I am planning to do some touring this summer but nothing really serious. After having many different bikes I guessed I realised that a touring bike is what I would use the most and I already have all parts for it really apart from a frame. I am planning to buy a proper 26" touring frame next year but this year I plan to use one of the frames I have lying aorund in the attic. I have a Bridgestone CB-1, Kona Kilauea and a Dawes Street Sharp. The Dawes seem to have many more attachment points for stuff (especially on the fork) but I am not sure if I need them. Fenders is easily mounted on all of them. I know none of them will make a great tourer but if they differ at least I could try not to pick the wort one. Any idea how to choose? Measure the chainstay and take the one with the most heel clearance?? The Dawes is the only one with shifter bosses welded on the down tube so I am leaning towards that one.
Well.... If you're doing shorter tours, you could probably use just about anything. Heck, a couple of guys did the perimiter of Britain on tall bikes, fer cryin' out loud. But the general qualities you'd look for / design for are:
• low gearing
• relaxed geometry
• longer wheelbase (more stable w/loads)
• lots of braze-ons for racks and accessories
• preferably (but not exclusively) steel; avoid carbon
Downtube shifters should be fine, the main thing you probably want to avoid is caliper brakes (not enough stopping power imo).
So I don't know those particular frames too well, but unless they are obviously oriented for something else (e.g. racing), I'm sure it will work out fine.
Maybe I'll give the kona the first shot then. It's for sure the best quality frame when it comes to the choice of steel etc and the most lightweight even though I guess that is not important when touring with it but it will also be my bad weather training bike for the winter (different wheelset though).