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Re: The Plug iii -any views...and will it fit a 1" steerer?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 8:25am
I've just noticed your latest message, Dave.

I'll try to answer to your questions.

We are principally touring cyclists, and prefer to travel with full camping kit in wildness and mountainous areas on unmade roads. Our fleet comprises steel-framed bikes with mudguards, front and rear racks, and variously equipped with Carradice saddle bags, Ortlieb panniers, and small and large barbags as required. So, we are not particularly fast cyclists and, even when we are 'pressing on', we tend towards the 'full value' or touring end of audax riding too. We like the freedom to ride into the night, and modern hub generator-driven LED lighting is truly wonderful, and provides for much of our USB charging needs too.

I've not seen the evidence that the Reactor requires a higher speed than the Plug for a given output; if anything I thought I recalled reading the contrary. Just looking now, Sinewave claim a peak USB charging current of 1A at 14.4kph whereas the Cinq 5 claim the Plug III only reaches 5W output (which would be 1A at a USB nominal 5V) at a little more than 30kph. Certainly, my experience is that the Reactor performs better than the Plug at touring speeds.

We use various Schmidt SON hub generators i.e. SON 28 Klassik, new style SON 28 and the SONdelux, and even one of the original (first generation) SON hubs, which must now be over 15 years old. For slower touring speeds, a SON 28 is our preference. Our standard set up is to connect them to Schmidt Edelux (an Edelux II in one case) front lights with B&M Secula or Toplight Line Plus rear lights. The lights are controlled automatically by the Edelux ambient light sensor. As I mentioned, we keep our Garmins connected to our Sinewave Reactors all the time, and sometimes via a cache battery. The cache battery can also be used to charge phones, cameras, headtorches, etc. when touring too, and can be topped up from the mains when the opportunities arise. It all works very reliably throughout the year whatever the weather.

As an aside, and since someone mentioned it earlier in this forum thread, I have used the B&M Luxos U with USB charging too, and my experience is that the Reactor has a far better USB charging performance than the Luxos U. This difference in performance is greatest at night, when the Luxos wouldn't provide any USB charging with the light on dipped beam, whereas the Reactor will charge a USB device and power an Edelux perfectly adequately for all but the fastest, winding, unlit descents. If ever I needed more light output from my Edelux, unplugging the USB charging cable would provide a little extra lighting using the Edelux at its full potential. The Luxos is an excellent light, but I find the U-variant is disappointing with respect to its USB charging performance.

Re: Booby Trap Warning: Tiptree, Essex

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 January 2016 - 8:12am
Last night I was driving in torrential rain, sometimes on country lanes. Having contributed to this topic earlier in the day I asked myself whether I would spot a lump of concrete, the size of a football, on the dark, wet road surface. The honest answer is no, not on some of the potholed lanes with their irregular surfaces. I was driving in my usual way, watching out for pedestrians and other road users, plenty of margin for error. But rubble on the road would not have shown up well in my headlights with the wipers going. (Taller obstructions like cyclists and pedestrians would have been much easier to identify).

Taking the discussion a little away from the original topic, what cycling-related message can I take from this? Well, my lights would have picked out taller obstructions (including people) so no problem there. But if there had been an injured person on the floor with no reflectives, and in dark clothing, I may or may not have seen them. Putting aside the rights and wrongs of this, if you ever find yourself lying injured on a road at night, and if you are able, get yourself off the road ASAP.

I think nearly all motorists know about the requirement to be able to stop in the distance you can see to be clear, but when we think "clear" we tend to think clear of the usual obstructions such as other motor vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, horses and (here in Wales) sheep. Stuff lying on the floor is rare and therefore not at the top of our list of what to watch out for. Stuff on the floor is also much harder to identify at the sort of distance that motorists (and, to a lesser degree, cyclists) look. Rubble would be identified as such (in the dark) quite close up, but the motorist normally concentrates on a zone a bit further up the road. You could be very good at spotting cyclists and very poor at spotting bricks.

Re: Booby Trap Warning: Tiptree, Essex

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 January 2016 - 7:50am
AlaninWales wrote:We are now all vehemently agreeing I wonder why

I agree by the way.

Well, to deal with moving vehicles one can't see (eg approaching car round a bend) everyone would have to be able to stop in half the distance they can see to be clear.

Re: trans am for novice advice needed

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 7:42am
I've done a bit of touring in the US, I do live there after all, and I can assure you that whatever you decide to do you will have a good time. If you're camping be prepared for cold stuff, in Arizona I've gone from 90F (32C) to snow in one day's ride. If you decide to do the ST resist the temptation to go into Mexico, anywhere north of the border should be OK. On the whole officialdom outside big cities is friendly, so town halls, libraries and police stations are good places to ask about camping. In one Missouri town they let us camp on the lawn in front of CIty Hall and use the toilets inside which meant going past the cells to get to them. The best people of all to ask for help is the Volunteer Fire Department. Before today they let us sleep in a VFD among the fire engines. They were even called out and I slept right through it, lights, sirens and everything.

