Spare Parts For Your Bike Tour

After numerous bike tours and extensive conversations with bike tourers from around the world, I have put together what I consider to be the best lists of spare parts for long-distance bike tours.

Extra spokes and nipples

You may need as many as three different spoke lengths: one length for the front wheel, one for the non drive-side rear wheel, and another length for the drive-side rear wheel. Invest in good quality double-butted spokes and some extra nipples made of brass. I usually carry more rear spokes than front spokes as they tend to break more easily.

Pro Tip: For ultra light-weight, you can buy FibreFix kevlar spokes, which are lightweight and ultra portable.

Cassette removal tool and chainwhip

It’s a good idea to carry one of these, as it is a real pain to get them off without one. Plus, if you do happen to break a drive-side spoke, it’s quite difficult to get them on or off without removing the cassette.

Pro Tip: You can use your own chain and stand on it with both feet to stop the cassette from turning and not bring a chainwhip.

Extra links and quick links

Some people still like to carry extra chain links. I used to always keep a few from the new chain to bring with me while touring, but nowadays quick links are so much more convenient that I just carry a few of them.

Tubes and tire boot

No matter if you are running tubeless or not, when bike touring it’s a good idea to carry a couple spare tubes. 

Pro Tip: When you glue a patch on a punctured tube, you should use it again after drying for a few minutes so that the patch can dry while being under constant pressure.

Brake pads

Whatever type of brake you are using, it’s a really good idea to carry 2 sets of extra brake pads. You don’t want to be going down a mountain with no more pads.

Shifter and brake cables

When going on a tour I always carry one extra shifting cable and one extra brake cable. It would be very unlikely that you would even have two brake at the same time.

Bolts for everything

Carry extra bolts for your bike racks, water bottle mounts, seat post clamp, seat-rail clamp, brake callipers, etc.

Pro Tip: Titanium bolts are lighter and much stronger. Small but worthwhile investment.

Rear derailleur hanger

Some bikes won’t work well with standard rear derailleur hangers, so it’s good to have an extra, because if the event of an accidental bump, it could easily be broken.

Bottom bracket

Depending where you are going in the world, you might want to have an extra bottom bracket with you.

Chain lubricant

Of course you can’t forget to bring chain lube. Without it you will have a rusted chain what is sapping you of most of your energy.


Traveller. Cyclist. Expat. Over 15 years experience living abroad in six different countries. I've travelled to over 40+ countries and met countless travellers, cyclists, and other expats. As a passionate cyclist I've had opportunities to bike tour in some truly amazing places. While definitely not an expert at bike touring, I'm passionate about sharing bike touring stories and helping others learn hacks, tricks, and techniques to improve their touring experience. I look forward to you joining me on this journey of learning about and becoming a better bike tourist.

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