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Messages - RussSeaton

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Gear Talk / Re: Classic Randonneur Build
« on: June 06, 2011, 12:32:46 pm »
The bike itself is a steel frame with Reynolds 531 and with Campy dropouts. Its a 1984. I have no idea about widening the rear end but it sounds kind of risky and so i think i will most likely use contemporary parts.

How can i tell the right sizes for wheels. hubs, cassettes?

If its a touring frame, it probably has cantilever posts on the fork and seatstays.  If so, then trying to fit 700C wheels into a 27" wheel frame will be problematic.  The posts will be too high for the brakes to correctly squeeze the rims.

But if its centerpull, sidepull brakes, then just put some wheels into the frame.  700C if you have some around.  See how far the brake mounting hole is from the rim.  Check the front wheel.  Front wheels are 100mm spacing since forever.  Modern short reach sidepull brakes have about 37-47mm reach.  You can buy modern sidepull calipers with up to about 60mm reach.  Check Tektro brand.  See if the distance from the mounting hole to the center of the rim sides is about 2 inches or less.  If so then your bike is 700C probably.  And you can buy modern brakes to fit the bike.  If the distance is around 3 inches, then its a 27" wheel frame and you will have a hard time getting brakes to fit if you put on 700C wheels.  Remember you are putting a small 700C wheel into the frame to measure with.  I'm pretty sure you can buy 27" rims and tires today.  So you could build up a set of wheels to fit the frame if you want.

Hubs are easy.  Just put a tape measure between the rear dropouts.  Measure inside face to inside face.  If its 126mm then you need hubs from long ago that measure 126mm.  Freewheel, won't be cassette.  As mentioned, you can put modern 130mm wheels/hubs into your 126mm frame.  If you go 126mm hubs, then you are talking freewheel.  Freewheels are available in 5-6-7-8 speeds.  If you go 130mm hubs, then 7-8-9-10 cassetes are available.    May be some problems fitting 7 speed cassettes onto 8-9-10 hubs though.  Your rear cogs will be determined by what shifters you go with.  If friction, then you could go anything with number of cogs.  If indexed, then the rear cogs is determined by how many clicks you have on the shifters.  Get your shifters first, that will determine what you do with the rear wheel.

Gear Talk / Re: Classic Randonneur Build
« on: June 05, 2011, 04:02:22 pm »
Early 1980s means 120mm frame spacing at the rear hub.  Maybe 126mm, but I doubt it.  If its 120mm, then I would not want to spread that to 130mm to fit modern 8-9-10 speed cassettes/wheels.  That is too much spreading.  If its 126mm, then it can be spread to 130mm by a shop that knows what it is doing.  Or you can just squeeze the rear wheel in each time.  May be very difficult to find a shop that knows how to correctly spread a bike frame.  Road frames have been 130mm for 20 plus years now.  The spreading knowledge is gone.  I have no interest in modernizing an old frame.

If you go classic as you state, then it means running 5 or 6 speed freewheels in the frame.  And downtube shifters.  If you can find them.  Friction since indexed shifters did not come along until 7 speed and 126mm I think.  Headsets and stems can still be bought for this frame.  Bottom brackets and cranks won't be any problem.  Brakes?  Maybe need long reach sidepull calipers.

Gear Talk / Re: Rohloff hub
« on: May 26, 2011, 02:42:01 pm »
Since maintenance of the chain is the reason you are considering a belt, I'm going to suggest a full chain case.  Europeans, Netherlands, use them on commuting bikes.  These cases enclose the chain, chainring, sprocket and don't allow any water/dust to get onto the chain.  It would reduce oiling a chain to a minimum.  I presume some European websites would be selling these chain cases.  Maybe St. John Street Cycles deals in them like they deal with the Rohloff hub.

Gear Talk / Re: Help/Advice for New Bike
« on: May 21, 2011, 06:54:29 pm »
Don't have any suggestions for a specific bike.  But the two you mentioned go for $1850 and $2000.  Frame/fork.  So you could very easily find a somewhat local custom frame maker and have him build you a custom touring frame/fork for the same money.  Might be worth your trouble to find out who is close to you and talk to him.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 15, 2011, 03:30:13 pm »
I have a Co-Motion Mocha Tandem with 26” wheels. How does this effect gearing? Assuming the same gear combination how would it differ from a 700 wheel while climbing up hill? BTW mine has 52-39-30 front and 11-28 rear.

