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Messages - gottobike

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Gear Talk / Re: Handlebar Light and Ortlieb Handlebar Bag
« on: May 06, 2022, 12:00:16 am »
I moved away from handle bar lights when using handle bar mounted bags. Instead, I use a simple headlamp like the Niterider Roadrunner 320 wrapped around the bag. Easy to aim, less crash sensitive and much more versatile than a handle bar/fixed mounted light.

Gear Talk / Re: A must item
« on: September 05, 2020, 12:56:31 am »
Bandanna. A must for any/all outdoor activities.

Sweat band
Hair band
Head scarf
Wash cloth
Dish towel
Sun shade
Eye shade
Lamp shade
Dust mask
Smoke mask
Sand storm mask
Insect mask
COVID-19 mask (added 2020)
Tie down
Prefilter for water filter
Fruit/vegetable bag
Tent shelf

And my number one use for a bandana is to wet with water and wipe smog and road debris from face and forehead before it gets into my eyes.

General Discussion / Re: A Bicycle Chain
« on: August 15, 2020, 03:34:59 pm »
These deplorable numbers for chain mileage are for 10 & 11 SPD drive train with total combined load of 220-280lbs.
 I was using Triflow but switched to Progold Prolink on recommendation of bike shop. After no improvement and someone again suggesting it may be the lube, have recently switched to Boeshield T-9, which seems to work better.
My normal chain maintenance is lube and wipe whenever it needs it. My miticulous chain maintenance mode is lube and wipe after everyride and the wipe again before each ride. After rain/mud/sand, I would also clean with a solvent like WD-40 before relubing but now I mostly just lube and wipe.

General Discussion / Re: A Bicycle Chain
« on: August 15, 2020, 01:49:58 am »
I get about 1,000 miles out of a chain if loaded. I get a little more, maybe an additional 100 miles, with meticulous chain maintenance. Most of the time I replace before a stretched chain damages chain rings or cogs.

Chain questions:
Are e-bike chains any stronger than regular chains? The ones I see cost ~20% more than a similar conventional chain,; however, the e-bike chain also has ~20% more links.

What caused your chain to break? The only times I have been able to break a chain is when installed by an incompetent mechanic (me) or when using a drivetrain that was prone to chain suck, also probably caused by my competency as a mechanic. Probably not too surprising, but I have never broken a chain installed by a professional mechanic. 

Gear Talk / Re: Touring capable road bike
« on: August 14, 2020, 07:03:25 pm »
Ditto on the previous suggestion regarding gravel bikes. They seem to fill the niche between road and touring very well.
For sporty handling, frame material might be less of a consideration than frame geometry. As frame geometry varies considerably within the same model, a smaller frame (ie, 52cm)  may not handle as well as a medium (56cm) or large (60).
If looking for a small frame, avoid the popular new fat 700c 29'er frames as too many compromises are made to fit the big wheels into small frames. This includes steep (74 degree) seat tubes and slack (71 degree) head tubes. For retaining the sporty feel of a road bike, frame geometries around 72-73 for seat tube, 71.5 to 72.5 for headtube with 70-75 mm bb drop and relatively short chainstays may deliver the road-bike feel.
Many of the options in this category will not accommodate front racks. It may be worth looking into bike packing bags as many are rackless or have floating racks (Arkel) that are not mounted to frame. A gravel bike packing kit with front bag, frame bag, and seat post bag typically comes in at about 30  litres, about half the volume of traditional front/rear panniers for a touring bike. This volume should support a 30 lb payload very well and by balancing the load with the heaviest load in the frame bag, should not have too much impact on handling.
The benefit of a bike packing kit is that there is no additional cost, weight and potential failure of racks, may be mounted on bikes with carbon forks and they work well on sportier frames as they do not require long chainstays for heels to clear rear panniers. Also, by removing the bags you have your sweet handling sport bike back, something you will never have with a full on touring bike.

General Discussion / Re: IRC 90 psi tire versus Schwalbe marathon.
« on: August 11, 2020, 12:51:42 pm »
I had a much different experience with IRC tires, but then, it was prolly not the model you used. In late 90's my Trek 520 came stock with a set of 700c IRC tires, possibly Duo Tours, and I loved them. They lasted well, delivered a relatively nice ride, handled well in both wet and dry conditions, and seemed fast and lite compared to other options. When it came time to replace, I was unable to find the same IRC tire and went with Conti's instead.
Just curious, what did the Schwalbe Marathon cost back when you were paying $7.00 for the IRC?
Maybe the model of IRC you wore out regularly on tour would have made a very nice inexpensive day tripper / commuter tire?

Gear Talk / Re: Compression sacks - do you use them?
« on: August 10, 2020, 05:35:32 pm »
Previous generations of compression sacks and waterproof bags I've used were all cylindrical and when compressed, their diameter was too large to fit into my panniers nor would they stay in place when strapped directly to the rack. Now Osprey Packs has several options that are rectangular and seems these would be much more usable for bicycle touring / bike packing. Options I am currently testing include the Straightjacket Compression Sack and Ultralight Dry Sack. Also, trying out the Osprey's Ultralight Stuff Pack which looks similar to Sea to Summits' Ultra-Sil Day Pack.
With the rectangular shapes I am expecting all the same benefits of waterproof compression sacks/bags but also able to get them in/out of panniers easily.

