What’s in Neils Bag?

If you’ve ever ridden with Coach Neil, you’ll know that he carries a pack with a complete bike shop inside it.  I’m constantly amazed with the amount of stuff he carries for just about every situation.  He was generous enough to write up what he carries.


  • Allen and Torx keys for all fasteners on the bike except the very largest one (I carry 1.5, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8 & T20, T25, though I have found need for a 10mm allen a couple times and had to MacGyver a work around)
  • Folding multi-purpose tool with pliers, a blade, and some other items.  Mine has metal and wood saw blades, several screw drivers, and scissors – it’s basically a Swiss Army knife built into the handle of folding pliers.  I use the pliers and a small flat blade screwdriver most often.
  • Chain tool – could be on a multi tool or separate
  • Tubeless valve core removal tool – this one comes in handy with pumps like my Lezyne, which thread onto the valve stem and occasionally remove it when disconnecting the pump or when the valve core needs to be replaced due to the tip being broken off or sealant clogging it
  • Tubeless tire plug kit – there are a variety of these out there with different pros and cons but this is majorly important for me as I have put holes in countless tires
  • Tubeless tire sealant (2-4 oz bottle) – whatever I can do to avoid tubing a tire the better.  Few people check their sealant status and it dries out, so having a refresh available can mean the difference between tubing a tire and risking flatting the tube and continuing the ride
  • Chain lube: I use this for its intended use as well as general purpose oil.  I’ve opened stuck bearings and squirted some in, put it on pedals or cleats when they get caked in dried mud or sand and are not releasing well, and used it on various squeaks and creaks that come up.
  • High Volume Pump – at least as high volume as you can get with a mini pump.  Basically the longest that will fit in my pack and largest barrel diameter.  Should be labeled as an mtb pump.  The tiny micro pumps are sort of passable for road tires, but flats happen fairly regularly off road and it sucks to work with those with large volume tires.
  • Shock Pump: Not really mission critical, but I have typically carried this with me over the years.  My current pack doesn’t fit it well when the water bladder is full, so it’s not always in there currently.  Of this list, this is the least important for team rides.  More of a peace of mind item for back country rides or when taking potential customers out on demo rides and needing to setup suspension for them.


  • Tube (2 for backcountry rides) – absolute last resort option if plugs and adding sealant fail
  • Complete tubeless valve
  • Valve core
  • Chain quick link & ideally a couple chain links
  • Brake caliper mounting bolts (M6 x ~18mm)
  • Disc brake rotor bolts (M5x ~10mm)
  • Shimano SPD cleat
  • Shimano SPD cleat bolts (M5 x ~10mm flat head)
  • Fiber Fix replacement spoke (I’ve carried these for years but I can’t remember using one)
  • Zip ties
  • Duct tape
  • Chainring bolts (though these are not relevant to most current team bikes)
  • I also have a few random fasteners that are specific to the gearbox system and replacement springs for chain tensioners