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51
Gear Talk / Re: What lube to use for touring.
« Last post by staehpj1 on January 27, 2015, 05:53:40 am »
What is missing from these discussions is what our personal tolerance is for the manifestations of chain and cassette wear. I swap out a chain when the shifting begins to be anything but perfect. I love the exact crispness of a good quick shift. That is just my preference. Others may be more tolerant of shifting that isn't as precise.   If I was riding downtube or barend shifters, maybe I  could also get 10,000 miles because I would have more direct control over the shifting with those systems than with any indexing system.

Since you brought that up...  As one of the folks who tends to get very long wear out of chains and has indexed shifting on all of my bikes, I have not found that within the normal range of chain wear that shifting is affected much as the chain wears.  I find that once I set limit screws on the derailleurs they never need to be adjusted again, but cable tension does need a tweak once in a while on indexed systems.  That probably means tweaking it a few times on a coast to coast length tour and usually amounts to twisting a barrel adjuster 1/4-1/2 turn or so, which I typically do while riding.

I typically check my chains by measuring 12 complete links.  When they are 12-1/16" it is time to start thinking about a new chain and I make sure to get one before it is 12-1/8".  As I said, within that range, it has never seemed to me that chain wear had anything to do with any shifting issues.

I find that cassettes and chain rings typically last me a very long time.  So long that I have no idea how long.  I have found that cassette wear and derailleur wear have a lot more impact on crisp accurate shifting than chain wear.  A gunked up drive train also has a negative impact, but with my current routine that doesn't usually happen on tour.  Gunk build up does seem to be more likely for commuting for some reason I don't understand.
52
General Discussion / folders
« Last post by fastrog on January 27, 2015, 02:52:48 am »
I rode road bikes for years, but have been riding a Trek FX 7.5 with road tires for mostly rails=to-trails rides of 25 to 30 miles and occasionally longer. And I'm breaking into a Bacchetta recumbent thanks to lots of hand, arm, foot and other numbness. The goal is touring, building up to south-north florida, maybe the cross georgia and cross-iowa tours and eventually cross-country.  This summer, we plan a car tour across the southern tier, into new mexico, Utah and Colorado. Idea is to drive half-day, then take a scenic loop or up and back to camp to hotel. And some days take turns driving and playing sag wagon. Since space is limited I'm thinking about a foldable. Any advice on whether a foldable is practical for 40 to 50 miles a day? Would one of the brands with an 8-speed internal and gates belt be at all practical? any preferred brands? thanks. roger
53
Routes / Re: PC / Mac for some photography PP on route? Suitable for a 6 month ride?
« Last post by geegee on January 27, 2015, 01:54:23 am »
I've been taking my 11" MacBook Air with me on my latest tours. I have Adobe CS5 and MS Office running on it for doing some job-related work (I'm self-employed) while I'm on the road, as well as for keeping a blog and staying in contact with family, friends and clients. I have a neoprene case for it and it tucks nicely into a pannier with clothes. I also have one of those 2 TB MyCloud drives at home that I use to archive everything, so I can access and upload/download any of my files wherever there's wifi. Last time I was on a 6 week ride it gave me peace of mind to be able to respond to urgent requests remotely.
54
California / Re: Local insights on loop trip from San Francisco summer 2015
« Last post by cgarch on January 27, 2015, 12:56:25 am »
Apologies for the lengthy delay - the holidays got in the way. Jamawani makes a plenty of good arguments for that route. I agree that riding north up the coast is not recommended - the wind will beat you down. Plus if you ride south on the coast, you're on the ocean side of the road which is a lot more pleasant. I would suggest that you have two choices - a loop ride that goes up through either Napa Valley or Sonoma, crosses over to the coast and then returns south on 1 to SF. Or a straight up out and back on the coast.

First, if camping in state parks then hiker-biker sites are first come, most everyone served. If you want a conventional site, then you'll need reservations. The tough part is connecting the dots if you choose to do an inland loop for camping sites.

Suggested Loop route: SF to Vallejo by Ferry, ride to Bothe-Napa SP, north of St. Helena. B-N SP has HB sites and a lot of good eats along the way. Here it gets tough - do you go to Clear Lake as Jamawani suggests or do you start thinking about the coast. Clear Lake is a reasonable destination but it is hot in July, Worse, Getting to Clear Lake is a bitch. You don't want to take 29 unless you have to - it is narrow and has relatively heavy traffic. 29 twists and turns as it climbs the shoulder of Mt. St. Helena and has no shoulder - It's highly not recommended. There is an alternate - further north of Calistoga is Ida Clayton. Great scenic road but just a stinker of a climb for several miles. Over the county line (to Lake County) the road turns to powdery dirt for the descent into Lake County on Western Mine Road. Once past that you rejoin CA 29 for the ride to Middletown. From there you would continue on 29 towards Kelseyville and Lakeport. There is Boggs Mtn State Forest, but I'm not sure of the camping opportunities. And this to me would be the problem with this route, is the limited number of camping opportunities in this area. Personally, I don't care much for Lake County and would suggest you avoid it.

