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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 02-02-10, 08:07 PM   #1
mthayer
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Looking at getting a new bike.

I am looking at getting a new bike in the next month or two. I am looking at getting something thats more in the middle for touring. I am looking at buying something that is new, getting tired of having to keep fixing my current bike. What would be a good bike in the price range of 500 to 1000, I would like to spend the least amount possible, so I can still have money to completely outfit the bike and then to spend some on touring.
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Old 02-03-10, 04:01 AM   #2
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I'm outfitting my Trek FX 7.3 into a tour bike. If you go up to the 7.5 you don't get the front braze-ons for a front rack. I bought my bike for $500 last August, so it right in your price range and leaves plenty for out fitting. The only downside, and I'm not really sure it's a downside, is that it's aluminum. Some will say aluminum will give a harsher ride. Some may want to swap out the handle bars for drop handle bars.

With bike, front and rear racks and panniers, handle bar bag, trunk bag, fenders, and new lower pressure tires, I've got $1,065 into the bike.

John
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Old 02-03-10, 08:41 AM   #3
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I'm outfitting my Trek FX 7.3 into a tour bike. If you go up to the 7.5 you don't get the front braze-ons for a front rack. I bought my bike for $500 last August, so it right in your price range and leaves plenty for out fitting. The only downside, and I'm not really sure it's a downside, is that it's aluminum. Some will say aluminum will give a harsher ride. Some may want to swap out the handle bars for drop handle bars.

With bike, front and rear racks and panniers, handle bar bag, trunk bag, fenders, and new lower pressure tires, I've got $1,065 into the bike.

John
For $600 you can get the Windsor Tourist from bikesdirect.com. Its a proven touring bike, with real touring geometry, tubing, and materials. I dont think that the Trek you pointed out would make for a good dedicated touring bike. More of a commuter. However, the Windsor will commute real well too, For the extra money there is a lot of bang for your buck but I dont recommend something that you have to modify too much to get to do what you want. The Windsor is an exact copy of the Fuji Touring, also a great bike but much more expensive.
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Old 02-03-10, 09:43 AM   #4
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What size are you? You might be able to find an REI Novara Randonnee from 2009 on sale. Last year I found a 2008 model for $700 for my wife. If you call around at all of the REI shops in your area they can tell you what sizes are in stock.
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Old 02-03-10, 07:21 PM   #5
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The Cannondale Touring 2 is a little above your budget (it retails for around $1400) but is a really sweet touring bike. You did not say whether you prefer drop bars or flat bars, but this bike has drop bars. It comes with a rear rack and has braze ons for a front rack as well.
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Old 02-03-10, 07:26 PM   #6
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For $600 you can get the Windsor Tourist from bikesdirect.com.

Good Choice
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Old 02-03-10, 09:51 PM   #7
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I am 5'8-9" so I am looking for a 54cm frame. I am looking for drop bars on the bike. I am kinda hesitant on ordering anything online, so I am thinking the Windsor is out. I am going to wait till the end of the month to buy the new bike so I still have a while to do alot of research before I make a decision. I have been looking at a Masi bike, little more than I would like to spend, at $1145, but it looks like a beautiful bike.
http://www.masibikes.com/steel/speciale-randonneur/

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Old 02-04-10, 06:04 AM   #8
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I dont think that the Trek you pointed out would make for a good dedicated touring bike.
Having just started putting together my touring bike, I don't know a lot about it. The Trek FX 7.3 has all the brazeons, room for large tires, lower gear range than my road bike, long chainstays and long wheelbase. From what I've read, it would seem like a good fit for touring. What would be wrong with it?

John
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Old 02-04-10, 07:59 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by mthayer View Post
I am 5'8-9" so I am looking for a 54cm frame. I am looking for drop bars on the bike. I am kinda hesitant on ordering anything online, so I am thinking the Windsor is out. I am going to wait till the end of the month to buy the new bike so I still have a while to do alot of research before I make a decision. I have been looking at a Masi bike, little more than I would like to spend, at $1145, but it looks like a beautiful bike.
http://www.masibikes.com/steel/speciale-randonneur/
It's good that you are doing research before buying. The Masi has a few warts that keep it from being a truly great touring bike. The dual pivot brakes have less clearance than cantilever brakes you'll find on more traditional touring bikes. This limits your tire size and make fitting fenders more difficult (if fenders are important to you). Look closely at the pictures of the Masi and you'll see that the rear fender is very close to the tire.

