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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 07-18-08, 02:18 AM   #1
Al Downie
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How heavy is the load on your bike?

Without wanting to solicit too much personal information... I'm wondering what the average total weight (rider and luggage) on a touring cycle is. Me, for example, I'm about 200lbs without luggage, and planning an unsupported tour in an area where we'll have to camp, cook, and carry food & water for up to four/five days before refill, and where the temperature could drop to freezing at night. And it'll be a very long way from a bike shop. And it's very hilly (Himalaya!). So I'm a wee bit concerned about the total weight on the bike - I'm thinking it'll be close to 300lbs by the time I've filled the water bottles.

Have you ever toured with that much weight? Should I saw the handle off my toothbrush?
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Old 07-18-08, 06:57 AM   #2
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Hi,

I weigh 64 kg
bike 15-17 kg (not know exactly)
Maximum load 50-60 kg average 35-40 kg.

I would say that the rider weight isn't a problem, because bikes are designed for that weight. The luggage should not weigh more than 40 kg.

You should buy good rim (no Mavic) and good carriers (blackburn / tubus).

Thomas
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Old 07-18-08, 07:29 AM   #3
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Hi again Thomas,

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnyW View Post
You should buy good rim (no Mavic)
Aaaack!! Just half an hour ago I picked up my wheels from the wheel-builder, with shiny new MAVIC rims!! However, they're the EX729 Disk rims, which get very good reviews for strength. Fingers crossed...
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Old 07-18-08, 08:40 AM   #4
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On my recent trip to France, I packed everything into two suitcases. When I weighed them on the airline scales, they came in at 100 pounds. Figure about 10 pounds for cases and stuff left at the hotel, that is 90 pounds on the bike (includes racks, bags, etc). As I stood at the airline counter I was shocked and wondered if the airline's scale was off. I weigh 175 pounds.

It is worth noting that one way to lighten your load is to lose a bit of weight. I managed to lose 5 pounds before I left. I can't say I noticed the reduced weight on the bike, though!

When I filled up my camelback with water (1.5 liters), I could feel the extra weight in my legs.

Ray
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Old 07-18-08, 08:47 AM   #5
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Me 203 lbs
Bike 25 lbs
Gear 20lbs
Water and Food 5lbs
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Old 07-18-08, 09:07 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Downie View Post
Aaaack!! Just half an hour ago I picked up my wheels from the wheel-builder, with shiny new MAVIC rims!! However, they're the EX729 Disk rims, which get very good reviews for strength. Fingers crossed...
Unless you have them built with some unrealistically low number of spokes you should have no problems with those rims.

Not sure what thomas has against mavic rims... they are generally quite wonderful. Lots of guy's spec their tandem rims for touring bikes.
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Old 07-18-08, 09:39 AM   #7
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Without food and water.

Heavy mode: 255 lbs 4 bag
Medium Mode: 235 2 bag
Light Mode aka no tent: Never tried it because I'm a cheep bastage

Me 175-180 and I ususally drop 5 on tour.
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Old 07-18-08, 09:42 AM   #8
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I just completed my TransAm this summer. I departed weighing 215, carrying about 85lbs of gear with a 30lb bike (racks included). I arrived at the end weighing 190 with somewhere around 40-50lbs of gear. You'll most likely drop stuff as you go, but (unless you've already bought everything) try to get the lightest equipment you possibly can. Every little bit helps.

Your biggest weight addition is going to be food, but water shouldn't be a problem - boil, filter, or bring tablets and you'll save yourself lots of weight. I'd also consider what you're bringing very carefully. The best tip anyone ever told me: Lay out everything you think you're going to need, and then bring half of it.

You'll likely be wearing basically the same stuff every day and washing when you get to a sink/river/stream (biodegradeable soap), so just drop the extra clothing. Losing even five lbs of weight DOES make a difference. I felt stronger every time I sent things home.

Even if your rig still weighs 300lbs when you leave, it's no biggie. That's how much stuff I had, and I was touring in the states!

Good luck, enjoy the ride!

-cpt
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Old 07-18-08, 09:44 AM   #9
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Me + bike + stuff = 320lbs
Even out the load L-R F-R and you should have no problem on a decent touring bike.
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Old 07-18-08, 10:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Halthane View Post
Not sure what thomas has against mavic rims...
I crashed 5 high quality Mavic rims in bicycle travel history. All broke on the inner rim alongside up to 270 long - with these kind of damage the cuts puncture your tube. The wheel is still rolling has a lightly 8 and you can tape the rim and continue your trip

The problem aren't roads (tarmac or gravel) but Mavic rim have a problem with max. pressure on the tyre, a lot of luggage and a crash against a 4 cm high rail or a big pot hole or a big stone. Never had these on the other rim I cycle 8 years after I crashed 5 Mavic in 3 years. Then I bought a new bike equiped again with Mavic rim. On the first trip - same defect.

In the German forum you can read the similar problems with Mavic rims

Thomas

PS: Don't ask me for type - but I normally buy the 2nd most expensive one - recommendation of my dealer
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Old 07-18-08, 10:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnyW View Post
The problem aren't roads (tarmac or gravel) but Mavic rim have a problem with max. pressure on the tyre
This rings a bell - I noticed in the shop when I was picking up the wheels with the new Mavic rims, a timy sticker on the rims describing the max allowed pressure - for a 2.1" tyre it's 55psi. If I hadn't seen the sticker, I'd have just gone ahead and inflated to 60psi, following the 30-70psi advice on the tyre.

As it happens 50psi should be fine on the tracks we'll be on.
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Old 07-21-08, 01:51 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Downie View Post
As it happens 50psi should be fine on the tracks we'll be on.
I'm lighter than you - but 50 psi is my absolute minimum on tarmac. I go up to max. pressure that's allowed. Under 50 psi - full loaded - my Marathon XR back tyre look so wide while I cycling. I don't like it spongy
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