Author Topic: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions  (Read 10798 times)

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Offline dmeans2anend

Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« on: May 31, 2018, 01:08:41 pm »
Hi All!

Need some help deciding what gear is best for ultralight setup road touring. 
I'm trying to keep my gear down to less than 20 pounds with camping and simple cooking stove.

I'm doing the Pacific Coast Route in August.

a)  Can't decide to use SPD pedals or go with BMX style flat pedals and good rubber sold shoes (ie FiveTen)?

Pro of SPD:
More power and pedaling efficiency, utilize different muscle groups of the leg to minimize fatigue, I'm already familiar with it and I have both the cleats and SIDI mountain bike shoes already. 

Con of SPD:   
Need to pack an additional pair of shoes for days off bike walking around town, etc which would additional weight.

Pro of Flat Pedal and Rubber sole shoes:
Easy on and off, Need to pack only one pair of shoes so less weight to overall gear

Con of Flat Pedal and Rubber Sole shoes:
Less power and pedal efficiency, utilize primarily the calf muscles to push down, additional gear that I need to buy (both the flat pedals and five ten shoes).

b)  Bike Headlights
Thinking about going with the "torch" style flashlights like Tank007 to be used as a bike headlight or camp light.  I won't be riding at night so don't really know if a headlight is absolutely necessary except when it gets possibly foggy.  I will definitely have a rear flashing strobe type light but not sure what is out there and what is best for UL system.




Offline John Nelson

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2018, 03:44:31 pm »
On that "additional pair of shoes" thing, two thoughts:
(1) Get some walkable SPD shoes. I have a pair. They're pretty much like running shoes with a cleat on the bottom. I've toured with these as my only shoes.
(2) It feels good on your feet to switch to a different pair of shoes in the evening. You can make that second pair something very lightweight.

On the headlight thing. You don't need one. You'll probably take a headlamp for using in camp. In an emergency, you can strap that around your handlebar bad and use it as a headlight.

Offline RonK

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2018, 04:36:00 pm »
It is an urban myth that you can't walk in SPD shoes. There are plenty of very walkable shoes available, some even have Vibram soles which are very much designed for walkability. I only ever take one pair of shoes touring and use SPD pedals. Pedal choice really comes down to personal preference.

As an example, these are my current touring shoe. Northwave Escape Evo

These have a sole made by Michelin. Northwave Spider 2

However, you can also carry something like a pair of these Xero Z-Trek Sandals as camp shoes for a very small weight/bulk penalty.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2018, 07:08:00 pm by RonK »
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...

Offline Patco

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2018, 07:08:41 pm »
Similar to those who have already responded, I travel with but one pair of shoes, and those are MTB shoes with Speedplay Frogs, which are a recessed, walkable cleat. MTB shoes are not as stiff as road bike shoes, which, for me, makes it easier to walk when off the bike.

As for the headlight, I do not travel with one but my spouse wants me to begin since there are so many distracted drivers she believes a headlight will help keep me visible. I am considering adding the headlight because I have had numerous instances of panic braking when someone turns in front of me (even though they make eye contact, sometimes they just see through you) and then there are the people who are traveling against you and decide to pass a car when you are in the oncoming lane. A light may make that event less frequent.

Offline Inge

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2018, 01:03:05 am »
Me, I do not like spd pedals. Have used them briefly but switched to platform pedals. Gives me a chance to use whichever shoe I want to + I feel safer on them . At the moment I am using a Scarpa appraoch shoe which has a nice stiff sole and is comfortable walking on. But have also cycled on Keen sandals or low and sturdy hiking shoes. For my time around the campsite I use some slippers.

Headlight wise I cannot really help you - have a son hub dynamo with an Axa Luxx usb front light and my rear light is a B&M mini toplight

Offline staehpj1

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2018, 07:22:20 am »
On the pedals/shoes for riding...  It depends entirely on your preferences.  For me SPDs are a slam dunk.  For shoes, I always wear my Sidi MTB shoes to ride when on tour.  They are okay for a few miles of walking if there isn't a lot of steep slick rock.

For off bike shoes...  I have done a variety of things ranging from SPD shoes only, to SPD shoes and crocs, to SPD shoes and trail runners.  Which I prefer depends on how much hiking I plan to do on a given trip and what kind of terrain I'll be hiking in.  Flip flops or something like my Cushe slippers (about 11 ounces and very comfy).  I have even gone all SPD for most of a trip, bought trail runners for a 1 week break in the Yosemite Valley, and mailed them home when I hit the road again.

Online Pat Lamb

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2018, 09:49:26 am »
I wear Sidi MTB shoes (or Keen MTB sandals) on the bike.  After riding is over for the day, I'll put on some Teva sandals.  They're fine for walking a few miles, and double as shower shoes.

