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Messages - briwasson

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Routes / Re: East Coast Greenway Complete Route Info
« on: May 12, 2016, 12:57:20 pm »
The East Coast Greenway is still fairly new, and not fully completed yet. You'll probably find more info on the ACA's Atlantic Coast Route, which has been around for a lot longer.

For ACA Atlantic Coast journals, see

You might find some other related journals in here:

General Discussion / Re: Michelin Maps or Google Maps for Europe?
« on: May 11, 2016, 09:56:45 am »
For touring in Europe, for many countries there are bike-specific maps that are available. These are really handy because they show all bike paths, good roads for biking, and usually even show where there are hills (marked with light or dark arrows to show severity). Germany and Austria are pretty well covered by these, and I've found them for the Czech Republic, too. The only issue is that they are detailed in scale (~1:75,000) and as such only cover a narrow area.

Classifieds / Re: FOR SALE: Co-Motion Pangea S&S XS size
« on: April 21, 2016, 12:24:59 pm »
Price lowered!

Yes, as others have said, getting a box from an airline at the airport can be very hit or miss nowadays. Some airlines have their own, but may not have them in stock. If you are flying a return flight out of the same airport you arrived in, you could ask the airline to hold your boxes for you for the return flight, or at least put a request in with them to have new ones available for your return. I know both these options sound like they would never work, but they have for me (for example, US Airways held three boxes for me in Munich for our return flight once).

Always give yourself an extra day before you flight home to source a box and pack it up. If you are using an airline box, try to go to the airport the day before and get the box. If the airline is out of them, they may be able to request one from another location and have it delivered by an incoming plane (happened for me in Paris once, they sent one over on a plane from the USA).

Gear Talk / Re: "Adventure" bike for short rider?
« on: March 16, 2016, 02:51:06 pm »
I have a 44cm Co-Motion Pangea Co-Pilot for sale, listed on the forum in the classifieds, if you are interested. Fits my 5'2" wife just fine, and has about a 28" standover.

This Co-Motion Pangea 26"-wheeled touring bike with S&S couplers is perfect for the shorter person looking for a high quality touring and travel bike. The seat tube measures ~45cm, and with the sloping top tube the frame has a good bit of size flexibility (Co-Motion calls this a 48cm in their frame specs on their website). It should comfortably fit someone between 4'9" and 5'3" or thereabouts. Scroll down for the full build list and all measurements. Do a Web search and you'll find a lot of great reviews of the Pangea.

The paint job is a very cool purple to black fade. The bike is used (2009 build date) and shows scratches on the frame, most of which have been touched up, and it looks fine from five feet away. I tried to catch all the blemishes in the photos. Otherwise it is in great condition.

My wife is the second owner of the bike (we bought it used from a bike shop). We have the original Co-Motion build sheet/paperwork from the first owner. Sorry, an S&S case is NOT included in the sale, but you will get the special S&S oupler spanner wrench.

Selling this bike for $1995. Located in the Philadelphia, Pa., area. Will consider shipping or meeting a buyer within a 1-1.5 hour drive. PayPal accepted for long-distance sale, with seller/buyer splitting the fee.

For reference, a current Pangea with couplers would cost around $4,800. Although this is a 2009 model, it is very similar to the current model shown on Co-Motion's website at The main difference is the new model has disc brakes and is 10-speed instead of 9-speed (although the new model has downgraded the derailleurs to an XT rear and 105 front vs. XTR and XT on this bike). For touring, many prefer V-brakes over discs anyway, and the difference between 9- and 10-speed drivetrains is negligible.

Lots more photos available on request.

Co-Motion's description:
"Far from a mountain bike with a drop bar, the Pangea is designed with the stable, responsive touring geometry that has made Co-Motion an industry leader.
- Super-duty, extra-large diameter Reynolds 725 Steel tubing and rock-steady hand-built touring fork
- Long chain-stays, room for fat tires and fenders, plus fittings for three bottles, front and rear racks, and the toughness you need for your global touring expedition"

Co-Pilot travel option with S&S couplers
Reynolds 725 steel tubing
Frame size (measured) 45cm; Co-Motion calls this a "48cm" on their website, probably because the sloping top tube gives a lot of flexibility.
28" standover height
Seat tube: 45cm center-top, 40.5 center-center
Virtual top tube: 48 cm (sloping top tube)
Center seatpost to center handlebars: 58cm (with 110mm stem)
Full touring braze-ons, including front and rear rack and three bottle-cage mounts

