When you buy a new bicycle, there is a whole bunch of gear that you need to consider purchasing. It’s a list that can go on forever and ranges from bottle cages to cycling socks. So where does this one stop and what the main elements that should not be left off the list?
We put together a check list for you to use when you purchase your next bicycle. Some of the items on the list you may not agree with or need, it ultimately comes down to personal preference and the type of cycling that you will be doing.
Here’s our own check list and some of the questions that we think you should ask yourself when making your next bicycle purchase. You don’t have to get everything on the list, but there are definitely some that you should not pass on, for example you should adopt principle of “no helmet no ride” … things can change in an instant and it’s always important to know that you head is protected!
On to our list, you have made the decision to start cycling and have purchased your machine of choice, so what’s next?
- Always protect you head—helmets are important and you should not get on a bicycle without putting on one.
- Cycling shoes—what type of bicycle have you bought and what type of riding are you going to be doing? If you are a racing snake, or at least intending to do a couple of races, you will want to purchase a set of cleats and the appropriate shoes to go with them depending on whether they are mountain or road specific. Riding with cleats allow you to transfer more power to the pedals and give you more control over the bicycle, although make sure you know how to unclip from the pedals before setting off on a long ride.
- Bottle cages—It’s important to drink when you ride. Do yourself a favour and when you ask your local bicycle shop to install the bottle cages, purchase two new bottles as well.
- Spare tube and parts—no one likes being stranded or having to call home asking for someone to come and fetch you because you have a flat tire. Make sure that you have the relevant spares you need, from tubes to chain links and derailleur hangers.
- Saddle bag—a functional and retro piece on any cyclist’s bicycle. This small piece of equipment is a great way to keep all your spare parts together and it also allows you to take extra food along for the ride.
- Bicycle pump—no one likes a flat tire. You can take a CO2 canister along in the pocket of your cycling jersey, but a good old-fashioned pump is a worth-while addition.
- Cycling kit—are you a “lycra bandit” or do you prefer keeping it casual and enjoying the baggies on the trails? You will also need a good set of gloves and a cycling jacket to make sure that you don’t have an excuse to miss the morning ride.
- Lights—a rear light to keep you safe on the road is an important asset, it helps to alert cars that they are sharing the road with you.
- Insurance – you might not realise it initially but the appropriate bicycle and cyclist insurance might be the most important thing you buy if you ride a bicycle. So important that we added some more information about it below:
We don’t like to think about it, but the reality is that riding a bicycle do have some risk associated with it. In fact, the feeling of freedom and being totally exposed to your surroundings is probably one of the main things that make it so enjoyable to ride a bicycle. Things can and do unfortunately go wrong from time to time. Its part of riding.
How can you prepare for the day that it does go wrong? Simply make sure that you put in place the best bicycle insurance. And make sure you do it before you ride again. It is important to know that home insurance generally don’t cover your for most things you actually use your bicycle for.
There are some scenarios and risks that you might not think you need cover for until it happens to you. For example, bicycle / cyclist liability… the reality is that you may be a really skilled cyclist but we just can’t control everything. Like colliding with a pedestrian that steps out in front of you. Or unintentionally scratch a new Porsche with your handlebar! Or realising how easily organised bike thieves steal bicycles even if they are locked up with a good lock.
Spend less time worrying and more time riding your bicycle with peace of mind. So, whether you are purchasing a new bicycle or just starting your cycling journey add the finding the correct bicycle insurance to your check list.