Re: Booby Trap Warning: Tiptree, Essex

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 January 2016 - 7:29am
AlaninWales wrote:We are now all vehemently agreeing I wonder why

I agree by the way.
I don't think we ever disagreed.

Re: touring on a trad touring bike?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 7:02am
khain wrote:Erudin wrote:khain wrote:Can someone post what the book actually says? A short extract is covered by fair use.....

Extracts are available to read in the "Look Inside" section at: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Adventure-Cycle-Touring-Handbook-Worldwide-Trailblazer/dp/190586468X/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

I didn't see much about British tourers, perhaps the omission is most telling. I did notice this:

"For adventure touring drop bars are simply not as good as straight bars. They aren’t wide enough to give good leverage with heavily-loaded front panniers on rough mountain roads … and the brakes are much less powerful than MTB brakes."

Seems fair enough. I cycled the Alps with drops and heavy front panniers. It wasn't that bad but I would have preferred straight bars with v-brakes. On very rough roads I can images drops would be pretty dismal.

I'm a bit surprised that you didn't find drops good on Alpine roads. That is where I find them best. The idea of undertaking a ten mile climb with straight bars is not appealing. For me the hands on hoods position is perfect for climbing, just shifting my hands around occasionally to avoid discomfort. I find straights, even with bar ends, have no good climbing position. And my tourer handles well on Alpine climbs and descents with panniers front and rear. It feels really well planted on the road. And whilst I don't see touring as an opportunity to race, I tend to overtake heavily laden German and Dutch cyclists on their straight barred tourers, especially on climbs. They look red faced and suffering, even more than me. I go slow, but they seem to go even slower. And I don't think it is because they are taking time to enjoy the scenery.

Re: touring on a trad touring bike?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 5:47am
Bicycler wrote:A declining choice of premium tyres maybe, but true obsolescence isn't even on the horizon
Not yet, no. But the reason often cited for using the 26" size on tourers is that it is the easiest to obtain spares for worldwide.

That was originally because the MTB used to be the main go-to option for people worldwide who wanted a cheap bike. Cheap Chinese MTBs with 26" wheels flooded the market in the 80s and 90s especially in poorer countries.

Thats changing now.


Re: waterproof overgloves

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 2:48am
fishfright wrote:Why do i keep reading this as waterproof ovengloves?
Perhaps you are confusing baking with biking.

Re: touring on a trad touring bike?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 1:36am
A declining choice of premium tyres maybe, but true obsolescence isn't even on the horizon

Re: touring on a trad touring bike?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 6 January 2016 - 12:50am
Barrenfluffit wrote:Also the availability of spares is relevant. I can't remember if the 91 Galaxies had abandoned 27 1/4 wheels but from awkward personal experience I can attest that tyres and wheels in this size are not readily available in France.
I do use it "offroad" but not in the sense of remote multi-day tours on gravel tracks; its not its forte.
Given that the MTB industry now only seems to recognise either 700c or 650b rim sizes I wonder how long it will be before the once ubiquitous 26" rim/tyre used on my Thorn tourer becomes as rare as a 27"?

Re: London - Finsbury Park to Blackfriars

CTC Forum - On the road - 6 January 2016 - 12:06am
+1 for not letting the risk stress you out, and furthermore I'd counsel not to be in too much of a hurry. I see people putting themselves at horrendous risk going too close to 4-axle dumpers, scaffolding trucks, ready-mix cement lorries and other great killers of cyclists and think... they're on their way to work, man, what's the rush?

Hope you find a sweet route- I've not cycled around there for about 15 years. Shoreditch roundabout used to be so quiet on a Saturday morning you could go around the Old Street roundabout (before the addition of traffic lights, obvs) no-hands.

Re: Cycling opportunity Keswick -Kendal

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 11:44pm
Every year the Keswick to Barrow challenge walk starts just north of Thirlmere. They close the western road to traffic for that but it is a major event. Thousands take part for charity and it dates back to IIRC post WWII Roosevelt comment about every American should be able to walk 50 miles a day. A few years later Americans advising on the building of nuclear submarine design and manufacture at Vickers in Barrow challenged their British colleagues to a walk from Keswick by the Moot Hall to Barrow, a distance of 50 miles. Since then various teams walk it but only the last 40 miles of it was you get army, navy, even airforce teams doing it in competition with BAe systems teams for their own challenge cup. The first time I did it the fastest person completed it in 4 hours then went on to race in a Lakes fell race over marathon distance IIRC. His time broke the previous record and even second place beat the previous too I think. Impressive!

Re: London - Finsbury Park to Blackfriars

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 11:39pm
Onyerbike1979 wrote:HI folks,

New here so I hope I am in the correct part of the forum for my query.

So I have decided to opt in for the bike to work scheme, all part of a general lifestyle change.

Since I moved to London three years ago I have heard lots about cyclists getting knocked over, killed etc.
I obviously do not want this happening to me.

