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Messages - John Nelson

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Routes / Re: Staying or Camping in Yellewstone Park doing the TransAm
« on: January 01, 2021, 02:15:27 pm »
Camping in Grand Teton and Yellowstone is not a problem. Cross it off your worries list.

General Discussion / Re: Question about seat height
« on: December 22, 2020, 12:31:28 am »
feels like I'm sitting too high in the air

What exactly do you mean by feels too high?

Yes, I use different saddles on different bikes. But no, I don't compare seat height measurements on different bikes. I just set each bike where it feels best. That is generally as high as I can without creating a situation where my pelvis rocks when I pedal, and my leg is nearly, but not fully, extended at the bottom of the stroke. Factors other than saddle height come into play.

Until I have it fully dialed in, I carry a wrench in my back pocket so I can experiment as I ride, moving it up or down. I really don't know when it's right until I've ridden many miles on it.

Gear Talk / Re: Better components?
« on: December 16, 2020, 11:39:47 am »
I’m also a fan of wearing out what you already paid for before looking for something better.

General Discussion / Re: Average Weight Loss/Gain on Cross Country Tour
« on: December 16, 2020, 11:36:33 am »
On a cross-country tour, I will typically gain a few pounds.

Gear Talk / Re: Bottle Cage Allen screw Size
« on: December 13, 2020, 08:01:43 pm »
T-9 is the wrong product for your intended use. Shops sometimes try to sell you what they have when they don’t have what you need. I might just avoid this shop in the future, or at least that salesperson.

Any general-purpose grease should work. I use Park grease, but you could even use automotive grease.

General Discussion / Re: Kickstands - Love them or leave them?
« on: December 13, 2020, 12:40:35 pm »
One of the reasons I appreciate a free-standing bike instead of laying it down or leaning it against something is that it’s much easier to unpack and pack the panniers on a free-standing bike.

General Discussion / Re: Kickstands - Love them or leave them?
« on: December 12, 2020, 11:51:10 pm »
I use a Click-Stand.

General Discussion / Re: Pedals and Shoes for the TransAmerica
« on: December 12, 2020, 03:49:55 pm »
I would highly recommend you do what you like best as this is a highly personal area.

Completely agree. If this thread stays active long enough, you will see pretty much all possible approaches recommended. Every solution is the right one for somebody.

SPD works for me.

Routes / Re: Meeting other riders or loose group riding the Trans America
« on: December 08, 2020, 11:20:59 pm »
Leaving too early from the west coast increases your chances of a lot of rain in the Northwest. Pete's departure date of June 11 sounds good to me.

Yes, a lot of people ride west to east, but I'd guess is that twice as many people ride east to west.

Routes / Re: Meeting other riders or loose group riding the Trans America
« on: December 05, 2020, 11:36:39 am »
The key is when you start and which direction you go. I recommend starting in Yorktown on May 7. It’ll increase your chances. How long you ride with someone depends on how flexible you are. Are you willing to take a day off when they do? Go off route when they do?

I recommend that you ride your own ride. Ride with others when the opportunity presents itself, but don’t let that change what you’re doing. A lot of the really wonderful stuff happens when you’re by yourself that wouldn’t happen in a group.

Bike saddles are very personal things. It’s not possible to know what will work well for you without trying them. Having said that, I’m going to recommend you try a Brooks B17. You can order one on the web from countless vendors.

A lot of people associate comfortable with cushioning. But that’s not necessarily true. It could be you just need a saddle with a different width. Some shops have the equipment to measure what width you need. Other shops have a loaner or try it before you buy it or free exchange program.

How many miles are your longest rides? What do you find uncomfortable about your current saddle? How upright is your riding position? Forgive the delicate question, but are you heavy?

I did the TransAmerica Trail in 70 days in 2010. A year in advance, I started telling everybody, including my boss and his boss, that I would be gone the next summer. I didn’t make a big deal about it. I didn’t ask permission. I just spoke of it as if it had all been agreed to, a done deal. I spoke of it over and over again until it was ingrained in everybody’s knowledge. When the time came, everyone was expecting it. When I returned, I just went back to work as if I had just been gone for the weekend.

Couple of things.  Do you want to do the TransAm Bike ROUTE or the TransAm Bike RACE (Race Across America)?  They are different.  One is a tour and you can take as little or as much time as you want. The other (RAAM) is a race and takes I think around two weeks. 
The Trans Am Bike Race and the RAAM (Race Across America) are two completely different races, at different times, on different routes and with different rules. But, as you say, they are both different than the TransAm route.

Yes, your calculation is correct.

Is 27 gear-inches low enough? Depends. Are you young and fit or old and fat? Do you travel light or heavy? Do you object to walking? Do you plan high-mileage days or low-mileage days? Are you a spinner or a masher?

Does TABR = TransAmerica Bike Ride? Do you plan to follow the Adventure Cycling TransAmerica Trail route?

The TransAmerica Trail is pretty hilly. If instead you want to ride on interstates and federal highways (not recommended by me), they are considerably less steep.

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