So if you don't go to Clear Lake, then you could continue north of Calistoga on CA 128 towards Geyserville. Above Geyserville there is a KOA where you could probably camp. From this location you would track back through Dry Creek Valley to head towards the Russian River. Alternatively you could cut through Healdsburg (great eats and lodging) and work towards the Russian River (Westside Road, River Road). There's a campground near Korbel Winery, think it's called School House (private) that would be worth a shot. The gist is that you would start to work through the Alexander Valley towards the Russian River to head out to the ocean. Road traffic is moderate and the roads have decent shoulders. If you consider this area and route do not give any thought to going towards Warm Springs Dam and trying to reach the coast by way of Skaggs Springs - Stewarts Point Road. Unless you like hot temperatures, extreme grades (12-18%) and no services - including water - zip, nada zilch. It's 40 miles of the most beautiful and rugged terrain but a nightmare if you are fully loaded and just returning to touring. Stick to working towards River Road and CA 116 on back roads to reach the coast.

Presuming you stick to this itinerary, CA 116 will take you to the coast. A short run down to Bodega Bay will take you to Bodega Dunes SP with its teensy-weensy HB site. Within easy reach of town for supplies. Options include riding out to Bodega Head and various hikes. From Bodega Bay traveling south takes you to SP Taylor SP with more HB sites. There's also a great B&B in Olema, The Bear Valley Inn, run by a former LAB board member - you get a discount if you arrive by bike. A good spot to hole up for a day or two and ride out to Pt. Reyes and back - 40 miles or so.

Presuming you've stuck this route out, you're now 1 day away from returning to SF. So there's a good 5-6 days of riding in some fabulous territory.

If you want to do the coastal O&B then it's just those last few days in reverse order going north before you turn south. Hope this helps.
55
Gear Talk / Re: Should I be worried about my frame?
« Last post by Doug64 on January 26, 2015, 11:16:52 pm »
I think folks have pretty well nailed it.

This is a test to see if I can post a photo, and I'll try it with a picture of a crack in my Bianchi Volpe frame.

If it does work, Ill read the instructions :)

This is where my top tube meets the head tube.  It was covered under warranty, and now the only things left of my 2007 Bianchi are the seat post and bars.

56
Gear Talk / Re: What lube to use for touring.
« Last post by driftlessregion on January 26, 2015, 10:51:24 pm »
Discussions about chain and cassette longevity are interesting if only because the variation is so great. I don't want to doubt those who get 10,000 miles but that hasn't been my experience. What is missing from these discussions is what our personal tolerance is for the manifestations of chain and cassette wear. I swap out a chain when the shifting begins to be anything but perfect. I love the exact crispness of a good quick shift. That is just my preference. Others may be more tolerant of shifting that isn't as precise.   If I was riding downtube or barend shifters, maybe I  could also get 10,000 miles because I would have more direct control over the shifting with those systems than with any indexing system.
57
Gear Talk / Re: Keen R.I.P.
« Last post by dombrosk on January 26, 2015, 06:27:05 pm »
Thanks for that info, Tandem Tom!

On the theory that the more they hear from cyclists the better, I also sent an inquiry. 

Here's what I got in reply:

"Thanks for contacting us.
 
KEEN took a hiatus from the cycling business and did not produce any pedal styles for 2014.  We are planning to release new cycling styles in April 2015.  Check out our site, www.keenfootwear.com, at that time for details.
 
Please let us know if you have any further questions.
 
All the best,
 
Brad
KEEN Footwear"

This gives me hope that perhaps a new leather lace up shoe will also be available, which I really like both for daily commuting and touring.  It was also nice to get an actual reply from a human being!

58
Classifieds / Seeking: TransAm maps
« Last post by Nitsua08 on January 26, 2015, 02:37:05 pm »
I'm biking the TAT this summer, and I'm looking to purchase used TransAm maps. I would prefer them to be fairly recent. Thanks!
59
General Discussion / Re: Washington, DC to Atlanta, GA
« Last post by indyfabz on January 26, 2015, 01:53:47 pm »
The Atlantic Coast route has a D.C. connection and passes through Statesboro, GA. A quick check of Google Maps bike directions shows that Statesboro to Atlanta is about 200 miles.

Once you get a general route idea you can search for campgrounds and/or motels using Google Maps. For example, for the first day, pick a point that's about a day's ride (based on what you think you can handle mileage-wise) from D.C. and, in Google maps, search for "campgrounds near [name of town]." If nothing comes up, pan out to widen the search area. Check any state parks which may show on the search results to see if they have camping. You can do the same with restaurants and grocery stores.
Fine tune your route based on services you locate. I find this method works pretty well.
60
Temporary ACA Route Road Closures / Re: GDMBR Addenda for Canada
« Last post by CMajernik on January 26, 2015, 11:29:13 am »
Yes, Steve, you are correct. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We'll get it changed.
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