Author Topic: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?  (Read 4476 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline hikerjer

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #15 on: December 22, 2020, 09:04:36 pm »
I don't suppose we'll ever solve this equation since tourng weight is such a personal thing. And confusing as well. Are we talking about wieght of the bike, weight of the bike and racks and panniers/handelbar bag. With of the bike fully loaded with or without consumables. Do consumables include just water or fuel and food as well?  How much food and water - a day's worth, two days or whatever?  All very nebulous.

On my last tour this is how it worked out for me.:     

My bike, fenders, bottle cages and racks weigh in at 35.25 lbs.  Bike and gear, including racks, three bottle cages, four panniers/handlebar bag (no consumables): 72 lbs (it'll be a couple of lbs lighter this summer due to the purchase of some new, lighter gear)

I weigh 162 lbs so without consumables, it's 234 lbs.  Throw in consumables and you can add considerble weight depending on how much you carry, especially in regard to water which is, as has been pointed out, heavy. I find my weight, due to water, increases considrably in the desert.

I do think weight can make a difference, especially on the uphill, but not so much as in say, backpacking, where the weight is actually carried on your body and not a bike frame.  But everyone is different. Do what you're comfort demands and what works for you.
« Last Edit: December 22, 2020, 11:31:39 pm by hikerjer »

Offline staehpj1

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #16 on: December 23, 2020, 09:11:03 am »
I don't suppose we'll ever solve this equation since tourng weight is such a personal thing. And confusing as well. Are we talking about weight of the bike, weight of the bike and racks and panniers/handelbar bag. With of the bike fully loaded with or without consumables. Do consumables include just water or fuel and food as well?  How much food and water - a day's worth, two days or whatever?  All very nebulous.
Just me, but for me it is a little more simple.  When I talk about weight here it is with regard to packing choices.  I figure that others will have different situations, standards, and different needs.  So they may want to use different numbers, but it is important to say what number you are using.  That said if someone uses something other than base gear weight or maybe base total bike and gear weight, I am likely to gloss over and move on without really registering what the weight means.

I include gear, clothing, and the bags or panniers they are in.  I refer to it as gear weight to avoid confusion with total bike weight, and total bike and rider weight.  I could easily see an argument for including the racks in the gear weight, but it seems to me as if that muddies any real chance of meaningful comparison of gear choices wrt weight.

Total bike weight including gear is a useful number, but it is in my opinion a poor number to use in comparing gear choices since the bike would skew the numbers pretty heavily between folks who choose different style bikes (or folks who ride different bikes on different tours).  Also I try not to get too obsessed over bike choices, I am more inclined to ride one of the bikes I have and not worry about swapping components too much beyond what it takes to meet some minimum standards like sufficient range of gearing.

Total bike and rider weight might be very useful for the rider to evaluate a number of things for themselves, but it is a useless measure for comparing notes with other riders.

To my way of thinking there is no point in trying to include consumables in any weight reported except maybe if someone were to report what their maximum load was at some specific point on tour.  For example it might be interesting to know what my total bike weight plus consumables topped out at when I had a long stretch with no resupply capability and carried far more food and water than usual.  The thing is that it is just an anecdote about some specific incident and I most likely would not know the number any way.  There isn't likely to be a scale handy in the middle of the tour when the situation arrives.

Food, water, and fuel are all extremely variable both throughout the weeks or months of a long tour, but even over the course of the day.  Then there is the fact that some may pack a weeks worth of food or more and some may pick up their food for the evening in the afternoon most of the time.  I'd usually have no really accurate way of knowing what that number would be at any point except before the start and maybe at the finish if I finished the tour somewhere with a scale (not a given).  I generally pack at home with no food, fuel, or water, fly to the start of the tour.  I assemble the bike in the airport and start riding from there.  Food, fuel, and water are obtained along the way and typically in small quantities frequently.  The notion of including some number of days of food is a non-starter for me because most often I don't carry any more food than enough to get to the next store with a bit of cushion.