Brakes: Avid SD-7 V-brakes
Brake levers: Cane Creek for drop bars
Rear derailleur: Shimano XTR M971, long cage
Front derailleur: Shimano XT M761
Shifters: Shimano Dura-Ace bar-end, 9-speed, indexed w/friction override
Cassette: Shimano XT M770 11-34 9-speed
Chain: SRAM, 9-speed (recent, maybe 100 miles on it)
Crankset: Race Face Deus, 24/34/46 rings, 170mm arms
Headset: Chris King 1-1/8", black threadless
Wheelset: Brand-new Sun RhynoLite rims with XTR M950 hubs (titanium axles), 36 spokes f/r. Different from the wheels shown in the photos. Rear spacing is standard MTB 135mm for ease in finding parts (not the 145mm Co-Motion usually builds these with, which is a tandem-spec and very hard to find)
Tires: Almost new WTB Slickasaurus 1.1 road tires (different from the ones shown in photos)
Skewers: Salsa Flip-off
Handlebars: FSA Omega 42 cm
Stem: FSA OS150, 110mm x 6 deg., black, 4-bolt removable faceplate
Seatpost: Kalloy Uno Seraph, 29.8 x 350mm, black
Seat: Basic Terry "Sport" women's seat installed for test rides, will include if buyer wishes to keep it
Pedals: not included (well, I might have a set of Shimano XT SPDs in my garage that you can have if I can find them)
Misc: alloy QR seatpost binder; DaVinci cable splitters on all cables (except front brake); inline cable adjusters

General Discussion / Re: Riding Amtrak from Washington DC to Cumberland MD
« on: December 25, 2015, 09:41:16 pm »
I've biked the C&O and the GAP self-contained (two separate trips). Can't help you on the train part, but I will suggest that you consider seeing if you can make do with just rear panniers and bar bag. When I ride the C&O first I used four panniers, bar bag, etc. For my GAP ride just used rear panniers and bar bag, and found I didn't really need the extra space of front panniers. Especially on the GAP there are plenty of resupply opportunities and you can make do just fine with less space IMO.

For the train, get a thin, light and cheap duffle that will fit your gear inside and your panniers (flattened if possible). Conductors are more likely to notice someone juggling a pile of panniers and sundry gear than a person with one bag, even if it's on the large size.

At the end of my C&O trip in Washington, I packed my S&S bike in a backpack case, along with most of my gear. I wore the (very heavy) bike and gear backpack case on my back and carried my handlebar bag over my shoulder. Nobody looked twice at me, even though the S&S case was fairly large.

Routes / Virginia Beach, VA to Wilmington, NC
« on: December 16, 2015, 10:47:57 pm »
From Va Beach head south on Princess Anne Rd (rt 615) through Pungo and across the NC border to Knotts Island. Take the free ferry from there across the sound to the NC mainland and then continue to Wilmington by the route of your choosing. The Currituck-Knotts Island ferry option is a great way to start your trip from Va Beach and the route there is very scenic.

From Currituck either head down the Outer Banks to Morehead City via ferries, or head inland via Elizabeth City and then south to Wilmington. Outer Banks would definitely be the more scenic route.

Routes / Re: What is better? Zion or Bryce Canyon?
« on: December 16, 2015, 10:44:12 pm »
Biking Zion is amazing. However, in riding up the canyon road during main season, try to do it as early as possible before the crowds arrive. We did it twice at 6:30-7:00 am and the canyon was empty and wonderful quiet. Beware that the law is that bikers must pull over and stop whenever a shuttle bus approaches in your lane in the canyon. This can be a real PITA during busy times; another reason to go early. It's worth it though.

General Discussion / Re: Atlantic Coast Bicycle Route USA
« on: November 26, 2015, 03:45:01 pm »

Meanwhile .... I have searched for your UK "Bespoken" brand trailer and found that there are many popular designs

"Bespoke" is not a brand of a trailer, it a Britishism for "custom." So he's having a custom trailer made.

General Discussion / Getting out of Dulles Airport.
« on: November 14, 2015, 11:24:25 pm »
Skyline Drive is really nice, but definitely hilly. The climb out of Front Royal is a pretty good sustained climb. There are campgrounds at mileposts 23, 51, 57 and 80. Food is usually nearby these locations too. Stealth camping is not allowed without a permit, and you have to be a half mile off the road. But it is a beautiful place to ride, especially if you go during the workweek when traffic is light.

