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  1. #1
    Senior Member adamlaw's Avatar
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    Packing list for out of town tandem rally

    My wife and I are going to the South Tier Tandem Rally. This is the first time we have been to a tandem rally and hope it will be the first of many to come. We are wondering what we need to bring aside from captain/stoker and tandem? Also, should we attach a pannier rack or is this unnecessary? We plan to stay at a B & B, so we are not bringing camping equipment. We would like to create a master list we can laminate and use on future excursions - tools, clothing, spares, first aid etc. On this occasion we are able to travel by road, but in the future we may need to travel by air to rallies and won't be able to carry as much.

  2. #2
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    This is just my single bike day ride list, but it's a start for others to add to:

    Bike
    Check tire pressures
    Map or directions
    Map holder
    Pump
    Floor pump
    Cell phone with case
    1 large water bottle, filled
    Food drink in other water bottle
    Extra food powder
    Hammer Gel and holster
    Recovery foods and drinks
    Recovery pills & vitamins
    Helmet
    Sunglasses
    Various lenses
    Sunglasses chamois
    Heart rate monitor & receiver
    Sprayer
    Watch
    Shoes
    Booties
    Gloves
    Headbands (2?)
    Black poly skullcap
    Jersey
    Undershirt
    Shorts or tights
    Arm warmers
    Leg warmers
    Plastic bags
    Plastic cover for computer
    Jacket
    Wind vest
    Sun screen
    Eye drops
    Chamois cream
    Energy bars
    Calling card
    Credit card
    Cash
    Driver’s license
    Health insurance card
    Keys
    Spare tubes (correct tubes! Check valves)
    Multi-tool
    Spoke wrench
    Chain tool
    Tire levers for other peoples' bikes
    Patch kit (check goop)
    Tire boots
    After-ride clothes
    Asthma stuff
    Set altimeter
    Set Polar sampling rate
    Cue sheets
    Event paperwork

  3. #3
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I think that you're making this too hard.

    Mrs. Grouch and I have been to many tandem rallys. Riding clothes, a set (or 2) of casual clothes for the evening, and we're good-to-go.

  4. #4
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    In our saddle bag we always have:
    Tube (s)
    Patches (self adhesive)
    Multi-tool (with chain breaker and tire lever)
    Extra tire lever
    Tire boot
    CO2 cartrige w/valve
    Chain piece (3 links) and master link
    Advil $ and ID's

    On the frame we always have:
    Tail light
    Morph frame pump

    For multi-day events we always take:
    Extra set of wheels with mounted tires (if traveling by car) If flying two extra tubes and one folding tire
    Frame tool (traveling tandem)
    Extra set of disc brake pads
    Extra set of pedal cleats (frogs)
    Tool case
    One long DR and one long brake cable.
    Chain oil and small tube of grease

  5. #5
    Senior Member adamlaw's Avatar
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    Travelin' light

    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    I think that you're making this too hard.

    Mrs. Grouch and I have been to many tandem rallys. Riding clothes, a set (or 2) of casual clothes for the evening, and we're good-to-go.
    Thanks for the beatnik approach - we'll carry pack of smiles.

    Carbonfiberboy What is hammer gel and holster?

    Cornucopia 72
    Several items here that wouldn't have occurred to me, thanks
    Last edited by adamlaw; 07-25-09 at 05:22 PM. Reason: inclusiveness

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    We bring a couple of other things on a weekend or longer trip with tandem:

    spare spokes (rack trunk)
    spare tire (to leave in car or hotel)
    some first aid stuff in tandem rack trunk (handiwipes, gauze and tape)

  7. #7
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Hammergel is like GU. It's just for quick energy. The holster is to carry the flask in.

    I always am entertained by packing lists. Everyone has to determine there comfort level for what is important and not important. I'm usually glad someone else is carrying all that stuff. Just in case I need to borrow it.
    I'm a firm believer in keeping my good quality equipment in prime working condition so that I do not have to worry about things breaking. Sure things happen but I can count on one hand those events over the last ten years. That philosophy has worked well for me. My packing list is probably very similar to Retro Grouch's.

    Yeah, I'm new here but not new to cycling.

