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Topics - geegee

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Canada / Northern Ontario — Lake Huron
« on: May 04, 2017, 11:12:52 pm »
Just a heads up to cross-Canada cyclists, a bike route from Sault Ste. Marie to Sudbury avoiding quite a bit of Highway 17. Free downloadable maps at:

Urban Cycling / Enhanced "Sharrows"
« on: October 12, 2015, 10:52:54 pm »

They tried this in my city this year (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) for a few blocks on a popular main street. There has been resistance by merchants to give up parking spots for a bike lane on the narrow road despite a high incidence of doorings. The result has been interesting, it educates cyclists to take the lane, and it shows the drivers the reasons why cyclists have the right to do so (to avoid getting doored). The busy markings have definitely calmed the traffic, forcing drivers to slow down behind cyclists and pass only when the opposite lane is clear. Many cyclists also continue to take the lane farther down where the markings disappear. Any opinions?

Gear Talk / Opinions on refurbishing/re-equipping a 20-year old bike
« on: December 08, 2013, 12:19:05 am »
I got my first real touring bike back in 1994, a custom made steel frame from Marinoni with an all Campagnolo drivetrain. I rode it for 15 years through several continents until the paint started to crackle and rust, and the most of the parts just got too worn out. I reluctantly abandoned it five years ago, stuffing it up in the rafters of the shed before riding off to Alaska with a new Trek 520.

In a fit of nostalgia, I decided to dust off the old beast, striped it down and sent the frame back to the builder to get it completely repainted. I just got the frame back and it is better than new, even its rusted braze-ons were replaced, and a superior quality paint was used. I will slowly rebuild the bike with new parts as a labour of love through the winter. I've ordered a new wheel set, using Velo Orange Grand Cru hubs with their RAID rims to retain a bit of the vintage feel of the bike.

Looking back, the Campy parts were beautiful, but I hate the range of their gear cassettes, and how relatively limited and expensive it is to obtain replacements. So I'm going to switch over to Shimano. I had Ergo shifters, but I'm leaning towards low maintenance thumb shifters — any opinions regarding these?

Since it's a chance to start from scratch, I'm also looking to get some recommendations on a new triple crankset and other aspects of the drivetrain — should I lean towards Deore, SLX, Tiagra or 105 etc? As most of us learn over the years, expensive isn't necessarily better, and my experience is limited only to the group sets I've used so it would be great to hear from other touring cyclists regarding reliability and robustness. Any personal opinions on where the current line is drawn between the various components — where what you pay for durability ends, and you start wasting money on light-weightness is ?

Routes / Haida Gwaii
« on: March 31, 2013, 01:06:23 pm »
Has anyone here cycled Haida Gwaii? I'm contemplating doing my second trans-Canada trip and I would like to begin from these islands. Ideally, I'd like to start off from kilometre 0 of the Yellowhead Highway in Masset, but the airport is in Sandspit (YZP) at the other end near the ferry to the mainland. I could either ride north to Masset and catch a hitch back to the ferry, or take a bus and ride from Masset to the ferry. Are the prevailing winds here the same as the rest of the Pacific coast, from north to south? Any other tips or experiences worth sharing would be appreciated.

Gear Talk / Pitching a tent along the western Southern Tier
« on: April 11, 2012, 01:09:20 pm »
I'm heading off on the Southern Tier route from San Diego to Texas in a couple of weeks, my first time in the Southwest. Just wondering if the ground is mostly sandy and if I should take along beefier spade-type tent pegs instead of my thin ultra-light ones.

Routes / Across New Mexico on US70/380 then onward to Dallas TX
« on: April 09, 2012, 09:47:06 pm »
I'm thinking of taking the Southern Tier route from San Diego CA up to Las Cruces NM then taking a more direct route to Dallas. Has anyone have any advice/tips on this route that would take me through Roswell on US70/380 and then somehow connect with US180 to Dallas-Fort Worth? The services seem well spaced along the way, but it would be great to hear from someone who's been down this route.

Would it be better to ride past El Paso and then connect with US 180?


General Discussion / Wow, terrible car ad!
« on: October 14, 2011, 09:34:20 am »
"Stop pedalling...Start driving" — that's what really sucks!

