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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 03-31-06, 09:54 AM   #1
blinblue
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We should make a touring "what to bring" list

Now before you tell me that it has been done before, let me explain what I am thinking of.

First, I personally I have not yet gone on a tour (I will be going on my first one later this spring) and I still need to get most of my equipment (tent, sleeping bag, etc). I have been looking around this forum and around the net to get an idea of what models are good. But there is a dizzying amount of things out there, and for me personally, it is difficult to know where to get started.

So what I was thinking is make a list of equipment, but instead of just saying "you will need a good multitool" we will have a list of actual models. So instead of "you may want a 2 person tent for extra space even if you are going solo" there would be a list of good sized 2 person tents that aren't too heavy and pack fairly small.

And also have a list of good stores (online and not) to buy this equipment from.

One way I envision this is make a Wiki. For those that don't know, a Wiki is a page that anyone (or perhaps just registered users) can edit and make changes to. The most famous one is wikipedia.org, which has over 1 million user created and edited encyclopedia articles. The advantage of it being a wiki is it would be that as new models come out, it is easy for the list to be updated.

Anyone think that this is a good idea? I think it would really help newbies get started, because right now the only way to find recommendation for specific models is to painstakingly search through forums like these over and over and over. And believe me, it gets a bit tiring and discouraging for it to take so much time to find what you want.

If there is a list like this already, please point me to it.
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Old 03-31-06, 04:57 PM   #2
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Great idea! Fire ahead!
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Old 03-31-06, 05:02 PM   #3
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The reality is however you buy the cheap/crap stuff to start with, do a couple of tours, realise where you have gone gone wrong and and buy better and pass the old stuff onto newbies.

and repeat ad nausium
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Old 03-31-06, 06:31 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Brains
The reality is however you buy the cheap/crap stuff to start with, do a couple of tours, realise where you have gone gone wrong and and buy better and pass the old stuff onto newbies.

and repeat ad nausium
While I agree with that, and I think it is important for people to figure out what works for them (I might actually be doing a DIY pannier), I still think many people would find it beneficial to have one simple place to find recommendations for equipment. There is no need each newbie to reinvent the wheel. Plus, it would make it easy for people on these forums when a question like, "which tent should I buy" comes up. Because then you would have a single page to send them to.

Some other thoughts, I think it would also be useful for the recommendations to be broken into price categories (cheapest, more expensive, highest end, etc), obviously actual prices wouldn't be too useful as those change fairly fequently.

Anyway, I will look into the technical aspect of it soon.
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Old 03-31-06, 08:33 PM   #5
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Packing List ... complete with a few brand names:

http://www.machka.net/packinglist.htm


But some of the reasons I don't have specific brand names for a lot of things are:
1) because it doesn't really matter to me ... one is as good as another (I've never been much of a brand name person for anything)
2) or maybe I prefer one brand/type/style, but I know that other people prefer another.
3) or because I've picked up a lot of my stuff (especially the smaller bits and pieces) at places like dollar stores, or the "mini-bins" in the pharmacies of department stores, or wherever ... and once it is used up, or breaks, or whatever, I'll just pay $1 for another similar item.


Something else to keep in mind is that we're all from different countries. I get a lot of my camping gear from Canadian Tire or MEC, but those who live in the UK, USA, Australia, and other places don't have access to Canadian Tire or MEC. Also, I know that both the Australians and Europeans can get ahold of a whole range of tents which most outdoor goods stores here in Canada know nothing about. I'm thinking that to make a comprehensive list of everything would be a HUGE job.


And one more thing ... have you seen this site: http://www.bicycletouring101.com/
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Old 04-01-06, 12:58 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Machka
Packing List ... complete with a few brand names:

http://www.machka.net/packinglist.htm
WOW, I'm impressed that you got all that into two panniers. I love a challenge!
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Old 04-01-06, 01:10 AM   #7
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WOW, I'm impressed that you got all that into two panniers. I love a challenge!
Two panniers (filled about 3/4 full), 1 Carradice Nelson Long-flap (stuffed full), 1 handlebar bag (filled about 1/2 full), and a waist pouch (with my money, ID, etc.)!!


But I also don't bring absolutely every single item on that list on every tour. I do leave one or two things behind.
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Old 04-01-06, 01:14 AM   #8
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My list needs to place upper limits as to space requirements. and weight as one packs. I have problems with keeping the weight down even when it comes to regular vacations .( Keeping the weight under 70 lbs. before boarding a plane. Why would I act differently when it comes to bike tours. No self restraint.
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Old 04-01-06, 01:22 AM   #9
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There was such a list: try searching for a thread that mentions the need for a small brown towel that dries quickly when hung from the back of your bike.

P.S., I don't think you need more than about 30 lbs (unless you're pushing a shoping cart).
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Old 04-01-06, 05:49 AM   #10
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third pounds is a good standard to achieve. I am sure my non supported tours were more like 50. Effect on steering the bike, to me, sort of makes it feel like steering a shopping cart.
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Old 04-01-06, 10:34 AM   #11
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The search feature for the Forums works very well. Here are two previous threads to check out:

Two week tour, what to bring?

Don't leave home without it...

Have fun
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Old 04-05-06, 03:41 AM   #12
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making a list for beginners sounds pretty nice, except:

- everybody is looking for different features, depending on their own personal style

- for every item you can think of, there are 100's to choose from. how many can you list?

- products hit the market, evolve, and dissappear with the speed of government spending. everything would have to be constantly updated.

what you'd end up having would be hundreds of peoples comments on new and old products, everyone's own advice on different aspects of touring, route information and updates, etc, etc.


which is what we already have here.

if you want to know more than you'll ever really need to know about what's the best touring bike, which tent is best, etc., all the info both new and old is already here. if you can't make up your mind about which toothpaste to bring, you can start a thread and find out in a day or two.
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