to buy a multiple:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I've found that the mechanical cell phone holders cost more and don't last very long.
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Old 08-23-19, 07:27 AM
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Nightrider makes a bunch of 800+ lumens lights that start putting you on par with car headlights. My 1400 nightrider rivals my high beams and everyone seems to see me. If you are riding around dusk, especially, there is no such thing as too much headlight or taillight.
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Old 08-23-19, 07:30 AM
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spare tubes,
tire levers,
patch kit.
a small multitool.
a small pump. (probably a topeak morph be it road, mini, mtb depending on your needs) I just picked up a mini morph G for $20 at gander outdoors.
a rear flashy red light. rechargeable ones for sure.

under the saddle bags are good for tubes patch kit small multi tool
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Old 08-23-19, 07:58 AM
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If you are riding MUP's with the family I wouldn't be concerned with lights, unnecessary unless riding predawn or post dusk. I would have helmets for the kids at a minimum, water bottles, patch kit and necessary tools for wheel/tire removal, and tire pump.
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Old 08-23-19, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by 02Giant View Post
If you are riding MUP's with the family I wouldn't be concerned with lights, unnecessary unless riding predawn or post dusk. I would have helmets for the kids at a minimum, water bottles, patch kit and necessary tools for wheel/tire removal, and tire pump.
+1 this. This will get you out the door with less of a dent in the wallet. Bikes too, if you don't have them yet. 😄

When you think about it, what do you need with you to be safe, and to limp home if you have a problem. You can carry tools in a backpack, fanny pack, or whatever. I'd make sure to have an 5mm and 6mm Allen wrench too, or whatever sizes are most common on the bikes. Maybe a cable lock so you can park the bikes somewhere convenient for a short stop. They only really prevent the most opportunistic of theft, so if you'll have longer stops, get D locks.

Bicycles are hard to see in shadow, if you'll be riding in the street you'll want lights, but they don't need to be fancy. I like clip on front and rear for "see me" visibility. It's hard to go wrong with the choices stocked by the lbs and sports stores, just look for side visibility too.

Last edited by Unca_Sam; 08-23-19 at 12:11 PM.
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Old 08-23-19, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Any specific pumps you recommend? I’d like a floor and on bike pump.

Thanks!
On bike: Lezyne Road Drive
Floor: Topeak Joe Blow
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Old 08-23-19, 03:53 PM
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Sunglasses/eye protection.
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Old 08-23-19, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
What do you guys suggest as must have gear?
For 700c wheels: 50 front, 12 rear.
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Old 08-24-19, 03:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
spare tubes,
tire levers,
patch kit.
a small multitool.
a small pump. (probably a topeak morph be it road, mini, mtb depending on your needs) I just picked up a mini morph G for $20 at gander outdoors.
a rear flashy red light. rechargeable ones for sure.

under the saddle bags are good for tubes patch kit small multi tool
That's a good list. If one of the parents is riding a bike with a rear rack, a trunk bag could hold all of it. Might need several tubes if the wheels are different sizes on the kid's bikes.
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Old 08-24-19, 03:43 AM
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Must have gear for new cycling family
Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
What do you guys suggest as must have gear? Our family is getting into riding and want to be prepared for single person or family rides.

Are insulated water bottle worth the money? What do you suggest for brand/style?
Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Any specific pumps you recommend? I’d like a floor and on bike pump.

Thanks!
Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Light recommendations ?
Originally Posted by _ForceD_ View Post
Maybe some sort of fitness/mapping cell phone tracking app on everyone’s phone.
Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Thats a good idea! That would make mom excited to see the progress.
Originally Posted by isuhunter View Post
Oh man yes! I love me some rocky road!

Root river bike trail in Minnesota always had some great ice cream stops growing up.
I note that in the Opening Post, and all subsequent replies, @isuhunter does not further describe his family, in particular the ages of children, and most of his posts concern such superfluous items such as water bottles, cell phone, and ice cream. The only safety item considered are lights, and I would look askance at taking children out for a ride on the roads at night (though lights at any time of day are good idea).

In any case, on all such lists I recommend a rear view mirror. I think that's crucial for cycling on the road, especially if you also have to keep other cyclists in tow.





Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I use both left and right rearview mirrors, in my case Take-a-Look eyeglass mounted ones. I got the idea from a cycling companion who used only a right hand mirror. The additional right hand mirror affords a pretty good rearward view, but is particularly useful:...

This past weekend I rode with a companion on a low-riding recumbent three-wheel trike. I just deflected my right-hand mirror slightly downwards so I didn’t have to crane my neck upwards to see him. The left-hand mirror was still in place to monitor reaward traffic.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 08-24-19 at 06:23 AM. Reason: added "rant"
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