If I were doing some serious hiking (maybe 5 miles or more), I'd want something different on my feet.

Offline dmeans2anend

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2018, 02:13:43 pm »

Thank you all for your feedback!

Based on comments, I will definitely go with SPD pedals and pack my MTN Sidi SPD shoes.  I'm especially glad I don't have to buy another item to do this tour!!! .   

I pretty much live in my TEVA mush flip flops daily so I'm more than happy to pack it for the trip! 

I currently have the Shimano SPD pedals (M540) (350 grams) that are just knobby type. 

I'm wondering if it is worth investing in a SPD pedal with Platform like Shimano PD-A530 (383 grams) or M324 (533 grams)?


Offline staehpj1

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2018, 02:33:52 pm »
I currently have the Shimano SPD pedals (M540) (350 grams) that are just knobby type. 
Those are my choice for long tours.

I'm wondering if it is worth investing in a SPD pedal with Platform like Shimano PD-A530 (383 grams) or M324 (533 grams)?
I like the M324 for my beater bike around town, but on tour I leave them home.  I find I almost never use the platform side when on tour and it is just a little more trouble to find the right side clip in with them.  Not a big deal, but on a coast to coast trip I figure I probably clip in thousands of times, so it might as well be as easy as possible.  With the M540s I can peddle a short distance in my crocs or other non bike shoes if need be (like to the shower in a campground or pool).

Offline RonK

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2018, 07:40:33 pm »
I'm wondering if it is worth investing in a SPD pedal with Platform like Shimano PD-A530 (383 grams) or M324 (533 grams)?
I would suggest M530 or M8020 Trail pedals.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...

Offline dmeans2anend

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2018, 02:10:09 pm »
Ok. 

Another newbie question - 

I'm wondering what is the best lite weight bike "hand" pump to pump up my tires regularly?

I just purchased the Topeak Road Morph Pump with gauge for my Pacific Coast Route ride in August. 
However, it is rather "long" and somewhat heavy.  My bike frame is only 49 cm so the length really because an issue for me to attach it on the bike with limited real estate on the bike.

I'm wondering if I even need a bike "hand" pump..... or whether I can just get away with CO2 cartridges (2), a mini CO2 bike pump, and schrader presta adapter.

For my normal road rides (30 to 50 milers) in the past 5 years, I have never carried a road pump. 
I just carry CO2 gas cartridges and a mini Portland Design Work CO2 gas pump.
I have only had 3 flats in the last 5 years (knock on wood!).  (2 flats were consecutive because of a tiney tiny thorn around the stem that I didn't discover until the tire deflated again in a day or two...).  I'm not your typical "male" rider since I'm very light weight (108 lbs) on a superlite carbon bike which I think helps with less flats than the normal heavier rider.

The scenerio with my touring bike will be slight different though since it'll be heavier (+30 lbs).  I was thinking that I would carrry my gas pump, 2 CO2 cartridges, and schrader presta adapter.  I would check tire pressures regularly every 3 - 4 days at bike shops or gas stations (schrader presta adapter) to keep up tire pressure.  For flats, I would rely on my CO2 cartridges and replace the cartridges at bike shops, etc.  I figured that the route was rather commercial so there wouldn't be too many days of remote riding. 

Is this a  Bad idea???   Good Idea???   Any suggestion on lighter pumps that is good on road bikes and that you don't have to strain excessively to get to the higher road tire pressure? ;) (which is why I use CO2 cartridge).  For hand pumps, I like the Topeak Road Morph because it comes with a lever and you can sort of stand on it.  Seems to have pretty good reviews.

Has anyone used the Leyzne Carbon Road pump?  See a deal on it on CL for $40 and wonder if it is worth it and whether it would be hard to get up to road tire pressure?  One reviewer said 300 hand strokes to get to road pressure.  Aaarhhhhh....


Offline RonK

Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2018, 03:59:25 pm »
There is no way I would rely on CO2.
I use a Lezyne Micro Floor Drive HP on tour.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...

Offline John Nelson

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2018, 05:38:54 pm »
There is no way I would rely on CO2.
+1

Offline Iowagriz

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2018, 08:06:14 pm »
25yrs of CO2 without problems. However, I wouldn't tour without a backup mini pump (and visa versa). Each needs to backup the other.

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk


Offline staehpj1

Re: Newbie Road Touring Need Help with Gear Questions
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2018, 08:21:32 pm »
There is no way I would rely on CO2.
+1
I wouldn't either, especially on a long tour.  For an overnight or for just a few days maybe.  Since I generally never do real short tours, I wouldn't even consider co2 as a primary inflation method.

BTW, it always seemed to me as if pressure bled out faster with co2.  So I found I needed to refill more often when I used it around town.