CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

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Updated: 1 hour 40 min ago

Re: Which Bike do I take?

30 December 2014 - 4:57pm
I would take the steel triple as you will have a few get out of trouble gears.

Which Bike do I take?

30 December 2014 - 4:48pm
In May 2015 I am cycling from Caen to Nice with an organised tour. I will not have to carry any luggage other than what I need each day. We will be going over the Massif Centrale and a short detour up some lump called Mont Ventoux en route. The problem I have is which bike to use. I have a choice of carbon road bike, very comfy and this year used to good effect riding Dover to Cape Wrath (except the Cape Wrath bit). Pretty light with compact chainset (50/34) and 12-30 cassette. The second choice is my audax/tourer. Steel 631 frame with triple (48/36/24) and 12-32 cassette. Heavier but just as comfy to ride.

Will I need the extra low gears or would the compact be enough? I could, at a pinch, fit a 12-32 cassette on the CF bike. No need for a postcard. This forum will do for answers

Re: Kyrgyzstan blog-post

30 December 2014 - 4:23pm
Excellent blog.
Well put together, informative and of great interest to me, since I hope to be in that area next May/June

Matt

Re: Brittany - the draining of the Lac de Gueledan

30 December 2014 - 12:03pm
quilkin wrote:MrsHJ wrote:What's the purpose of draining the lake?- aha, just read your link, mechanical repairs.
Apparently it's done every 40 years. I was cycling in Brittany during a very hot August in 1975 and saw this big lake on the map. Ideal for a swim, so I thought, so off I went 20 miles to get to it. You can imagine my feelings when I saw it empty

In theory this will be the last time as they will be installing equipment that will allow the turbines to be maintained without draining the lake as the effect on local water supplies etc causes considerable difficulties.

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

30 December 2014 - 11:36am
gplhl wrote:As for weight, touring's not a race. )


You don't say! However that doesn't mean you have to lug around 40kg's of kit - everyone can get some benefit from lighter stuff - if its up to the job which of course it isn't always!

Spending less on kit doesn't give me more time to ride which i'm sure is true for many on here, spending more might make what time we have more enjoyable. Personally i only became interested in how much stuff weighed when i started flying with the bike - a 500 gram saving with a Ti rack (in combination with other stuff of course) could easily save me £60 on a return flight - not just once but many times.

Now if we could just convince Tubus to make a Ti front rack.....

Re: Brittany - the draining of the Lac de Gueledan

30 December 2014 - 12:54am
MrsHJ wrote:What's the purpose of draining the lake?- aha, just read your link, mechanical repairs.
Apparently it's done every 40 years. I was cycling in Brittany during a very hot August in 1975 and saw this big lake on the map. Ideal for a swim, so I thought, so off I went 20 miles to get to it. You can imagine my feelings when I saw it empty

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 9:05pm
On the other hand if you eat fewer pies you can afford lovely expensive shiney gear

Re: Default tourer?

29 December 2014 - 8:34pm
I'm not sure about the marketing.

When I bought my LHT nearly 3 years ago, I had hardly seen an advert for Surlys. I knew about them from reading about them on 'international' sites like Lonely Planet and crazyguy. I also saw a few of them on the road. In fact I always thought of Surly as a small niche manufacturer

Contrast this to the 2 or 3 page Thorn ads that used to appear in each edition of Cycle, plus regular ads by Dawes, etc.

I'm not saying Surly don't have slick advertising, its just that I never saw it before I bought and rarely see it now.

Remember also that many of us aren't able to do lots of comparisons. A short test ride is about it! Hence the value of regular good recommendations by other touring cyclists.

titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 8:28pm
foxyrider wrote:gplhl wrote:My concern would be how easy does titanium weld if broken? Steel can be welded anywhere.



probably easier than the aluminium Tortec! But how are you gonna break it?

Do a long tour and everything will break.....eventually, it's just a matter of when/where.

For me I'd rather have something anyone can mend when I'm in the middle of nowhere.

On the other hand if I wasn't doing a big tour then I'd be happy to use titanium (excepting the cost). As for weight, touring's not a race. On an overall setup the weight saving is negligible, conversely to the sum of the cost of all the shiny expensive weight saving components, eat fewer pies! Spend more days on the road with the savings

Gary
http://www.longbikeride.co.uk

Re: cycling video collection of ascents:Alps, Pyrenées,Canar

29 December 2014 - 5:12pm
Hello !

I edited a best of video about my bicycletour that I had this summer in the Alps (1828 kms + 39441 m ) . This video contains not all of the climbs that I cycled but the most beautiful ones or most memorable ones. The following clmbs can be seen for few dozen seconds or for a minute:
Passo Mortirlo, Gavia, Umbrail, Passo dello Stelvio , Forcola di Livigno , Passo dello Spluga , Juf , Oberalppass , Sustenpass (in rain + 3 degrees Celsius) , Triftalp ( 2090 m) , Moosalp (Stalden side along the vertical rockwall ) , Simplonpass , Colle Fauniera (partly above clouds) , Usseglio - Alpe Bessanetto climb (with chamois !!! ) , Col des Gondrans, La Bergerie du Bois Noir (2009 m), Col du Granon, Sestriere

In the following weeks I will edit new videos about each day (1st: Granon, then La Bergerie du Bois Noir) to have videos (in my collection) about all of the paved climbs finishing above 2000 m in the French Alps.

