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Messages - DaveB

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General Discussion / Couriers and bike cases?
« on: April 14, 2007, 04:48:27 pm »
UPS, Fed-Ex or one of the other package delivery services will ship your bike case anywhere you wish. The cost will be about $50 since it will be based on size as well as weight.  

Both shippers many locations and have shipping points in several other businesses as well.  Go to one of their web sites and look up "shipping l;ocations" and you should find one near where you require.  

General Discussion / SPD Sandals for air travel
« on: April 10, 2007, 08:10:10 pm »
I don't know why they would be a problem.  You take them off like any other shoe, pass them through the X-ray scanner, the TSA person looks at the image, shrugs and you put them back on. If questioned about the "funny metal thingy" on the bottom, you describe what it's for.  

They are looking for weapons and/or explosives and the cleats are neither.

General Discussion / Eating and spending on a two month biking spree
« on: April 05, 2007, 09:43:35 pm »
You only live once and you dont need their permission to do it.

Of course she doesn't need out "permission" but she did ask our opinions and we shared what we thought.  She is free to accept or reject any advise at her whim.  If you don't want to hear what people think, don't ask.  

General Discussion / Eating and spending on a two month biking spree
« on: April 01, 2007, 07:49:37 pm »
You have to understand that there is no group of people a naive or as accepting of populous rhetoric as recent college graduates.  They really believe all that philosophical babble they have been exposed to really describes the way things work.  They totally lack personal experience and perspective.  

Give her a break, she will probably grow up sometime. In the meantime let her live out her delusion that she can really change the way people behave.

General Discussion / Eating and spending on a two month biking spree
« on: March 29, 2007, 11:32:50 pm »
....bicycling is one of those last frontiers that does not require a huge bank account to be richly rewarding.

That's true but how much can you enjoy a trip where every penny must be carefully watched.  Poverty and privation are poor traveling companions.  

I think Russell was a bit harsh but his overall concept is valid.  You don't need huge resources or lavish accommodations but  you do need enough money to more than barely get by.  you need to eat adequately, sleep in a safe place and be prepared for unexpected expenses and bike repairs.  

Also, as a woman, do you really want to sleep by the road side with no other shelter?  Face reality, that's not a safe or intelligent plan.

Finally, the vegan diet doesn't strike me as an attractive option either but it's your choice.  Just be careful to get a well balanced meals as your riding will be very demanding on your nutrition.  It's difficult to get all of the proteins you need on that diet unless you choose very wisely and that won't be the cheapest food available.  

General Discussion / how much weight?
« on: March 27, 2007, 09:36:05 pm »
I've only credit-card toured so my bike and load are a lot lighter than needed for a camping/cooking tour.  My bike complete with a rear rack weighs about 24 pounds and my load, panniers and all, is about 18-20 pounds.  I do laundry almost every day.

This message was edited by DaveB on 3-27-07 @ 5:36 PM

General Discussion / Bicycle security in hostels
« on: March 30, 2007, 11:29:56 pm »
One way to improve bike security when you are away from it is to enlist the help of someone who is going to be near your bike anyway.   For example, I've asked store clerks to keep an eye on it while I'm shopping or I'll have lunch in a restaurant within walking distance of where I want to go and ask if the waiter/waitress will watch it.  Generally they don't mind and you do have another pair of eyes working on your behalf.    

General Discussion / Bicycle security in hostels
« on: March 27, 2007, 09:10:05 am »
Like ptaylor, I've only stayed in hotels in Europe (and Japan) but I always brought my bike into the room with me and leaned it against an available wall.  I was never questioned about this by the hotel staff.

General Discussion / Your Local Bike Shop
« on: March 25, 2007, 11:36:58 am »
I do both.  I buy a lot of my components from mail order/internet dealers since the selection is much larger and the prices generally (but not always) better.  I consider myself a pretty accomplished bike mechanic so I don't need the LBS to install the parts or tune my bikes.  

I also have a favorite LBS that has always treated me well and I will buy from them if they have the items in stock or can get them reasonably promptly. I don't mind the small cost penalty.  

Are you planning to ride your bike from Chicago to do your tour completely by bike or are you planning to fly or drive to the area and then tour on your bike?  