  8. #8
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    We are wondering what we need to bring aside from captain/stoker and tandem?

    Everyone's a little bit different and obviously the weather will play into the equation. However, common sense and a review of each Rally's agenda will usually give you clues as to what you'll need.

    Off-Bike Clothes: No real need to pack anything you wouldn't take on any other weekend trip aside from cycling clothes. Most banquets are casual and you'll see folks in sandals with shorts and cycling T-shirts as well as others who'll be in dockers with a button down; kinda depends on what you're more comfortable in. I don't like to do breakfast in cycling gear so I'll always pack sweats to wear in the AM.

    On Bike Clothes: Again, somewhat personal. For us, 3 days of riding = 3 sets of cycling apparel and for Debbie that usually means 3 sleeveless jerseys and 2 jerseys with sleeves "just in case". I always throw arm warmers in our travel bag and we also keep our O2 rain jackets in the travel bag "just in case". Some of the hardcore touring / frugal types may only take one cycling kit and wash them out each night to cut down on what they need to carry. Of course, when the turns cool or could be cool (always check the long-range forecast for where ever you're headed), a set of kickers or knee warmers could come in handy. The colder it gets, the more stuff we tend to pack, e.g., tights, long sleeve jerseys, wind vests, ear warmers, etc... Again, it all depends. Of course, don't forget your cycling eyewear, helmet and cycling shoes: you'd be amazed at how many times we've seen folks show up to rallies who left their shoes at home that go out searching for a bike shop.

    For the body / safety: Sunscreen, chamois cream, Tylenol, lip balm, med-alert bracelets and I always keep color copies of our drivers license and medical cards with emergency contact numbers stuffed in our seat packs.

    Other non-bike stuff: A camera if you're into collecting photos of your travels and a cell phone.

    The Bike: Again, this varies from team to team. I tend to be a good-cycling-samaritan and on road trips I'll have a folding work stand, my tool box and lots of spare parts so that anyone who has a problem isn't left stranded if there isn't a tandem or bike shop owner at the rally to take care of those things. I also carry either a spare rim when I have my conventional wheels or I'll have my conventional wheels in a wheel bag if I've decided to fit a boutique wheelset to the tandem for the rally.

    However, for 'normal' folks just throw in an extra tube and a spare tire along with your floor pump and you should be good to go, assuming your tandem is reliable and receives periodic maintenance. Make sure your tires aren't 'about due' for change, make sure your seat pack actually has the stuff in it that you think you usually carry (funny how those things can be used or misplaced) and that your chain has been wiped down and lubed.

    The tandems that have the most problems at rallies are the brand-new ones that haven't been fully sorted-out, the ones that don't get used that much (lots of user-induced issues on these), and then there are the basket cases that aren't well-maintained and always seem to be breaking down. If you fall into one of these three categories, bring your tools or an icy cold six-pack of good beer (Corona's my favorite) to offer up to anyone nice enough to help you with your tandem during the weekend.

    Also, should we attach a pannier rack or is this unnecessary?

    Again, it's a personal thing and there are folks who will always have a trunk bag sitting on a rear rack of their tandem even on their rides at home and/or if they ride with kids and need to carry snacks and other kid-related stuff. The only time we've used a trunk bag was when we were touring and wanted to have extra room for the aforementioned foul weather gear, bag lunches or small souvenirs and a spare tire + tubes. However, we've never used one at a rally weekend. So, as I say, unless you're going somewhere where the temperature ranges are pretty extreme from AM to PM and you'll need a place to stash a jacket or leg warmers and/or a rain jacket or just like to carry a lot of stuff, if you don't normally use one you probably don't need one for rally.

