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new(ish) Ortliebs

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 2:25pm
Decent tutorial.

As an extra observation, I bought a length of black air hose with the same internal diameter as both racks a couple of years back for the same reason. The colour doesn't detract from the whole rig and air hose is pretty rubbery but tough. I guess it has to be for it's designed function. The panniers are quiet now and the racks aren't being eaten by my Ortliebs anymore. I took the inserts off the bags btw.

Re: Marin muirwoods as a tourer

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 1:58pm
i bought a couple of 1994-edition (i think) steel framed Marin Muirwoods as a way to get a cheap steel frame. replaced all the parts with new stuff.
We rode them on a 9month tour through Asia.

Frames were great... although i managed to snap one chainstay on mine halfway through the tour... though that's probably more a manufacturing defect.

Geometry-wise there's a couple of things to think about (i didnt notice either of these things until i swapped to the Surly Frame [same parts]) halfway through the tour.
* im not really sure why but the handling is quite jittery/noodly under load. particularly if you have a handlebar bag. we had decent headsets and there was no issue of headset play. put the same parts on my surly and the problem just disappeared. this wasnt really apparent when riding without pannier load.
* pedal stroking. maybe the frame was too small for me, but i feel like the seat position was too far behind the bottom bracket... so my pedal stroke was more a push forward rather than down. changing to the surly frame was a weird feeling bcos suddenly i was pushing down again. much more comfortable
* chainstay length. this was short-ish on the muirwoods and luckily i had racks that i could push the panniers an inch or so further back to avoid heel strike. even so it was a bit of problem sometimes.

totally agree with previous poster on upgrading wheels if going for a long tour as they will probably fail under touring loads/abuse.

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 1:25pm
+1 for the camping option, especially if there are no other campsites within a few miles. You could even consider having a couple of tents for hire when your rooms are full. (These wouldn't need to be very expensive - above the cheapest level, what you pay for in a tent are mainly light weight and ability to withstand wind - neither of which would be important for you, assuming you had a reasonably sheltered camping area.)

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 12:45pm
This is a good point, and touring cyclists like to know they're going to be able to stop somewhere. An area for tents that is sheltered from the prevailing wind is nice - some have tenting areas exposed to gales. And the campers need access to the toilets during the night, obvs.

Re: new(ish) Ortliebs

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 11:35am
I use them for carrying things like non cycling shoes (teva type sandals or crocs for example) or sometimes my waterproof top if it is showery and going on and off and on the last trip a rolled up alpkit Gordon lightweight rucksack that I took for day walks, going on the ferry, etc. have also been used for short term transport of baguettes...

You obviously have to make sure you pull them tight to avoid losing stuff but they work well.

Re: Lowest gear for touring including load-pulling

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 11:08am
I use a 36/24 front with 11-36 cassette on 26" wheels. Any lower and I'd fall off. I do use the lowest gear up hills like "mount Gabriel" (28% on one bend) and I somehow got 4th fastest time on the descent to Schull the other side so the 36t front ring dosn't seem to hold me back at all. I love the double set up as I'm lazy so spend most of the time like I'm on a single ring set up and just drop down for the steep hills. On the odd occasion I outpedal my top gear I don't worry as it's a "touring" bike and not a race bike so I enjoy the freewheeling.

Re: This morning...

Cycling UK Forum - On the road - 3 April 2016 - 10:43am
My right foot was straight up, waiting to set off...

Re: new(ish) Ortliebs

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 10:30am
Thanks for the reply hamish.
No, not an answer to my two questions, but is on topic.

So can I ask what you use those top straps for?

Re: What should we have in our bunkhouse

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 10:03am
i use quite a lot of bunkhouses, hostels, bothys, etc. I don't like booking really so tend to turn up or phone on the day. What I really like is places that I can turn up to and stay if there is room but camp outside if there isn't. That means you don't have to worry about booking but know you have somewhere you can stay at, use the kitchen, etc and then sleep outside if need be. I don't mind paying the full fee if need be as I'm not avoiding the cost. I just like the freedom of this option.

So if you have some convenient flat and not too boggy grass nearby, don't have problems with allowing camping and can find a way of fitting it into your pricing, etc. I recon it would be a good option to include.

Re: new(ish) Ortliebs

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 9:47am
I know I am not responding to your question but have been looking at the panniers too and have an observation that you may find relevant. I have older bikepacker plus panniers. They have been fantastic. One negative point on the new ones is the lack of the top straps that go over the pannier lid. I really like those straps on my version and use them for all kinds of things. I would miss them if I changed to the newer versions.

Re: Barbed Wire Trap set on trail in Kent

Cycling UK Forum - MTB - 3 April 2016 - 9:43am
reohn2 wrote:Taken to it's logical conclusion it is terrorism

It's then use of unlawful force to achieve a political objective? How does that work?

Depending on the motive it's anything from being a pecker through to attempted murder, but I can't quite see the link with terrorism.

Re: Dogs on cycle paths - how many where you live?

Cycling UK Forum - On the road - 3 April 2016 - 9:28am
I like playful dogs, even the big ones. Ive yet to be so hassled by one that I've had to take control of it and march it back to its owner. Looking forward to it, tbh, provided I dont get bitten, that would not make a good day out.

I love them, others dont. I do see their point of view. Those who dont like them often get anxious and afraid, then situations get confrontational which is unpleasant for all involved. Nothing worse than an anxious over-reactive owner who gets stroppy and ups the ante, transmits her fear straight down the lead etc. Then they start the blaming nonsense. IMHO a lot of owners dont ubderstand how their pets tiny mind works, join in, fught their childrens squabbles etc. There are very few overtly aggressive dogs, but many that will react to their owners feelings.

