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Old 08-03-03, 09:13 AM   #1
Aggressor
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Converting MTB to tourer

I have a 2000 Avanti Aggressor, I really want to use it as my tourer next year when I head to Europe.. Its a hardtail Pro XC bike, I'm just curious as to what I would have to change to make it a comfortable tourer.

I've already got semi-slicks and new rims. I have just installed a Shimano flight deck, I have clipless pedals. I'm just curious about handlebars and groupset. Anyone have any hints or information they would like to pass on?

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Old 08-03-03, 10:25 AM   #2
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Here is a little information to get this debate going.

If you do a search on bike forums, you should find a few threads on this topic and a few on whether to use panniers or a Bob style of trailer. A mtb conversion w/shock and a trailer may be the way to go if you will be traveling for a long time. As I mentioned in another of your posts, I toured around France and the south of England on my mtb with front suspension. And the touring bike I am using now is a mtb convert with a rigid fork.

Handlebars:
Disadvantages: Fewer handhold positions, I started to have problems with my fingers going numb. Large barends will help alleviate this problem.
Advantages: Upright position is more comfortable to ride and provides a better view.
Here is a pile of links that will help you with you preparations.

Shocks:
Disadvantages: weight, could brake down, hard to attach front rack, but not imposable.
Advantages: Absorbs shock, and if you stay in one place for a while you can use your bike for trail riding.

Components:
Disadvantages: mtb gearing seemed to spin out at high speeds.
Advantages: Good robust components with good low-end gears for steep mountains.

http://www.myra-simon.com/bike/women-tour.html

Converting a Mountain Bike to a Touring Bike
http://briandesousa.com/bicycling/tech/convert.htm

Travel with Bicycles - Touring Links
http://www.bikeaccess.net/touring_db.cfm

Trento Bike Page
http://www-math.science.unitn.it/Bike/

A Global Bicycle URL Index
http://users.chariot.net.au/~gloria/global.html

How to Buy a Touring Bike
http://www.adv-cycling.org/features/buyabike2003.cfm

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Old 08-03-03, 02:15 PM   #3
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Gordon, thank you for posting those links.

Wes
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Old 08-03-03, 06:16 PM   #4
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Yeah cheers for that Gordon
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Old 08-04-03, 03:02 AM   #5
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A lot of MTB riders fit some kind of aerobar to their flat bars, this gives an excellent touring position, esp if your bars ore fairly high. It is much more aerodynamic and comfortable than bar ends.
Even with a ridgid fork, you can take an MTB on trails. All off-road MTBs were ridgid not so long ago.
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Old 08-04-03, 03:09 AM   #6
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I use my MTB for touring, in fact, I'll be using it in Tasmania this December. I like the fact that I don't need to fear dirt roads with it. I use full slicks and can cope with probably 90% of dirt roads I encounter. Of course, having the "Granny gear" is also useful if there's any climbing to do on these dirt roads (I've encountered that on occasions), or if I'm just buggered or lazy.
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Old 08-04-03, 05:02 AM   #7
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If you wanna crash at my place for a night Chris, you are more than welcome
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Old 08-04-03, 08:47 AM   #8
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A lot of MTB riders fit some kind of aerobar to their flat bars, this gives an excellent touring position, esp if your bars ore fairly high. It is much more aerodynamic and comfortable than bar ends.
Yeah, this is a good idea, I often found myself hugging my handlebar bag whishing it was an aerobar.

Handlebar bag or aerobar?
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Old 08-04-03, 08:51 AM   #9
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I had an aerobar on my old mountain bike and it is very nice to cruise along in the 'aero' position.. I think I'm going to keep the flat bar, and go with the aero bar idea. That way I can store things under it, hang things off them Very handy.
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Old 08-04-03, 09:07 AM   #10
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But it is so nice to have a handlebar bag to put valuables in. This is handy when shopping, eating out etc. Having a map and compass in front of you is very important when navigating your route while on tour. Too bad both canít be put on the bike.
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Old 08-04-03, 09:14 AM   #11
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Really? I would've thought you could sit your handlebar bag between the aero bar?
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Old 08-04-03, 09:17 AM   #12
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Come to look at it.. perhaps not. Is there any way around this?
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Old 08-04-03, 04:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Aggressor
Come to look at it.. perhaps not. Is there any way around this?
I can't live without aerobars on my mtb (or any bike). Personally I use 5 inch velcro straps my LBS sells to attach things to my frame. Currently on my touring I have a bag that hangs from my areo bars and a camelbak hanging in the frame (instead of bottle cages) using velcro.

You can also use zip ties which are stronger, but then you have to cut them to detach them. I'm sure you could find strong buckle straps if you really needed strength.
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Old 08-05-03, 10:26 AM   #14
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Sounds interesting. Do you have any pics of your bike with this setup?

I'm going to set my lights and computer up on my aero bars, but I'm not sure how I am going to go about a handlebar bag. Does anyone have suggestions?
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Old 08-06-03, 04:00 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Aggressor
If you wanna crash at my place for a night Chris, you are more than welcome
Thanks for your offer, I might just take you up on that! I've got a spare day or two my itinerary, so I might just head over to Devonport and see what all the fuss is about! Of course, feel free to look me up if you're ever in this part of the world. There are some AWESOME places to ride around here.
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Old 08-06-03, 04:42 AM   #16
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Not a problem. I'm considering an Australia-wide ride maybe next year or 2005.
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Old 08-31-03, 08:31 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by Aggressor
Sounds interesting. Do you have any pics of your bike with this setup?

I'm going to set my lights and computer up on my aero bars, but I'm not sure how I am going to go about a handlebar bag. Does anyone have suggestions?
Its hard to tell from the picture, but here you go. http://ctimail.dnsalias.org/bag.jpg

The bag has a shoulder strap which is wrapped around the areobars and it held with no problems. Its not the easiest to access while ridding, but I keep the things I need while riding in my jersey or the pocket in my camelbak; the camelbak is mounted in the frame.
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Old 09-06-03, 10:53 AM   #18
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Hi, take a look at my mtb converted to a commuter/tourer. Only thing not on the pics are a riser to rise the stem to comfotable height.

http://www.karlstam.com/

Click link "Bicycling" and then link "Pictures and tips about the bike and gear".

/Anders
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Old 09-14-03, 03:00 PM   #19
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I really enjoy my hardtail MTB with slicks,but after having been on several long rides,I think a road bike is the way to go for long tours,unless you don't mind bonking ocassionally

Regards.
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Old 10-07-03, 09:30 PM   #20
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I actually perfer my mountain bike for longer rides/day tours (which is all I've done so far) I can cover 100 miles a day on it no problem, much more comfortable then the road bike, I wish for the drop bars sometimes, but it isn't bad if I wear gloves and take a break every once and a while. My road bike is a racing bike so it's built for speed not comfort, for shorter rides it's a blast but for longer rides I perfer the slower mountain bike, even if it's harder work sometimes.
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Old 10-08-03, 12:11 AM   #21
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I am in the middle of building a tourer around a Mtb frame. I intentionally chose this frame which is slightly larger than the usual Mtb frame sized for me. In fact, this frame is almost as tall as my road frame. Toptube is a bit long but I'll deal with that. This still leaves me with good standover clearance especially with 26" wheels. I'm using an old LX 8-spd groupo w/cantis in almost new condition which used to be on my wife's mtb. Road levers and barend shifters will be used on WTB dirt drop bars. Saddle is one of my old and trusted B-17. This bike will be pulling a BOB....most likely.

George
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