by John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com
Congratulations, you bought a new bike! Few things are as fun as “new bike day” but don’t let all that excitement get the best of you. For every new bike there are bike accessories you should consider getting. While all you really need to get out there and be safe is a bike and helmet, these accessories will make you more comfortable, more informed, and more prepared.
Bike Accessories the basics off the bicycle
Now that you bought your bike you should consider how to get it home. While taking the wheels off and putting it in the trunk is an option, without the bike assembled, derailleurs, the frame, brakes, and fenders can be damaged. The best way to transport your bike is on a bike rack. There are many brands of racks, but the basic three types are Hitch Racks, Rear Racks, and Roof Racks. All will do the job, but each have their own benefits.
The other basic product needed off the bike is a floor pump. Even if you already ride with a small bike pump, a floor pump is a good idea. The reason they are a good idea is that a mini pump will technically put air in the tires, but it will take forever to do it. Floor pumps by contrast will get your tires up to pressure with little to no effort.
Basics on the bike
For on-the-bike products, nothing is more important than being able to get home and the security of repairing your bike if catastrophe strikes. I recommend putting together a flat pack for your bike. A flat pack consists of all the items needed to repair a flat tire on the road. Start with a good sized seat bag that can hold, a spare inner tube, tire levers, a patch kit, a mini pump, and a phone an wallet.
With your security covered, it’s time to focus on your comfort. For comfort, nothing is more important than hydration while riding. Water bottles and cages carry water on your bike easily. Where cages are concerned, there are many different types made. While aluminum and plastic cages are most popular, I prefer the stainless steel type. Beyond stainless steel being more durable, the material wont wear off on the bottles and mar them like aluminum of plastic. For bottles, you can buy standard plastic bottles or insulated ones.
To keep your bike working well, try to avoid the damaged caused by laying the bike on the ground by using a kickstand. There are many types to fit all shapes of bicycles. Consult your bike shop for the best one to work on your bike.
Useful Items on the bike
Its always great to see how far and fast you have gone. For that job there is no substitute for a bicycle computer. Basic versions record mileage, trip distance, time, average and maximum speed while for advanced versions can capture GPS information, give turn by turn direction, display your cadence and the amount of energy you are producing.
While we are talking about electrical accessories, we should touch on lights. Bicycle lights can be simple blinkers that allow you to be seen, rechargeable lights that transform night into day, or generator powered lights that run off the wheels rotation. Whatever the light you choose, be sure to get one that meets all your needs.
Fenders are also a standard option for many. Fenders are light, sturdy, and keep you dry when riding in wet conditions. If you don’t want to keep them on your bike at all times, snap on style fenders are available, while a more permenant option is a bolt on fender.
Bikes come with stock saddles that are usually pretty basic. When getting a new bike, make sure the saddle is something that fit you and is comfortable. Also double check that it has the features yo want. Many stock saddles will feel nice to the touch, due to the soft foam they are padded with, but not support you like a gel saddle would.
Overall, the best way to figure out the best accessories to help you ride is to visit your local bike shop. At the shop you can interface with scores of professionals trained in riding technology.