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Buying gifts for mountain bikers is no easy task. Most riders are particular about the gear they allow into their packs or onto their bikes. And let’s face it, a lot of mountain bike accessories are expensive. But there are a few gifts out there that are affordable and will be sure to make every rider smile when they find them in their stocking or under the tree.
I’ve put together a list of five of those items, with the hope that it will save you some time and effort, as well as the worry of buying the mountain biker(s) in your life a gift they won’t use or appreciate. All of the items are small, so they’ll fit in a stocking, and you can buy them on Amazon, so shipping times should be short. Because if you’re a last-minute shopper like I am, this is an important consideration!
On that note, I won’t take up any more of your time. Let’s get to it.
Topeak D2 Smart Gauge
With a digital pressure gauge like the Topeak D2 Smart Gauge, the rider you’re buying for will have the precise tire pressure needed to stay on top of any and all conditions. Larger floor pumps are just that—large, and they can’t be carried on the trail. A good digital pressure gauge is small and accurate. Serious mountain bikers take their tire pressure seriously. One or two psi can mean the difference between a great ride and one that falls flat—literally!
If you’re buying for someone who also rides a fat bike, accuracy is even more important. The ultra-low pressure used in those huge tires is almost unreadable by floor pumps. And small changes in pressure can make a huge difference in ride quality.
Park Tool VC-1 Valve Core Tool
It may not look like much, but this is a tiny tool that can have a big impact! It’s a great time saver when it comes to bike maintenance. Valve cores are delicate and can bend easily. With this tool, it’s quick and easy to remove and replace them, without needing to replace the entire valve. Also, once a valve core is removed, injecting sealant through the it’s easy, and much tidier, to inject sealant through the valve on a tubeless wheel using an injector (see the gift idea below).
Stan’s No Tubes Sealant Injector
Pair this injector with some sealant and the Park Tool VC-1 mentioned above and you’ve got a match made in sealant heaven! Without these two tools, getting sealant into your tubeless wheels can be a messy and time-consuming process. This injector allows for the efficient, no mess transfer of tire sealant from bottle to tire. Do the mountain biker on your list a favour by gifting them one of these injectors and make the time they spend in the shop a breeze. Because we’d all rather be riding than working on our bikes!
Stan’s No Tubes Dart Tool
With the Dart Tool, Stan’s No Tubes has eliminated the Achilles heel of tubeless tires. Now there’s a way to seal holes that are too large for liquid sealant to fill. In my opinion, it’s one of the most innovative and useful additions to the mountain bike market in some time. And, best of all it’s a relatively new addition to the Stan’s No Tubes product lineup. So there’s a good chance the rider that you’re buying for won’t have one yet. Give one of these as a gift to any mountain biker and let them know you’re ahead of the curve. It also doesn’t hurt that you could save them time walking with their bike or squatting on the side of the trail dealing with a flat tire.
Pedros Tire Levers
Pedros are a bit of legend in the tire lever game. Unofficially, and with no data to back it up, I would say these are the most popular tire levers out there! They’re strong, light, compact and come in a variety of colours. Nobody likes a flat tire, but they happen. So it’s good to be prepared. I haven’t found another lightweight, packable tire lever out there that does the job more competently, or efficiently than a pair of Pedro’s Tire Levers. Think the rider on your list already has a set? Fear not. No mountain biker can have too many of these useful little tools.
Keep those wheels turning!
And there you have it! By now you’ve probably noticed that these gifts for mountain bikers have something in common: they all have to do with wheels. Wheels need a lot of maintenance. And tires, a major component of a wheel, are the only part of a mountain bike that comes in contact with the ground—at least intentionally. They need to be constantly cared for, maintained, and even replaced.
I’ve chosen gifts around mountain bike wheels because wheels are fertile ground for finding accessories that mountain bikers want and need.
And don’t worry if you’re not a mountain biker and don’t know what these tools are for. The rider you’re buying them for will! These aren’t fringe products or things that fall into the category of ‘nice to have’. They’re essentials for any serious mountain biker and you can’t go wrong with any one (or more) of them.
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