Smaller wheels make the gears easier.  Circumference of the tire.  So with a 26" wheel, the 30x28 low gear will be a little bit easier than a 700C wheel with 30x28.  Small amount easier.  10% easier between 26"x1.0" tire and 700Cx23mm wheel.  Diameter is roughly 24" for the 26" tire and 26.3" diameter for the 700C wheel.  At the high end, the 52x11, the 10% difference would be noticable.  At the low end, the 30x28, the difference may not be noticable.  At the low end you are talking 2 gear inch difference.  That is not much at all.  At the high end the difference is 10 gear inches.  Noticable.

Gear Talk / Re: Bike selection for use with trailer
« on: May 11, 2011, 12:56:50 pm »
I know a kid who used a Trek 5200 mid 2000s frame to pull a BOB trailer.  Short tour.  But it worked fine pulling the trailer.  Only problem with the bike was the 30x27 low gear.  The Dura Ace triple crank only allows a 30 tooth inner chainring.

A lot of your general touring questions can be answered by reading some of the touring books Adventure Cycling sells.  Libraries may have them too.  They cover the basics and the rest you figure out as you ride.

Netherlands.  I rode in from Germany in the NE corner.  Then along the dam that goes for 30 or more miles along the north coast of the Netherlands.  Bike route on top of the dam/barrier/causeway.  Then south along the coast to Amsterdam and out the south through Rotterdam.  Lot of bike trails from the dam south near the coast.  Officially I think you have to ride on the trails instead of the roads.  Which is a problem if you are trying to get from point A to point B.  The trails aren't direct.  They meander.  Hard to figure out which one goes where.  I stayed in hostels, AYH.  They were scattered so I hit one every 60 miles or so.  I suspect there are cheap motels/hotels/pensiones in most towns.  So camping isn't required.

I rode in August.  Warm.  Windy, windy, windy.  Some rain too.  Good riding weather.  The route I rode was perfectly flat.  I think there are some hills in the eastern areas of the Netherlands.  Its not tough riding terrain.  Towns everywhere, every few miles.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: May 09, 2011, 01:59:56 pm »
Be careful. If you have too big a difference between the big ring and the granny; if the chain is short enough for the granny gear it may be too short for the big ring. If you see what I mean. I

Not sure how this problem would ever occur if you size the chain correctly.  Wrap the chain around the big ring and big cog and through the rear derailleur.  Just long enough to make this circle with a tiny tiny amound of extra play.  Then the chain is the right length.  If you are in the small chainring and small cog, the rear derailleur may not have enough length to take up all of the slack.  No problem.  Having the chain hang loose on the bottom does not cause any concern.  And using the small chainring and smallest 1-2-3 cogs is not something you should ever do anyway.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: April 28, 2011, 01:33:23 pm »
I've ridden in the Rockies and only used a 24x23 low gear.  Never needed the 24x28 lowest gear.  It did not hurt me.
Not sure where you rode in the Rockies, but I will say that the route that the OP is talking about has much steeper climbs than anything I saw in the Rockies on the Trans America. 

Slumgullion, Wolf Creek, Red Mountain, Rocky Mountain Park, Rabbit Ears, Molas, Coal Bank, Monarch, Squaw, Berthoud, Vail, Loveland, Mt. Evans.  The point of my comment was to point out that a 24 inner ring gets you a lower gear than a 28 ring.  So with the same cassette, you will have one lower gear with the 24.  Maybe you won't need to use it.  You will be able to get by with the 24 ring and your next to biggest cog.  Nothing is harmed if you carry your biggest cog and don't need it.

Gear Talk / Re: Gear Chainring
« on: April 28, 2011, 04:02:04 am »
Since you mention a 28 tooth chainring, I'm guessing you have a road bike triple crankset.  With the inner chainring using a 74mm bolt circle diameter.  You can easily put a 24 tooth chainring on such a crankset.  No matter how big your outer chainrings are, the 24 inner will work perfectly.  Having a 24 instead of a 28 may mean you only have to use your 24x28 gear instead of your 28x32 gear.  So you have one extra low gear in reserve.  No harm done having too low of a gear.  I've ridden in the Rockies and only used a 24x23 low gear.  Never needed the 24x28 lowest gear.  It did not hurt me.