If you plan to bicycle all the way, one month and 1000 miles won't be nearly enough unless you stay in the Great Lakes region.  

If you are going to travel by air or car to the area, any of your ideas are possible.  

General Discussion / Hotel/motel vs camping
« on: March 18, 2007, 10:53:24 am »
It looks like I'm the odd man out; But I love credit card touring. I like eating out and sleeping in clean sheets after a hot shower. Also I like to ride with very little weight.

I agree with your take on credit-card touring.  I'd much rather have a clean dry bed and a hot shower followed by a good meal after a day of riding, particularly if the weather is less than ideal.  

If you stick to the plainer chain or mom-and-pop motels and away from major tourist areas the cost isn't much more than camping and the comfort is much better.

BTW, camping in tourist areas isn't cheap either and most of your "neighbors" will be in motor homes or trailers with generators and TV's.  It will be neither economical, quiet or restful.  

For meals, the same technique applies.  Avoid high priced restaurants and your daily meal costs can be very reasonable too.  

The final attraction is being able to ride a bicycle with minimal weight that retains most of it's agility and responsiveness.  Somehow riding a packmule loaded down with a twice its weight in luggage doesn't seem like plesant riding, it seems a lot more like work.

Oh, yes, credit card touring doesn't have to isolate you from other people or eliminate the possibility of being invited to stay or eat at someone's home.  

General Discussion / Cycling on the Cheap . How low can you go?
« on: March 25, 2007, 11:29:43 am »
The point I am trying to make is even if you can't afford that much you can still go on a tour , it doesn't have to be a yuppie pass time.

Actually long distance, time consuming bike touring isn't a "yuppie" pass time at all.  The yuppies I know of are too consumed with their careers, cars, houses, social life, etc. to take the time and put forth the effort.  They may have the money but not the interest. If they bike at all it's weekend fitness rides on the most expensive racing bike they could find.  

Tourists tend to be people of modest means who have jobs that allow long absences and families that are either cooperative or non-existant.    

General Discussion / Cycling on the Cheap . How low can you go?
« on: March 14, 2007, 11:08:57 am »
......all their clothes were cotton or wool . They were carrying 150 lbs on each bike . My favorite part about their gear was they said that their tent was not water proof and leaked . The bikes weighted a ton , but they made it.

"Making it" and enjoying it are two entirely different things.  I assume you want to do more than just survive the experience.

No, you certainly don't need the most leading edge, most expensive equipment available but not using modern technology and materials is foolish when it's available at modest cost.      

General Discussion / Cycling on the Cheap . How low can you go?
« on: March 12, 2007, 11:37:43 am »
One way to get a lot of calories at fairly low cost is to hit a "Buffet Restaurant".  The prices are pretty low, typically less than $10, and "all you can eat" takes on real meaning for touring bike riders.

That could be your one restaurant meal of the day and would go a long way to keeping your calorie count up and your costs down.  Just choose what you eat with some care as the selections aren't all "health food".

General Discussion / Cycling on the Cheap . How low can you go?
« on: March 11, 2007, 09:27:09 am »
DaveB it's nice that you have a keen grasp of the obvious...

Indeed, it's a talent I'm very proud of.   ;p

On a more useful note, one way to get good equipment at more reasonable cost is to check the closeouts.  I bought a Northface 20-degree rated light weight synthetic sleeping bag from Campmore for $60, or half it's normal price, because it was "last year's style".  Look for similar deals on camping gear and clothing.  

I would caution you to buy quality equipment since more than your comfort depends on it.  A cotton sleeping bag in a $20 X-Mart tent may be ok for a kid's sleep-over but can be a horror on a cold, rain soaked night.  You will be subject  a wide variety of conditions and must be adequetly equipped to tolerate them.  There is a "Traveler's Rule" worth remembering:

"It will be hotter than you think.  It will be colder than you think.  It will rain more than you think."

As to eating on $15/day.  I supose it can be done but it will be very difficult to sustain. As wandering wheels pointed out you will need a lot of calories and a reasonably balanced diet.  It's going to be very difficult to do both on that amount per day. You won't have the ability to buy in bulk to get the cost savings associated with that either.    

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