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Old 11-01-06, 09:51 PM   #1
BlindRobert
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rando and touring - can one bike do both

I am shopping for a new bike and will probably splurge for a custom frame. I would like this bike to be for longer brevets and touring - is there a bike that will do both well? 2007 is a PBP year and I would like to try to qualify - would a true touring frame be too heavy and slow for an event like that?

I would appreciate any thoughts - I am a track/FG guy (and sometime roadie) and don't have much experience in distances longer than a double century.
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Old 11-01-06, 11:08 PM   #2
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You bet!!

Machak is my sport touring, Marinoni Ciclo, custom made just for me, and then customized by me in the years I've owned him.

I've been a Randonneur since 2001, have completed four 1200K events, including the 2003 PBP, and have done quite a bit of touring, including 3 months in Australia (during which time I also rode the GSR 1200K) ... all on Machak.

Have a look on my website in the signature line below for stories and photos.



I've attached a couple photos here:
.
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File Type: jpg Tasmania_Machka and Mt Wellington.JPG (34.3 KB, 110 views)
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Old 11-02-06, 02:32 AM   #3
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You have 90 hours to do 1200 km, it isn't that fast. Even a bloke on a scooter can do it. A proper touring bike is comfortable way to do PBP.
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Old 11-02-06, 04:56 AM   #4
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Great! Thanks Machka and LWaB - I was hoping that was the case. The bikes labeled "club touring" seemed to be not quite different enough from the road bike I already own, making it hard to justify the expense of a new bike.

Any thoughts on gearing? Should I definitely get the triple or would a compact double and low geared cassette do the job?
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Old 11-02-06, 08:59 AM   #5
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The difference between a randoneur and a "real" touring bike is generally very slight. Touring bikes tend to have heavier tubing and hence have a great deal harsher ride when they aren't loaded. There may also be a difference in wheelbase length that isn't very important.

But "great deal harsher" may not even be noticeable to most people.

So your answer is - get a good modern touring bike and you won't have any problems using it for randoneuring.
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Old 11-02-06, 12:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlindRobert
Any thoughts on gearing? Should I definitely get the triple or would a compact double and low geared cassette do the job?
You will definitely want a triple for touring. But you will thank yourself for getting it for randonneuring as well. It will help you save energy while climbing. The weight penalty with a triple is insignificant. A triple will also allow you to use a 'tighter' cassette.
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Old 11-02-06, 06:59 PM   #7
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Machka, I had read your PBP narrative already - it's great!
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Old 11-02-06, 08:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Lotum
You will definitely want a triple for touring. But you will thank yourself for getting it for randonneuring as well. It will help you save energy while climbing. The weight penalty with a triple is insignificant. A triple will also allow you to use a 'tighter' cassette.
A 50/34 with an 11-34 cassette at the back would certainly be enough for touring, no? 34:34...1:1...surely if you feel like shifting down from that it would be more energy efficient to walk.
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Old 11-02-06, 08:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javna_golina
A 50/34 with an 11-34 cassette at the back would certainly be enough for touring, no? 34:34...1:1...surely if you feel like shifting down from that it would be more energy efficient to walk.

My lowest gear is currently a 30:34 (that's a 30T chainring, and 34T cassette ring). It's not low enough for me. I'll be ordering something with a 26T chainring in the next few days.
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Old 11-03-06, 12:48 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by javna_golina
1:1...surely if you feel like shifting down from that it would be more energy efficient to walk.
No.
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Old 11-03-06, 11:21 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by javna_golina
A 50/34 with an 11-34 cassette at the back would certainly be enough for touring, no? 34:34...1:1...surely if you feel like shifting down from that it would be more energy efficient to walk.
No. I'm running a 46/36/22 with a 12-32 8 speed cassette. Slogging up 20% grades in Scotland with camping gear on the bike, or any significant hill with camping gear on the bike at the end of a long day, I was very grateful for that super low gear. I wasn't moving at much more than a walking pace at times, but I didn't have to hold the bike upright and keep it moving at the same time.
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Old 11-04-06, 05:00 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Machka
You bet!!

