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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 10-23-09, 12:08 AM   #1
undisputed83
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Can you tour the country on a racing bike?

Or does it HAVE to be a touring bike? I wouldn't wanna mess my bike up...
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Old 10-23-09, 12:24 AM   #2
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Yes, you can tour on a racing bike, or any bike for that matter. It all depends on if you are going to hotel/motel or camp, and how much gear you are going to carry on the bike vs a support vehicle. If self supported tour with no hotel/motel, or support vehicle you can use a BOB type trailer to carry your gear.
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Old 10-23-09, 12:55 AM   #3
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Certainly. Just a question of what you prefer. No need for a trailer either unless you prefer that - there are always ways to attach sufficient gear to any bike, esp. if you're willing to cut the gear down to a reasonable amount (but still sufficient for camping and cooking).
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Old 10-23-09, 01:12 AM   #4
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That is good news...
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Old 10-23-09, 01:17 AM   #5
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You can tour across country on whatever you want. However as someone who has done it on a touring/road hybrid I can offer these few things to look for.

1. Most racing frames don't have proper eyelets for front and rear rack installation. (This can be overcome by towing a trailer)

2. You would have to stick to pretty well paved roads riding on 23c's the whole time. I rode on 32s and I couldn't really see handling any of the crossover paths on anything less than 28's.

3. The person I toured with rode a straight up mountain bike and we saw dozens of people using either comfort, MTB, Racing or recumbents cross country.

Good luck and have fun.
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Old 10-23-09, 01:24 AM   #6
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Hi,

like your president says: Yes you can

Thomas
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Old 10-23-09, 01:25 AM   #7
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I intend on touring on my racing bike next september. I'll carry all my supplies in a medium sized backpack or smaller. It'll shave weight from my total weight, but I expect it to weigh down on my during the days. No matter, I think it's a better option than trudging along at 10-12 mph on a 100+ lbs loaded touring rig.

I probably won't be riding 700X23's though. Probably some 25's at the least and maybe 28's if they can fit on my bike. Not a huge deal though.

Last edited by permanentjaun; 10-23-09 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 10-23-09, 05:32 AM   #8
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Old 10-23-09, 07:21 AM   #9
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If you decide to use panniers, I'd recommend getting a beefed up rear wheel. 36 spokes at least. My first tour I loaded up a 32H-wheeled road bike and by the end of it I was popping spokes about every 20 miles.
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Old 10-23-09, 11:32 AM   #10
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I'm going to use a bob trailer like in that pic two posts above this one...
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Old 10-23-09, 11:54 AM   #11
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You can go credit card touring on a road bike with fatter tires. I wouldn't recommend one for loaded touring though. The frame is simply not built for it.
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Old 10-23-09, 11:59 AM   #12
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Or if you want to do loaded touring with a road bike, an extrawheel trailer is an ideal option. One wheel tracks better than two and after a while you forget you have a third wheel in the rear. I should clarify that in my last post I meant that a typical road bike frame is not built to take panniers with heavy loads. And the wheelbase can be "twitchy" as its built to emphasize speed over stability and comfort. Lots of people have done it but a road bike limits where you can go - like no going off road since they aren't tough enough to handle the rigors of unpaved paths and trails.

Last edited by NormanF; 10-23-09 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 10-25-09, 09:59 PM   #13
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I just rode from Perth to Melbourne on a carbon fibre road bike with a bob trailer. No problems. I even went down a 10km gravel road and back without issue. You're better off riding a bike that's comfortable and you're used to. In my opinion, touring bikes are only really useful for panniers. The above quote is clearly incorrect. What do they ride in Paris-Roubaix?
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Old 10-25-09, 11:11 PM   #14
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+1 on the trailer.

This summer I told a friend of mine we could do a bit of touring together, and he asked if he could use his old steel racing bike. Sure! I said, it's steel, it'll be great!

We continually ran into one thing after the other. The problems are many, but can be overcome:
-No rack braze-ons. - Got a Cold Springs Old Man Mountain rack.
-No tire clearance for anything bigger than 25s.
-Only one water bottle mount.
-(Usually)No granny gear.
-Usually less than 36 spoke wheels.
-Not specifically built for comfort.
-Depending on how much touring you were to do, the durability of lightweight components tends to be less than something like mountain bike components.
-It's a racing bike. The title 'racing bike' comes from the fact that it was built for racing.

All that being said, if you were to get the gearing right, have a strong enough rear wheel, and get a BOB, I think you'd do just fine. It was just interesting watching my friend try and go through all the modifications to make a racing bike a touring bike, when he could have spent that money on a decent 80s Japanese touring bike that would have been oodles better in the end anyway.
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Old 10-25-09, 11:18 PM   #15
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I see a lot of people opting to use a trailer and ride a lighter bike and just built up a 32 spoke rear wheel for a fellow who plans to tour in this manner and I don't have any worries about the wheel holding up.

He's a lightweight and despite the trailer plans on traveling light.
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Old 10-25-09, 11:25 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eljimberino View Post
The above quote is clearly incorrect. What do they ride in Paris-Roubaix?
This

Many carbon road bikes come out of the box with warning stickers that clearly state that the bike is not for offroad use. The question is rarely whether the bike can survive a trip down a gravel road, but rather can it survive that trip over and over and over again, loaded.

Carbon mountain bikes and some carbon cross bikes could be much more suitable for this, because they're designed for such riding. Again I'll say, I don't think there's any problem touring on a road racing bike(with BOB), but you're going to run into more difficulties than on a bike designed specifically for touring. There are differences between the two all the way down to the chainring bolts.
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Old 10-26-09, 05:46 AM   #17
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ul cycle touring site

Hi,
I have a Bianchi Volpe which I learned about from the book Adventure Cycle Touring. Excellent read.
But you should check out this site: http://www2.arnes.si/~ikovse/weight.htm He takes the whole ultralight touring to an extreme worth considering.
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Old 10-26-09, 05:55 AM   #18
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