If you’ve ever broken a chain or lost a bolt while dirt bike riding, you know how important being prepared can be. Keeping the essentials with you in a dirt bike tool kit means you can make quick repairs while out riding to keep the fun going.
Even back in the garage, having the right dirt bike tools make routine maintenance and big mods like adding an electric starter easier to accomplish. Changing tires, replacing broken spokes, and even a full-engine rebuild require good basics you should have in your toolbox at all times.
So what are the must-have dirt bike tools you should own if you plan to tinker around with your bike? Let’s take a look at some of the most important.
The core of any tool kit for any mechanic is a wrench. You can keep some general ones in your toolbox, but for a dirt bike, there are some specialized ones you should have on hand as well.
Start with a spoke wrench, which allows you to adjust the tension of your spokes. You’ll want one that can manage different sizes, even if you only have one bike. Check your spokes each time before you ride as if they’re loose for too long, they can take your wheel out of true.
A plug wrench is compact and inexpensive, so there’s no excuse not to have one in your kit. You’ll need it to change a spark plug or just take it out to inspect it. This is especially critical if you’re riding a two-stroke like a Yamaha YZ250 or Honda CR500 as plugs go out faster.
You’re going nowhere without them, so keeping the right tools to deal with tire problems is critical.
A flat is almost inevitable, so a set of tire irons should be in your kit to help with changing it. You need a set big enough to make it easy, even if they take up more room in your bag. They just make it easier to remove the tire and find a leak or replace a tube.
Speaking of tubes, an extra one should also be on your kit list. If you don’t have space for one while riding, pack a puncture repair kit at least. Even if you do have room for the tube, a repair kit is a good backup in case you get a hole in the spare or pinch the tube while replacing it.
To deal with tire pressure, you need a gauge and a pump in your kit. The right pressure is important to prevent a blow-out or just make your ride more comfortable – and you’ll definitely need the pump if you ever have to fix a flat.
Your chain suffers serious wear and tear because you’re riding the bike hard, so a broken chain is a common repair. Even if you had room to carry a new chain with you all the time, you’re likely to still need to tweak it to fit your bike, which means tools.
You’ll want a chain breaker to remove a broken link, and a rivet tool if you’re making a permanent repair. If you carry clip-type master links, you don’t need any special tool for those.
While you don’t need pliers as often as other tools, they’re often the handiest option. If you’re using safety wire or lockwire on your nuts and bolts you’ll need a pair of wire pliers for adjusting.
Long-nose pliers help you reach inaccessible areas, while flat nose pliars are good for gripping tiny clips. In a pinch, you can use pliers anywhere you might normally need a wrench. The pliers are going to be way stronger than your fingers for tightening or loosening a nut or bolt.
Most bikes need a metric socket set for loosening and tightening all the bolts and fasteners. Not all are accessible with a wrench, particularly the recessed ones that hold on body panels. Something is always coming loose on a dirt bike because rough riding equals a lot of vibration.
A T-handle is convenient to use with a socket system as it’s easier to use than a ratchet. It gives you a solid grip, and the compact size makes it easy to carry in a kit. You’ll want one that includes multiple socket sizes; a range of 6mm to 14mm should suffice.
Look for a screwdriver that has removable inserts with different head types and sizes. It’ll take up less space in your kit and be more versatile.
You could look for a ratchet version with multiple change attachments. While you don’t need to bring them all when you ride, make sure you carry the bits that cover your bike.
Having the right tool doesn’t help if you have a part that needs replacing, so keep a few of these in your kit as well.
A bolt kit with common bolts, nuts, washers, and screws is super handy in case something comes loose and you lose it altogether. When you’re missing one fastener, it puts more strain on the others, increasing the risk of breaking one.
Spark plugs are small and light, so worth keeping in your kit. Make sure you have the right wrench for replacing them.
Split link clips are tiny, so keep several on hand. You’re unlikely to find them if they fall off in the woods, so replacements are useful.
Not a bike part, but cable ties are a handy thing to have in your kit. They can hold broken panels in place or temporarily replace a lost bolt. In an emergency, they can help you get home rather than spend time stranded.
What’s In Your Dirt Bike Tool Kit?
When you have the essential tools to hand, you can handle most dirt bike maintenance and repair when needed. You’ll also be able to do some of the more popular mods to improve speed and power when you’re ready to start tweaking the bike. Keep your dirt bike tool kit handy in the garage and when you’re out on a ride.
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