What is a drive train?
The drive train on your bike is the system that moves you forward. Pushing on your pedals turns the chain, which in turn moves your tires forward. There are many moving parts that contribute to it, but that is basically what it boils down to.
After getting two flats in two rides, I wanted to learn how to change my own inner tubes. It will be a very handy skill for trail side repairs, as well as home repairs. Overall this was a fairly simple process, and only required minimal tools. I will be using a very handy video from Park Tool for reference material, as well as adding tips I found useful while doing it myself.
I got this little bike stand a few weeks and so far it has been a very useful addition to my cleaning and maintenance tools.
It is a simple folding design with two geared heads that mesh together to hold the stand in position. It can go either very wide with just enough clearance for the tire above the bottom stand, or very narrow with lots of clearance, although that makes it very unstable. It also folds flat for storage.
So I am off to Bragg Creek again tomorrow to ride some more singletrack trails with a friend. I figured this would be a good time to share what I pack and what I check on my bike before each ride.
So I have decided what bike I am eventually going to upgrade to.
After visiting Ridley’s Cycle in Kensington I have fallen in love with the Giant Trance 2. The one above is going to be the 2018 version, which is the one I am going to start saving for. I can’t wait to get it fitted just for me, fully adjusted and ready to roll.
I now have padded chamois shorts. BEST MTB PURCHASE YET!
So yeah I will never be riding without those on ever again. I picked up a pair of Diadora mountain bike shorts that came with the Coolmax Chamois liner. The shorts themselves are not perfect. The polyester is not the softest, and they are a touch large, but with a belt they are fine. I also didn’t notice any discomfort from them not being soft during my last ride.
The chamois though. Pure amazing. It padded my ass so nicely, and was very comfortable, while still being supportive. They didn’t get overly hot and I didn’t notice a crazy amount of perspiration. So yeah, I am in love with them, and so is my butt.
The jersey performed exceptionally well too. It is a Fox Indicator jersey. It wicked away sweat really well, had great breath-ability and was well fitted and comfortable. It dried very fast when I got down to the parking lot too, which was awesome. Especially because I forgot a shirt to change in to. The camouflage print back in grey also hides my sweat well. I will be picking up the long sleeve version asap.
Overall both of these purchases were fantastic. I can’t wait to go riding in them again!
So I picked up a used The North Face hydration pack today! I am pretty excited about this new addition to my gear. It was only $25 which makes it a pretty good steal for a pretty essential piece of kit.
It has a separate pocket with sleeve in the back for the bladder, and a large main pocket in front of that. It also has the small front pocket. There are two side mesh pockets as well. I liked that all the pockets were zippered, and the cord on the front could come in handy. There are chest and waist straps which will be nice. It also conveniently goes with the orange on my bike.
I also got this nice Platypus bladder from a family member, for free which was awesome (Thanks Ruth!). It is a little big for the bag but I should be able to squeeze it in there without issue. Now I can stay hydrated no matter the length of ride! I was noticing that a water bottle was running out, so this should help a bunch.
Now I just need to start packing it. So far it will have my multitool, snacks, wallet, phone & keys. I still need some essentials for it, like a spare inner tube, tire levers, hand pump, and a first aid kit, as well as emergency contact info just in case. Looks like I have a bit more shopping to do.
I picked up this SportRack 3 bike trunk mounted bike rack today off Kijiji. It is a little scuffed up but it fit my bike and got me to Nose Hill with no troubles.
Overall I am pretty excited to have a way to get to trails easier than pulling two kids car seats out of the back seat and putting the seat down!
New kit is always cool!
I picked up this Filzer Mini 10 multitool today from MEC. It had great reviews and I really liked the simplicity and size of it.
It has Allen keys from #2-6 with an adapter that fits on the #6 to make it an #8. It also has a Phillips and flat head screwdrivers as well as a #25 Torx wrench. The tension on the arms can also be adjusted using Allen bolts on the axle, so that’s a nice feature.
It got mostly 4 & 5 star reviews and the warranty and returns at MEC can’t be beat. As long as I don’t lose it this should last me a very long time. Overall I am impressed with it and look forward to using it lots.
So this is my gear so far. It’s not much but at least it is getting me on the trails.
The helmet is a Giro Revel I picked up at B&P Cycle. It is very comfortable and I barely notice I have it on. The adjustment strap at the back is very easy to use. The straps are soft right out of the box, and I have noticed no rubbing with any of the buckles.
I got the Mechanix gloves at Marks after reading they were a good substitute for much higher priced gloves they sell at bike shops. Thanks Reddit (r/mtb if anyone wants to know more). They were very comfy and gripped well. They weren’t too warm which is good. I got the Magnum lock at MEC and so far it is doing its job.
The Allen keys, I have no idea where they came from. I really need to get me a multitool though.
I was also wearing a cheap back pack from Superstore that can fold in to itself. It did the job but I think I may start hunting for a hydration pack.
So that’s the kit. There is still lots more I want/need like a multitool, spare tube, tire levers, hydration pack and a good pair of riding shorts and a nice jersey. Time to start saving!