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  1. #1
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    touring frame options-- what's out there?

    Hi folks. I am interested in knowing if there are any frames out there that are designed with these specs in mind:

    1) braze-ons/mounting points for full tail rack and front panniers.
    2) 26" wheels
    3) women's specific frame (in particular, a very very short torso length, hence a relatively short top-tube to seat tube ratio).
    4) Light-weight (butted aluminum, et al).

  2. #2
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    Not exactly women specific, but Salsa Vaya has relatively short and inclined top tube and tall head tube. The smallest models offered with 26" wheels.
    Much cheaper than female bikes from Terry.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikhalit View Post
    Not exactly women specific, but Salsa Vaya has relatively short and inclined top tube and tall head tube. The smallest models offered with 26" wheels.
    Much cheaper than female bikes from Terry.
    Thanks for the tip, Mikhalit. That looks like it fits the bill. Definitely doesn't have to be "women's specific." I actually hesitated to use the term, because it's so vague. The Chro-Mo frame might be a bit heavy, but the geometry aspects appear to be spot on. Discs too, which were desirable.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Chris Pringle's Avatar
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    Look into Rodriguez out of Seattle, WA. They have a 26"-wheel touring bike called the UTB, which they can gladly build with disc brakes or extra features important to you. It's a custom built frame and as such, it will be built according to your body dimensions. If you've had difficulty fitting correctly in standard bikes, this is definitely the way to go. I believe this is why those guys have had a big following with women for decades.
    Last edited by Chris Pringle; 10-04-12 at 10:03 AM. Reason: Wrong link

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    If you're a light person and not tall then a light frame could work, if your main use is loaded touring aNd you aren't light a light frame is somewhat irrelevant and self defeating criterion.

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    RoyGBiv, there was a rather good thread recently about a women choosing a touring bike. Maybe you'll find it helpful.

    Personally i like the way that Chris Pringle suggests, you will find there a link to the really nice Rodriguez touring bike built for rough roads and shipped to Russia, but i believe such a custom bike comes close to some 2.5-3K USD.
    Last edited by mikhalit; 09-17-12 at 10:27 AM.

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    SOMA makes a nice frame called the Saga. SiZe 54 and under take 26"ers. It's not aluminum though.

  8. #8
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    RoyGBiv, Why 26" wheels (just curious)? You also didn't specify drop bars or flat/trekking bars.

    1) Any dedicated tourer and many CX frames accomodate a rack. There are front racks that do not require a mid mount.
    3) Many tourers have classical frame sizes where seat tube length is nearly equal to top tube length, there are exceptions.
    4) The touring niche is the realm of steel. The weight penalty isn't very much, usually 3-5 lbs.

    Here's another thread from a female cyclist choosing a touring bike: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...20-for-touring .

    Brad

  9. #9
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Check out Georgina Terry's bikes , too.. she has 559 26" wheel touring bikes.
    for a narrower than ATB width tire..

    If you let go of the 26" spec, Bike Friday's travel bikes fit into a suitcase,
    to make getting to the trip start , and return easier..

    particularly with 'Bike' triggering additional charges in many air carriers,
    these days.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikhalit View Post
    RoyGBiv, there was a rather good thread recently about a women choosing a touring bike. Maybe you'll find it helpful.

    Personally i like the way that Chris Pringle suggests, you will find there a link to the really nice Rodriguez touring bike built for rough roads and shipped to Russia, but i believe such a custom bike comes close to some 2.5-3K USD.
    Thanks for the read, Mikhalit. I hadn't found that earlier.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradtx View Post
    RoyGBiv, Why 26" wheels (just curious)? You also didn't specify drop bars or flat/trekking bars.

    1) Any dedicated tourer and many CX frames accomodate a rack. There are front racks that do not require a mid mount.
    3) Many tourers have classical frame sizes where seat tube length is nearly equal to top tube length, there are exceptions.
    4) The touring niche is the realm of steel. The weight penalty isn't very much, usually 3-5 lbs.

    Here's another thread from a female cyclist choosing a touring bike: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...20-for-touring .

    Brad
    26" wheels because I recognize that 650c wheel spec is a dying breed, and 700c gives toe overlap problems on the frames we've tried--even the "women-specific frames." This is a particularly small rider we're talking about, so I suppose I should tack on the requirement that small frame sizes should be available.

    Frames designed with Flat bars in mind, I think, are the preference, although she is open to the drop-bar arrangement.

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    I'm finding that both the Vaya and the Long Haul Trucker have really similar proportions, but the LHT drops down another 3 cm on it's top tube length over the smallest Vayas, giving us some wiggle room on adjustments. That sounds pretty darn appealing. Man that's gotta be a small frame!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Check out Georgina Terry's bikes , too.. she has 559 26" wheel touring bikes.
    for a narrower than ATB width tire..

    If you let go of the 26" spec, Bike Friday's travel bikes fit into a suitcase,
    to make getting to the trip start , and return easier..

    particularly with 'Bike' triggering additional charges in many air carriers,
    these days.
    I am *amazed* at how unique Terry bikes can get. They take some pretty unique design cues. I am *very* curious if all ride characteristics were contemplated while pairing fork to frame geometry & head tube angle on some of their more extreme designs, like their 24"/700c frames.

  14. #14
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I ride a 42cm LHT frame. It is a tiny frame. I've been happy with it. It carries whatever you can strap onto it and rides like it's on rails.
    Gunnar Sport
    Specialized Ruby
    Salsa Vaya Ti
    Novara Randonee x2
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  15. #15
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Seems a 26 26 is on the current option list. and building her frames are subbed out to Waterford a quality builder ..
    so still a small batch steel frame. Waterford/Gunnar are in the US..

    http://www.terrybicycles.com/Bicycle...to-Donana-Tour
    Last edited by fietsbob; 10-04-12 at 12:11 PM.

  16. #16
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    Might want to look in the other forum called "Framebuilders" for discussion of steel vs aluminum vs carbon. I think the guist of that is that steel has gotten dramatically stronger and lighter over the last 10 years or so which allows a bike to be build of steel and still not be significantly heavier than the other materials.

    Also might want to visit Rodriguez's site as he specializes (amongst other things) in really getting bikes right for ladies and his site has a lot of data and discussion on topics related to those issue.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksisler View Post
    Might want to look in the other forum called "Framebuilders" for discussion of steel vs aluminum vs carbon. I think the guist of that is that steel has gotten dramatically stronger and lighter over the last 10 years or so which allows a bike to be build of steel and still not be significantly heavier than the other materials.

    Also might want to visit Rodriguez's site as he specializes (amongst other things) in really getting bikes right for ladies and his site has a lot of data and discussion on topics related to those issue.
    Yeah, that's something I've started to realize, is that reliable thin-walled fabrication has come a long way. Was checking out the Vaya & LHT at my LBS, and was pretty surprised at how close it came to the Al frames.

  18. #18
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    Check out an older mtb frame. Im almost finished building one up from an early 90s chromoly Trek and thinking of building one p for the wifey next. Geometry works well and there are lots of frame options available. Just an idea. Good luck.

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