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Messages - RonK

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Gear Talk / Re: Tubus Duo Front Rack on Spec. AWOL
« on: December 15, 2014, 10:00:21 pm »
The inner mounting point is just a thin tab, I doubt the brake cable fixing would cause a problem.

It depends on the panniers used, but the lower Ortlieb bag mounting does not fit well on larger 16mm diameter tubing of the Duo (and Tara). Ortliebs fit better on the Ergo, or even better the stainless steel Nova/Cosmo with no paint to chafe off and rust.

General Discussion / Re: Schwalbe Mondial vs Marathon Plus Tour
« on: December 01, 2014, 12:50:28 am »

Thanks again for the replies. I ended up ordering the MPT last week from Wiggle. If they don't work out, I'll be ordering up the Mondials.
Too late he cries.  Have fun fitting them then. :)

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: Best GPS for touring
« on: November 29, 2014, 03:42:36 pm »
Etrex 30 bundle is $370 at REI. Shop around you might get it for less.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Best GPS for touring
« on: November 29, 2014, 07:26:50 am »
The most logical thing to do would be to get a Garmin Etrex 30, which runs on easily sourced AA batteries and download the ACA route waypoints to it. But yes, it's still advisable to have the paper maps.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Best GPS for touring
« on: November 28, 2014, 02:44:53 pm »
Where Garmin does not shine is in navigation - route finding. The Cyclo 505 had much better navigation.

Whichever device you choose, expect to encounter errors and frustrations.

General Discussion / Re: Touring Bicycle
« on: October 25, 2014, 04:42:22 am »

I like the gearing ratios too, compared to some other bikes.    high gear 50 x12 and low gear 30x30......i don't believe i will need any lower than bike had a could pull out tree stumps with
Hope you're hauling a light load on flat roads. There are plenty of us using MTB group sets with 22x34 gearing. :lol:

General Discussion / Re: Wireless computer on touring bike
« on: October 21, 2014, 07:01:43 am »
I've used wireless on three tours, and never has interference, but some cheaper computers may not use coded digital signaling.
I'm using a Sigma Rox 9, but I like the look of the new Rox 6 for a little cheaper option.

International / Re: Biking New Zealand
« on: October 21, 2014, 04:11:21 am »
I have done two tours in New Zealand since 2010, both on the South Island, so I can only make general comments about the North Island.

The North Island is hillier, more densely populated, the roads busier, and reputedly, the drivers more aggressive. I've heard negative comments from a few cycle tourists, but I've experience few issues myself.  This may be because my visits have been in the spring when the roads are less busy. But generally the roads of the South Island have been mostly quiet, with the exception of State Highway 1, which runs the length of the east coast and is the main north-south artery. Plan to avoid this route as much as possible.

Your January visit coincides with the summer vacations, and is the height of the backpacker and tourist season as well, so it will be busier. It would be better to defer your vist by a month or even two if possible. The locals have gone back to school and work by February and the tourist season is starting to wind down by March, which is also likely to produce the most stable weather conditions.

Also, don't be deceived by the miniscule size of NZ on the map, depending on how far/fast you want ride and how much time sightseeing, it will take around 5 weeks to cover the South Island and maybe most of the North in the remaining available time. So far I have done two month-long tours to cover the middle and the bottom of the South Island, although to be fair I did go back over some parts that I enjoyed so much I wanted to do them again.

Last tour I rode several hundred kilometres on unsealed back roads. I found these roads well-formed and manageable (with just a little more than normal care) riding on 32mm Schwalbe Marathon Supremes, but the main touring routes are sealed. 1.6"x26" Supremes would be fine for your bikes.

NZ has a well-developed tourist route and it's quite possible to tour without camping if preferred, although you may need to do the odd 100km+ day. There are many motor camps (rv parks), backpacker hostels and camping grounds, and most towns have a domain where free camping is allowed, although there may not be much in the way of facilities.

The best touring guide is Nigel Rushtons Pedalers Paradise - there is a volume for each island. It's very basic but covers all the information you'll need with little weight penalty. There are very few roads in NZ so you don't need much in the way of maps or navigation - a simple road map from a newsagent or gas station is generally sufficient. I used Google Maps with an earbud to get voice navigation prompts passing through some of the bigger cities, which ofter have motorway approaches and convoluted cycle routes to avoid them.

Have a look through my touring journals - you'll find links and reference to the information I found most useful. Any questions you are welcome to ask.

Chasing the Long White Cloud
Gone Fishin'

The sizes you quote refer to the length of the seat tube, which is not overly important given seat posts offer a significant range of adjustment.

But a larger frame will have a longer top tube, affecting the reach. This is the important dimension as scope for adjustment is limited. Since the saddle must be set to position you correctly in relation to the pedals, the reach dimension can only be varied by changing the stem.
An off the shelf bike will usually have a stem of 100-110mm. A long stem is 130mm, 50mm is short, but may affect the feel of the steering. Stems are made in 10mm increments.

At 6'4" a 58cm will most likely be too small, but you may be able to compensate with a longer stem.

If it is too small you may feel cramped on a test ride.

Perhaps you should visit a bike shop and test ride a correctly sized bike to get a proper feeling before looking at used bikes.

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