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Topics - dayjack119

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General Discussion / Amtrak roll-on in Seattle
« on: July 06, 2017, 12:18:26 pm »
Just took a ride from Seattle to Sacramento via Amtrak with my touring bike a roll-on.  The system had a few bugs that one has to adapt to.
1.  Most people buy their tickets on-line these days and therefore don't use the ticket counter.  One is suppose to get a tag there for one's bike before he boards the train.  I waited a half hour in the check-in line before someone told me.
2.  The baggage car where one's bike is stored is just behind the engine.  One is expected to remove all bags and attachments from the bike before storage and carry them to your passenger car, which in my case was 13 cars back.  I held up the train just to get this done.  One wonders who came up with that process.  The next train that I am transferring to in a few hours may go smoother, now that I know what to look for.  I will up-date.

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General Discussion / Ebike kit update
« on: May 26, 2017, 05:11:03 pm »
C2C@73 -  With advancing age, I decided that this year I would try an ebike kit on my ride across the country since I had the big four USA mountain ranges to conquer.  Turn up your nose if you like.   I am at mile 1,300 of my route and have already passed up and over the Great Smoky Mountains.  Child's play.  This electric kit has found a final home.  I won't go back.  It helps with dog chases, unsafe situations where you have to get through fast, and climbing all those hills.  It also allows me to stay up with locals without luggage or loaded riders with young legs.  Normal 8-12 mph gives the battery a 45 mile range while hilly is about thirty.  You pedal the same, you just get there faster and easier.  ...In this photo, I am getting new foot pedals in Muscatine, Iowa at Harper's Cycling.  The EBO Burly model electric kit needs no maintenance so far.  ...I wonder if I could put another one on the rear.  Backup.

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General Discussion / Interested in 'electric assist' touring?
« on: April 24, 2017, 05:57:13 pm »
Route Map and info - https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1w4J6NGvXOUYbyeuldSASSZ_sm6Y&ll=40.874234941725135%2C-111.8975110156889&z=4

It's finally time!  May 1st will begin my 6th bicycle tour (24,000 miles) since retirement, a coast-to-coast arc ride within the USA & Canada. STARTING at the Atlantic Ocean on Hilton Head Island, SC, I will endeavor to reach the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco sometime in August, staying with nearly 60 host families along the way.  But this trip will have an additional boost.  Having paid my dues, I have secured an Electric Assist Kit which adapts to my REI touring bike.  Looking forward to conquering the four major mountain ranges of my country along the route, Alleghenies, Rockies, Cascades, and the Sierra Nevada, I am tired of wasting time near the summits pushing my load up the worst of it, and in addition I want to be able to keep up with those younger legs who frequently join me for awhile.  One pedals as usual, but the electric kit gives a little added 'gas'.  There was only one company (EBO) confident enough with their product to work with me when I mentioned I wanted to accomplish an unusually tough goal and seriously abuse their unit.  These guys have e-bike experience with cargo, mountain and commuter customers in Colorado so who better to make the fit.  If 'electric' peeks your interest, I will be making no-BS updated posts to my Facebook ride-page, both good and bad, referring to mileage per charge, speed, and other variables.  I'm excited to try it and if everything works out, you will get so sick of my bragging!   Who had any idea that at 73 one can still be able to dream and participate in life at its fullest?   

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General Discussion / Rear Kickstand
« on: March 03, 2017, 08:21:01 pm »
I use a two kickstand system after much trial and error.  The rear stands normally deemed as 'heavy duty' are not very strong.  After a couple snapped on me, I contacted the companies involved and it was explained they were not made for the weight of a loaded bicycle.  So does anyone know of a rear kickstand that will take the beating of a cross country loaded ride?

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Classifieds / Wanted - Bivy Sack Found/2/26
« on: February 22, 2017, 07:01:26 pm »
I am seeking a bivy sack for the unusual times that I may be stuck for a place to sleep while pedaling a new adventure.  Cutting way back on weight this trip (tent, pad, and cooking gear) because I may be changing to electric assist for the steep grades of the four mountain ranges of my 2017 C2C tour.  Long size, bug screen, and waterproof.  I'm excited for the good weather to get here.

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Gear Talk / Electric Assist Kits
« on: January 05, 2017, 07:07:35 pm »
After five long distance tours across the USA since retirement, I'm doing research for this year's 4,400 mile adventure in the electric assist motor kit realm for my REI Novara Safari. I'm 73. I can get away with it. I don't see any problem with not being a purest, not when I have to cross the Great Smokey Mountains, the Rockies, the Cascades, and the Sierra Nevada's, all on one ride. I'm tired of pushing up steep grades, and it burns up so much time. From what I have gathered so far, there are models that can be used on either wheel. I'm looking at a front wheel application, only because I have finally gotten my rear wheel just right to handle all the weight with extra spokes and heavy duty rim. "If it works, don't mess with it." The electric assist companies make great claims of distance and speed. If I could find one that actually produced only half their results, I would be thrilled. I understand that these setups are for the 'commuter' market and not touring applications. I have not found a manufacturer so far that is confident enough to recommend their product. It seems to me that if a 'commuter' product made it all the way from ocean to ocean on a lightly loaded bike, this would speak well for durability and quality. A go-getter should jump on this. ...Are there any ideas out there to further my search?

