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Messages - RussellSeaton

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Gear Talk / Raleigh Sojourn
« on: October 30, 2008, 10:05:47 am »
Looks pretty competent.  Except for the 32 spoke wheels mentioned.  But they might/should be OK.  Maybe.  Crankset gearing can be easily fixed by putting a 24 tooth inner chainring on instead of the 30 tooth that comes with the bike.  Bike shop can/will do this for free.  Then you have a low of 24x34.  Nice.  50 tooth big ring is great.  The front fork does have mounts for a braze on low rider front rack.  Nice.  Eyelet at the fork will have to be used for the rack mount so the fenders would need P clips to keep them on.  Not a problem.  Front fender is too short to provide much coverage though so its just there for appearance.  Disk brakes don't excite me.  But I've heard others like them and use them on touring bikes.  Brooks B17 saddle, nice.  Very, very nice.  Bar end shifters work very well.  Alloy spoke nipples are bizarre.  With very minor changes this bike could be a fine loaded touring bike.  32 spoke wheels give me a little pause though.  And the disk brakes...

Gear Talk / Surly LHT or Trek520
« on: October 21, 2008, 09:23:41 am »
"The 520 is a great touring value at roughly $1000 with the venerable Reynolds 531 tubing."

Not sure the Trek 520 ever used Reynolds tubing.  The Trek 720 did back in the mid-early 1980s.  But I don't think they ever used the good stuff on the lower model 520.  520 has been True Temper tubing for many many years.  My 1991 520 frame was True Temper.  The MSRP on the 520 is $1320.  Hasn't been $1000 except on closeout/sale for a decade.

Gear Talk / Surly LHT or Trek520
« on: October 16, 2008, 04:09:28 pm »
"I strongly recommend 650c or 26" for short riders"

If you're talking about road bikes, racing bikes, recreational bikes, I agree with the 650C wheels.  But for a touring bike, no 650C.  Only 26" wheels on a small touring bike.  The reason is 650C (571 mm bcd) tires are basically only available in 20 or 23 mm widths.  The Terry Tellus does come in 28mm width but it is maybe the only wider 650C made anywhere.

In this discussion the Surly Long Haul Trucker uses 26" wheels in its small sizes.  There are plenty of wider 26" tires available.  All widths from 7/8" to 2.2".

Gear Talk / Surly LHT or Trek520
« on: October 15, 2008, 02:46:21 pm »
I had a Trek 520.  1991 model.  So its pretty much identical to the one sold today.  Mine was a lugged frame while the current model is TIG welded.  Other than that, they are unchanged through the decades.  Currently everything from that bike was replaced except the crank arms, middle chainring, and rear wheel.  The Trek 520 was a fine bike for loaded touring.  I used it for thousands of miles and several trips and it never gave me any problems.

Currently the Long Haul Trucker from Surly/QBP and the Trek 520 have the same frame.  Parts I suspect are about identical too.  Either will work as well as the other.  The LHT may have the edge because it uses 26" wheels.  If you need a bike that small, then it makes sense to get smaller wheels.  The manufacturer does not have to monkey up the geometry as much when using smaller wheels.  Unlike trying to shoehorn 700C wheels onto extra small frames.  The maker has to put a too slack head angle on the frame and usually ends up with a too long top tube as well.

Gear Talk / Trip form Airzona to Alaska
« on: October 23, 2008, 09:58:24 am »
The 2008 Specialized Globe Sport comes with a 48-36-26 triple crankset and 11-32 8 speed cassette.  I suspect you could find a smaller inner chainring.  The crankset probably has a somewhat common bolt circle diameter and different parts are available.  But it would likely be a $20-30 custom order for a smaller chainring from the local bike shop.  Probably not worth it.  8 speed cassettes only come with a maximum big cog of 32 so no way to get lower gears by changing the cassette.  If you went to a 9 speed shifting system you could get a 34 cog in back.  But you would also have to replace the shifters.  Costly.  So changing your rear cassette is pointless.

I rode the Alps and Dolomites on a bike with a low of 24x32.  A little lower than this bike has.  It was sufficient.

Gear Talk / Touring Tires & Brakes
« on: October 20, 2008, 09:59:09 am »
WalMart also sells regular patch kits in their automotive area.  Regular patch kits with glue and patches and sandpaper.  They work just fine for patching a tube the now old fashioned way.  Use the sandpaper to scuff up the area to be patched.  Spread glue on the area.  Wait a minute for the glue to flash off its volatiles.  Put the patch on.  Then I like to wait awhile longer before using the tube but I suspect you can use the tube immediately.  Tube is patched as good as new.

Gear Talk / Rims
« on: September 29, 2008, 09:24:28 am »
Rims are put together two ways.  One, a metal spline/piece is stuck between the two ends of the rim and this metal piece holds the two ends together.  Mavic Open Pro rim uses this method.  Two, the two ends are welded together then the weld is ground down, cleaned up.  On the spline/piece method it is easy to see the two ends of the rim opposite the valve stem.  You can see the line in the rim wall.  Welding you probably won't see the ends come together.

