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Life paint!!!!

CTC Forum - On the road - 31 March 2015 - 7:26pm
Those brainy boffins at Volvo have come up with a great idea for keeping cyclists safe


Can't help wondering if it wouldn't have been simpler to tell drivers to look beyond the end of their bonnet! (does look good though). I do like the quote at around 1:50 "Putting something on that will make you scream out to drivers like me is a fantatstic thing."SO IS PAYING ATTENTION TO WHAT'S HAPPENING AROUND YOU, YOU IDIOT!

Re: Touring bike choice for people with long legs

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 6:54pm
Please remember the following is advice, offered in the tradition of cyclists trying to help each other.....I'm sure bits of it will come across as critical, but I don't see what else I can do, as I think your position is miles out......

The saddle needs to go down quite a lot, and back quite a lot. As soon as you alter a riding position you have used for a while, it will feel "all wrong" .....its bound to. So I suggest you drop the saddle and move it back 5mm at a time and get used to each adjustment before you make the next increment. Saddle height needs to be right for smooth pedalling, if its too high you will point your toes and wiggle your hips just to keep a bit of bend in the knee at the bottom of the stroke.....lack of fluidity at the bottom of the stroke is the hallmark of too high a saddle. However, I have seen worse......

Saddle position front to back is much more about your balance on the bike than about pedalling efficiency. If the saddle is too forward, it throws weight onto your hands, and I think this is the likely cause of your neck problems....this is me, aged about 64, and now at 67 my position hasn't changed..(68 in a couple of months...how did that happen?)....You can't judge too much from the position of the saddle nose, as you don't sit on the nose, but mine is 75mm behind the BB, and I'm shorter than you.

How to tell if your saddle is far enough back? The small amount of weight I put on the bars I can support with no strain on one finger of each hand on the brake hoods.
My saddle height is set so there is still bend in my knee with my foot level or even heel down, in cycling shoes with low/no heel. This means i can carry on pedalling fluidly on rough tracks while letting the saddle bounce underneath me, with little weight on the saddle.

My position has much more forward lean than yours. This braces my lower back for those occasions when I'm pedalling hard, and means off-road I can un-weight either wheel by redistributing my weight to go smoothly over the bumps.

Riding past Pen y Ghent.....in balance, and relaxed.....nice day in a place like that.

Re: Has technology changed touring?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 6:39pm
Just think, in pre "technology" days, say pre1990 --
1. We might send a post card to work colleagues. Now many are in email contact.
2. We might phone home once a week from a phone box. Now it is constant contact through mobile phones and other devices that demand charging.
2. We just went, we did not need routes to follow.
3. We might arrange to do a slide show when we got back. Now it is all on the blog.

Simpler times and I'm happy to be a simpleton

Re: Has technology changed touring?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 6:39pm
The flip side has been the way that our expectations have changed in line with that technology. Once upon a time you just upped and left with what you had. Now it's too easy to spend months on the internet researching and to come away with the view that you need x bike with y kit and need to wear z clothes. You can easily come to the conclusion that you can't afford to go touring, that your bike isn't up to it, your tent is too heavy and your clothes are unsuitable. I understand that cycling is a minority pastime for enthusiasts who like to have good quality kit. That's all well and good but it risks deterring people by making them think that it is necessary to spend £££ on cycling stuff to go touring. That's why it is good when occasionally someone pops the marketing/enthusiast bubble to show you that you really don't need anything more than a bike and a desire to tour: http://tomsbiketrip.com/you-dont-need-a ... rob-maria/

Re: Has technology changed touring?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 5:58pm
The really amazing thing is that new technology has completely and utterly let us down. The greatest benefit that technology could have conferred on cycle touring is the huge diminution in working hours that would have allowed everyone if they so wished to go touring - the Great Leisure Time revolution. It was promised but never happened. Compare that to the universal adoption of the two week holiday early in the last century - that was a technological revolution as much as a social one.

So how much time has technology freed up for touring? Not a lot as far I can see. Cycle touring, obviously, is a time consumptive activity - technology cannot shorten it. Personally I would give up every piece of new technology for the freedom to have few weeks' extra time to tour.

Flying has changed people's horizons and yes, you can fit a trip to Australia into your annual holiday now. Using Google to plan a trip saves a little time. But two weeks is still two weeks and then it's back to the grindstone.

