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Old 01-15-06, 07:20 AM   #1
trmcgeehan
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I was looking at the latest America by Bicycle tour brochure, and in it they recommend buying a new bike before taking a tour. I have four road bikes, ranging from 10-25 years old, all expertly maintained by my LBS. What's wrong with taking an old bike you know well? I was looking at the Fast America South 2,899 mile coast to coast in 27 days. It says you have to be able to average 16.5 mph, so this leaves me out. I couldn't average 16.5 off a 1,000 foot cliff! Maybe they have a Slow America South tour for old farts on old bikes.
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Old 01-15-06, 07:30 AM   #2
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Nothing at all wrong with an old bike you know well. I suspect it's a self-serving ploy to make it less likely someone will show up with a bike which will need lots of repair work during the tour; repair work that the tour operator may have to do.
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Old 01-15-06, 12:02 PM   #3
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Because many of their customers will be people who see the ad, think it'll be great, and go get there 20-year-old, dust-covered bike out of the garage, and lack to common sense to realise it won't hold up for a 1000 mile tour.

You obviously don't fall in this category.
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Old 01-15-06, 07:53 PM   #4
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A new bike with no miles on it to begin a tour is asking for a major breakdown and much more likely to break down. And if it breaks down, you will be out of reach from the LBS you bought it from and thus will possibly have to pay for breakdowns or adjustments that your LBS would normally cover with a new bike for free.

Use your used bikes, just check it out yourself before you go. If you really feel inclined to buy a new bike, ride it a few 100 miles at first and do a mini shakedown tour to test your gear and to modify what you will need or not.

Consider taking a tour by yourself. You decide the pace, you decide the route, you decide where you want to stop and how you want to stop. If you want to take a day off, do it.

The downside of course is you won't have constant companionship during the tour.

Good luck
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Old 01-17-06, 05:43 AM   #5
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I have a book called "Over the Hills" -- the story of an LA Times reporter who rode across the U.S. alone. He didn't train for it -- he trained as he went. He also smoked all the way across the U.S. at age 55.
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Old 01-17-06, 06:28 AM   #6
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oh my god! why didn't someone tell me sooner?! i've been touring on the same bike for near 35 years now. guess i'd better toss it in the trash, preferably right now.
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Old 01-17-06, 06:39 AM   #7
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hi - me again. my calculator tells me that that's an average 107 miles per day. a respectable average distance but at 16.5 mph, you'll be done in 6 1/2 hours riding. with an early start that means done for the day by lunch time!

how about 10 hours in the saddle at an average of 10 or 11 mph?
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Old 01-17-06, 02:22 PM   #8
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many a good tune been played with an old fiddle ...

i have old bikes that are well looked after and well maintained that still continue to cover big mileage quite reliably ...

i can't understand the philosophy behind the 'buy a new bike' comment ...

ride something you are comfortable with
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Old 01-17-06, 04:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philso
oh my god! why didn't someone tell me sooner?! i've been touring on the same bike for near 35 years now. guess i'd better toss it in the trash, preferably right now.
But, and this argument worked on my wife , if you don't buy a new touring bike at least once in a while (and 35 years is impressive), they aren't going to make them anymore. Look around and see how many good touring bikes you can find at your local bike shop. Chances are maybe one really, really dusty one in the back corner. Think of those that come after you
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Old 01-17-06, 09:39 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by cyccommute
But, and this argument worked on my wife , if you don't buy a new touring bike at least once in a while (and 35 years is impressive), they aren't going to make them anymore. Look around and see how many good touring bikes you can find at your local bike shop. Chances are maybe one really, really dusty one in the back corner. Think of those that come after you
therein lies the rub. the biggest reason that i don't buy a new tourer (beyond the fact that my current one is my oldest best friend) is that to buy a new one of similar quality, i'd probably end up spending $2,000 - $3,000. and for what, a few extra cogs in the back and a few braze-ons. well, maybe someday
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Old 01-19-06, 10:04 AM   #11
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Another reason for not getting a new bike would be your body. Unless you have gotten the bike soon enough for your riding muscles to adjust to a new ride, I would suggest sticking with what you are used to riding. A new bike can have enough differences in geomitry to use muscles differently. An example would be forward and rearward positioning of the saddle affects how much I use my quads and or hamstring muscles.

There are exceptions to every rule or theory, but this idealogy is something to consider. Some exceptions I can think of are not training for the tour, buying a newer identical bicycle, and someone that can set up a bike to fit themselves quickly (person that documents measurements of a good fitting bicycle).
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