Gear Talk / BRP Bike Help
« on: September 24, 2008, 09:52:39 am »
BOB trailer.  If you're doing a fully loaded trip and carrying tent, sleeping bag, cooking stuff, etc., etc.  A BOB trailer will not put much if any load on the bike so your racing bike will be fine.  Wheels won't see any extra weight either.  Fork won't need any rack on it.  You will need lower gearing if pulling a BOB.  A triple crankset or maybe one of those compact cranks can be bought cheap.  Nashbar has many.  May need a new bottom bracket too.  And a new rear cassette of 12-27 at least can be bought cheap.  Assuming your bike is 9 speed you could also go with a 12-34 or 11-34 cassette and get a new cheap Shimano rear derailleur.  Shimano rear derailleurs for mountain bikes can be bought for less than $20.  Cheapest and easiest is to stick with yor 39 crankset and get new cheap cassette and rear derailleur.  $20 for each.  39x34 is a 30 gear inches.  Pretty low.  Changing cranks is more work and more expensive.  And with a compact crank's 34 inner ring you end up with 34x25 or 34x27 low gears of 36" or 33".

Or you could just travel uptralight and go with the bike just as it is.  Stay in motels at night.  Carry the absolute bare minimum in a seatpost rack bag.

Gear Talk / Equipment Qestions For A New Guy
« on: September 11, 2008, 03:43:41 pm »
"FWIW: Those Nashbar mountain panniers may be rated at 2200 cubic inches but in practice we found that they held WAY less that our 2310 cubic inch rear waterproofs.  It seemed like half as much fit in them and they seemed closer to our 1056 cubic inch front ones."

Not sure how this is possible assuming both panniers have accurate size descriptions.  Volume is simply a mathematical equation.  From recollection I'd say the Nashbar panniers are roughly 14" high, 10" wide, 8" deep.  That gets to 1120 cubic inches per pannier.  2240 for the pair.  They are more or less rectangular shaped with one main pocket so easily accomodate almost anything.

"My two riding companions used 1 each (on one side in the front with a Nashbar waterproof on the other side).  They kept the stuff they wanted to get to quick in the mountain panniers.  They were kind of flimsy and flopped around.  After a while they tended to get into the spokes until I tywraped a stick to the rack to keep them from rubbing."

I toured Europe one summer and have done several other 1 to 2 week tours with these panniers since and never experienced them getting into the spokes.  I used Blackburn racks front and rear so they may have provided more support than the racks your companions used.  As for being floppy, the more you stuff them, the more they hold their shape.  But they have a compression strap so you can easily squish them to keep them from being floppy.

Gear Talk / Equipment Qestions For A New Guy
« on: September 11, 2008, 09:33:55 am »
I toured with Nashbar mountain panniers.  No longer made.  Top opening models.  They were about 2200 cubic inches.  Used the same panniers on the front and back.  I'd recommend bigger than smaller panniers.  Its easy to use the various cinch straps to take up any extra room and compress the panniers.

Gear Talk / Head & Seat Tube Angle affect on Frame Behavior
« on: August 28, 2008, 09:19:38 am »
As already mentioned, seat angle affects where you end up sitting on the bike.  You usually try to get your knee in a certain position over the bottom bracket.  You will slide the saddle forward or backward on its rails to achieve this.  A steep seat angle such as 74 degrees may require you to slide the saddle all the way back to get the knee over the bottom bracket.  And thus increasing the length of the reach to the bars.  And a 72.5 seat angle may require you to push the seat forward on its rails, thus shortening the reach to the bars.  So in reality the four bikes you mention do not have the same top tube length when you actually set the bikes up the same.

In the range you mention for seat angle, there is no comfort difference or behavior difference.

Gear Talk / MTB tires
« on: August 18, 2008, 09:44:41 am »
Smooth mountain bike tires work perfectly well on everything but slick mud and very soft dirt where knobby tires have the advantage.  Put some smooth tires on your mountain bike and ride it on road and off road.  I frequently ride my 23 and 25mm wide road bike tires on gravel roads and short sections of dirt road.  They work just fine.

Gear Talk / Clipless w/float and platform please
« on: August 08, 2008, 12:36:42 pm »
"In any case, nobody suggested any pedals which float in both directions that meet my requirements.  Does that mean there aren't any?"

SPD pedals, at least those from Shimano, float in both directions.  Left and right.  They have about 6 degrees of float.  You set your cleat so its roughly in the middle of this float and then you have float in both directions.  If you pedal normally with heels out for instance, then you would set your cleat on your shoe so its angled.  Not straight ahead.  Your problem with having zero float in one direction is because your cleat on the shoe is not angled correctly so when you pedal its already at one extreme.  Set your cleats on your shoes so they are in the middle of the float when you pedal.

Gear Talk / Search for new Rain Jacket
« on: July 31, 2008, 10:24:02 am »
I rode with the Showers Pass jacket on a ride.  Borrowed the jacket.  It was their high end model of jacket.  Kept me warm and dry I guess in the chilly rain.  I say dry I guess because all zipped up to keep the rain out did not let any of the perspiration out.  Heavy jacket.  Not packable unless you are carrying panniers.  Ideal jacket for cold weather riding where you know you won't take the jacket off.  Or heavy rain in cooler temps.  Not really a carry along just in case rain jacket.  Its too heavy for summer riding.  Great for winter and maybe, maybe spring and fall.

Gear Talk / Trailer or panniers
« on: July 15, 2008, 08:45:37 pm »
A Litespeed tri bike with a 53-39 and 12-27 cassette.  For the PCH.  Pulling a BOB trailer.  Not my idea of an enjoyable ride.  I've driven the California section of the PCH and there are hills.  Even at my pretty good condition I'm not sure I would want to try it with a low of 39x27.  I could make it but not sure I would want to try it.  And you say you are 5'10" and 225.  Not light.

I think you should reconsider your plan.  Maybe do an ultra ultralight credit card tour with maybe just a big saddle bag for all luggage.  I don't think you have the right equipment or conditioning for a fully loaded tour.  Don't mean to sound too negative.  But be realistic with your abilities and with what you are trying to do.

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