You've bought yourself a bicycle. Now you face the question of what cycling equipment you can add to it, to make it uniquely yours. What kind of bicycle accessories and cycling gear will make your bike safer and more comfortable? The choices available to riders today are vast; here are some of the most useful options.
One easy change you can make is the bicycle seat. Small differences in the placement of your hip bones can make a seat torturous or wonderful. Technically called the saddle, the seat of a bicycle can vary from a slender racing saddle to a wide, gel-filled cruiser saddle. Any good bicycle parts store will let you try the different saddles for a short ride.
Another easy change is altering your bicycle tires. If you buy a mountain bike, it will have "knobby" tires. These tires provide excellent traction when riding up and down dirt tracks, but if you plan to spend time on the road and don't want to buy two bikes, a set of "slicks" becomes essential. Slicks have very little tread and generate little friction, which is preferable if you are riding city streets. Commuter tires are a combination of both styles. With a smooth center surface and rough outer tread, you get the best of both worlds. You can even get a pair of snow tires if you plan to ride in all types of weather.
Bicycle trailers are useful as well. If you plan on using your bicycle to travel long distances, it's good to have a sturdy, coverable trailer in which to carry your gear. If you plan to drive and carry your bike with you, you will need a bike carrier instead. Carriers can be mounted on your car in various ways. Designed for one to four bikes, you can accessorize the carrier with locks, rain shields and additional connectors to keep your bicycle safe and dry.
A bicycle rack will keep your bike safe and upright in the garage when you are not using it. Most adult bicycles don't come with a kickstand and the last thing you want to do is lay your bike on the floor when you are done with it.