Author Topic: changes for self-supported tour  (Read 6021 times)

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Offline MrBig

changes for self-supported tour
« on: November 24, 2004, 05:54:55 pm »

I'd like to do some self-supported touring next summer -- a week or two in duration.  It's new for me.  I've always done fast supported rides with no baggage.

My favorite ride is a Litespeed Classic -- no eyelets. I'm thinking of selling a second bike to finance purchase of a BOB, rather than adapting racks to the bike.

My questions: the crank now is a standard Ultegra (53-39) and I'm sure I need to go lower.  Is it better to go to a triple or a compact crankset?  With a triple, do I absolutely need a new bottom bracket and rear derailleur?  I'm certain I need a new front shifter, but I'm kind of at a loss.  Also, does anyone have any experience mounting a compact or triple using the braze-on fitting on the Classic?

I'm now riding on Open Pro 32 spoke rims laced 14-15-14.  I'm big -- bike is 63 cm -- and I'm 6-4 and 200, but on the way to 190.  Am I asking for trouble?  Would I be better off swapping the back end for, say, a Phil 36 hub, laced with straight 14 gauge?

Thanks.  Any help is much appreciated.

Offline raider

changes for self-supported tour
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2004, 01:17:01 pm »
just bring some spare spokes.

Offline DaveB

changes for self-supported tour
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2004, 04:45:50 pm »
Adventure Cycling's catalog lists racks that mount to the rear dropouts of any bike and are held by the qr skewer. They don't require eyelets so your Litespeed could be fitted with them.  The major problem might be heel clearance with panniers since your bike has short chainstays.

Rack or BOB, a triple is definitely the way to go.  A "compact" crank has a 34T inner ring while Shimano's road triples have a 30T granny ring and can be easily refitted with a 26T.  Either will give you a lower gear than the compact. Your current "braze on" front derailleur tab should have enough adjustment to properly set the FD over either a Compact (50T) or road triple (52T) crank.

You will need a long cage rear derailleur and a new bottom bracket for the triple.  A long cage rear derailleur will probably be needed if you go with the compact crank, particularly if you use a wide range cassette.

Assuming your current set-up is Ultegra 9-speed STI, you will not have to change shifters.  The left 9-speed STI shifter works for both double and triple cranks.

It's not obvious but 14-15-14 butted spokes are more durable than straight 14-ga spokes.  Spokes don't break in the middle, they fail from fatigue at either the head or the nipple threads, both of which are in the thicker sections.   The thinner inner section of butted spokes actually serves to reduce the shock loading on the vulnerable ends.  

It is true that 36-spoke wheels are more durable than 32 but unless you plan on carrying a huge load, 32's are strong enough.