I've been a Randonneur since 2001, have completed four 1200K events, including the 2003 PBP
Have a look on my website in the signature line below .
Dear Machaka, I find your article on Randonneuring very interesting and informative. Pls allow me to post on Thai web, link direct to your site.
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Old 11-04-06, 05:21 PM   #13
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I went to Sid's today to take a look at what independent fabrications had to offer - they happened to have a steel independence (touring model from IF) in stock that was a display bike at interbike. Looked pretty great - I am still torn between a Waterford and an IF - the IF is a pretty bike and looks thoughtfully made, but I worry about a TIG welded frame.

I am in the middle of a repair job on a lugged track frame - when it got damaged I was so happy that it was lugged and could be fixed. I get very attached to my bikes...it would crush me to have to throw one away!

I am starting to sort out the component options now. I am thinking Shimano XT cranks and drivetrain, just because in my experience the triple mountain equipment shifts more reliably/accurately than the triple road groups. I might go with a road 12-25 9 speed cassette (thoughts appreciated), definitely want cantilever brakes, and still open on the question of STI vs. bar ends...
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Old 11-04-06, 06:17 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by BlindRobert
I am starting to sort out the component options now. I am thinking Shimano XT cranks and drivetrain, just because in my experience the triple mountain equipment shifts more reliably/accurately than the triple road groups. I might go with a road 12-25 9 speed cassette (thoughts appreciated), definitely want cantilever brakes, and still open on the question of STI vs. bar ends...
I went with a cassette like that on the first bicycle I used for randonneuring. It was perfect ... I had no problem at all with it ............

........... for all my very flat Manitoba brevets.


The moment I got into the mountains to do my very first 1200K (the RM1200), I realized I had the WRONG gearing! Everyone else was casually spinning up the climbs like they were nothing, and I was walking everything in sight because I couldn't turn the pedals anymore.

My current cassette is 11-34. That's much better, but even so, I'm going to go lower on the chainring now too.
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Old 11-04-06, 07:07 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Machka
I went with a cassette like that on the first bicycle I used for randonneuring. It was perfect ... I had no problem at all with it ............

........... for all my very flat Manitoba brevets.


The moment I got into the mountains to do my very first 1200K (the RM1200), I realized I had the WRONG gearing! Everyone else was casually spinning up the climbs like they were nothing, and I was walking everything in sight because I couldn't turn the pedals anymore.

My current cassette is 11-34. That's much better, but even so, I'm going to go lower on the chainring now too.

Are you running a road crankset with smaller chainrings or a mountain crankset? Just curious what works for you. I appreciate the info - as I said, I really don't have any experience with loaded...other than grocery shopping.
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Old 11-04-06, 08:48 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by BlindRobert
Are you running a road crankset with smaller chainrings or a mountain crankset? Just curious what works for you. I appreciate the info - as I said, I really don't have any experience with loaded...other than grocery shopping.
Right now I'm running a mtn bike cassette and road crankset, but in a few weeks (I hope) my whole drivetrain will be mtn.

It's not so much the whole riding loaded aspect (although that's certainly part of it) it is the distance we ride when we do the extended brevets/randonnees. A person can make any gears work for a shorter ride, but your ride lasts more than one day (straight through), your legs get tired ... and especially toward the end of a 1200K overpasses look like steep, tall mountains and you find yourself whining about the cruel organizers who put the finish point of the ride on the other side of such a monsterous hill.
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Old 11-04-06, 11:44 PM   #17
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I have a Marinoni Tourismo which I use for both light and loaded touring. I use A-719 36 spoke rims and Schwalbe 700X35 Marathon Plus tires for loaded touring and I built up a set of Open Pro 36 spoke wheels on 700X28 Conti Ultra Gatorskins for light touring.

I run an XT crank set with a 11-34 cassette for loaded touring and a 12-27 for light.
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