  9. #9
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Being minimalists at a tandem rally we carry our usual:
    Pump, 2 spare spokes (mounted under boob tube), patch kit, tire tools, spare tube, chainlinks/tool, sunscreen + food/water; if inclement weather beckons maybe rain gear. Do bring an if needed use/carry: armwarmers/jacket/long gloves. No need for panniers; trunkbag is sufficient.
    There's usually good sag support at rallies.
    Ride TWOgether/enjoy!
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  10. #10
    Senior Member JTGraphics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    This is just my single bike day ride list, but it's a start for others to add to:

    Bike
    Check tire pressures
    Map or directions
    Map holder
    Pump
    Floor pump
    Cell phone with case
    1 large water bottle, filled
    Food drink in other water bottle
    Extra food powder
    Hammer Gel and holster
    Recovery foods and drinks
    Recovery pills & vitamins
    Helmet
    Sunglasses
    Various lenses
    Sunglasses chamois
    Heart rate monitor & receiver
    Sprayer
    Watch
    Shoes
    Booties
    Gloves
    Headbands (2?)
    Black poly skullcap
    Jersey
    Undershirt
    Shorts or tights
    Arm warmers
    Leg warmers
    Plastic bags
    Plastic cover for computer
    Jacket
    Wind vest
    Sun screen
    Eye drops
    Chamois cream
    Energy bars
    Calling card
    Credit card
    Cash
    Driverís license
    Health insurance card
    Keys
    Spare tubes (correct tubes! Check valves)
    Multi-tool
    Spoke wrench
    Chain tool
    Tire levers for other peoples' bikes
    Patch kit (check goop)
    Tire boots
    After-ride clothes
    Asthma stuff
    Set altimeter
    Set Polar sampling rate
    Cue sheets
    Event paperwork
    You forgot a Master Link
    It may not be fancy but it gets me were I need to go.
    http://www.jtgraphics.net/cyclist_bicycles.htm

  11. #11
    Senior Member adamlaw's Avatar
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    Here is my whittled down packing list!

    Thanks for the group effort here. Aside from Retro-Grouche's non-list list, here is my alphabetized list:

    2 Helmets
    2 large water bottles
    3 days off-bike clothes
    3 days on-bike clothes
    acetaminophen
    Cash
    cell phone
    Cell phone with case
    Chain oil and small tube of grease
    Chain piece (3 links) and master link
    Chain tool
    chamois cream
    color copies drivers license and medical card in bike
    Credit card
    Cycling shoes
    Driverís license
    Dry lubricant
    Event paperwork
    Extra set of disc brake pads
    Extra set of pedal cleats (zeros)
    Floor pump
    Frame tool (traveling tandem)
    Gloves
    Health insurance card
    Inner tubes
    Keys
    lip balm
    Map or directions
    master link
    Multi-tool (with chain breaker and tire lever)
    naproxen
    One long derailer and one long brake cable.
    Plastic bags
    Portable work stand - car travel
    Pump
    Rain jackets
    spare pedals
    spare spokes
    spare tire
    Spoke wrench
    Sunglasses
    Sunglasses chamois
    sunscreen
    Tail light
    Tandem
    Tandem stand
    Tool case
    Watch

  12. #12
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    You forgot something...I don't know what it is but I bet you forgot it! As soon as you need it you'll know what it is though. It always works that way...

  13. #13
    Senior Member DCwom's Avatar
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    We were thinking of going to the STTR this year but things didn't work out. We too have never been to a tandem rally, but I never thought of bringing much more than the bike and our basic support pack (tubes, tools, etc). Isn't the STTR associated with a bike shop and don't they have some sort of SAG? I kind of figured that was what rallies were about, meeting other tandemeers with supported organized rides.

  14. #14
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DCwom View Post
    Isn't the STTR associated with a bike shop and don't they have some sort of SAG? I kind of figured that was what rallies were about, meeting other tandemeers with supported organized rides.
    STTR has been hosted by Rich Shapiro who has been running Gear-to-Go Tandems (www.gtgtandems.com) out of his home for many, many years... noting that home-based tandem speciality dealers have been the norm for over 20 years, e.g., Tandems East, Tandems Ltd, Precision Tandems and a few others that have come and gone.

    Rallies are about meeting other tandem enthusiasts but most are not technically 'supported' rides with SAG vehicles and mechanics or even bicycle shops as sponsors / official support folks. In fact, most rally organizers will make a point of telling attendees that they should be self-sufficient, but will note that there are often times folks at rallies and/or dealers attending who may be able to offer assistance. As for on-road break downs, carry a cell phone and the organizers will usually find someone who will come to your rescue.

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