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Messages - briwasson

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My wife is likely going to sell her Co-Motion Pangea S&S bike (26" wheels). I forget the exact frame size, but it would definitely fit you. Haven't gotten it ready to list yet (on Ebay), but I'm thinking around $2450 (retail is around $5,000).

If you have any interest, let me know via PM and I can get you more info and photos.

Gear Talk / Velocity Dyad or Mavic A719
« on: August 19, 2015, 08:22:00 am »
Both are very good runs for touring, and the LX hubs will work just fine. Peter White, a respected wheel builder, says the Dyad is his favorite touring rim. See

Google this question and you'll find other threads asking the same question. More important than which of these two runs to choose is who is building the wheel set. If an unknown builder (like from eBay), take them to a good LBS and have the tension checked.

Gear Talk / Back To Bar Cons
« on: August 16, 2015, 08:14:11 pm »
If you still have your 6703 brifters, often the shifting issue can be fixed by soaking the innards with lots of WD40 and then flushing with lots of clean water (plenty of how-to posts on the Web). I've fixed many a "broken" set of STI shifters this way. I have Ultegra triple 9-speed brifters on four bikes used for touring, including two tandems and a triple. I also have barcons on my Co-Motion Pangea and definitely prefer the STI levers. On the tandems and triple I tend to shift a LOT and the STIs are still going strong after thousands of miles. We did have one broken cable at the head in a left shifter, which was kind of a pain to replace, but was still doable as a roadside repair. If you ride a lot in the rain or on gravel/dirt, proactively flushing the STIs as described above can also help extend their lives.

California / Re: Local advice for a UK visitor please?
« on: July 30, 2015, 07:06:48 pm »
80 degrees is not even close to being hot in the middle of the USA in summer. We just got back from driving across the country and it was easily 105 in parts of Nevada and western Washington state, for example.

General Discussion / Re: What can towns offer cyclists?
« on: July 30, 2015, 07:03:26 pm »
Do a search for "trail towns" and the "great allegheny passage." They have some good resources for towns that want to profit economically by supporting cyclists. Contrary to what many noncyclists may think, bikers DO spend money. Many respected studies bear this out.

Sure, some are on a shoestring budget and want to camp every night for free and eat ramen for dinner, but many others eat at least one meal a day or more out, shop local stores, etc. a town that welcomes bikers quickly gets known and will be chosen over another town for a stopping point. Offer a low-cost town campground ($10 or less) and it will more than pay for itself as bikers stop the night and eat dinner and breakfast in nearby restaurants.

International / Re: Loire Cycling
« on: July 30, 2015, 06:54:38 pm »
There are a number of self-guided outfitters that offer trips in France. Usually they set you up with a rental bike, arrange each night's lodging, and transport your luggage each day. But during the day you are on your own. This is how many if not most Europeans that use services tour. There are a few big outfits out of Austria and Germany. Austria Radreisen is one. I can't recall the other. Search on "self guided tours" and the Loire and you should turn up some options.

General Discussion / Re: Tandem on the Northern Tier
« on: July 30, 2015, 06:38:21 pm »
BTW, my wife and I have been riding and touring on tandems (and now on a triplet with our 10 year old son) since 1994, so if you need any advice send me a PM.

General Discussion / Re: Tandem on the Northern Tier
« on: July 30, 2015, 06:37:06 pm »
There's a current journal on CrazyGuy by a couple riding from NJ to the west coast in a tandem. I think they are doing a modified N Tier route.

General Discussion / Re: Buying Used Question
« on: July 30, 2015, 06:35:15 pm »
A T800 for $300 is a pretty good deal. I had one for a while and liked it. Does it have a threaded (quill) stem or threadless? The nice thing with C'dale frames is that they are the same across all models of that year, so upgrades make sense if/when you want to make them.

A friend of a friend just had her bike stolen in Portland, Oregon, after riding cross-country from the East Coast. I don't know her, but here are the details from her posting asking for help. If you know of it, contact the Portland Police using the case number at the end.

Note, this is NOT MY BIKE. Just posting to maybe help her find it.


I just rode across country from Washington DC to Portland OR. My 2nd to last day visiting Portland, my touring bike, that I built myself, was stolen this morning sometime before 8am PST on west Burnside St (NW). I am absolutely heartbroken. I dont have many friends/connections here in Portland but posting this anyway to get the word out for those who are nearby. If you know people in Portland or surrounding area, please tag. Could be already in the marketplace or several weeks before the culprit sells it.

Surly - Long Haul Trucker
Black 46cm frame
26'' wheels (Continental Tour Ride)
Honey colored Brooks leather saddle (possibly under black seat cover) and matching tan handlebar tape
Teal cable housing
Headset has a unique spacer thats a lime green beer bottle opener
Shimano bar end shifters
Black front rack (old man mountain) and back rack **the front rack cannot be removed unless they find a new quick release for hub mounting**
Front and back Planet Bike fenders **with lots of bright yellow reflective stickers**
The right of the top tube only says "Trucker" on it (compared to all/most LHT bc I scratched it off).
27 speed. Large chain ring is black, middle and small are silver.
Pedals are MKS step-in **flat on one side, clips on the other**
I had a nameplate on the back fender that said "Megan" from Natural Bridge, VA but likely was removed.

Unfortunately I dont have many pics of the bike unloaded because I finished building just before the trip.

Portland police case #15-248109

Routes / Re: Getting to TransAm start point (Yorktown, VA)
« on: May 09, 2015, 09:08:33 pm »
FYI, Very soon, perhaps this summer even, Virginia will open its new Capital Bike Trail, running from Richmond to Williamsburg and through Jamestown. Yorktown isn't much farther from the end of the trail.

I'm not quite sure what you are asking here, other than about your wheelset's viability? If you have specific questions please detail them sand folks will be happy to help.

I'm 5'9" as well, and would never think to buy a large frame. But, I guess it all depends on your leg length, etc. you can adjust reach and all that with stems, longer steerer tube (or extender), etc.

Routes / Re: Maryland to Maine route? (Breast Cancer Awareness Ride)
« on: April 05, 2015, 08:34:02 pm »
Philly is a "necessary evil"? Hmpfffh.

Routes / Re: Anchorage to Dawson Creek- Gradients?
« on: March 23, 2015, 11:17:36 am »
I've driven the Alaska highway a few times, but haven't biked it. Hopefully some riders will jump in, but until then...

The Alcan doesn't really have any terrible grades, and especially nothing like the Alps (I've biked Galibier, Alpe d'Huez, etc.). I think the maximum grade is something like 10%, and not for a very long distance. The grades are basically when you are coming in and out of river valleys. If you've cycled a lot in the Alps and can deal with that, you'll be fine on the Alcan. I'd characterize the Alcan as undulating with the occasional steep climb.

Check out the "Alaska Highway Bible" at It's a big, printed book, but is well worth getting for planning any trip in the far north, as it has literally mile-by-mile guides to most all of the northern roads. Really helpful.

There are also quite a few trip reports on I'd start reading them to get an idea of the conditions.

There are a bunch if trip write ups for this on I'd suggest starting there for some narratives. I've biked that route three times Passau-Vienna and and other parts of it a few additional times. I've also done the Tauernradweg a few times. I'll post some ideas tomorrow when I'm at my computer and a real keyboard instead of an iPhone.

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