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Messages - awbikes

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Gear Talk / Re: map cases
« on: August 13, 2012, 11:35:03 pm »
My wife an I each have the Ortlieb Ultimate 5 handlebar bag with the accessory map case. For easy access to read maps or written Q sheets (directions) you can't do much better than the Ortlieb set-up. It is a bit pricey @ about 130.00 plus for bag and map case.

Routes / Card Sound approach Fla. keys
« on: August 10, 2012, 09:41:28 pm »
Will be cycling to the to Florida keys end of this month. I recently heard from a south florida resident that US 1 from Homstead to Key Largo now has a rideable shoulder and he recommended this route over the Adventure Cycling Card Sound road route. I am skeptical of this recommendation. Has anybody cycled the US 1 route recently and can you recommend it over Card Sound?

Routes / Barcelona to Amsterdam
« on: August 07, 2012, 05:22:36 pm »
I will be in Barcelona in late April and would like to cycle north to Amsterdam following the Rhine through Germany. I have been told due to prevailing northerly winds this is a north to south route, is this correct? I am hesitant about taking a train north and starting from Amsterdam at the end of April due to cold weather. I am therefore hoping to go south to north thus moving north as it warms up.

General Discussion / Re: Transporting a bicycle
« on: August 01, 2012, 10:26:41 pm »
You can ship via FEDEX from the east coast to west for 100-150 dollars depending on weight and size of the box. Same bike in a large bike box vs a small one is a difference in 50 dollars. Most bike shops will give away boxes for free, be sure and get the smallest possible. Info on packing is available via google this website or the bike shop. If you can't do the disassembling yourself most bike shops will do it and pack it for around 50 dollars. You can then ship to a shop to have it reassembled. Bikes can be shipped as baggage on your flight but this can be expensive depending on the airline and can be difficult and/or expensive as some airlines are not bike friendly. Do your research!!!

This is a small overview and much more information can be found by doing a word search on this site.

General Discussion / Re: What do you use for sunscreen?
« on: July 19, 2012, 10:28:50 pm »
Ridergirl50 is dead on the money with her assessment of arm protectors. I live and ride in Florida in 98 degree heat. Can not stand sunscreen and don't use it. My Pearl Izumi (white) arm protectors are comfortable and do not feel warm and if anything shade my arms and produce a cooling effect by the process of evaporation. When I stop and go into an establishment I forget I'm even wearing them. I have tried the baggy long sleeve fishing type shirts and I feel the sweat running and the shirt feels sticky and miserable. Do I think I look weird with the skin tight arm protectors? Yes, but they ABSOLUTLEY work. Incidentally m wife wears Canari brand and they work well also. Just be sure and get the light weight sun shades and not heavy black winter arm warmers.

You won't be the first or last to accomplish a ride like that (with highly questionable) bikes. As you are young and fit, other than saddle discomfort which will decrease with time, your bodies will adjust just fine. It is important to have the local bike guy at least look at the bikes and insure the fit/size is workable and that there are not any immediate and noticeable mechanical issues. Reasonably serviceable tires are important though and the ability to repair flats. All said and done at your age and with your travel experience I would DEFINATELY do it.

We will be interested in your success so please keep us informed. As there is no substitute for youthful exuberance and the sense for adventure I know many of us will be just a little envious.

Gear Talk / Re: Tire wear
« on: July 07, 2012, 03:51:08 pm »
Thanks pdlamb I like your advice. Since I tend to enjoy messing with the bikes! I'll give your method a try.

Gear Talk / Tire wear
« on: July 06, 2012, 10:51:52 pm »
Just returned from a tour and was giving my bike a thorough tune up and noticed my rear tire wear looked to be about twice what the front was. The same was true for my wife's bike. We are running Continental Touring Plus tires. I understand the reason for faster wear to the rear, however I am wondering if anyone rotates tires to even it out. Is it worth the trouble? I'm thinking it would be. Comments suggestions...

