FANNY PACK BASICS (By Dick Burleson)
Dual-sport riding requires you to be as self-sufficient as possible. In some ways, dual-sport riders must be better prepared to cope with problems on the trail than enduro or hare scrambles riders who can count on support at pit stops during the event.
Because of this basic difference, the kind of tools and spares a rider carries should be specifically organized for each type of event. In all cases, though, you want to carry as much as you may need, but no more. I prefer to use a fanny pack for carrying my "stuff," for a number of reasons.
First, when fitted correctly, the weight will be carried on the seat of the machine while the rider is sitting, no by the rider himself. Second, a fanny pack doesn't interfere with rider movement on the machine, and is less cumbersome than other types of luggage. Third, a fanny pack can be swiveled around to the front for easy use, and removed quickly for bigger jobs.
A fanny pack prepared for a hare scrambles race will have the minimum tools and spares, because riders have access to major tools at the pit area. When it comes time for dual-sport riding, however, you must be prepared to return from whence you came. The most important addition to the basic race pack is flat-tire-fixing equipment.
I use different compartments of my fanny pack for different types of spares. The little zippered pouch inside is great for spare nuts, bolts, and chain pieces. The big outside pouch is for gloves, flat-tire-fixing stuff, handkerchief, flashlight and snacks. I use the zippered belt pockets for my compass and Leatherman multipurpose tool on one side, license and money on the other. For water, I often carry a small plastic bottle inside the fanny pack, but on longer rides canteens are the way to go. (I use a camelbac)
It really is amazing how much can be fixed on the trail with very few tools or spares. I sometimes rob nuts or bolts from somewhere else on the machine to jury-rig (we call it "MacGyver") things back together to get home. Like a sturdy pair of boots and a good helmet, a well prepared fanny pack can make the difference between an epic adventure and a nightmare.
BASIC RACE PACK:
1. Universal wrench. Fits front and rear axle nuts, spark plug socket and a few other nut sizes.
2. Spark plug socket wrench.
3. Assortment of combination wrenches: 8,10,12,14mm.
4. 5 and 6mm Allen wrenches.
5. Small needle-nose Vise Grip.
6. 10 nylon zip ties.
7. Spare chain link and master link(s)
8. 5, 6, and 8mm nuts.
9. Clean handkerchief.
10. Three Tire Irons
11. Tire pump or CO2 system and pressure gauge
12. Tire patches, glue and scraper
13. Spare 3.00 x 21 tube (can be used in both front and rear tires in emergency)
14. Multipurpose tool, such as a Leatherman
17. Compact Compass
18. Spare gloves
19. Blistex or other lip protector
22. Detailed map of area
23. Drivers license
EXTRAS AND OPTIONS TO DICK BURLESON'S DUAL SPORT TOOL KIT
- Sturdy Rope or Tow Strap
- Earplugs, Aspirin, Eyedrops, Medication, Sunscreen
- Compact First Aid Kit
- Small container of Dish Soap (for seating tires and washing hands)
- Hooded sweat shirt, Baseball cap, Bandanna
- Sturdy Paper Towels (for clean up, and TP)
- Length of Electrical Tape, Duct Tape, Safety Wire
- Glove Liners
- Rain Jacket (for unexpected showers and cold)
- "Throwaway" type camera (with Flash)
- 3 Foot length of fuel line (for fuel transfer)
- Small container of chain lube
- Spare levers, clutch perch, compression release, etc.
-- "Quicksteel" (for patching holes in cases(MS Racing))
Be certain, for example, that your axle nut wrench actually fits your axle nut. Same with plug wrench. Have EXACT spare master links for your chain. Any goofy special tools required for trailside repairs on your particular bike? Replace tired cable, chain, tires, or missing hardware prior to the ride or suffer later. Learn how to fix a flat in the comfort of your garage, not a mosquito-laden trail. Stay to the right on all trails and fireroads to avoid an ugly head-on. Learn to be resourceful, self-reliant, and knowledgeable about basic bike repairs and trailside fixes.