For visibilty of the rider, this is about the best product you can buy.  OK-1 mesh surveyor's vest.  Fluorescent yellow with reflective stripes.

Gear Talk / Re: Race Face is in receivership
« on: April 11, 2011, 07:00:36 pm »
Was Race Face an actual manufacturer or just a distributor of cranks made to their specifications somewhere else, like Asia?  If they didn't make the cranks in their own facility, the cranks could easily reappear under a different marketing name.

Race Face was a real company.  Not a company that put its name on stuff made elsewhere.  I don't know if Race Face had factories making its stuff or contracted with others to make stuff for them.  But Race Face did design and create the product.  Their stuff was not a generic thing picked out of a Chinese factory catalog.  I suspect if anyone bought Race Face, it would be for the brand name and its designs.  Those are its assets.  Although the designs may not be too valuable since the company went into bankruptcy.  I doubt you will see Chinese companies coming out with Race Face look alike products.  The products I recall from Race Face were unique.  They were not simple cheap to make products.  They required CNC machining.  The Race Face Next LP crank was an I beam shape.  It had to be milled to look like that.  They also had a carbon/aluminum crank.  The arms were aluminum wrapped over carbon.  Not something a Chinese company could do.  The good Race Face products are not going to be copied by anyone because they were costly.

Gear Talk / Re: Race Face is in receivership
« on: April 09, 2011, 02:54:47 pm »
Seems quite a few bikes use their rings and cranks.

10-15 years ago Race Face was a big after market chi-chi high end supplier of cranks.  I don't recall them ever having much of the manufacturer market.  They did not come original on many bikes.  So if your goal is to have a wide choice of new replacement cranks to switch on and off your bikes, it will affect you.  If you just buy bikes from your local shop and ride them, you won't even know they are gone.

Routes / Re: warm weather winter routes?
« on: April 09, 2011, 02:49:32 pm »
You seem to be fixated on the US for some reason.  Portugal and Spain was my choice many years ago for a November tour.  Great weather.  If you are going to fly to the ride, flying domestic or international makes no difference.   Same outrageous cost.

My wife and I have a trip planned to visit family in Baltimore, MD on May 7th and I just talked her into letting me ride my bike from our home in Clearwater, FL to meet her their on the 7th.
1. very short notice...only 17 days away. I'd have to leave on the 27th of April to allow enough time to make the trip.
2. No previous experience with a long distance trip like this although I am in very good physical shape from running and cycling on a regular basis.
3. I want to travel lite but have no idea what to and what not to pack. I planned on adding just a set of rear panniers and a front handlebar bag to my bike.
4. My bike is not a touring model. It's a Scott S20 Speedster which is more of a aggressive road setup.
5. Safe routes. What is the best way to find a safe route along the way?

10 days riding.  Its about 1000 miles between Clearwater and Baltimore.  Doable.

No experience necessary.  Just ride your bike every day.

Traveling light.  Two pair shorts, one jersey.  Maybe a t-shirt and shorts for when you are done riding.  Biking sandals ans SPD pedals so no need for extra shoes.  Toothbrush and toothpaste.  Any medicine you use.  You will stay in motels every night.  So they provide soap and shampoo and towels.  Eat in restaurants or convenience stores.

Adventure Cycling has an Atlantic Coast route map.  I suspect it would get you most of the way along the eastern seaboard.  Already mapped for you.  Check where the towns are to be sure you can ride between towns that have motels.  Check the map to see what kind of hills or moutains are on it.  I think they talk about those things on the maps they sell.  See if the hills warrant you changing the gearing on your bike.  If so its easy to get a cassette with bigger cogs and a compact crankset.  Your racing bike will handle a 27-28-30-32 rear cog and 50/34 crankset with no other changes.  Except chain may need to be longer.  Front derailleur lowered.  If you're feeling like spending money you could get a long cage rear derailleur for fun too.   Not needed though.

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