I agree about the Hotel near Dulles. Out your bike box in a shuttle and build it the next morning at your hotel. If you arrive on a weekend sometimes you can get really good deals at Dulles area hotels if you shop around.

Classifieds / FS: Beckman Designs Modular Tandem/Expedition Rear Panniers
« on: November 07, 2015, 05:59:12 pm »
Selling one pair of expedition-quality modular rear panniers by Robert Beckman Designs (aka Sakkit). These are an extra-large set originally designed for tandem use, but also great for any kind of long (or short!) trip due to their modular design and flexibility.

The modular design features a rear compartment (with several dividers inside) and a front compartment that easily zips off to make the set smaller or so you can take just a few necessities into wherever you are going. The front compartment area has a fully zippered closed part as well as a mesh outer pocket with its own zipper for clothes drying or other quick access.

With all the compartments attached, these are big panniers, probably 3600-4000 cubic inches all told. The bags are made to be bomb-proof, with Cordura nylon, heavy duty zippers, etc. They are handmade in the USA by Beckman.

The color is a teal green (for some reason they look blue in the photos, but they aren't).

These are older Beckman panniers, but still in very good condition. One of the small compression straps is missing on one of the panniers, easily replaced with some 3/4" webbing and a buckle from REI. No rips or tears, and the fabric and zippers are in perfect condition. They could use a good cleaning, and they smell a bit musty due to being stored, but that's about all they need.

While Beckman panniers are designed to be used on certain brands of racks (commonly Bruce Gordon or Beckman Designs), these will fit on Blackburn or Tubus racks with just a bit of reworking of the lower straps.

Lots of photos on my ad on at

Selling these hard to find panniers for $160 + shipping. I'm not in a hurry to sell, and the price is firm (to get a set of these new would be well over $500, probably more like $650, so I think $160 is fair). Located in the Philadelphia, Pa., area.

General Discussion / Re: Transporting 8-12 Bikes
« on: October 14, 2015, 12:02:02 am »
I'd do either of these options:

1. Get Yakima or Thule rack setups to fit the number of bikes you need to carry and put them on the van. This is what you see a lot of bike tour companies do as it offers good flexibility. Most rental vans are Ford E-series, which take standard rain-gutter mount towers (like the venerable Yakima 1A tower, which can be found on Ebay and CL for cheap) for the racks. If you are sure that you will be renting an E-van (Ford E150, E250, E350, or Clubwagon) this is probably the easiest and most secure way to go, but it could get expensive. And loading on top of a high van is not for the faint of heart as you'll have to climb up on top and have somebody hand up the bikes. Also, some rental places are moving to the new-style Ford Transit vans. I'm not sure if they still have raingutters like the E-vans do. As far as the rental company allowing it, how would they know (unless you put it on in the parking lot or something)? Raingutter racks go on and off quickly and easily. As an aside, if you aren't familiar with driving loaded full-size vans, be careful. When they are loaded with people and gear they are very heavy and require extra skill (I have a Ford E350 campervan and am very familiar with them). Don't overload the van! Basically a van full of people is at max capacity, even without carrying gear (10 people @ 150 pounds = 1500 pounds or 3/4 ton).

2. Rent an enclosed U-Haul trailer. This assumes that your rental vehicle has a hitch on it. Not all do due to liability issues. To protect the bikes you can either build basic wood racking inside (you'll need to get the trailer well ahead of time and be handy to do this) or simply use foam sheets between the bikes. Since UHaul trailers are standard, you could rent one ahead of time for a day or two to fit and make your racks inside, store them until your trip, and then you are ready to go.

3. I'd also consider renting a separate U-Haul truck for the bikes and gear if you have enough drivers to support a second vehicle. If it's a supported tour, presumably you'll be hauling people's luggage around too and you need the extra room anyway. For this option, you could build some basic wood racks as noted above. Or simply use moving blankets, cardboard bike boxes, etc., to keep the bikes separated. Assuming you also have a passenger van, get a basic rack that hangs off the rear doors for the occasional side-of-road sag service. If you need to transport the whole group (bad weather, etc.) then use the box truck.

Classifieds / Re: FS: '06 Cannodale T2000 $600
« on: September 25, 2015, 01:44:18 pm »
Nice bike and a very fair price. Someone should jump on this!

General Discussion / Re: Carbon or touring bike?
« on: September 12, 2015, 09:43:48 pm »
I don't see why you'd need a robust bike if a van is hauling all your stuff. Just make sure whatever you ride is comfortable for long multiple days in the saddle. I wouldn't ride a full on carbon race bike for example.

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