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Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

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Old 01-28-06, 03:19 AM   #1
Mr_Carrow
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Cannondale tourers - any good?

Hi All,
I'm planning to do a lot more touring in the next few years.
Im looking to buy a tourer, that I can use for long hauls as well as a daily commute (to get the most for my money).
I think the type of touring Ive got planned will require rear and possibly front panniers, but not huge amounts on weight etc.
I've got about 1000 (2000 dollars) to spend, and have looked at the Dawes range of tourers, and also the Cannondale Touring Classic 2006, does anyone have any opinions on whether this would fit the bill...I dont really wont to go down the custom frame route etc.

Also does anyone know the approximate frame sixes for this cannondale as they seem to come in sm, med, lrg etc.
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Old 01-28-06, 03:53 AM   #2
MichaelW
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'dales are tough and well proven but are really a big man's bike. The extra stiffness of their fat tubes can make the ride harsh for lighter riders and loads.
In the UK we also have good value tourers from Thorn, Orbit, Hewett, Saracen.
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Old 01-28-06, 04:10 AM   #3
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The seat tube lengths given on the Cannondale website appear to be "virtual" lengths therefore, the offering is as follows:

63.5cm
58.4cm
53.3cm
48.3cm
43.2cm

You would likely pick the size closest to the size that you currently ride. I am not that familiar with the Cannondale sizing methodolgy so, if someone provides different information on sizing or fitting these bikes then I respectfully defer to the higher authority.

Another bike you should consider being that you reside in England is the "Mercian". These bikes look excellent and are made for the long road.

http://www.merciancycles.com/frame_king_mercia.asp
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Old 01-28-06, 05:23 AM   #4
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I really like the looks of British touring bikes; with the King of Mercia leading the pack. I don't think you'll find better for the money.
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Old 01-28-06, 07:37 AM   #5
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Comfort, strength, reliability..........steel frames are the traditional compromise which best meets the tourist's criteria. Weight is a non-factor, once you're talking about carrying panniers.

Not saying you couldn't great great pleasure from a 'dale but I've never been tempted to look beyond the British traditional style- and there are so many excellent makers to choose from in the UK.
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Old 01-28-06, 09:29 AM   #6
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The cannondales are great bikes. Full geometry can be found on their website, for the T800 go here: http://www.cannondale.com/bikes/06/CUSA/model-6TR8.html
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Old 01-28-06, 11:06 AM   #7
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I got a Cannondale touring frame for $60.00 US once and a mechanic friend sent up with parts salvaged from two other bikes. Still works ok but. . . I live near Bruce Gordons' shop (he is in Petaluma) and was able to afford one of his Basic Loaded Touring bikes. The right frame size this time; the Cannondale was always a little small. The BG bike was $1650. Check his site if you have not brought your bike yet. www.bgcycles.com Bruce prefers people who will USE the bikes, not just let them sit in a garage.
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Old 01-28-06, 03:28 PM   #8
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Hi! Four years ago I bought my first bike, a Connondale Tourer T800. It has since gone across the continent (N.A.) twice, and seems to be holding up well. The aluminum is a bit stiff, but is very light and strong. A German lab has done some stress tests and puts the Cannondale frame at the top (--it may take a while, but I think I could find the web site if you're interested.)

I've had a couple of complaints: - (I have the largest frame) the rims are just standard touring gague, and the rear one didn't hold up very well for a big guy like me, fully loaded. The front one's ok, but it has considerably less weight.
- I had trouble with the small ring not holding up. The teeth would bend every once in a while, throwing the chain. Took me a while to figure out what the problem was and to learn to tweek it back. I had it replaced with a stronger ring, and have not had a problem.

My complaint rationale was: The largest bike they make will obviously be used by a heavier than average cyclist, so it should have some components that are stronger than regular components. But, overall I have been very pleased with it.
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Old 01-28-06, 09:23 PM   #9
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I have a '94 Cannondale T700 with over 50000 km on it. It has been a great bike for touring, commuting, recreation and training. I highly recommend the 'dale.
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