Cycle touring by its nature tends to eshew technology beyond the bike itself - that's the idea. And all those gadgets don't really detract from that (even though I don't use them). But they cannot really enhance it either: cycle touring needs time, serendipity, an open mind, some physical resilience, a sense of wonder and a feeling of joy. Technology could have released us to be able to experience more of that (even with paper maps) but instead it chained us to our work and held out as compensation some new toys to use on a short break. Give me an extra week over GPS any day.

Re: Handlebar bag views and costs

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 5:51pm
In case anyone is interested, the bag from Planet X (previous post) is holding up well during my tour through Holland and Germany.

The bracket is solid and the map case does a good job of holding my phone in a landscape orientation for navigation.

The bag isn't waterproof though so dry bags required for anything that needs to stay dry.

Re: so when do the shorts come out?

CTC Forum - On the road - 31 March 2015 - 5:37pm
Not today - its currently alternating between snow and hail here!

Re: Has technology changed touring?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 4:59pm
I have avoided facebook/twitter in favour of my own blog which is more for me really although people are always telling me to get onto facebook.... I like blogs and forums not bought into the whole social media thing as I have seen the dark side of it all working in education and having left a few forums because of very nasty individuals.

Re: Has technology changed touring?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 4:48pm
My first tour was only about 7 years ago, but in that time I've got my first smart phone, joined facebook, etc. The smart phone made on the hoof research realatively easy. It's still slow as browsing goes, so I only tend to use it when I have to. Facebook and social media - well that has a corrupting influence on all walks of life. It is very easy to make choices that are blogworthy or for some facebook attention rather than what you might do otherwise without an audience. My last long tour I wasn't on there, but I bet if I was I'd have spent rather more time staging photos than just getting on with it.

Re: Gluten Free

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 4:23pm
Thank you

Re: Budget Tourer Advice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 3:54pm
This is the review that sold me on the Vantage...


There's a little over 9500 miles in just over 3 years on mine and they have been mostly trouble free. Parts wear out as on any bike and so far she's on her second rear mech, third cassette, second bottom bracket, second rear hub, countless chains and cables and the other bits that were replaced were done for fit and comfort. As bikes are built to price, the rear hub and bottom bracket were just plain crap but other owners have had reliable service from those parts.
The ride itself is lovely imo but then again I do roll on Hyper Voyagers which are vastly superior to the stock Randonneurs fitted when I bought it. I also ride on a suspension seatpost which smooths things out even more. The steel forks (no posh cro-mo here, its high tensile only) seem to help the ride too.
For me, the bike has always felt a little too quick handling, twitchy almost although it didn't feel sluggish when fully loaded. The Tektro cantilevers while not the most powerful in the world, are very reliable and even better when you ditch the stupid Shimano link wire and use a proper straddle cable instead. The square taper (theres a good argument for these over modern designs) Truvative chainset has yet to fall off despite lots of other users having problems and the shifters, front mech and headset which are the only other remaining original parts have been trouble free also.
The rear rack is ok for daily use but I discovered after about 6000 miles that the stays were bending, having not had a lot of weight on them. Not good.
Maybe not the most important thing in the world, but the colour is absolutely gorgeous and I frequently get comments from folk telling me what a nice bike she is It does the ego no end of favours
I have to agree with Chris Judens remark about the 'aero' downtube, it does seem pointless and rather stupid for a touring bike but part of me thinks it adds character to the bike and maybe even helps in the stiffness stakes when she's fully loaded. It doesn't flop about like a wet towel.

edit: If I remember correctly, Dawes quoted 31lb as it's off the shelf weight. I think that's a little optimistic of them. 33-34lb is more like it.

Re: Touring bike choice for people with long legs

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 3:43pm
I'd say the saddle's too high and that you have short thighs and long lower legs,hence KOPS @ saddle 50mm behind the BB.

BTW,that's the weirdest arrangement of road STI's I've seen But if it suit who am I to judge.

Re: so when do the shorts come out?

CTC Forum - On the road - 31 March 2015 - 3:29pm
I don't think there is any evidence apart from my post above.

"Some people with anterior knee pain tend to have generally colder knees, and such people also trend towards having to wear extra tights/long johns in the winter.[7]"

Touch wood I have had no problems and wont point fun at the sufferers, my legs sweat covered above 5C.
You can get sore knees from a variety of reasons, and I guess that once they are inflamed best to cover up.

