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  1. #1
    Senior Member tcmers's Avatar
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    OK, You've inspired me

    I've been reading the touring forum for a while now. Haven't done any real bike touring in a looong time. Most of my riding now is done on my road bikes. As I've read about all of the fun you guys are having, I decided to put together a budget tourer. Probably won't do any tours of any duration this year since we've alreay got a trip to Italy and France planned this year, as well as several running races and triathlons scheduled. Anyway.....I have a couple of old mountain bikes laying around. One is a Giant ATX 760 steel frame,with rear rack mounts and rockshox front suspension. Frame is great, components have seen better days. The other is a full suspension Mountain Goat whose frame has seen better days, but had low mileage LX and XT components. Started pulling parts off, moving them, etc. Ordered a new front deraileur, chain, stem and cables. Everything else came from one of the two bikes. I'm leaving the front suspension. I know all of the reasons I shouldn't, but like the ride as is. Should have taken before and after pics, but didn't think about it. It's cleaned up and everything is moved. Just waiting on the new stuff. Still haven't decided on which rear rack or panniers to get. Most of my touring will be short, (4-8 days) and I prefer to travel light. Suggestions are welcome. Here's the setup so far:

    LX front and rear deraileurs and brakes.
    STX compact crank. (Will probably upgrade to a touring crank)
    SRAM PC 68 Chain
    7 Speed 13-32 Cassette
    Pulstar 36 spoke hubs laced to Ritchey Rims ( Good wheelset, not really best for touring. Upgrade later)
    Straight bar, bar ends and LX rapidfire shifters
    Seat- Have a couple laying around, but will add a Brooks at some point

    Can't wait for this snow & ice to go away!

  2. #2
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    sounds like you've really gotten inspired - congrats on your new/old ride

    and thanks for posting - I, too, have no time for touring until July when my wife & I will do our first credit card tour. But next fall & winter will give us opportunity to take some weekend overnighters out & back from our town.

    All this to say that I am a complete wanna-be interloper on this touring website. 35 years of backpacking is soon to give way to cycle touring cuz carrying all that stuff on my back just isn't very appealing any more.
    centexwoody
    They're beautiful handsome machines that translate energy into joy.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Gotte's Avatar
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    I'v e not toured before, though have been cycling for about twenty five years.
    LX should be fine for what you want.
    I'd always go for a steel frame. I know you said you like the ride with suspension, but I'd maybe try fitting a rigid fork, just to try. The weight saving may actually be negligible, but I prsonally prefer the feel of a rigid fork. You feel the road as it should be.

    Anyway, where are you planning on going? I;m hitting the black forrest in late april.

  4. #4
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    2nd that rigid fork-- Nashbar sell 'em cheap.

    That STX crank will work fine as well. touring bikes end up being heavy. In the touring world, lighter camping gear is a easy/cheaper way to drop weight. Plus you're set up for backpacking as well

    And don't put off touring this summer. Do a weekend trip or two. Watch the weather in Sept. or Oct. I bet you can get a fall trip in.

    Most off all-- welcome to the touring forums.

  5. #5
    Senior Member tcmers's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies. I know that a rigid fork makes more sense for touring, but I'll probably use this bike for light trail rides as well. I really like the suspension as is. Cost isn't the issue. May change my mind later, but we'll see.
    I'm already set up with lightweight camping gear. My wife and I have done backpack and wilderness kayak trips up to two weeks in duration many times. Packing two weeks worth of stuff into a 13 foot kayak transfers pretty well to packing panniers. Still haven't decided on a rack/pannier combo.

    Have a couple more things left to do. I'm putting a slightly shorter stem on the bike, with a little more rise for a more comfortable riding position. Also thinking about moving the full size XT crank from the other bike, but have always liked the compact crank. I'll have to ride it loaded and see what I like.
    I'm sure there will be a couple of long weekend trips this summer, but no extended touring. I may use this bike to commute to work a couple of days a week to. Thanks again for the welcome!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Gotte's Avatar
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    I said I've not toured before, but been for plenty of weekends and overnights, and week trips where we stay at one base and cycle around. You sound like you've got it worked out, so that's the first hurdle over with. I seem to spend all my time wondering which combinations to work with for my up and coming 8 day tour in the Black Forest this April. I've got two bikes to make up, one for me, one for a friend. Oh, the possibilities.
    Goood luck with everything, and welcome aboard.

    Oh, that Kayaking sounds great. One thing I've always wanted to do but never got round to (I'm from the UK, and the water here is pretty crowded and pretty uninspiring). I like the idea of all that wilderness viewed from the water. I bet it beats everything.

  7. #7
    Senior Member tcmers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gotte
    I said I've not toured before, but been for plenty of weekends and overnights, and week trips where we stay at one base and cycle around. You sound like you've got it worked out, so that's the first hurdle over with. I seem to spend all my time wondering which combinations to work with for my up and coming 8 day tour in the Black Forest this April. I've got two bikes to make up, one for me, one for a friend. Oh, the possibilities.
    Goood luck with everything, and welcome aboard.

    Oh, that Kayaking sounds great. One thing I've always wanted to do but never got round to (I'm from the UK, and the water here is pretty crowded and pretty uninspiring). I like the idea of all that wilderness viewed from the water. I bet it beats everything.
    The kayak trips have been great. We try to put a long portage early in the trip. This tends to get us away from the crowds and the weekend warriors. On our last trip, the only people we saw in ten days (after our initial launch day, of course) were three guys that had flown in to a fishing camp. Saw them for about 10 minutes, then were by ourselves again.

    The bike is coming together well. Having some patience problems waiting for parts to arive, but other than that, it's been good so far. We live about 40 miles from Lake Michigan. I make try to sneak in a four or five day trip along the lake late this year. Maybe drive up to the lake, go out 2 or 3 days, then circle back. Have fun on your Black Forest tour!

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