Planned Straightjacket Compression Sack usage is 8 and 12 liter or 12 and 20 liter:
8 liter Straightjacket Compression sack for fluffy sleeping gear (thick fluffy balaclava, thick fluffy wool socks, thick fluffy pants, thick fluffy henley, thick fluffy gloves, bag liner)
12 liter Straightjacket Compression sack for bedding (thick fluffy quilt)
Alternatively, the 20 liter Straightjacket Compression sack may be required for colder weather sleep system or if I can't get everything to fit into the smaller sacks

Gear Talk / Re: A must item
« on: August 09, 2020, 03:45:32 pm »
Bandanna. A must for any/all outdoor activities.

Gear Talk / Compression sacks - do you use them?
« on: August 08, 2020, 08:19:02 pm »
Are compression sacks useful for bicycle touring / bike packing?

Do you use them?

Why, or why not?

Which ones worked well or did not work well?

Gear Talk / Bag volume, weight, cost for touring/bike packing?
« on: July 23, 2020, 04:41:25 pm »
What is the combined volume of bags on your touring or bike packing rig?

What is the total weight of all bags including fixed/floating racks?

What is the total loaded weight (bags, racks, gear, food, fuel, water, cloths, stove, etc) you carry on your touring/bike packing rig?

What was the approx cost per litre for bags?

General Discussion / Re: eBikes for touring
« on: July 19, 2020, 11:54:29 pm »
Currently I am running a Trek Crossrip+ for day trips and found that it took 5-10 mph off my high speed and basically added it to my slow climbing speeds. For example, on a descent I might do 35-40 mph on my road bike but with my eBike, only 30 mph. However, when climbing I might only be doing 5 mph on my road bike but 10-15 mph on my eBike.
The benefit of higher speed with less effort when climbing is that I no longer pulse out on the climb nor do I overheat.
Of course, the downside is that the battery does not last very long.
To reduce the impact on battery I've been working on finding a minimum acceptable speed and it seems with the gearing on the Crossrip+ and a 30-40 lb load , about 6 mph is where I need a boost. On the flats and descents I do not need to use any battery power and ride in Off mode. When my speed drops below 6 mph on climbs, which is typically over 2% grade, I set to the lowest power setting of Eco. If grade increases and exceeds 4%, my speed drops back to 6 mph and I set to next higher power setting of Tour. As grade exceeds 6%, I move up to Sport power setting and anything over 8% grade gets the highest power Turbo mode.
This allows me to ride all day with only a single charge and although it drops my average day trip speed from ~12 mph to ~10 mph, it is still worthwhile to keep my pulse in check and reduce overheating on climbs.
With this scheme, it seems touring with a single battery is possible but very dependent on getting access to AC power to recharge every night.

General Discussion / eBikes for touring
« on: July 16, 2020, 01:11:27 pm »
Anyone have any tips for touring with an eBike?
I've been riding a Trek Crossrip+ pedelec for about a year and it seems pretty adaptable for bicycle touring. Found I could keep up with most mountain bikes with the electric assist either off or at lowest setting. Also learned that I could ride all day on a single charge by only boosting power when needed on climbs.

Food Talk / Re: Hot food without a stove?
« on: May 16, 2020, 02:46:59 pm »
Oatmeal and coffee... breakfast of champions! Seems the reduction in fuel volume/weight/cost and the additional functionality of the thermal flask would contribute greatly to eating on tour.

What solar panel and power bank setup are you running?
Has anyone found a good way to securely mount a solar panel on a  touring / bike packing bicycle?
I’m looking for an attachment scheme that will keep the panel secured when descending at speed (~50+ mph), crosswinds, wash board, bumps, moguls, g-outs, skids and sprints.
Also, what panel design (folding, roll, single) and size works best for use on a bicycle while moving? Any pics of good solar panel configurations mounted on bicycle?
Or is a trailer a better choice when using solar panels?

Gear Talk / Re: Mechanical or hydro?
« on: February 10, 2020, 05:45:28 pm »
For what it’s worth, here’s my two cents...
Does your current derailleur fit 46 or 50 tooth on the rear? If not, may need one of Wolf Tooth Link options.
Seems Option 3 would be for sponsored riders, riders looking to move up a classification, or you just need some plushness/bling. I love the smoothness of hydros, esoecially on fast, loose descents. However, I don’t see hydraulics being very repairable when you are bike packing unless you plan on lugging around a complete set of tools and hydro fluid or you have race support.
Not sure I would want to go to the expense of Option 2 with 12 speed unless the terrain or fitness level absolutely required the new high/low. The higher 10- gear may be useful on fast gravel road descents but typically not single track. Keep in mind, 1 tooth on the front is approx equal to 2 in the rear, so you really aren’t gaining much.
The cheapest option offered in Option 1 is the most dependable/proven solution and prolly more useable for self supported bike packing.

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