Best way to behave is to calm oneself down, deep slow breaths as needed, then talk sensibly to people. Easier said than achieved.
Of course, those with a strong dislike of dogs tend to avoid the doggy areas. A mile further on is almost always dog-free.

My dog has only ever shown interest in one person on a bike, and knocked him off - me.
Who can I blame, shout at, and denounce to the authorities ?
Of course, the council, its always their fault, "they should do something about it". Nice soft grass verges to land on please.

Re: Dogs on cycle paths - how many where you live?

Cycling UK Forum - On the road - 3 April 2016 - 8:51am
I was in the 2 Tunnels near Bath yesterday. Scores of families out on their bikes without lights.

BUT there was also a dog walker with his terrier off the lead AND the damn thing had no lights either. [emoji849]

Re: 6 months in Western Europe - complete beginner

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 8:41am
The longest I have toured is 4 months - Maintenance generally comes down to checking the rack bolts once a week, a bit of air in the tyres when it feels a bit sluggish, WD 40 on the chain when it rains heavily, proper oil on the chain when it dries up - halfway I got a bike shop to change the cassette and chain (about 5000km plus the 3500km they had on them before I started) on a day off - I always carry brake blocks - easy to wash out a set descending on very wet days - spare brake and gear cable and rack bolts are the only other spares outside of a couple of inner tubes

Re: Dogs on cycle paths - how many where you live?

Cycling UK Forum - On the road - 3 April 2016 - 8:18am
khain wrote:Dogs are not unpredictable - you might not be able to read their body language, but that's a different problem.
In many years of cycling I've had a "face plant" from a loose dog.
I've been pursued by dogs ranging from a Great Dane (had to get the police to deal with that as it was a regular occurrence so I suppose it was predictable )
to a Jack Russell - shouted at that and it ran back into a driveway only to reappear backed up by a Rottweiler - (I discovered I could still sprint)
I've had a playful border collie running out of a farm entrance and biting my shoes ( the farmer saw my point and I never had any problem after that.)
I've had foul abuse from owners of uncontrolled dogs who resent a request that they call off their dog.
When I was a child I was knocked over by a playful Alsation - this to the amusement of the owner.
My sister had four ridgebacks - she also had a cat which had lived amicably with the dogs for some years. One day the cat jumped down from the refrigerator and set on by the dogs and torn to pieces.
IMO no owner will know with 100% certainty what their dog will do. They are pack animals - they cannot be reasoned with and can only be controlled - something which many owners are unable or unwilling to do.
Some of us are wary of dogs with good reason.
I generally avoid shared use paths.

Re: 6 months in Western Europe - complete beginner

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 3 April 2016 - 8:03am
I have to admit that I don't do much with my bike whilst touring. I fix anything that goes wrong, and if it gets really dirty, I clean the worst off. I wipe the chain down and relubricate it. Petrol station paper towels or baby wipes are fine for that.

I've never toured for as long as 6 months, but I don't guess I would do much more, except that you will need to give it a proper clean & inspection now and again and replace some parts like brake pads. I probably wouldn't carry them with me, but buy them when it loked like the old ones were getting worn enough to need replacement. If you go off into the Finnish wilderness or something, it's a good idea to plan for not having access to a bike shop.

Re: Chris Boardman vid

Cycling UK Forum - Racing - 2 April 2016 - 9:02pm
Enjoyed that, thanks for the link.

Re: Chris Boardman vid

Cycling UK Forum - Racing - 2 April 2016 - 9:02pm
Enjoyed that, thanks for the link.

Re: I wasn't expecting that!

Cycling UK Forum - On the road - 2 April 2016 - 8:10pm
On motorcycles they use a long slot so the wheel has to come out some way before the brake plate would disengage.

I not sure I like either of those pics that much.

Re: Critiques of routes for touring

Cycling UK Forum - Touring & Expedition - 2 April 2016 - 8:08pm
I wouldn't say that I had a bad time. I enjoyed being out in the country, seeing various wildlife, seeing historical buildings (e.g. the Priory at Canons Ashby - though I would have enjoyed it more if I could have gone inside - the advantage of actual touring where you don't need to make so much distance in one day.), and the achievement of the ride. I would have enjoyed it more had navigation been accomplished better. But, I enjoyed the day. I just want to do it even better next time.

Thanks for the advice about the prepared routes. I'll check them out. I've already started looking at a Gloucester route replan, but there seems to be a bit of a shortage of small roads northeast of Gloucester.

Today I frequently used my phone to tell me where I was. Until the battery ran out - near the end of the journey. Next time I want to have more than one charged battery. A cycle computer would help as if I need to 'turn right' with no street name after 5.2km, then I need to know when I"ve travelled 5.2km.

BTW: I live in Leicester. I typically either take a train out from, or a train back to, Leicester. I can very easily plan long routes around Leicester itself, but I find it more interesting to go further afield. Putting the train into the equation allows going further than an out and back trip. I have cycled around Leicester and to/from towns/cities around Leicester quite a bit. So, some of the novelty has worn off.

IMHO using Google Maps to repair navigation errors is a little bit dangerous. As even if a cycle route is selected, it seems to insist that you find the nearest massive and busy A-road, and ride along it.

EDIT: If it's a good idea, I can solve the Stratford-upon-Avon --> Leicester leg by simply heading east from S-U-A onto the Fosse Way, and then following the Fosse Way all the way home. Good Roman road. Straight as a die and takes me nearly home from all the way out there.
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