Saturday, 3 November 2012

What to buy a road cyclist for Christmas?

Xmas is coming - what will Santa bring you?
If you have a partner, spouse of relative that loves road cycling and you're already on the hunt for Christmas stocking fillers, let me give you some inspiration on some items that a road cyclist might quite like to unwrap on Christmas day.

Avoid those bad after shaves, knee-high socks and K-Tel CD compilations and put your money into one of these gifts and you'll be assured of a big happy smiling roadie.  They will be super impressed at your insider knowledge of all things cycling and you'll be guaranteed a brownie point filled Christmas day.

I'll keep adding items as I think of them or come across them, additionally if you have any contributions, just leave a comment.

Gifts Below £10
  • Book - Tyler Hamilton - The Secret Race.  Undoubtedly the book of the moment, you will seriously impress your cycling partner with your insider knowledge buying this as a gift.  The book that brought down Lance.  Less than a tenner on Amazon.
  • Bike Floss.  It's good to floss and these will make quick work of a dirty cassette or hard to reach area on the bike,  a simple idea but really effective idea.  Brilliant stocking filler from the kids at only £3.99 a set via Purple Harry.
  • Condor Race Socks.  Super comfortable, got loads of pairs of these - bargain £7.49 a pair.  Details here.
  • Scarf/Buff.  On cold days this is an ideal cycling neck scarf to keep the chills away.  Less than a tenner on Wiggle.
  • Purple Harry cleaner and degreaser.  To keep the pride and joy clean, you need a decent cleaning spray, Purple Harry do the trick with this cleaner/degreaser for less than a tenner.  Buy here.
  • Garmin Edge 800 silicon cover.  If your partner has got one of these gadgets on their bike, this silicon cover will make sure it stays in tip top condition.  Less than a tenner on Amazon.
  • Merino socks.  Tootsies getting cold  makes riding miserable.  Slip your feet into these merino socks and a ready brek like glow will entail for £9.99 (pack of three).  Buy here.
  • Chain links.  You will blow your partner away with these, they'll think you've been on a service course.  Everyone should carry one of these in their saddle bag in case of a chain break.  You just need to know what groupset they run on the bike - Shimano/SRAM or Campagnolo and hey presto.  Available on Wiggle for under a tenner.
  • Chamois cream.  Look away now those of a nervous disposition.  This is cream that you wallop all round your nether regions to help prevent saddle sore.  Essential for those long rides and this product from udderly smooth was developed for milking cows.  Enough said, a great stocking filler for under a tenner.  Available from Wiggle
  • High Five Zero tablets.  Great electrolyte additive to water.  Around £5.50 a tube, someone will thank you for these.  Available from Wiggle
  • Space Blanket.   With accidents on the rise and slippery roads, you never know when you are going to come across an incident.  A critical thing is to be able to keep someone warm and for around £3.00-£5.00 you can buy a space blanket off of e-bay which you can keep in your back pocket whilst cycling - it could be a life saver.  
  • Outwet balaclava.  Walk into a coffee shop wearing this and they'll be pushing the panic button thinking their about to be turned over!   I swear by one of these in the winter to keep the cold out, they even have a breathing hole bit for those really cold days.  Great gift for under a tenner, you can find them on the Planet X website.
  • Chain bath.  Keeping your chain in good order is an essential component of a good drivetrain.  This chainbath from Barbieri will help you keep things nice and clear.  Available here for around £7.50.
  • Merino arm warmers.  Merino is great, keeps you cool in summer and warm in winter.  These arm warmers are a bargain at a fiver.  Buy here
  • Book - Bradley Wiggins - My Time.  Just read this and it's a really good insight into how Wiggins prepared for his famous 2012 Tour de France victory and the real story behind the failed Olympic road race.  Less than a tenner on Amazon.
Gifts Below £20
  • DeFeet DuraGlove Wool Glove.  Brilliant Merino gloves at a bargin price of £13.49, look at the delight on your partners face as they rip these open.  Details here.
  • One Life ID bracelet.  A QR code with a link to a website detailing all the riders contact and health information available on a variety of things from key-rings or a wrist braceletEssential in case of accident in allowing emergency crews to quickly contact loved ones and identify any existing conditions/allergies.  An essential item for anyone who participates in outdoor sport.  Buy here from £10-£20.
  • Knog Lights.  Great little lights to have on your bike for emergency lighting when you get caught out.  £17.50 on Wiggle.
  • Sealskinz Skull Cap.  Perfect to nip on under your helmet on those cold winter days cycling, it's waterproof too.  Around £18.00 on Wiggle
  • DeFeet oversocks.  For those days when it's cold, but not wet.  Oversocks help keep your feet warm.  Around £12.00 on Wiggle.