So I was wondering if anyone here cycles from Green lanes/Finsbury Park to Blackfriars in the morning or close to Blackfriars.
If so would it be ok to shadow you for a week or two so I get used to cycling in the city, get to know my route, areas of congestion etc.

As part of this you will get the company of a fun Irish guy for your commute in the morn



Can't help with the Bike Buddy I'm afraid but don't worry about the risk. Just stay away from big trucks and you'll be fine. About 10 cyclists die on London's roads every year, almost all from turning trucks, but that's out of over 200 million journeys a year so your risk is about as great as that of winning the lottery jackpot. And the exercise will do much more for your life expectancy than the traffic risk.

As for routes you might like to try teh Cycle Streets route planner which allows you to choose between the fastest and quietest routes. http://camden.cyclestreets.net/journey/

Re: Cycling opportunity Keswick -Kendal

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 11:38pm
I take it the Kirkstone Pass is okay? If so it must be taking an unusually high level of traffic (along with The Struggle).

Re: Cycling opportunity Keswick -Kendal

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 11:34pm
Apparently that section of road has 5000 to 7000 journeys along it each day. The western road around Thirlmere is narrow such that it is not wide enough to mark the centreline of the road, the lanes would not be wide enough to meet regulations. This and the road is not designed to take this level of traffic makes it closed to all motor vehicles except any bus service. It is also because you'd struggle to pass a bus on it.

The main road on the eastern side of Thirlmere is cut at the section washed away by a river/stream. The section shown in photos and news broadcasts. This is relatively easy to reinstate. The main issue is alongside Thirlmere. The hillside is unstable as hinted at in one of the links when they mentioned further landslides late December. Basically even if you could cycle it, would you really want to in the rain with the high risk of getting caught in a landslide.

If you want to ride it then if not now you should be able to.soon. It is the path past the washed away bit which is at the Dunmail Raise end just at the bottom of the pass that needs to be opened for general public not escorted school kids. Once that is open you could ride down then turn left just past this bit down the western lake road. That road has always been a good road for cycling even with the odd maniac driver who.thinks they're on a special rally stage without oncoming.traffic. Once at the other end you rejoin the A591 but the hills have opened out a bit so no landslide risk. Then later on a bit you can always turn off into st John's in the vale road. Another nice road.

Basically my advise, having years of knowledge of the road, is to wait for confirmation you can get past the washed away bit. Then avoid the A591 completely but use the western road. This is based on having walked it numerous times on the Keswick to Barrow charity, challenge walk. Also driven it many times. I can picture pretty much all of it in my mind. I'd love to be able to play this mental memory/video against the current situation but I'll wait until they've stabilized the hillside.

It's not a case of being irresponsible riding it, but a case of just plain not safe to do do, from what I've heard. Ymmv is irrelevant, they've definitely closed the A591 completely for a very valid reason.

Re: Cycling opportunity Keswick -Kendal

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 11:00pm
david7591 wrote:Is it not the case that the A591 on the eastern side of Thirlmere is closed to all, due to the fact it is unstable and dangerous in places, and authorities will require access to rebuild? But also the case that the minor road on the western side of Thirlmere is open to pedestrians, cyclists and a park and ride bus service, but closed to other motorised traffic on the grounds that it is narrow and could not cope with the volume of traffic potentially diverted from the A591?

But there wouldn't be much traffic potentially diverted from the A591 because they still wouldn't be able to get over Dunmail Raise.

About 5 years ago an orienteering event near Thirlmere had to be cancelled due to the field that was to be used for parking being flooded. The organisers asked to use the road on the western side of the lake for linear parking (with a one-way system), but were refused on the grounds that that was the diversion route for the A591 and had to be kept clear at all times just in cast the A road happened to be closed on that particular day.

Re: Java Sulawesi North Maluku Trip

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 5 January 2016 - 10:52pm
well, if its the rainy season youre going to get wet, and dirt roads very hard to pedal through. Have fun !

When did the spelling change from Djakarta ? Or Djibouti for that matter ? Are we all to be dumbed down like the Americans ?

Re: London - Finsbury Park to Blackfriars

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 10:43pm
get the cycling maps from transport for london tfl, show all the back routes, cycle lanes etc.

Check the bus routes too, 63 and 45 bus from kingX, one goes to farringdon the other blackfriars, I could be a good few years out of date but when the weather is like this etc and you dont fancy the bike...

Re: London black taxi driver ‘used car as weapon to ram cycl

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 January 2016 - 10:26pm
And another one at the Old Bailey. Typical Mail Headline making it seem it was the cyclist who caused the problem. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3384136/Delivery-driver-deliberately-knocked-female-cyclist-49-bike-flashed-V-sign-him.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490 Although it shouldn't be the case, and I hope the judge directs the jury correctly, it may depend on how many of the jurors are cyclists or are sympathetic to the needs of cycling.
Noticed how both the accused are pictured being very smartly dressed - not their normal or casual clothes, I suspect.
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