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Routes / Southern Tier - People to Meet
« on: November 04, 2016, 04:43:48 pm »
Presently staying at the restored Simpson Hotel (B&B) in Duncan, AZ due to rain storms.  (Rain in Arizona?) These people have a soft spot for cyclists (Warmshowers hosts) and keep a trailer out back with access to shower/bathroom.  Marcel, a German cyclist, was here when I arrived and we've been having a great time.  Humble Pie across the street has excellent pizza and a pub is within walking distance for a beer.  Deborah is the innkeeper and generous to a fault.  Don't miss stopping here.  Interesting and gracious people.

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Gear Talk / Handlebar Rearview Mirror
« on: July 25, 2016, 09:33:48 am »
I've looked at some mirrors that mount on the butterfly handlebars of my REI Novara Safari but they are the convex type that make everything smaller and more distant.  I don't want to have to put on reader glasses to see.  Any ideas?

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Classifieds / Southern Tier Maps 1 2 3 Wanted
« on: July 23, 2016, 04:55:01 pm »
Southern Tier Maps 1 2 3 Wanted  - Don't care if they are beat up.

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General Discussion / Mississippi River barge ride
« on: June 29, 2016, 03:05:55 pm »
I'm pedaling the length of the Mississippi River this fall, all the way down to New Orleans, Louisianna. On the way, I would like to experience putting my bike on a barge and go for a short cruise and pass through a set of locks.  Anyone have any knowledge about how this could be done?  They have expensive paddle wheelers and tour boats but they are budget busters.

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General Discussion / Thank You card for hosts
« on: May 23, 2016, 12:17:49 pm »
Each year I make up a new personalized 'thank you card' for my hosts. I'm so grateful to these generous people for inviting me into their worlds, but not so good at verbalizing it. The rear of the card has room for a personal message and includes all my contact data. ...The card is also good for demonstrating your route when the man-on-the-street wants to know. (Another positive, it makes you the real deal to police, customs agents, park rangers etc... who have never come up against a bicycle tourist. Some don't know what to think.)

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General Discussion / Mancave Training Accessories
« on: January 23, 2015, 01:09:01 pm »
I was just downtown in Des Moines where the Iowa Bike Expo is being held tomorrow. I wandered around the booths setting up. They weren't all ready yet but the most interesting and truly innovative products I saw were from a new start-up company, "Cave Competitor". They are unveiling their product line at the show. http://www.cavecompetitor.com/

Their market target is the hardcore Ironman and Triathlon crowd that have training bikes in their basements. The Cave Competitor products are high-end stands to use while training. One is the Media Stand for in front of you that holds anything from a phone for music to a 17" TV screen. The other big item is the Caddy which sits alongside the trainer. This is for your food, drinks and whatever. It includes a slip-in freeze tray that keeps your Gatorade at 40 degrees for 5 hours. And it even has a add-on service post for working on your bike.

The items are made by a fabricator in Iowa who uses the same steel and paints on these stands that they use for making parts for John Deere tractors. The items are heavy duty and well thought out.

I would get too bored training in my basement, but this might be helpful to those of you out there that do.

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Routes / Death Valley Route
« on: December 31, 2014, 03:28:39 pm »
I'm planning my next ride and can't find much on sights to see in Death Valley, CA.  Any experience out there?  The following is my early 2015 Desert SW Tour Route.  The map is on-going and zoomable.  https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=zobmp9RdFhRI.koz6hhEoGaHQ

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Routes / Tenting on the Pacific Coast Route
« on: April 04, 2014, 01:56:38 pm »
My routes and overnight stops are determined way ahead when planning a tour.  I make use of Warmshowers and Couchsurfing wherever I can because for me, they are like minded people and their hospitality and generosity make them the finest anywhere.    Yet when there are no hospitality site members, I hate getting beat up by RV Parks and commercial campgrounds when I need a place to tent.  Over the years I have heard about small campgrounds for riders along the Pac Coastline, and I have also heard that they closed some of them down due to problems with the homeless.  I hope to do the Pac Coast in September from Vancouver down and it would be great to hear from someone who has the scoop on campgrounds.
Route in Progress - https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=zobmp9RdFhRI.k2SE9GEV_SHI

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Classifieds / Found One - Seeking used Bob Trailer
« on: April 03, 2014, 05:37:47 pm »
Looking for a Bob Trailer or similar this season as a loan, rent or buy.  So pack up that dusty thing hanging on the wall in the garage and send it to me for my June 1st bast off.  I need to carry more weighty gear and water for remote regions and lonesome mountain roads through the Pacific NW and I'm tired of rear wheel breakdowns in the middle of nowhere.

Route-in-Progress - https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=zobmp9RdFhRI.k2SE9GEV_SHI

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