Have pleasure with the video !
(In few months time I plan to write a travelogue too)

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4piRlCVv8w[/youtube]

/I started a facebook page ( https://www.facebook.com/cycling.high ) where I will post infos, photos, videos about my tours, experiences (more than 30.000 kms in the Alps, Pyrenées, canary islands & Andalucia) ... about cycling high .. and plan an article or list / collection about the most wonderful paved climbs (finishing above 2000 m) of the Alps, Pyrenées, Canary islands & Andalucia (I haven't visited there Calar Alto 2 years ago I had not enough time for that)

Best regards,
Gábor

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 1:54pm
elPedro666 wrote:foxyrider wrote:gplhl wrote:My concern would be how easy does titanium weld if broken? Steel can be welded anywhere.



probably easier than the aluminium Tortec! But how are you gonna break it?
Bouncing over rough roads/tracks with heavy panniers attached, or probably more likely on some kind of rustic transport (boat/train etc)! [emoji1]

Mine is used for camping - okay lightweight camping (5kg/bag) but across all surfaces, on and off public transport, aircraft, off tarmac - more worried about my wheels than a well made bit of Ti rack! You really would be unlucky to break one. Of course if you overload......

Re: Front racks

29 December 2014 - 1:03pm
I adapted an old steel rear-rack by adding a short metal bar each side as a spacer to reach the mudguard fixings on the front forks and hold the rack horizontal. This will take a set of small throw-over panniers or simply a roll of gear inside a plastic rubble-sack strapped on with bungees, although obviously it's better to keep heavier loads lower.

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 12:53pm
If all else is equal which is more beneficial

The aero dynamics of a rack pack, or stability of panniers?

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 12:50pm
pedalsheep wrote: just measured mine at 2.5". Definitely no use for a rack bag

Thanks for checking

Re: Default tourer?

29 December 2014 - 12:23pm
I don't think the marketing for the bike has ever promised it's exceptional (unlike the marketing for the Club Tour, for example). The LHT is promised as a solid and reliable bike, and that's what you get.

Surly is owned by the biggest (I think) cycle distributor in the US, which is where they get the discounted bulk-purchase parts for the finishing kit. The finishing kit is also unexceptional, yet 'standard' parts of reasonably good quality are exactly what you want on a long distance tourer. Conversely, both front and rear mudguards on my Club Tour have an element of 'different' about them (front needs to be drilled to fit the fixing points on the fork, one rear strut needs worked to bend around the rear caliper). The lack of 'exceptional' is what makes me prefer the LHT.

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 11:09am
Could I use one of these as a rack pack on the top of the airy?

http://www.ghyllside.co.uk/black-slate- ... VKEkHII-XA

And maybe hold on with a couple of Velcro straps from somewhere?

You could try but I don't think it would be very stable. The platform on an airy is extremely narrow - just measured mine at 2.5". Definitely no use for a rack bag but it does make a reasonable support for a Carradice saddle bag.

Re: Default tourer?

29 December 2014 - 10:08am
freebooter wrote:I have never ridden an lht but from the specs it looks an ok bike but does seem to be a victory of marketing rather than anything exceptional about the bike itself.

Touring bikes used to be very unfashionable. The 700 lhts don't look to be fundamentally different to Galaxies or any other traditional touring bike and the 26" version was predated by the Dawes Sardar that had the same disk/rim capability but with a better quality Reynolds frame rather than generic cromo.

Dawes just didn't have the same internet savvy at promoting their bikes as modern and trendy.

You could be right about the marketing,it very slick,but if a bike's a turkey it would soon show itself.
The LHT's I've looked at(not ridden one) have good spec and the framesets are very well made with good fittings.As good if not better than most out there,and certainly better made than the Galaxy's I've seen and much better cycle parts for the price too.

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 9:58am
Could I use one of these as a rack pack on the top of the airy?

http://www.ghyllside.co.uk/black-slate- ... VKEkHII-XA

And maybe hold on with a couple of Velcro straps from somewhere?

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 9:30am
I usually away for a week or two, but I have a 4 week tour planned and booked.

I've used the avenir/Raleigh double panniers in the past and have loads of room left which can be handy at the end of the day when I usually pop into a supermarket and pick up some supplies for the night (milk, fruit, etc) and next day (sweets, etc)

I have tried rack tops before as they seem more aero but never found one big enough for a two week tour, or they are so big that panniers become a better option

The avenir are great - cheap, light and practical - much lighter than my others. So I was suprised when I compared to the arkel's that they are 1200 - 1300 grams, its probably the backboards and fixings.

Would the arkel's be OK for a 4 week unsupported tour?

I'm open to rack top suggestions but would need about 20l...if it fitted the airy so much the better

Re: titanium rack - anyone used one?

29 December 2014 - 9:17am
Yes, the rack you would want for carrying camping gear would be OTT for credit card touring, where something less strong would be fine. The Tortec Ultralight is good with light loads, bit with any aluminium alloy rack I would put insulation tape around the tubes where panniers rub to stop the metal being worn down. An Airy would work with small panniers, but the Tortec is a better option if you can manage with a rack-top bag and leave the panniers at home. It really depends on how much stuff you want to take with you.

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