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Messages - mbattisti

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Gear Talk / Re: donkey boxx feasible for cross country tour??
« on: August 26, 2013, 10:21:05 pm »
my advice is to consider assembling some "kitty litter" bucket panniers.  Check out the article on the CGOAB site

Gear Talk / Re: Touring crankset
« on: June 26, 2013, 10:03:34 pm »
I second paddleboy's advice, just swapping the smallest chainring for a 24.  the 24 to 42 jump was no problem on my wife's and my fully loaded tandem, which took us XC a few years ago.  I may suggest adding a n-gear jump stop to prevent the chain from dropping off that little gear.

New England / Re: Loop tour in Northern NH or Maine
« on: June 07, 2013, 09:19:21 pm »
Nice!  A definite possibility, thank you.

New England / Re: Loop tour in Northern NH or Maine
« on: June 06, 2013, 08:45:41 pm »
oh yeah, and 5-6 days. (200-300 miles)

New England / Loop tour in Northern NH or Maine
« on: June 06, 2013, 08:15:00 pm »
Looking to do a loop ride/fully loaded tour in N. NH or maine in early august. 40-60 miles per day.  Any suggestions?  Would prefer to stay away from Acadia.

you may wish to look into a PINO tandem (made in Germany I believe).  Rider in back (sitting upright) does the steering, while the person up front is in a recumbent position.

Gear Talk / Re: Tips for avoiding back pain at night
« on: May 19, 2013, 09:22:20 pm »
I use a pillow (or wad of clothing) under my knees when sleeping on my back and between my knees when sleeping on my side.  I'd try experimenting with one.

General Discussion / Re: Do we need to do any training?
« on: April 23, 2013, 09:35:05 am »
Hi All,

My girlfriend and I will be cycling the TransAm West to East this August. Although we both cycle to work currently (3-4 miles each way) neither of us have any touring experience.

We are both relatively young (25 and 24) and have a lot of enthusiasm. We will have to complete the TransAm in 90 days.

I am getting a bit concerned that this might be too much of an ordeal. I am less worried about myself, but I wonder whether it might be too much for her.

What do people think? Should we be training, or can we just rock up and go?

One nice thing about such a 90 day trip: If you manage to do it without any fights, extensive arguing etc, you can safely get married and remain as a couple for the rest of your lives :-).
Or in my wife's and my case with our 90 day TA trip on a tandem to celebrate our 30th,  I guess you could say we renewed our vows (still together)!

Routes / Re: Avoiding Yellowstone
« on: April 17, 2013, 10:45:14 pm »
we also found yellowstone and the tetons no problem as long as you got an early start (and we visited in late July).  At Madison campground the hiker/bikers get to camp in a nice grassy area right behind the office (and it's a well-kept secret that the ladies gave us access to their coffee pot in the morning)!

Routes / Re: Across North America
« on: April 17, 2013, 02:12:31 pm »
My wife and I celebrated our 30th anniversary my taking the transam from VA to Missoula,MT, then detoured north thru Seeley Lake, MT (which will take your near BEAUTIFUL glacier natl. park) where you can pick up the northern tier. We also ended in Seattle.  I've heard the North Dakota-Eastern Montana stretch of the Northern Tier can get boring (and with sometimes difficult headwinds and that direction). 
You would just need to plot a route to pick up the transam from NY.  If you wish to see a wider cross-section of america (and we think more scenic) I would recommend the transam over the northern tier in the east.
Be prepared for cold weather and possibly some snow traveling over the cascades in Mid-september.

Gear Talk / Re: No Stove
« on: April 16, 2013, 03:06:58 pm »
My wife and I did the transAm unsupported on a tandem: no room for a stove.  But looking back, I would not have brought it if we could.   You're riding across the entire US of A!  Who wants to cook?  There's a country to explore out there!  Take the time to visit local places of interest, talk to the people, reflect in your journal, etc.  Make some new friends in a diner.

Gear Talk / Re: two handlebars on one stem...crazy?
« on: April 16, 2013, 02:59:22 pm »
Have you tried pivoting the drop bars severely upwards?  Brings your hands higher and closer to your body.  I know several people with bad backs that found this to be a cheap and simple solution.

Gear Talk / Re: Shaving Creme
« on: April 16, 2013, 02:53:58 pm »
William's Shaving Soap(solid) is available in most large supermarkets . One half of a bar- size of a silver dollar- lasted me the whole transam.  Worked so well my wife preferred it to shave her legs.

General Discussion / Re: touring without "eating out"
« on: April 16, 2013, 02:36:58 pm »
I would agree to reconsider this touring without eating out challenge.  Part of the highlites of my TransAm trip was the great food and people, conversation, connecting with communities which was made possible in a large part by local mom and pop diners.  Breakfasts are usually cheap, and when you figure in the bottomless cup of Joe, and all the ice and water to fill your bottles, and maybe a few packets of Jam for that bagel 20 miles down the road, all in all a pretty good deal.
We also passed thru some towns where we heard cyclists felt unwelcomed.  Maybe if more cyclists patronized the businesses, instead of just asking to use a bathroom and mooching for water, this wouldn't be an issue.

General Discussion / Re: Shipping Supplies to Yourself
« on: April 16, 2013, 02:14:10 pm »
We had our kids mail us packages "general delivery" during our tandem XC trip.  We layed out supplies like zip-locked gatorade powder, laundry detergent, inner tubes, tires, sample sized toiletries etc.  out in our garage along with some flat-rate shipping boxes and just directed them what to send.  Worked great!  The kids even stuffed the boxes with wads of the local newspaper so we could keep abreast with the hometown news!  Besides, who better than the local postmaster of a small town to fill you in on what's not to be missed in their community (like the best diner)!

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