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  1. #1
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    Pannier Racks, backpack?

    Hey everybody,

    As you may know from my other posts, I am planning a cross-country bike ride this summer. I can still use a lot of help, so check out my other posts.

    So I was browsing on Craigslist and found some Old Man Mountain pannier racks. Their website looks legit, any opinions on how strong and durable this brand is? The rack is the White Rock, found http://www.oldmanmountain.com/Pages/...RearRacks.html.

    Here is the rack the guy is selling (on the right). http://losangeles.craigslist.org/lac...996126757.html.

    Any other suggestions for pannier racks? Also, I was considering taking a backpack instead of rear panniers (I know front ones are necessary to keep control of the bike on a steep incline), but I was told by a lot of people I will destroy my shoulders and back, any opinions on that?

  2. #2
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikexcountry View Post
    I will destroy my shoulders and back
    +1. In addition, raising your center of gravity is a bad idea.

  3. #3
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Front panniers aren't 'necessary'.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    How about one of those water backpacks?

    http://www.camelbak.com/Sports-Recreation/Packs.aspx
    Last edited by bikexcountry; 05-06-12 at 04:08 PM. Reason: include link

  5. #5
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikexcountry View Post
    How about one of those water backpacks?

    http://www.camelbak.com/Sports-Recreation/Packs.aspx
    Why do you think you'd want that?

  6. #6
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Water bottles weigh 2 ounces each and cost few bucks, Camelbacks are a pound or more and cost $100 or more. Why?

  7. #7
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    Easier to drink I guess. And you can carry more water without more space.

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    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    But weren't you the one talking about how you don't have a lot of money to spend on this trip?

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigAura View Post
    +1. In addition, raising your center of gravity is a bad idea.
    +1. You are more likely to have a spill raising your center of gravity.

    I sweat profusely so I carry two bottles and a 40 oz. Camelback. It didn't cost me anywhere near $100. Not even half that.

  10. #10
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    I found them for 60 on the camelbak website and only 20 on ebay, 15 if I buy the components separately. A 100 fl oz backpack was 30.

  11. #11
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Personally I don't like camelbaks, but it's your choice. However, I'd strongly advise against a backpack. It is much more sensible to have the bike carry the weight. It handles better, and you don't get sore.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  12. #12
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
    It didn't cost me anywhere near $100. Not even half that.
    I guess you're talking about this one ($45/weight 11 ounces) and I'm taking about this one ($100/weight 30 ounces). I understand it works for some, but I'm not a fan.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    I like that small one you mentioned - 50 fl oz is still very respectable, in addition to 3 water bottles I could potentially go 50 miles without refilling.

    Any comment on the rack? I would have to head up to LA to get them and don't want to if they aren't quality racks

  14. #14
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Old Man Mountain racks are excellent quality. I had their Lowrider model and it served me well (I did later sell the bike with the rack on it though).

  15. #15
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    It is listed for 100 on their site, is it worth 50 used once? I don't have a car, so I'd probably end up doing my century up to los angeles lol

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    Cant comment on that brand of rack but they sell them on the ACA website.Surly Nice racks are really good but there heavy,heavy,heavy.I weighed the front one, 46.1oz.The rear rack holds about 80 or 90lbs and weighs a little less than 3lbs.Tubus makes nice racks too.The cargo rear rack 21.8oz and hold 80 or 90 also and the Tara front rack 17.1oz holds 35lbs.The finish on Tubus racks isnt all that great but the weight difference is awesome.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Chris Pringle's Avatar
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    To other responders: if you've been following the OP's questions in several threads, he is a teenager wanting to get into touring by possibly riding cross-country this summer. Let's be supportive by educating this young man why we do the things we do instead of criticizing him and snuffing his motivation and desire.

    Bikexcountry: a Camelbak is not needed at all for touring cross country. While touring you'll be sitting on a bicycle for hours day after day. A backpack or camelbak is heavy and will get your back uncomfortably sweaty and even achy. Basically, you want to put the least strain on your body. It's all about riding comfortably. So, save your pennies and go 3 or 4 water bottles that the bike can carry for you. There are many adaptors to hold bottles if the bike you have doesn't have many braze-ons for water bottle cages. You can also put a few more in your panniers if you feel they will be needed going through a remote area with little services or if it will be a really hot day. Camelbaks are used in mountain biking because you don't want anything to mess up the natural balance of the bike while you're riding through technical terrain plus it exerts/dehydrates you more and you need to replenish fluids more quickly than when touring.

  18. #18
    Senior Member bktourer1's Avatar
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    I only have one rear rack Jannd "expedition". As far as hydration packs, check out Wallyworld for packs from "Outdoor World". I just saw a 2 liter pack at costco for $25

  19. #19
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    Do you think I'll need to carry 90 lbs of equipment? I figured a tent (5lb), water, tools, change of clothes, phone, spare tires, and probably a cooker, then some general stuff. Maybe 50-60 lbs max.

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    No, you don't need to carry so much. I actually "lost weight" after 3 months realizing that a lot of the things I have aren't so necessary. You don't need spare "tires." Depending on what tire you have, you may only need to carry just one tire. You may not need a cooker if you can bear eating raw food and occasionally eating out.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Chris Pringle's Avatar
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    ^^^^ Yeah, keep it as light as you can. You need to start a detailed packing list. Look at other packing lists on this forum or on CrazyGuyOnaBike.com to see what others carry. The lighter the better. You won't believe how quickly things start to add up in weight. Once you pack 50 lbs (or more!) on your bike, it may seem/look really intimidating to ride with that much weight. Plan carefully.

  22. #22
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikexcountry View Post
    Maybe 50-60 lbs max.
    That's a reasonable weight target for all gear & supplies, although you could bring it down a bit. I carry a little under 50 pounds total of gear & supplies (food & water). It's a good to get a postage scale and weight all your items individually.

  23. #23
    Senior Member bikexcountry's Avatar
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    Alright I'll probably do that. I sell on ebay and amazon (look me up: aqualityguarantee lol) so I've been meaning to get a scale for a while. Thanks for that tidbit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Pringle View Post
    To other responders: if you've been following the OP's questions in several threads, he is a teenager wanting to get into touring by possibly riding cross-country this summer. Let's be supportive by educating this young man why we do the things we do instead of criticizing him and snuffing his motivation and desire.

    .
    well said

  25. #25
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    I'd wait until you have your bike before buying racks, panniers etc. The bike is the core and depending on what bike you get the dimensions might dictate the type of rack and things like pannier taper for heel clearance. Does the bike have the appropriate eyelets for mounting rack, or are you going to have to improvise? The Old Man Mountain are for a bike with 26" wheels, if I read the CL post right. You can get a new Blackburn rear rack for $40, that will serve you well.

    Regular water bottles tend to grow "stuff" on a long trip, even when washed regularly. This is especially true in hot weather using sports drinks. Hydration bladders also grow stuff, but hide it much better. We use Camelbacks for other sports like skiing and mountaineering, and they are really hard to keep clean. Also, when riding you have the pack against your back which does not allow much ventilation. I am not a big fan of them, but my wife likes them. I'd recommend the water bottles for utility and cleanliness.

    Like many of the previous folks have stated, you don't need front panniers. My wife probably has over 10, 000 touring miles with only rear panniers and a rack pack. you should be able to pare your gear weight down to 30-40 lbs. Some of the folks that frequent this forum, have reduced their gear weight into the 20 pound range. I tour pretty comfortably with 35 pounds of gear, and am still looking at ways to reduce the weight.
    Last edited by Doug64; 05-06-12 at 10:40 PM.

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