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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 04-19-07, 08:53 AM   #1
Miah2008
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touring bike?

Hey im in need of a touring bike, but i want it singlespeed. I was looking at surly's, i havent looked at bianchi yet, if you could help me out, ill be a happy man.
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Old 04-19-07, 08:57 AM   #2
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I'd advise against a singlespeed when touring (unless you are unloaded [and even then...]). You'll be wishing you had gears every time there is a hill or a headwind... Any specific reason you don't want gears?
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Old 04-19-07, 09:01 AM   #3
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You could consider a Shimano 7 speed hub if you want the 'look'.
But I have got to say that even with gears climbing late in the day
with a loaded bike is a b*tch....
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Old 04-19-07, 09:30 AM   #4
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Before we even go down this road....

1)Are you talking self-supported touring (25-40lbs of gear) or just doing Ragbrai?
2)Are you thinking of staying within Iowa and the upper Midwest, or actually riding in actual mountainous or hilly areas?
3)Have you actually strapped on 40 extra pounds and attempted to ride 50-70 miles with decent ascents on a singlespeed?
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Old 04-19-07, 11:28 PM   #5
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A horse doesn't have any dérailleurs and it doesn't run off gasoline.
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Old 04-20-07, 01:08 AM   #6
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A horse doesn't have any dérailleurs and it doesn't run off gasoline.
lol...nice reference.
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Old 04-20-07, 05:22 AM   #7
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A horse doesn't have any dérailleurs and it doesn't run off gasoline.
And a human generates about 1/10th horsepower.
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Old 04-20-07, 07:51 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miah2008
Hey im in need of a touring bike, but i want it singlespeed. I was looking at surly's, i havent looked at bianchi yet, if you could help me out, ill be a happy man.
Buy a geared one and then try doing your whole tour in only one gear. Good luck.
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Old 04-20-07, 09:09 AM   #9
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Well, crazy as it is, somebody did it on a Surly 1x1:

http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?...ed&context=all

http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?...ed&context=all

If you're going singlespeed, I really do not recommend getting a geared bike and leaving it in one gear. I've tried geared bikes without shifting, and I've tried "pure" single speeds, and there is an enormous difference. I still think it's nuts to tour on a single speed, but I'm not going to dissuade you like everyone else seems to have.
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Old 04-20-07, 05:59 PM   #10
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Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
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Old 04-21-07, 10:30 AM   #11
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I self-support tour and cant imagine doing it on a single speed! Get the LHT.
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Old 04-23-07, 05:15 PM   #12
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changed my mind

i changed my mind, i dont want a singlespeed, ive found out that it is going to be way hard, i like single mountains though. Anyways i am still looking for an amazing touring bike, but not to expencinve im new to touring but im in shape. Im in cross country and track and i bike also.

http://dirtragmag.com/print/article....egory=features

^ that inspired me
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Old 04-23-07, 05:38 PM   #13
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(snip)

i changed my mind, i dont want a singlespeed, ive found out that it is going to be way hard,

(end snip)

I've done one tour on a fixed gear bike with a Bob COZ trailer towed behind. The hills were harder and the constant pedaling was somewhat tiring for me also. By this I mean that you pedal all the time, up and down hills as well as the flats.

On the flip side this constantly pedaling option is something I really enjoy as a pre-tour training aid during my daily commute to work.

Kent Petersen is worth a quick web search. He has ridden some amazing distances using a fixed gear bike!

You can have the best of both worlds. My fixed gear is a Surly Cross Check and they also make a relatively inexpensive Long Haul trucker. With a bit of planning you could easily pick up an extra wheel for single speed/fixed gear adventures as well in the future.

(snip)

Anyways i am still looking for an amazing touring bike, but not to expencinve im new to touring but im in shape. Im in cross country and track and i bike also.

(end snip)

Bicycle touring is a lot of fun! The cross training benefits you will likely receive from your other sports should translate to a couple easier first days on the road.

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Old 04-23-07, 07:36 PM   #14
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yeah, i want (i want= hopefully soon) a single speed for around town and a new mountain (single speed also probably, unless i get sucked into a great deal for an amazing bike) and touring bike.

i have a Trek 8000 right now for my around town/ mountian bike, its around 5 years old mabey preatty good shape

im savin for a touring bike though, what im leaning to is a surley long hual or crosscheck. are bianchi good? or any other? in town we only have Trek, Gary Fisher, Giant, and Raliegh. are those good? i know Treks are expensive. i need some suggestions, thanks
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Old 04-23-07, 08:37 PM   #15
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I currently have a Trek 520 for a touring bike. It's served me well so far but I've also modified it a bit. Here's a page listing some of the modifications. At some point I need to spend a few minutes updating the page a bit more.