The gearing on the Masi isn't loaded touring friendly. Although they don't list the specs (that I can see), the bike comes with a compact double 10 speed and what appears to be a rear cassette with that looks to be gear rather high. These are fixable but add cost down the road. A new crank, front derailer, cassette and rear derailer adds significantly to the cost.

Compare the Masi and it's component selection to an LHT complete or a Cannondale T2. Both the Cannondale and the LHT are well designed and outfitted touring bikes that show what is needed by most people for loaded touring. Use those two as standards for comparison when considering a touring bike.
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Old 02-04-10, 08:08 AM   #10
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Having just started putting together my touring bike, I don't know a lot about it. The Trek FX 7.3 has all the brazeons, room for large tires, lower gear range than my road bike, long chainstays and long wheelbase. From what I've read, it would seem like a good fit for touring. What would be wrong with it?

John
Although I'm not a fan of flat bars, the Trek FX bikes are suitable touring bikes with some tweeks. The 32 spoke wheels are a bit light for loaded touring and the gearing might be off but the rest of the bike would be a solid touring bike. The Cannondale Quick 5 or 6 would be a good flat bar touring bike as would the Specialized Sirrus. Both would need some adjustment...just like the FX...to be really suitable but those would be relatively minor changes.
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Old 02-04-10, 08:15 AM   #11
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The Masi bike does Not have touring gearing and is over your budget.
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Old 02-04-10, 06:49 PM   #12
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We can't have a what bike to buy thread without including the Trek 520. Regeared last year, there is a reason this is the longest lived bike model in Trek's line. A true touring bike. Though it lists for more, it can be had for the very top of your range, $1050.
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Old 02-05-10, 08:08 PM   #13
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If it was me i would buy the Gordon frame and rack set, and then port over the stuff on my current bike. Replace and upgrade parts for a while.
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Old 02-05-10, 09:04 PM   #14
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While you're searching on your own call around to shops and give them your criteria. For the shops that don't have a bonafide touring bike in their inventory they might have something that could be set up with drop bars. Can't hurt to find out. Purely by chance I got my LHT on the other side of the country in a small shop that was willing to ship it for cheap.
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Old 02-07-10, 09:33 PM   #15
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If you buy new on a budget: Novara Randonee.

if you buy used, you can get a lot of good brands and models.

Myself, I don't buy new bikes. The savings on buying used is compelling.
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Old 02-08-10, 04:12 AM   #16
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In your price range, the Surly LHT and the Trek 520 are out of your budget, unless you find a lightly used one on eBay or in your neighborhood.

I've just started compiling a list of reasonably priced touring bikes (it's not complete but it's a start) and while doing the research, I did notice that REI has last year's model of the Novara Randonee on sale at the moment.

If you really want to go for something on the low priced end of touring bikes, then you might look at a Marin Muirwoods, but you'd have to buy the racks, or the Dawes Vantage.

Personally, I'd try to spend $400-500 on a decent used touring bike, rather than $750-1,000 on a new one. With a used bike, you might find some of the upgrades have already been made, and if you can find someone who bought it for a tour and never used it again, it could be in excellent shape.
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Old 02-08-10, 07:30 AM   #17
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The Masi has a compact double crank and the shifters are 10 speed which limits the rear cog max size to 28 t. Also the Masi comes with an 11-25 rear cog. The gearing isn't low enough for loaded touring or hills. Ideally you will want a mtb triple crank and a 9 speed setup so you can take advantage of rear cogs with a max size of 34t.
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Old 02-08-10, 10:09 AM   #18
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What about the Bike Friday New world tourist?

it's not a traditional touring bike, but I've heard great things about it.
Supposely it is quite the durable folding bike and save money when traveling with it.

Darren alff rode it 9 months through Europe successfully
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Old 02-08-10, 10:14 AM   #19
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If it was me i would buy the Gordon frame and rack set, and then port over the stuff on my current bike. Replace and upgrade parts for a while.
If i were to buy a new frame/complete bike I would definitely go for this one. I love my BG, it is a joy to ride, and I am sure that is true with the taiwanese made ones too.
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Old 02-08-10, 08:08 PM   #20
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We just had a thread recently on the Windsor Tourist and BD - http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...r-tourist-2009
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