  • Lezyne CO2 inflator.  Punctures are a pain, getting yourself repaired and back on the road in the shortest possible time is easier with one of these CO2 inflators which will pump your tyre up to pressure with one squirt.  Less than £20 on Wiggle, re-fills around a tenner.
  • Crudguard Mudguards.  Easiest way to get mudguards on a road bike which doesn't have mounting lugs.  Keeps your feet dry and water out of the rider behinds eyes.  You'd seriously impress your partner with these.  Around £27.00 on Wiggle
  • Inner tubes.  Every cyclist always needs inner tubes, a cheap wrap up which will not be going back with the reciept. I think this Continental five pack is a great gift at under £20, order the 700x20-25mm with a 42mm valve.  On Wiggle here.
  • Park Tools Big Wheel Pizza Cutter.  For the man that must have eveything cycling themed in his life.  £12.99 on Amazon.
  • Super B Torque Wrench.  It's good to torque and this is easily the best value mini-torque wrench out there.  Great to keep your stem and seatpost perfectly tightened for around £15.  Available here.
Gifts Below £50
  • Annual subscription to Cycling Plus Magazine - £37.99.  Details here.
  • Lezyne Pressure Drive pump.  Excellent little pump for £27.99.  On Amazon here.
  • Topeak Bike Stand.  When you've invested money in a pride and joy bike, you don't want it to fall over and you'll want it to stand upright whilst you sit and gaze at it for hours in the dining room (note not the garage).  Around £40 on Wiggle.
  • Park Tools Allen keys.  Every cyclist needs to own a decent set of allen keys in their toolkit, these are not the cheapest but they are one of the best and will last forever.  Around £35 on Wiggle.
  • The Obree Way training manual.  The definitive book from one of the UK's greatest ever cyclists.  A legend revealing his methods, this book is available at around £35, but you can also get it as a much cheaper download.  Trust me, this one will be a winner.  Available from Obrees website.
  • British Cycling Silver Membership.  If you're new to road cycling it's important you're insured and this silver membership provides some of the essential cover you'll need plus a stack of other benefits.  £36 for a year.  Details here.
  • Park Tools chain wear checker.  A stretched chain can lead to all sorts of problems for your drivetrain.  One of those things that you need in your toolbox, quality always counts, don't buy cheap, buy this from Wiggle (around £25).
  • Lezyne Track pump.  Maintaining tyre pressures is key for performance on the road.  A good quality pump will last for ages and is one of those essential bits of kit.  Less than £40 on Wiggle
  • Tool kit.  As you get more confident with maintaining your bike, like Bob the Builder, you're going to need the right tools for the job.  This starter tool kit for £39.99 has all the essentials you'll need to spanner like a pro.  Buy here.
Gifts £50 Plus
  • Annual subscription to Rouleur - £78.  This isn't a magazine, it's a work of art designed for the most contemporary of coffee tables.  Watch as your partner drools at some stunning pictures, keeping them quiet whilst you get on.  Details here.
  • Exposure Flash and Flare lights.  The best compact lights out there, make sure you're loved one is seen from a distance.  £75 on Chain Reaction cycles website.
  • Workshop stand.  Whether cleaning, maintaining or tinkering a workshop stand is a must have for anyone serious about road cycling.  It will allow you to get in all those nooks and crannies.  This one scored 10/10 in a Cycling Plus review and is available for around £50.  Buy here.
£100 Plus.
  • Campagnolo Corkscrew.  Are you a Campag rider through and through?  Then you need the ultimate Campag accessory, the Campagnolo Corkscrew.  A snip at around £150.  Details here.
  • Fitness assessment with Total Cycling Performance. Guaranteed delight on Christmas day, this is the one that your partner will rave about for years.  Time with a cycling coach, a full fitness assessment and training plan.  It will make them faster on the bike and totally tick a box for a cycling obsessed partner.  More details on their website.  Mention that you saw them mentioned here and you may get a preferential rate.
  • Cyclops turbo trainer.  As the winter beds in, carry on watching your favourite TV by sending your partner into the garage to train on a static trainer.  A must have for anyone wanting to seriously train throughout the winter.  This is a good one for around £135 on Wiggle. (I'd also recommend you buy the riser block for £17.00).
Money No Object
  • Rapha Rocket Espress machine.  Coffee is a huge part of the sub-culture of cycling.  Impress the neighbours with this ultimate coffee machine.  Not sure whether it should be in the kitchen or in the front room in a cabinet.  A whopping €1,700 and it's yours.  More info here.

1 comment:

  1. Yet again a very impressive and informative blog entry from Such a great blog and really appreciate the time taken by the author to put together such a helpful and comprehensive list for the cyclists who may have everything else. Not so sure about the coffee machine though. LOL.

    Thanks and have a great Xmas everyone.

    Best wishes