Author Topic: Just starting.  (Read 2144 times)

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Offline undesputed135

Just starting.
« on: July 15, 2013, 04:46:06 pm »
I'm just starting with bike touring, next summer I plan to do a New England bike trip could some one help me out with some kind of packing list for the things I will need, and suggestions for the various products that are available in terms of computers, tents and the like? Any help is greatly appreciated.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2013, 04:55:18 pm »
A bike, clothes, sunscreen...

OK, that was flippant.  Spend some time curfing the ride registry at http://www.adventurecycling.org/resources/ride-registry/ -- almost everyone feels the need to add a packing list; I know I did!  In general, try to get things that serve multiple purposes when possible to keep the weight down.

You don't really need a computer, even though I choose to take one.  If you want to play with one when you're through riding, you can get a netbook, tablet, or smart phone.

Tents are a personal choice.  My recommendation is to buy the lightest N+1 person tent you can afford, where N is the number of people who will regularly be sleeping in it.  Others go for a bivy, tarp, hammock; check the archives for more detail.

Offline undesputed135

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2013, 05:08:38 pm »
Ok that you and sorry for sounding flippant. Also I meant cycling computer sorry for the confusion.

Offline mmounties

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2013, 05:13:42 pm »
I'm still pretty green in terms of bike touring myself but I realized one thing as soon as I started camping some of the nights.  You need a good night's sleep when you tour and for that you'll likely need a decent, light-weight sleeping pad.  I used my yoga mat for my first extended tour (10 days) and had a hard (in all meanings of the word) time with difficulty to find some good REM sleep.

Another thing that came in very handy was my handlebar basket as I was able to use it to carry everything I needed to the showers and keep my clothes clean and dry (i.e., out of the spray) while getting myself cleaned up.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 05:17:44 pm by mmounties »
-- Tina

Offline Old Guy New Hobby

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2013, 05:55:45 pm »
Here's a comprehensive list. Think hard about how to get by without as many items as possible. I converted this to Excel and use it as an interactive list as I procure, stage, and pack items.

http://www.bicycletouringpro.com/photos/documents/bicycletouringgearchecklist_v5_summer2009.pdf

Offline John Nelson

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2013, 05:57:42 pm »
I don't think touring suggests a different cycling computer than what you might use for other riding. If you will be following some kind of cue sheet like the ACA maps, it's good to have one with an easy-to-read odometer so you know when your next turn is coming up.

I second Patrick's "multiple purposes" statement. Many of your clothes should be able to be worn riding, walking, sleeping and swimming, or at least for more than one of those. Try not to take two of the same of anything, except maybe two pairs of socks and two pairs of underwear. If you're living outdoors, your clothes don't really need to be all that clean, and sinks are adequate washing machines.

Take enough to keep you alive ... and not much else.

Offline DaveB

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2013, 12:46:19 pm »
OK, the "computer" you are asking about is a cyclometer, right?  Easy answer; any Cat Eye wired cyclometer.  Extremely reliable, rugged, long battery life and low cost.

Offline SlowAndSlower

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2013, 05:36:30 pm »
OK, the "computer" you are asking about is a cyclometer, right? 

Technically a cyclometer measures revolutions (hence distance) whereas a bicycle computer does that and more,  speed, averages, time etc.

Offline DaveB

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2013, 05:48:04 pm »
Technically a cyclometer measures revolutions (hence distance) whereas a bicycle computer does that and more,  speed, averages, time etc.
Perhaps that is the formal definition but realistically, the current meaning of "cyclometer" is an instrument that reports speed, total distance, trip distance and  several other functions like cadence, ride time, clock time, average speed and maximum speed. 

Offline Old Guy New Hobby

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2013, 06:21:34 pm »
Quote
any Cat Eye wired cyclometer

I agree with the wired computer (or cyclometer if you wish). But I tried a Cat Eye and was not pleased. Every time the battery was disconnected, it "forgot" the odometer reading and the calibration setting. (The calibration setting tells the computer the circumference of your tires so it can convert pulses into miles.)  Ditto when I pressed the reset button -- even if I pressed it very briefly. I found that to be not very useful. Sometimes I would drop it (hey, things happen) and it would reset. I don't know whether the battery contacts lost contact momentarily or the reset button was somehow activated. Also, the model I purchased required an unusual battery that I could only find in bike shops, and only at an unreasonable price.

I switched to a Sigma. The battery is a common one found anywhere. It lasts over a year and isn't very expensive. It's operation is more friendly. The digits are bigger (important for me, but not necessarily for everybody.)

Maybe it was just the model of Cat Eye I tried. I'm pretty sure I won't find out for sure. I'm pretty happy with the Sigma.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2013, 06:24:52 pm by Old Guy New Hobby »

Offline SlowAndSlower

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2013, 08:43:53 pm »
Technically a cyclometer measures revolutions (hence distance) whereas a bicycle computer does that and more,  speed, averages, time etc.
Perhaps that is the formal definition but realistically, the current meaning of "cyclometer" is an instrument that reports speed, total distance, trip distance and  several other functions like cadence, ride time, clock time, average speed and maximum speed.

Okay I don't understand why after the OP had posted  " Also I meant cycling computer sorry for the confusion." you brought up the bit about a cyclometer? 

Offline DaveB

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2013, 09:56:03 pm »
Quote
any Cat Eye wired cyclometer
I tried a Cat Eye and was not pleased. Every time the battery was disconnected, it "forgot" the odometer reading and the calibration setting. (The calibration setting tells the computer the circumference of your tires so it can convert pulses into miles.)  Ditto when I pressed the reset button -- even if I pressed it very briefly. I found that to be not very useful. Sometimes I would drop it (hey, things happen) and it would reset. I don't know whether the battery contacts lost contact momentarily or the reset button was somehow activated. Also, the model I purchased required an unusual battery that I could only find in bike shops, and only at an unreasonable price.

Maybe it was just the model of Cat Eye I tried. I'm pretty sure I won't find out for sure. I'm pretty happy with the Sigma.
The Cat Eye you had the problems with must have been a very old model.  Current ones, meaning anything made in the past 10 years or so, are extremely reliable and use a low cost 2032 battery that is available in any X-mart, home store or drug store.   

Mine do keep their odometer setting after a battery change but the odometer and the wheel calibration number are easy to reset if needed.  And, since battery life is well over 5 years resetting either value is a rare need.  Mine have never been drop sensitive either.

I suppose it depends on your experience but a couple of riders I know have reported significant reliability problems with Sigma cyclometers too. 

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Just starting.
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2013, 11:13:48 am »
I, too, have found Cateye computers reliable over the last 10 years or so.  My biggest problem is that my 10-year-old computer is getting creaky w.r.t. contacts -- I have to grease them every year or two.  Mine stay on the bar for years at a time until the display starts fading, indicating a new standard 2032 battery is needed.  Rain, frost, transport on a car rack, parking don't cause any problems -- why take it off?

I went to Cateyes after several other models, including a couple Sigmas, just stopped working after 2-3 years.