http://www.bicycletouring101.com/Tou...keUpgrades.htm

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Old 04-24-07, 01:25 PM   #16
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I am traveling that path now to build up a touring bike. I do not plan to do any fully loaded touring thus I was not looking at bikes for heavy hauling. My quest was more toward a road bike with a longer chainstay and some eyelets to hang racks & fenders to let me carry my stuff for light touring...often called credit card touring.
I ended up buying a 96 Bianch San Remo. It is a steel lugged frame that Bianch sold as a light duty touring bike. I am having it repainted and I am installing all new components primarily from the Shimano Deore LX lineup.
I am not finished with it yet so I cannot report on how well it will work out for my light duty touring but for my needs, it looks good on paper.
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Old 04-24-07, 04:44 PM   #17
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check out the specialized langster, i think you can even throw a rear rack on it. flip flop hub and your set
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Old 04-26-07, 08:16 AM   #18
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Im interested in doing long touring
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Old 04-26-07, 09:10 AM   #19
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The langster would probably perform very poorly loaded... I have a KHS flite 100 which has rack and fender mounts and when I put any kind of weight on the rear rack, the front end of the bike starts shimmying violently. Its basically impossible to ride no hands for longer than a couple of seconds if you are going faster than 20km/h. The langster has slightly more relaxed geometry, but if miah is to buy a bike for touring, he/she would really be better off spending that money on a touring bike. I'm pretty sure the langster is over 600 bucks as well, so by the time you upgraded it for touring you could have almost bought an LHT complete.
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Old 04-26-07, 09:36 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miah2008
yeah, i want (i want= hopefully soon) a single speed for around town and a new mountain (single speed also probably, unless i get sucked into a great deal for an amazing bike) and touring bike.

i have a Trek 8000 right now for my around town/ mountian bike, its around 5 years old mabey preatty good shape

im savin for a touring bike though, what im leaning to is a surley long hual or crosscheck. are bianchi good? or any other? in town we only have Trek, Gary Fisher, Giant, and Raliegh. are those good? i know Treks are expensive. i need some suggestions, thanks
The Trek 520 is a decent bike. I am not wild about the wheels; but that may have changed over the years. If they are kinda wimpy, you can have the dealer swap them for cheap cross wheels for a few bucks.

The Surly LHT complete is a nice choice. I am not too wild about what Bianchi has. They have a cross bike
that might work, it has an aluminum frame, and I don't remember if it has eyelets for racks.

Personally, I was just not enthusiastic about the other bikes. But poke around and see if you can find something you like.
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Old 04-26-07, 02:12 PM   #21
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Singlespeed touring is a bit of a crazy idea, but not impossible. I know two people who have done it - one who I rode with - and he had to walk up sections of hill, and one who tours regularly on a fixed gear with a flip flop hub, one gear for climbing, one for descents and flats. It can be done. I wouldn't reccomend it though.

In terms of what bike to get - forgegt all of this nonsense about what new bike to buy - the LHT/520/Volpe. I'm sure they're all great bikes, but they're all also in the 12-1400 dollar range, after tax. Start scanning craigslist and your local used bike shops looking for an 80s steel touring frame. You'll know you've found your bike when you find an old lugged steel road frame that has cantilever brakes and extra braze ons for fenders on the front and back. Buy it, and replace the drive train, brake pads, cables, and any other parts that look worn. Voila - touring for half the price!
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Old 04-26-07, 04:32 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by midnightsimon
Singlespeed touring is a bit of a crazy idea, but not impossible. I know two people who have done it - one who I rode with - and he had to walk up sections of hill, and one who tours regularly on a fixed gear with a flip flop hub, one gear for climbing, one for descents and flats. It can be done. I wouldn't reccomend it though.

In terms of what bike to get - forgegt all of this nonsense about what new bike to buy - the LHT/520/Volpe. I'm sure they're all great bikes, but they're all also in the 12-1400 dollar range, after tax. Start scanning craigslist and your local used bike shops looking for an 80s steel touring frame. You'll know you've found your bike when you find an old lugged steel road frame that has cantilever brakes and extra braze ons for fenders on the front and back. Buy it, and replace the drive train, brake pads, cables, and any other parts that look worn. Voila - touring for half the price!
My experince has been trying to find a touring bike that fits on Craigslist is easier said then done. I did not have any luck with this earlier this spring and gave up and bought a REI bike during the 20% of sale. Rigid MTBs are much more plentyful though.
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Old 04-26-07, 05:35 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robmcl
My experince has been trying to find a touring bike that fits on Craigslist is easier said then done. I did not have any luck with this earlier this spring and gave up and bought a REI bike during the 20% of sale. Rigid MTBs are much more plentyful though.
Its true, finding the right bike on craiglist is difficult - thats why you have to be active in your search and give yourself time.

I spent about 4 months regularly browsing craigslist, but also stopping in regularly at my LCBS, as well as the used and consignment bike shops around town. It took some time, and I had to turn down a beautiful and oh-so-light first generation Nishiki International because it was a couple cm too small, but eventually I found the right bike, the Miele I'm riding now.

There's a level of satisfaction that comes from building up your own tourer that I wouldn't sacrifice for anything. Moreover, if you are going to be touring for any length of time, it seems to me being intimately acquatinted with the mechanics of your bike is a good thing.

[edit - you're right about the MTBs though, I was very close to converting/ building up a Rockhopper or Stumpjumper before I found my miele]
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Old 04-26-07, 05:54 PM   #24
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I'd kind of put a disclaimer of sorts in front of your post... You have to take into account that most people aren't as well versed in bikes as you. I certainly could not have followed the route you suggest when I was just starting out; apart from not knowing where to look for decent used touring bikes, or having enough time to look all over for them, someone might not know anything about mechanics or parts compatibility, or what bike size it is that really fits them. These bikes can become real money pits with no chance of return, and have odd parts that are hard to find replacements for.

This is where a fitting at a bike shop and a new bike will really be useful. They can get you on just the right sized frame and can customize it for you and offer ongoing mechanical support. Eventually you get a hang of this stuff yourself and know what kind of parts and geometry and size you like so you start doing what you suggest.

In the OPs case I don't think I'd suggest it based on what I've read so far. Still you have very valid points.
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