For folks who might pack food for some number of days and maybe leave from home having already fully loaded and also having access to a scale that all up number may be easy to know, but it still isn't especially useful for comparing and evaluating gear choices.

Offline HikeBikeCook

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 477
  • Touring for over 50 years and still learning
Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #17 on: December 23, 2020, 09:36:59 am »
When weighing in for bike touring or backpacking I always consider "dry" weight - that is no food or water. I carry a Jetboil and typically carry two of the smaller fuel cans and replace the empty one at the next opportunity, so for me two fuel canisters is part of my "dry" weight.

Water is a huge variable at 8.4 pounds to the gallon or about 6.5 pounds for 3 liters. Plus we often "camel up" hiking - meaning drink plenty of water when you find water so you are adding to body and packed weight. "Cameling up" is less enjoyable on a bike tour and, unless riding in dry areas, probably not a good idea.

Rider weight is a separate factor. A cubic inch of muscle weighs roughly twice as much as a cubic inch of fat and also requires more calories to maintain - so fitness of the rider is a factor in weight, as well as packed food weight to sustain that rider.

I think total dry weight of bicycle and gear, less food, water, and rider is the only near Apples-to-Apples comparison you can hope to make.
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline froze

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #18 on: December 23, 2020, 11:02:03 am »
I don't suppose we'll ever solve this equation since tourng weight is such a personal thing. And confusing as well. Are we talking about wieght of the bike, weight of the bike and racks and panniers/handelbar bag. With of the bike fully loaded with or without consumables. Do consumables include just water or fuel and food as well?  How much food and water - a day's worth, two days or whatever?  All very nebulous.



On my weights, I included everything and anything including stuff needed for 2 1/2 days. 

Offline John Nettles

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 1641
  • I ride for smiles, not miles.
Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #19 on: December 23, 2020, 11:08:18 am »
Rider weight is a separate factor. A cubic inch of muscle weighs roughly twice as much as a cubic inch of fat.
Great!  Since fat weighs less, I don't have to train now because that will just cause my weight to go up  ;D .

Offline hikerjer

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #20 on: December 23, 2020, 11:56:46 am »
"When weighing in for bike touring or backpacking I always consider "dry" weight - that is no food or water" --

Agreed that that is probably the best way to handle the issue although I do think it appropriate to include the weight of the racks when stating the weight of the bike and gear. So, for me it would be combined weight of the bike, racks and bottle cages. Panniers would be in a separate "gear" catagory along with a myriad of other stuff excluding consumables..
« Last Edit: December 23, 2020, 11:58:19 am by hikerjer »

Offline hikerjer

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #21 on: December 23, 2020, 12:00:00 pm »
Right. Now I can cancel the gym membership and use the money saved on fees to go to McDonalds. ;D

Offline John Nettles

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 1641
  • I ride for smiles, not miles.
Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #22 on: December 23, 2020, 12:03:43 pm »
What is a gym membership  ??? ??? 

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #23 on: December 23, 2020, 03:10:33 pm »
What is a gym membership  ??? ???

I think that's when you belong to a gym.

I belong to my bike.  And my dog.  And, oh yes, my wife.   8)

Offline froze

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #24 on: December 23, 2020, 07:39:20 pm »
What is a gym membership  ??? ???

I think that's when you belong to a gym.

I belong to my bike.  And my dog.  And, oh yes, my wife.   8)

I belong to God.

Offline hikerjer

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #25 on: December 23, 2020, 09:08:42 pm »
Gym: a place where people go clad in minimum tight fitting clothing to inflict physical punishment on themselves and hoping to meet beautiful people of the oppsite sex and find mostly, people as oveweight and unhealthy as themselves. But at least they're trying.  Personally, I'd rather ride my bike.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2020, 02:51:40 pm by hikerjer »

Offline froze

Re: Average Touring Weight observed at ACA HQ weigh-in?
« Reply #26 on: December 24, 2020, 01:05:51 am »
Gym?  I know a guy named Gym.