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Messages - PeteJack

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Gear Talk / Re: Cateye time & average speed funky readings
« on: April 21, 2014, 07:30:28 am »
 :-[ Oh the embarrassment. Somehow I'd managed to turn off the Automatic Mode for the thing. i.e. the timer keeps running until you press the start/stop button. There should be a little AT on the display. When all else fails RTFM

General Discussion / Re: newbie planning Belgium tour
« on: April 21, 2014, 07:11:22 am »
I took some French in college
Do learn how to pronounce the letters of the alphabet, most people are not taught this. It's very helpful if you want to find route D123 say. (e.g. D in French is pronounced 'day').  See And be aware that locals often don't know route numbers; roads often have local names that don't appear on maps.

+1 for Safari. You you can fit a bar bag on those bars. My wife's has one of these
 BTW make sure you have some good electrical tape with you. So far our only grouse is that the bar tape started to unwrap. The original tape on the Safari seems a bit thin to me, though Mrs PJ hasn't complained. You may want to have them put some more padded tape on before you pick it up.

Gear Talk / Re: Disc Trucker + Schwalbe Marathon Deluxe.. rim?
« on: April 19, 2014, 05:51:21 pm »
as everyone has said... use the ones that came with the bike. they're decent tyres. i find it useful to swap over the front and back after a while to get more even wear out of them.
Sheldon differs on this. You want the tire that is least likely to blow out (i.e. the least worn) on the front. 'Rotating' by moving the front tire to the back and putting a new one on the front is acceptable

General Discussion / Re: Tools for adventure
« on: April 15, 2014, 11:15:06 am »
Take some electrical tape (the good 3M stuff) for when your Safari bar tape comes undone as it surely will.

General Discussion / Re: Tools for adventure
« on: April 13, 2014, 11:12:36 pm »
I've also had my chain separate a few times
Wow, how is that happening? You're not putting pins back in, are you?
On tour last summer my SRAM 9 spd chain had about 1000 miles on it. I was climbing a steep hill using the 24T front ring when just before the summit I shifted up to the 38T middle ring. There was a rattle like a can of marbles and the bike stopped, the chain had broken. At least it looked that way. What had happened was that the Quicklink had separated. I had a spare so I was off again in short order. I asked around about this and the only explanation anybody came up with was that I was just unlucky in where the Quicklink was when I shifted. The quite a large jump from 24T to 38T may have contributed. I rarely use the 24T ring, it's my 'get out of jail free' card.

Gear Talk / Cateye time & average speed funky readings
« on: April 13, 2014, 08:53:42 pm »
On my Cateye Enduro 8 the readings: speed, distance, max speed,  time of day all appear to be working just fine but the ride time and average speed is rubbish. On my last ride it showed a time of 35 minutes for a 35 mile ride (!) and an average speed of 1.0 mph. Sometimes the average display shows a letter E. Does anybody know what's going on? Is it just the battery running down? I've done some searching and could find nobody with the same problem. Plenty of people with iffy Cateyes. e.g. intermittent failures. But with these the problem always seems to be the whole thing going blank. I don't really care about average speed so I can live with it but I'm curious as to whether it's a symptom of a dieing device. :(

I've just been out to check it again. The irritating arrows that indicate above/below average speed no longer appear to be working. Now that I can live with.

General Discussion / Re: Tools for adventure
« on: April 07, 2014, 12:05:46 am »
pick up our new Novara Safaris
My wife got a new Safari a few weeks ago. People have complained about the rack screws coming loose, I think I found the reason. The cheesy looking hex head cap screws that that retain the bottom of the rack only engage for a couple of threads and will strip out very easily if you overtighten them. The screws REI put in are M6 X 40. If you replace them with M6 X 50, the next length up,to get full thread engagement it interferes with the chain on the RHS if screwed in all the way so I shimmed it out with three washers. So, take a couple of M6 X 50 stainless socket head screws with you and a few washers when you pick up the bike. Then you will be able to tighten all the rack screws with a multi-tool and not have to faff with an adjustable wrench.