Re: Budget Tourer Advice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 3:23pm
I like the look of the Fuji frame, and personally I like simplicity and power of v-brakes on a loaded bike. I also like the Deore chainset (Hollowtech II, which people either love or hate) it's fitted with, I've got them on a couple of bikes.

If you don't like the shifters on the bar-end you can always get Gevenalle shifters or look at the ideas in this thread.

If you want STI I'd pick a bike with Claris shifters and mechs as they get good reviews.

Re: Budget Tourer Advice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 3:19pm
If you're going to the Bruntsfield branch of Edinburgh Bike, get them to point out Leamington Terrace and test ride up/down that. It's a reasonable hill but quite quiet with traffic, and only 1 minute from their shop. If you're new to tourers then it'll give you an idea of what they're about (getting up hills when you're tired!). It'll also give you an idea of the layout (bars, height, etc) as you grind/spin up the hill.

I did my first trip on an Ed Bike Cuillin, which was great for the price (£200). I think all the bikes will do it, just depends which suits you.

Re: Budget Tourer Advice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 3:11pm
I've had the Raleigh Royal since 2010 and I can honestly say it does what it says on the tin. It's quite high mileage, but has been pretty much trouble free. I'm only just replacing my back cassette, which is 11-32 on mine. I've also just been in at all the bearings for greasing etc, half expecting the horrors from the lower end parts...all fine, to my surprise. I like the 8 speed stuff as parts are far cheaper. I've often thought of upgrading, but in all honesty my Royal has been fine even if it isn't exactly sex on wheels. I don't think you could go far wrong with any of the bikes on your list...theyre all built to a price, and as I said, the 8 speed stuff is cheap enough to maintain.

Re: Budget Tourer Advice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 2:39pm
There's not too much to choose between them. The best advice is to try and go somewhere you can test ride one or more of the bikes. If you don't like the Revolution, Spa is not too far away from you in Harrogate.

I wouldn't worry about the Steel vs Al thing. All these frames are going to be fairly stiff and the weight difference between them is not great. The Vantage became the Galaxy Al a year or 2 back; it's basically the same bike. The Raleigh's cassette gives a higher bottom gear but this could be easily changed. The Fuji tries something a bit different (though Evans' Spec is incorrect - 25mm tyres ) by going for bar end shifters and v-brakes rather than STI shifters and Cantilever brakes. Most people prefer v-brakes but bar ends are an acquired taste. Some prefer them as they are more reliable and less expensive to replace but others prefer the convenience of STIs. For some bizarre reason the Fuji doesn't come with mudguards so you'd need to budget for adding these.

Re: The Gaurdian: Cycling near misses

CTC Forum - On the road - 31 March 2015 - 1:50pm
horizon wrote:mirrors not helmets - the message must go out. Helmet promoters are doing so much damage.
Discussion of various reasonably-current mirrors viewtopic.php?f=1&t=92027

Discussions of helmets viewforum.php?f=41

Re: Would this bike be a suitable entry level tourer

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 31 March 2015 - 1:46pm
There's suspension, suspension, and suspension.

First, cheap suspension is there to look like expensive suggestion but for the most part adds weight and goes "Boing", and typically makes the bike less efficient for little gain.

Second, suspension that is well engineered, but for a different job. For getting around town the suspension on a world-cup level downhill mountain bike is pointless as it's designed to take enormous hits on the back of Big Air at high speed. Just an expensive way to slow you down and flag you up to thieves around town or on tour, even if you'd really value it going down bonkers downhill courses.

Thirdly, there's well engineered suspension that's right for your particular job. Something like a Moulton, designed for the road and adding little weight in return for increased comfort and efficiency, would be great on tour if it otherwise suits. Tends not to come cheap though, as there's no mass market.

For jarring jolts, prevention is better than cure. Even on a loaded tourer it's usually possible to hop the front wheel over a lot of bumps and holes, and even if that's not the case then taking them stood up with your pedals horizontal at 3/9 o'clock and with your knees bent to take the shock will substantially reduces the whack. With a bit of practice you can get used to doing this with a loose grip on the bars too (all skills you learn quite fast if you did mountain biking before suspension was widely available!)

And what everyone else said about avoiding a crouch. That's a lot of why I tour on a recumbent (sadly not cheap either).


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