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There never seems to be a Subway when I need one, though!You must ride is some very remote areas. Those things are EVERYWHERE.
I actually expected most of the resistance to be from those who know other expanding chainring devices have not succeeded. I think the advantages of mine over predecessors is its simplicity, which leads to it being lightweight and inexpensive to produce, and that I have designed it to be interchangable with (or as easily installed as) other components.I will warn you to have the initial trial and production products made by a company that really knows what it is doing. Even if the concept is practical, nothing will kill a product faster than a series of breakages and early mechanical failures from manufacturing defects.
Big dollar bike shoes are as much a fashion accessory as a necessity and are aimed at competitive riders where weight and great stiffness are important.Big dollar shoes are not necessarily a necessity on a bike tour.
On the Nashbar website they have six shoes which take SPD cleats for $29.99 or less. Before using a 20% off coupon Nashbar frequently has. On the Amazon site the Crocs shoes are about $25-30. These are official Croc brand shoes so they might be much more than the copy shoes sold in flea markets. $30 or less for a pair of shoes does not meet my definition of "Big dollar shoes". All of the $29.99 or less Nashbar bike shoes looked like sneakers so I would guess they are comfortable.
I'll give an opinion on the bike. What everyone else has said should be considered. This bike does not appear to be setup for touring/carrying baggage. There does not appear to be any way to mount racks. The brakes are sidepull calipers. They will not be able to fit wide tires. Anything wider than 28mm likely will not fit. The shifters are mountain bike shifters mounted on top of the handlebars on either side of the stem. This does not seem like a good way to shift a road bicycle. Gearing seems OK. Triple crankset with at least a medium sized 7 speed cogset in back. Probably low enough gears if you do not run into anything real steep. You would need to be a pretty good bike mechanic to grease and tune the bike after you buy it. And be able to true and build wheels. Assembly is probably not good. I think you would be better off finding a used bike more suitable to touring. You probably need to learn more about bike mechanics.Everything you mention is correct but it could be summed up in one word: Walmart
This bike cost $180 all-up and the OP is trying to minimize his cost. Any usable trailer will cost way more than the entire bike.I'm trying to to stay as inexpensive as possible.When trying to use a non-touring bike for touring, it's usually best to consider using a trailer rather than panniers.
Just did a quick check and see that the ACA described the GDMBR as:If that's a good description and the single track is both a "dash" and not too tightly wooded or hemmed in by rock walls, then the 1200GS is a suitable machine.
"The big, bad granddaddy of epic mountain bike routes. 2,700 miles of primarily jeep roads (with a dash of pavement and singletrack)"
That sounds like what the GS and KLR were designed for.