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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 08-15-11, 06:59 PM   #1
OdieInAz
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My Creation!

I have been wanting to convert my Giant Revel 2 into a touring machine and now I have completed the build-up. I put continental-travel-contact-tire-26-x-1.75, Octagon adjustable stem, 44mm road bars and Shimano components (had to remove both the Sram derailleurs cause they did not function with the Shimano Shifters), Topeak rack and trunk bag. I have other cyclist looking at my machine with a mixture of wonder, curiosity, and repulsion. I love her. Now let's get to putting the miles in. I am going to plan my first mini tour in October. Kinda hot here in Arizona right now. Reading this forum has turned me onto the idea. So I blame my creation on those that post here!
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Old 08-21-11, 01:52 PM   #2
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Looking good. If it were me, I'd lose the suspension fork, but that's just me. I know there are quite a few people who tour with them. Look forward to hearing stories from the road. All the best
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Old 08-21-11, 01:56 PM   #3
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I love a good MTB conversion... beauty, I say.
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Old 08-21-11, 10:32 PM   #4
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How does it ride? You don't mind if I lol a little?
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Old 08-22-11, 07:00 AM   #5
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+1 to susp. corrected fork. Easier to mount front rack, better handling, won't compress under load, more reliable, lighter....

I put a $50 dimension susp corrected fork on my 700c xtra. Noticeably lighter, faster, better load carrying and better handling.
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Old 08-22-11, 07:30 AM   #6
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OdieInAz, My first mini tour was on this..

..sans rack bag and panniers. It worked better than I thought it would and considered modifying it like yours, but I still like to ride single track so I built up a touring bike. Have fun.

Brad
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Old 08-22-11, 01:15 PM   #7
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That's a nice looking bike. Concerning suspension forks - I can see them being really handy if you're touring in the wilderness, off road etc, then it could make a world of difference. In fact, I've seen some wild tours in Bike magazine and on the web, up mountain tracks only a goat would consider, and I'd certainly think about it then, but on asphalt and hardpack, I'd go with a straight fork (my preference is a Kona Project 2) I find the track just right, so little to go wrong and when weight is all, why bother scrimping with your kit when you can shed it at the front end?
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Old 08-22-11, 01:35 PM   #8
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Tubus Swing clamps high, to the fork crown, and a brace to the top end of the headset stack.

So the suspension will work, un burdened by added mass.
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Old 08-22-11, 05:30 PM   #9
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OdieInAz, My first mini tour was on this..

..sans rack bag and panniers. It worked better than I thought it would and considered modifying it like yours, but I still like to ride single track so I built up a touring bike. Have fun.

Brad
What kind of bike stand is that?
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Old 08-29-11, 08:44 AM   #10
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How does it ride? You don't mind if I lol a little?
It actually rides very well. It's surprisingly quick. Those mountain gears also are great in a climb and it has long enough legs on the high gears to maintain a fairly good speed. This bike also plows into head winds much better than my Rapid ever did. I don't mind a laugh. I like a mix of reactions. That's what makes it so much fun!
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Old 08-29-11, 08:46 AM   #11
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+1 to susp. corrected fork. Easier to mount front rack, better handling, won't compress under load, more reliable, lighter....

I put a $50 dimension susp corrected fork on my 700c xtra. Noticeably lighter, faster, better load carrying and better handling.
+1 on the rigid fork. This is still tumbling around in my brain. I do go on some pretty rough dirt/gravel roads from time to time. Still up for debate.
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Old 08-29-11, 08:49 AM   #12
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OdieInAz, My first mini tour was on this..

..sans rack bag and panniers. It worked better than I thought it would and considered modifying it like yours, but I still like to ride single track so I built up a touring bike. Have fun.

Brad
Nice ride. The main reason I went with drop bars was due to crazy neck pain. I tried everything I could to correct that problem but road bars allowed me to place my hands narrow for better neck support. The most comfortable bars ever. And for the long haul that's what I need. The multiple hand positions are a big plus.

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Old 08-29-11, 08:51 AM   #13
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That's a nice looking bike. Concerning suspension forks - I can see them being really handy if you're touring in the wilderness, off road etc, then it could make a world of difference. In fact, I've seen some wild tours in Bike magazine and on the web, up mountain tracks only a goat would consider, and I'd certainly think about it then, but on asphalt and hardpack, I'd go with a straight fork (my preference is a Kona Project 2) I find the track just right, so little to go wrong and when weight is all, why bother scrimping with your kit when you can shed it at the front end?
Good call with the Kona Project 2. That's exactly what forks I was considering if I go rigid. Don't know yet though.
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Old 08-29-11, 08:55 AM   #14
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Thanks for the compliments Clasher and everyone. I thought I was going to get more jeers and jokes but everyone has been very cool. I do need to make more mods. The first thing I was looking at was putting Travel Agents on the V-Brakes. Road levers work okay but it's tough to keep the brakes adjusted having the pads ride so close to the rim. Then I was considering a good saddle. Any suggestions on the saddle? I know the stand by is Brooks. I was considering that.

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Old 08-29-11, 01:54 PM   #15
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Great to see you working through it. This, for me, is the great thing about touring - you have a bike which you have to consider. It will be your biggest friend on the road, and the friendlier you can make it the better for you. It's also invaluable because you learn how your bike works, how little things affect it, and how little things affect you.
Saddles - I'd always go with a Brooks. I've cycled for thirty odd years now, and on long distance cycling nothing has compared with a Brooks. You (or I, at any rate) can't beat them. I personally believe it's becasue they are soft enough to absorb the road buzz, but polished enough to allow you to move over them. Soft saddles allow you to sink into them. this has a tendency to numb you (like sitting in a movie theatre seat for long periods of time).
One thing though, if you choose a Brooks, don't wear padded shorts - this defeats the whole object. Wear seamless synthetic underwear so there is no rubbing and so you can move over the saddle.
I've been luck in that both my Brooks have not really needed breaking in. True, there is a period, for me about four days, when your sit bones will be pummeled and hurt, but after they've toughened up, you'll be good to go.
That's my experience, anyway.
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Old 08-29-11, 02:21 PM   #16
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Ditto about the Brooks. I had a friend who said he wouldn't mind too much if his bike were stolen, but it was the Brooks saddle he would miss. He was working his way around the globe in 1-2 month tour segments, so he knew long-distance touring.

Also, yes, Travel Agents or changing to cantilever brakes will help the brake function- V-brakes have almost twice the cable pull ratio of the side-pull double-pivot calipers that the STI levers were made for.
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Old 08-29-11, 03:55 PM   #17
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What kind of bike stand is that?
It's from Performance. A nice unit to keep from leaning the bike on the car away from home.

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Old 08-29-11, 04:07 PM   #18
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Thanks for the compliments Clasher and everyone. I thought I was going to get more jeers and jokes but everyone has been very cool. I do need to make more mods. The first thing I was looking at was putting Travel Agents on the V-Brakes. Road levers work okay but it's tough to keep the brakes adjusted having the pads ride so close to the rim. Then I was considering a good saddle. Any suggestions on the saddle? I know the stand by is Brooks. I was considering that.
My butt seems to be one of the few that isn't happy with a Brooks. A Serfas saddle I accidentally came across (were on my Santana) seems to work the best for me so far, tho' I'm sure my model isn't available any more (Contoured much like a Selle Italia Flite, which I also like.). My mountain bike has a Fizik Nisene. It didn't work very well on the roadies, but is perfect on the Trek.

Brad
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