General Discussion / Re: Bicycle shop Seattle
« on: June 22, 2012, 11:11:26 pm »
FYI, I picked my bikes up in Tampa the other day. Amtrak officials in Seattle told me 4 days shipping time but it took 7 days. I have found that miss information from Amtrak is fairly common. In fact the first attendant I spoke to told me they did not even ship freight to Tampa. I knew better and checked with a second attendant who corrected the first. I have also gotten conflicting information from different attendants that was critical to the planning of other legs of my trip. This seems to be consistent over several dealings with Amtrak. This is not ment to be critical of their service as overall I found them to be helpful and a great benefit to my trip. I will DEFINATELY use them in the future. However, users need to be forewarned to do your homework.

General Discussion / Re: Bicycle shop Seattle
« on: June 13, 2012, 01:52:26 am »
Just for curiosity I checked Amtrak for their shipping rate. They will ship a bike to Florida (from Seattle) for $63.00. Plus the cost of 15.00 for their box. It is classified as freight and this price is for up to 100 lbs. If you provide your own box you can save 15.00. FYI their boxes are so large that you only need to remove peddles and handle bar. Racks, tires etc. can remain on the bike. Transit time is about four days so anyone considering Amtrak needs to take this into account. As the best LBS quote was 50.00 for packing and 80.00 shipping I think I will use Amtrak.

General Discussion / Bicycle shop Seattle
« on: June 11, 2012, 11:14:38 am »
Need to have two bicycles shipped from Seattle to Florida. Anyone have recommendations on a reputable shop?

Routes / Re: Recommendations Route from Napa to Martinez Ca.
« on: May 25, 2012, 11:34:02 am »
Thanks for the info. Will be going south to Martinez, can deal with the traffic if there is a good shoulder.

Routes / Recommendations Route from Napa to Martinez Ca.
« on: May 25, 2012, 12:38:19 am »
Need a Recomendation on the best Route from Napa to Martinez Ca. Would like to avoid high traffic roads and narrow shoulders.

General Discussion / Re: Bike shipping / Lesson learned?
« on: May 14, 2012, 07:57:40 pm »
As a first time flyer with bikes I apparently did not do my homework. My wife booked with United and I believe their bike fee was $100 per bike. Plus I was concerned with airport hassles. I did check the FedEx on-line calculator before I picked up my boxes from the LBS. Being my first time, I assumed bike boxes were pretty standard and a few inches here and there would make a small difference. In the FedEx on-line calculator I used the measurement that popped up in the "road bike" field and the weight of my bike price was around 70.00. As previously stated by you guys little changes in measurements make a big difference in price. I will be more careful on my return and may even take staehpj1 suggestion and have a LBS handle it all.  My intent with sharing my experience was so I an others could learn from my mistake. Thanks again for the feedback.

General Discussion / Bike shipping / Lesson learned?
« on: May 14, 2012, 02:16:42 pm »
 After much research and effort it appeared the best and cheapest way to get my two bikes from Florida to San Francisco for my west coast tour was FedEx. LBS gave me two boxes curiously one much smaller than the other. My wife's bike fit in the larger of the two boxes with only removing ft. Wheel, handlebars and peddles. What a dream. My bike in the smaller if the two boxes required both wheels removed, Rear rack, derailluer, handlebars and of course peddles. It was a difficult and tight fit. Took the boxes to FedEx and send them standarrd 5 day ground delivery. Now came the Shock. Small box total weight 35.8 lbs. shipping cost $85.17 larger box total weight 33.8 lbs. shipping cost 157.43. ALMOST DOUBLE!!! Total cost to get tha bikes toCalifornia. 242.60. Info has it that the  some of the so called rip-off airlines are too pricey. While I'm not complaining about FedEx their pricing seems a bit high, or is it that everybody ships in small boxes and my mistake was the larger box?

If anyone will send me a free set of southern tier maps (I spent my last dime on shipping) I may consider riding home!

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