Other than that the Safari is a splendid machine. We are setting off for the Natchez Trace next month with one and my Trek 520 with 42K miles on it.

And yes you can fit an Ortlieb bar bag to those bars.

General Discussion / Re: 2 General Questions
« on: March 26, 2014, 10:57:40 am »
   Regarding how far in advance to arrange for motels[/b] (can not speak to campsites), when I was riding thru eastern Montana and western N. Dakota, which I did in the earlier/beginning days of the oil/gas boom, I could find no/zero motel openings even 4 days in advance.  Now that the 'boom' has grown.... hopefully the motel capacity has as well.
Last summer (July) I rode the new ACA route through ND and MT that avoids the oil/gas nightmare, didn't book ahead, and had no trouble finding accommodation. Big chunks of Section 4 of this route are on I94, the ACA route offers alternatives, some people prefer to stay on the freeeway thinking it's quicker but I don't recommend it. On one frontage road I did 18 miles and saw one car and a lot of cows, far nicer than navigating freeway rumble strips and debris.

General Discussion / Re: Starting the TA in mid August...
« on: March 16, 2014, 01:39:44 pm »
Now, is the sun in your eyes THAT much of a problem going w to e?
Depends on what time you like to start riding in the morning. If you typically start riding an hour or two after sunrise (like me), then it's no problem at all. If you typically like to start riding before sunrise, it might be a problem on some days for just a little while.
+1 My only memory of sun-in-eyes being a problem was on heading S on the Sierra Cascade route! The road out of Big Bear City heads due E for a few miles, has no shoulder and a huge drop off of 10 -12 inches in places I was blinded by the sun and went by the few feet of road I could see by lowering my head and getting a bit of shade from my helmet visor. I should have stopped and waited for the sun to move round but like a chump I bashed on to where the road turned S. All the while I was doing this I was thinking that traffic behind me was equally blinded. So enjoy a lie in.

Mineral is entirely forgettable.
True. Unless you're feted by the VFD there ain't much there. On the other hand it's the "forgettable" places that are the real USA. Like Oxford Junction Iowa where I spent last 4th of July. The OP is coming from the UK remember.
Note the vintage firetruck of the VFD.

General Discussion / Re: Cell coverage - phone type?
« on: March 16, 2014, 01:01:46 pm »
In my experience T-Mobile is one to avoid. on the Sierra Cascades there was no coverage in WA S of Mt Rainier (confirmed by the locals) and I went for 500 miles in California with no signal. People with other networks were doing OK. Mind you I had T-Mobile on the Northern Tier last summer and it was quite adequate.

General Discussion / Re: ACA maps and crummy areas in big cities?
« on: March 16, 2014, 12:42:43 pm »
we were warned to keep our bikes locked inside.
Reminds me of a motel in Port Angeles the only place I was specifically not allowed to take my bike into my room (they did have a locked garage I could put it in). That was the place where I was quoted "$100 with a view" I asked how much without a view? "There aren't any." This was on the ACA list I believe. FYI If you go further inland to where no view is available prices drop dramatically.

We rode down the Atlantic Coast route to joint the Transam in Mineral Virginia.On the way we stayed overnight in Fredricksburg, site of three civil war battles. If you're lucky you get to crash at the fire house in Mineral and learn about Volunteer Fire Departments in the US, an important institution little known in the UK. In small towns VFDs rule. If you need to know where to camp e.g. go to the VFD. They'll often let you stay in their firehouse or right next to it. Since I was there they've had an earthquake in Mineral, very rare on the E coast.

General Discussion / Pleae help me watch the Tour
« on: March 11, 2014, 01:07:42 pm »
I got rid of cable and satellite TV but still have one of those 'smart' TVs that lets me watch Youtube and Netflix. Now, how can I watch the Tour de France with Phil Ligget's commentary and all that for a reasonable cost? Is there something I can subscribe to on the internet? It's a big deal for me as the first stage goes within 5 miles of my house in the UK.

FWIW this stage goes through some of England's most exquisite countryside - the Yorkshire Dales.

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