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  1. #1
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    Touring bike w/nice ride.

    I am considering looking for a touring bike, with relaxed geometry and longer seat stays to allow for use of panniers. Trouble is I am not really planning to do any loaded touring. Maybe just enough for a day tour etc. Most of the reviews i read suggest that most touring bikes ride poorly unless heavily loaded.

    Is there one that rides well when barely loaded?

  2. #2
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    I am considering looking for a touring bike, with relaxed geometry and longer seat stays to allow for use of panniers. Trouble is I am not really planning to do any loaded touring. Maybe just enough for a day tour etc. Most of the reviews i read suggest that most touring bikes ride poorly unless heavily loaded.

    Is there one that rides well when barely loaded?
    Define "poorly".

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed
    Define "poorly".
    Worse than a standard "race bike."

  4. #4
    jon bon stovie
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    why not just use any road bike or mountain bike?

    if you are only going to go on day tours, you probably won't need four large panniers. you can probably get away with only two smaller ones.

    my trek 1400 road bike is by no means a tourer. its a late 80's/early 90's racing bike. but i would still trust in on tour that lasted for even a few days, provided i didn't weigh it down to much with panniers filled to the brim. you could also try a comfort bike.

  5. #5
    Infamous Member chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    Worse than a standard "race bike."
    A touring bike has a longer wheelbase, and therefore not as 'twitchy' as a racing bike and not as light. My Fuji World rides just fine unloaded, but isn't made anymore. Try a Bianchi Volpe, with some better tires and saddle. Jamis Aurora might also be a good choice.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    A touring bike has a longer wheelbase, and therefore not as 'twitchy' as a racing bike and not as light. My Fuji World rides just fine unloaded, but isn't made anymore. Try a Bianchi Volpe, with some better tires and saddle. Jamis Aurora might also be a good choice.
    How much does a Volpe weigh?

  7. #7
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    Worse than a standard "race bike."
    Touring bikes ride =differently=. "Worse" is a subjective term.

    Touring bikes are generally heavier, more stable, flexier and have a "softer" ride. Racing bikes are stiffer, handle more quickly and are lighter.

    Different bikes for different purposes.

  8. #8
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    Just a suggestion...how about an older late 70's to mid 80's touring bike? I have an early 80's Raleigh Kodiak touring bike and it rides like a plush Cadillac. You get the old school lugged frame look, super-long chainstays, full-size frame geometry for a stretched out/relaxed ride (horizontal top tube, handlebar at or above seat level). Those older frames give a lively (although some would say flexy) ride. Not so important if you don't load up. You may need to upgrade a few things, so you have to like tinkering with your bike.

    For comparison, I also have a newer Fuji Touring. Very stable and I love it for longer tours, but it's not as fun as the Raleigh for day rides. I have no problem riding it unloaded, however.

    If $$$ is no object, how about something like a Rivendell Rambouillet?

    http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/rambouillet.asp

    (but, personally, I would get a retro 80's bike, and fix it up for 1/4 the cost.)

  9. #9
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Here's my reply to the same question over on the Clydesdale forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute
    But I think what you are looking for is something a bit sportier and not necessarily a full on touring bike. Lemond Etape, Specialized Roubiax, Specialized Sequouia, Trek Pilot, Giant OCR 1 or OCR2, Fuji Newest 1.0, Felt Z80, Jamis Ventura or Aurora (this is a 'touring bike' but it's a little short for my tastes as a loaded tourer), Bianchi Brava (get only the Celeste one ) would all be good choices. They are not true touring bikes but are relaxed geometry bikes. They are built more for century rides than for a criterium. There are others too. The ones I listed above, for which you'll have to do your own web searching , were all selected because they have higher spoke count wheels and are a little heavier than a race bike. Most, if not all, are below $1000.
    I'd start there and look up and down the entire line. The ones I've listed tend to be the less expensive, heavier models. But there are lots of higher level models that would be much lighter.
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    If you want a confortable bike for day touring, consider a day touring bike. Typically these use long drop caliper brakes to take any tyre up to 32mm and have drop bars set at a higher position than race bikes and come with the relevant braze-ons.
    The style is also known as sport road bike, audax, randonee.
    It is a bit of a niche product so look at smaller brands.
    The IF Club Racer is a nice example. See also Gunnar, Soma, Surly, Marinoni

  11. #11
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    pick your style

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelW
    If you want a confortable bike for day touring, consider a day touring bike. Typically these use long drop caliper brakes to take any tyre up to 32mm and have drop bars set at a higher position than race bikes and come with the relevant braze-ons.
    The style is also known as sport road bike, audax, randonee.
    It is a bit of a niche product so look at smaller brands.
    The IF Club Racer is a nice example. See also Gunnar, Soma, Surly, Marinoni
    This is good advice for sure. I picked this style of bike, then went to LBS. Originally I wanted a SomaSmoothieES, but after I was fitted, it turned out that Soma was the worst fit of all ! We then checked out the GunnarSport, SurlyPacer, Salsa LaRaza, but the Marinoni Ciclo had the very best geometry for my body. We put in the order for the Marinoni, should be here in a few weeks w/CampyVeloce.

    So to the original poster I say - pick the style of bike (ie Sport road), but don't get your heart set on one specific model. Get a highly experienced shop to do a proper fit, then scour the publshed geometry charts for the one which fits best. These sport bikes have longer steerer tubes to accomodate higher bar heights (w/o needing 10 headset spacers), slightly longer chainstays (but not as long as fullon tourers) for comfort and stability, the better tire clearance mentioned above, are made of double or triple butted cromoly steel, and usually have rack braze-ons at dropout and seat stays.

  12. #12
    'Mizer Cats are INSANE Mentor58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    How much does a Volpe weigh?
    If I recall correctly (and I know I posted it in some other thread), mine is about 26 pounds, that's with a brooks B17 saddle, and a Tubus lightweight rack.

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  13. #13
    Infamous Member chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    How much does a Volpe weigh?
    I'd say about 22-23 lbs (stock). My Fuji weighs in at 25lbs with the rack and fenders

    Edit: Ok I was wrong, just went to my LBS next door and weighed a 58cm Volpe - 25.11lbs
    Last edited by chipcom; 11-06-06 at 01:46 PM.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  14. #14
    ROM 6:23 flipped4bikes's Avatar
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    Specialized Tricross. Yeah, I'm biased...
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    I'd say about 22-23 lbs (stock). My Fuji weighs in at 25lbs with the rack and fenders

    Edit: Ok I was wrong, just went to my LBS next door and weighed a 58cm Volpe - 25.11lbs
    That's about 3 lbs heavier than my 58 cm Trek 1000. Just FYI in case anyone else ever stumbles across this thread. Three lbs isn't all that much to me.

  16. #16
    Prefers Cicero cooker's Avatar
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    I bought a used 1984 Trek 520 on eBay. About 26-28 lbs with racks and fenders, at least it seems to be, based on the bathroom scale subtract your own weight method.

  17. #17
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooker
    I bought a used 1984 Trek 520 on eBay. About 26-28 lbs with racks and fenders, at least it seems to be, based on the bathroom scale subtract your own weight method.
    That's either a low measurement, a small frame or really light weight racks.

  18. #18
    Prefers Cicero cooker's Avatar
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    Axiom fenders, so super light, and just a rear rack. Sorry about the s.

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