The holidays are here, and that means you are looking for that perfect present for a bike lover. Here are some great gift items all under $25 that will certainly make them merry and bright.
Grease Monkey Wipes are a handy little thing to keep around, whether in your garage or in your bike bag. You'll be thankful you've got them when your hands are covered with grease and there's no easy way to get them clean. One little foil pouch produces a hanky-sized wipe with enough cleaning power and durability to take the grease right off your hands. And it's just the right size to throw a couple in your bike bag for those repairs on the road. Sold in box of 24, approximately $1.00 per wipe.
If you've got the unfortunate situation of having so much cash you're just searching for new ways to carry it, Chrome Bags out of San Francisco has you covered. The Rook wallet is built like its big brother messenger bags
(for which Chrome is well known and highly regarded along with their apparel, including Chrome knickers
), meaning that it'll take what you give it and come back another day of rugged urban riding still looking good. Not a fancy leather wallet, it's constructed from scrap 18 oz. weatherproof truck tarp liner, and practically soaked in urban bike messenger chic. $25.
If you're a bike commuter or lunch-time exerciser and don't have the time or facilities for a shower, give Rocket Shower a try. It's a light water-based spray with a natural blend of peppermint oil, grapefruit essence, witchhazel and alcohol that together works to cool your body, kill odor-causing bacteria and evaporates quickly, leaving you feeling fresh and clean. Delivered in a non-aerosol pump in either 4 oz or 8.5 oz sizes, Rocket Shower is a quick, convenient way to get you clean when you can't shower.
Remember what a bust it was to get something like socks or underwear for Christmas? It may still be a bummer to unwrap a new pair of drawers, but no bike rider will complain or be disappointed to get new pairs of wool cycling socks. Renowned for its wicking ability, wool makes the perfect material to keep feet dry and comfortable. $8.99-$22.00 from DeFeet and Assos
Most cyclists now carry their cell phone or PDA when they ride. But where to put those pesky little things can be a problem. Do you clip it to your belt or put it in your pocket? It can fall off or get in the way. How about your tool bag? You may not hear it when it rings, and you surely risk it being beaten to death by your multi-tool as you roll along.
The best answer is to carry your phone or PDA in one of these nifty holders by Topeak. I use one all the time, and it's great. It can mount on your handlebars, stem or top tube and provides ready access to your phone while keeping it safe, protected and out-of-the-way. Different versions fit all phones, and most detach and clip to your belt. $9.99 - $21.99.
The Cue Clip is a simple device that is basically a thick strip of velcro and a stout little clip designed to hold your directions hands-free and always in front of you. Wrap the Cue Clip around your handlebars before you leave, and at the end of your ride, the clip and directions will still be there, no matter how long or how fast you ride.Even when you fold the cue sheet into eighths, the clip has no problems clamping down and holding. Can be mounted to handlebars or stem (or anywhere else, for that matter) to fit your need and personal preference. About seven bucks.
If that cyclist in your life rides where she or he frequently encounters pedestrians, a bell like this is a perfect and much-needed accessory. With the Big Brass Bell from Mirrycle, a rider can politely but assertively sound a note of approach with a full, distinctive old-fashioned sound that is fun to make and hard to miss. $9.00.
If you've ever ridden for any length of time, you know that protecting your, um, nether regions is an important part of being comfortable. The chamois is the name for the padded liner that most bicycle shorts and pants carry, and the Assos Chamois Cycling Cream is designed to keep that part of your outfit in top working order, if you know what I mean. Cleans, lubricates and knocks down the bacteria and fungus that can cause nasty infections. $17.95.
Make your Christmas tree even more festive with bicycle themed ornaments. A variety of styles and colors available. No wearing of your bike helmet is required to place these on your tree. $17.95.
Here's an entry-level multi-tool, perfect for everyday cycling. Featuring 16 tools in all, the Topeak Hexus includes seven different-sized Allen wrenches, a Philips and flat head screwdrivers, a Torx T25 bit for disc brakes, a chain hook, a universal chain tool, 2 tire levers, and spoke wrenches. Tuck this into your tool bag, and you'll have the answer to many if not most mechanical troubles that you'll encounter on the road. $28 bucks.