More on this

Routes / Mississippi River Trail: any new improvements?
« on: April 13, 2011, 05:25:01 pm »
I'm contemplating doing the Mississippi River Trail or parts of it this summer. I already bought the guidebook, but I'm wondering if there has been recent work on some of the roads on the route. Reading through the book published 3 years ago , it seems like many of the roads roads have no shoulders, although traffic is supposedly light on them. Tips and advice on things along the way or the best side of the river to ride on would be greatly appreciated.

General Discussion / Long Term Parking in Buffalo Area?
« on: July 30, 2010, 11:18:46 am »
Does anyone know of the best place to leave a car for a week or so in the Buffalo/Tonawanda area whilst doing the Erie Canal route?

Gear Talk / Any ideas for shaving weight off a Bike Friday NWT?
« on: May 12, 2010, 11:05:55 pm »
I have a Bike Friday New World Tourist and while I am quite happy with it, it's getting about time to upgrade some parts. I would love to shave off a bit of weight, any suggestions for best components to replace? Cranks? rear derailleur?

General Discussion / Erie Canal with kayak in tow
« on: January 28, 2010, 01:40:24 am »
I'm contemplating doing something different this summer, and do a tour partly cycling and partly kayaking. I've done afternoon trips of 40 kms cycling and 10 kms paddling with this set up and I think I'd like to try doing extended tour with it. I've rigged up my other kayak (a more stable sit-on-top) with a fork rack so I can load a bike on it like this and be able to do a contiguous journey. Since I'm lucky enough to live in a region of North America that is rich in historic canals (Rideau, Erie, Trent, et al), it will be fun to slowly explore them all this way in the future.

One of the itineraries I'd like to do is to head down from where I live in Ottawa to upstate NY and hook up with the Erie Canal to Buffalo. Although I live within a few hundred miles north of the Erie Canal, I've never really been on it. I'd like to hear from others regarding cycling and paddling along this route. I'd like to cycle the parts to avoid big water (like Lake Ontario), and paddle sections that are scenic and to avoid busy roads towing a long load. One stretch I will most likely have to cycle is the Seaway Trail from Cape Vincent (where I cross the border) to Oswego (NY 12E, 180 and 3) — how busy is this route? I looked on google and it doesn't seem to have a consistent shoulder.

My other option (which I can save for another time) is to head east towards Albany and possibly loop back up to Canada from there. Which part of the Erie Canal is more interesting?

Routes / Florida (again), Orlando to the Keys and back
« on: November 02, 2009, 06:59:58 pm »
I'm contemplating returning to Florida this winter, this time to cycle southbound from Orlando, possibly to Key West and back up. Any suggestions for an interesting route with the least backtracking? Maybe a good way of stringing up any of the available trails and bike paths? I don't mind going though some of the urbanized east coast, in fact I think I'd purposefully head into Miami since I've never been there. I'll probably consider taking my Bike Friday on this trip and packing relatively light.

Gear Talk / Sizing a 29er for off-road touring
« on: June 09, 2009, 09:28:06 am »
I'm thinking of getting a 29er mountain bike to add to my growing stable of bikes. There's a great network of ungroomed rail trails out where I am and I'd like to tour more of the Trans Canada Trail in the future which is mostly off-road and unpaved.

A question to those who tour on 29ers: did you size it as a mountain bike fit (upright riding) or get a slightly larger so you're a bit more stretched out?

I'm looking at a Gary Fisher Ferrous 29. Seems like an awesome steel framed bike perfect for my intentions. I am also thinking of getting an Extrawheel trailer to use with it.

Routes / Syracuse NY to Pittsburgh PA?
« on: May 24, 2009, 11:31:33 am »
Anyone have some good advice on roads to take from Syracuse to Pittsburgh? I'd like to do the GAP and C&O sometime and I'm looking for a good route to get there from Canada. I've cycled to Syracuse before, but not farther southwest.

Gear Talk / NuVinci hub
« on: May 08, 2009, 02:49:45 pm »
Anyone try out a NuVinci hub yet? I'm interested in one but not for touring, just for commuting. There seemed to be glowing reviews of it a couple of years ago from some websites, but I haven't really seen any recent reviews especially from real consumers.

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