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Messages - dkoloko

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Gear Talk / Re: Trek 520
« on: February 04, 2017, 11:57:35 am »
I have a 2015 Trek 520. Best touring bike I've owned. Not had a LHT; numerous comments of truck like performance (rides best loaded). LHT seems to have a cheaper frame to me. Bar end shifters have saved me; switched to friction mode when indexing failed on tour.

If you like the 520, why hesitate? buy it. As for suggestions to test ride both, lots of luck my area. Lucky for a shop to have one touring bike in stock, much less a selection of makes and sizes.

Gear Talk / Re: Lightweight touring bike?
« on: January 08, 2017, 11:11:05 am »
Thanks for the replies.  What do you think about this: Weight and price are perfect, but I'm not knowledgeable enough on components to know if it is suitable for touring.  Thanks.

This is an aluminum frame with a little carbon that is common for advertised entry level racing bikes. Gearing is lowered to appeal to recreational riders, and price is on low end for this frame and components. Personally, I'd go with a randonneuring bike, touring bike for lightweight touring, more room for wide tires, including room for fenders, etc. It is not too hard for a steel bike to come in at 21 lb.

Gear Talk / Re: Camp Stove
« on: January 07, 2017, 10:32:14 am »
You don't need to ride all around town looking for fuel. Coleman Fuel or its equivalent is widely available. What to do about having to buy a gallon? Two solutions worked for me: Carry two fuel bottles. Fill them. Offer to sell other half gallon with the can back to seller for half price. Fill the two bottles. Drop can off at bike shop, gift for next touring cyclist. Leaking has not been a problem for me. Weight of second bottle: same as a filled water bottle.

I have had trouble finding replacement gas canisters when traveling.

If you just boil up, an alcohol stove can do.

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast Route
« on: October 19, 2016, 12:52:15 pm »
Add, "The Western Region of Washington is one of the rainiest places in the world.", and "This results in a wet season beginning in October" .

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast Route
« on: October 15, 2016, 04:41:10 pm »
Be advised that a number of campgrounds may be closed in Sept and Oct.

Gear Talk / Re: Advice for choosing components to reduce gear inches
« on: October 12, 2016, 10:25:35 pm »
Hello everyone,

As a thought which I had considered is choosing an mtb crankset with a road front mech feasible, would I need to chose a mtb crankset which gives a chainline of 45mm, or would I need to use a road hollowtech II BB to force the mtb chainrings to give me a chainline of 45mm? 

Thank you.


I don't understand fixing on chainline of 45mm. With a triple crankset, middle chainwheel should align parallel with frame with middle cog. BB needs to match crank. I wonder if front derailleur is that critical; I have a number of times used a double racing front derailleur with a touring triple crank. Pat Lamb recommends letting a bike shop make the changes. I suspect, given your inexperience, that whatever components you buy, you will be making many adjustments, maybe changes in components, afterwards, to get everything working. Whether you want to hazard this, as a learning experience, is up to you.

Gear Talk / Re: Advice for choosing components to reduce gear inches
« on: October 12, 2016, 11:23:11 am »
If you go nutty and try a 36 rear cog, then your derailleur hanger my not be low enough and the rear derailleur will not fit underneath the 36 cog.  So that will not work. 

No trouble for me changing to 36 rear cog. I add that changing components to get below 20 gear inches can be much more challenging than being satisfied with a 20 inch low.

Gear Talk / Re: Getting bike and gear to start of tour
« on: September 26, 2016, 06:40:45 pm »

I don't know what happens if a Greyhound staffer flops the box on its side and pile crap on top of it. 

In my experience, it's what they do.

Gear Talk / Re: Getting bike and gear to start of tour
« on: September 26, 2016, 03:02:59 pm »

I have always thought Greyhound Freight was interesting.  They ship from one Greyhound bus depot to another bus depot.  It has been a while, but Greyhound was pretty flexible on box size--it just has to be low enough to fit in a cargo hold.

Just because it is a Greyhound bus station don't count on it being a station that will accept or receive a bike, and if does one, don't count on it doing the other; my experience.

Russ Seaton has some good comments. I add that, according to Berto, switching from double to triple crank, 80 percent of the time it is not necessary to change to a triple BB. That has been my experience. Also, if changing cassette to get lower gears, you might as well get one with a 36 tooth cog, as a long cage rear derailleur that shifts to a 34 tooth cog is likely to shift to a 36. That is my experience.

Gear Talk / Re: Getting bike and gear to start of tour
« on: September 13, 2016, 09:51:18 am »
I use to ship bike ahead. Picked up at your house, delivered to destination, insured for damage, loss. Take with to airport, you are charged a substantial extra fee, and are insured against loss, but not damage, and you have to transport to and from airports.

Routes / Re: connecting the Eastern Seaboard route with the Northern Tier
« on: September 05, 2016, 09:04:32 am »
The Northern Tier route travels the Erie Canal from about Albany, NY to Buffalo, NY, and is one of the features of the route. The canal towpath is composed of very fine crushed stone, smoother than gravel, and asphalt, which I found less appealing aesthetically and more troublesome to pedal, at least when I rode the path, as the asphalt was buckled in a number of places. 

Gear Talk / Re: Terry Touring Bikes - Coto Doñana Tour
« on: August 16, 2016, 05:00:03 pm »
I just can't determine the advantage of a custom bike at this point (having no experience), so seems foolish to spend the money on a bike I can't even test and hope it will be 250% better!

You'd be lucky if it was 50% better; you pay a lot for small improvements, custom or stock. You can expect the best values in the most popular models.

Gear Talk / Re: Terry Touring Bikes - Coto Doñana Tour
« on: August 05, 2016, 09:12:56 am »

Definitely consider the ultra light method.  Several on this site have talked about that way.  I have a loaded touring bike and panniers.  So heavy loaded for me.  But if I was starting from scratch again, I would seriously consider the ultra light method with a regular road bike.  Adventure Cycling sells several bags that attach under the saddle and inside the main triangle for carrying a large amount of gear.

I tried the ultra light method, rackless bags, on an extended tour last year, on front; kept rack and panniers on back, as I use the rack. The rackless bags were a disaster; weren't that secure, and high load caused falls. I do not recommend the ultra light method for a novice. Lighten the load carried in the bags instead. After experience, you can explore options.

Gear Talk / Re: Terry Touring Bikes - Coto Doñana Tour
« on: August 04, 2016, 10:54:28 am »

Another person argues against buying a frame and building it yourself because the cost is usually more than buying it direct already built as a complete bike.  With the Terry it is very easy to see if this is true or not.  Terry says it is a Gunnar frame/fork.  Gunnar sells its frames direct to the public and lists its prices.  Price both the standard and custom options.  Terry also lists all the parts on the bike.  Simple to find all those parts on the internet and list their prices.  See if the totals work out right or wrong.  Biggest benefit for building it yourself is you get to pick every part yourself and get what you want. 

A lot of work when historically building a bike from a frame costs a lot more money than a comparable complete bike. You suggest making changes; more research. Who is going to decide final component choices? Who is going to install the components? We're talking here of a comparative novice. There is the problem of compatibility of presumptively superior components, a problem you should be well aware. I built a bike from a custom frame; took months after receiving frame (back order of components, etc). Satisfaction in specifying what you want, but more work, and more value in buying complete comparable bike.

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