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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 08-20-11, 02:54 AM   #1
xray1978
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A long ride on a bike not made specifically for distance

So have any of you rode long distances on a bike that was not made specifically for super long rides? Think English 3 speeds, beach cruisers, mountain bikes, ect.

This summer I rode a single speed beach cruiser 80 miles over rolling hills, not truly long distance, but sure felt like it at the end of the day. If you have any experiences please share them.

Am I crazy to take my Raleigh 3 speed on the Bike Across Kansas next year? Surely someone on the RAGBRAI has done it on an old 3 speed.
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Old 08-20-11, 07:18 AM   #2
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I've done some longer rides on a folding bike that was really meant for short trips. It wasn't too bad, since most of those times I was stopping a lot.

If the route is flat, you plan to stop a lot, you're not in a rush, mechanically the bike is in top shape, and you're certain you can tolerate a week in that position, it might work. It sounds like this ride has SAG support and in the worst case scenario you can bail.

Since the next BAK is next year, you could always take the 3 speed out for a weekend and see how it goes.
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Old 08-20-11, 07:28 AM   #3
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I rode a MTB 3000 miles a few years ago, on a bike tour. There's a guy who rides a schwinn stingray on bike tour of colorado every year....
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Old 08-20-11, 07:33 AM   #4
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2200 miles NM to FL

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Old 08-20-11, 08:08 AM   #5
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I rode my track bike 130 miles once. It was a little hilly, not a lot. Some of the steep hills put a strain on my lower back. I don't recommend it. I'm sure there are others that have done more.
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Old 08-20-11, 08:41 PM   #6
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I did a super randonneur series on a mountain bike. If the bike fits you and you can get comfortable, then you can do it. In the case of a Raleigh 3-speed, I'd be really worried if there were a lot of hills. I have an old Superbe, and the low gear is not all that helpful for climbing.
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Old 08-20-11, 09:24 PM   #7
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I did my first 5 centuries and first 200k on a Worksman single speed cruiser.
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Old 08-20-11, 10:06 PM   #8
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I've done about 5 centuries, 2 200ks, and a handful of 100k rides on my commuter. It's got a nice bailout gear, so the hills don't own me.

Key is getting your fit dialed in (a bike fit can help). Anywhere you have pain, figure out what's causing it, and adjust as necessary. My last century was pain-free. My first few? Not so much.
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Old 08-20-11, 10:09 PM   #9
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People have done rides like RAGBRAI and Bike Across Kansas on everything from a Penny Farthing to Walmart bikes to whatever you can imagine. Doing one of those rides on a Raleigh 3 speed should be no problem. As long as you can ride 60-70 miles in 12hrs you should be fine.
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Old 08-21-11, 12:04 AM   #10
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See this thread ... http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...Raono-on-a-MTB

I did my first 200K on a heavy department store mtn bike.
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Old 08-21-11, 12:19 AM   #11
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My first century (actually it turned out to be a double metric after a wrong turn adventure) was done on a MTB that retailed for $150.

If I was to go distance on a Raleigh Sports I'd wrap the bars from levers to stem. I'd probably consider getting a longer than stock stem, maybe even swap the bars for mustache bars or something of the sort.

Absolutely crucial is the proper saddle for your butt.

I'd probably ditch the fenders for the ride also.
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Old 08-21-11, 03:37 AM   #12
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Alright, then I will ride the crap out of the old Raleigh until I get everything dialed in. The reason I want to use this bike is because it does not hurt me to ride it longer distances and it is currently my lightest bike . I have problems with my wrists where if I put much pressure on them it really hurts

I think I can easily ride 60-70 miles in 12 hrs so I might be fit enough right now. I don't know how well I would handle doing these distances over many days. I average 15 mph on 30 mile rides on my 48# 3 speed beach cruiser over hilly terrain. I don't know if that is a good gauge or not for my current fitness. I do know the Raleigh weighs in at a mere 35# and I feel like I have wings if I have been riding the cruiser a lot like I have been this summer.

More time riding will only improve the situation, I know nothing beats time in the saddle. I am obviously not looking to be the guy at the front of the pack or even the the middle. I have always wanted to do this ride and would be happy to just finish.
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Old 08-22-11, 07:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
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I did my first 5 centuries and first 200k on a Worksman single speed cruiser.
That's incredible! Where did you ride?
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Old 09-22-11, 08:43 PM   #14
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63 Miles is my longest distance on my hybrid. I've gone to 700 X 25 tires and turn off the shock on the front fork. Saddle is great, but get numb in my hands after 5 miles. Bar ends and gel gloves have done nothing to alleviate it, and I think its due more to my previously diagnosed but untreated carpal tunnel syndrome. Shake my hands out every so often and the come back for a while. 40 seemed easy last weekend on this bike. Drooling for a new road bike to add more miles next season.
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Old 09-22-11, 10:02 PM   #15
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my hands get numb in 5 miles on straight bars, and I've heard this is not uncommon. I have to remember to move my hands around on my 10 mile commute when I ride my straight bar commuter.

With drop bars, I have very few problems. I didn't notice it on the ride, but I'm still suffering a very mild neuroma in my left hand from PBP. I should probably do something about it.
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Old 09-23-11, 05:28 AM   #16
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I did 115 miles on a Schwinn OCC chopper. Built it with an 8-speed hub.

As long as you have the right seat and fit, you can ride almost anything.
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Old 09-23-11, 10:33 AM   #17
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Hey, unterhausen,

Interesting, I have the same numbness problem with straight bars. And also have some residual numbness in my left-hand from PBP. Hope it goes away, soon, but history (BMB '06, PBP '07, a 1000Km last year) suggests I won't get full feeling back until about January.

Nick
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Old 09-23-11, 11:11 AM   #18
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Nick, after I posted above, I told myself to go take some fish oil and Ibuprofen, but of course I forgot. I have had neuromas respond to fish oil before, but of course there is no way to know for sure that the fish oil contributed. They do seem to get better all on their own.
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Old 09-23-11, 12:10 PM   #19
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I got the numb hand thing once on a 1200k. It went away after quite a while. I haven't had any hand problems since I started riding with my forearms on the tops of the bars. In an aerobar type position.
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Old 09-23-11, 12:56 PM   #20
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Before I knew anything about decent bikes, I did several metric centuries on a Target Huffy MTB.....I'm spolied now.
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Old 09-23-11, 01:26 PM   #21
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I got the numb hand thing once on a 1200k. It went away after quite a while. I haven't had any hand problems since I started riding with my forearms on the tops of the bars. In an aerobar type position.
that hurts just to think about. Do you have anything special on there to keep your forearms from being compressed?
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Old 09-23-11, 02:34 PM   #22
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I started my life filled with "long distance riding" by pedaling away to my grandparents home. The trip was 52 miles - and I completed it in four hours and thirty minutes at the age of fourteen. The bicycle pictured below was purchased with my paper-route money - from a mail order outlet at the heft price of thirty one dollars.

This is me - posing at the finish line -several hours after arriving.
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Old 09-23-11, 04:45 PM   #23
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you guys are truly cyclist from all aspect of it.

i'm amazed!
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Old 09-23-11, 07:37 PM   #24
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I recently completed the 100k D2R2 ride on an old Raleigh M-80. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Pics are on my blog.
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Old 09-23-11, 07:52 PM   #25
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I've done 8 half centuries, 2 metrics, and 1 century on my 1995 GT mountain bike. Tomorrow I plan on doing a 70 miler. Hoping to do at least another metric after that before the season ends.

Want to get a road bike but I'm fearful that it may be very uncomfortable at my current... uh... girth.
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