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Old 03-26-13, 11:24 AM   #1
scozim 
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Touring on a hybrid - experiences/recommendations

I have posted here a couple of times over the past 5 yrs as I've developed some curiosity about touring. I spend 95% of my time in the C&V forum since that's where my primary interest is. I'm cross posting here to hopefully gain some more insight on my question.

I have been seriously considering finding a C&V touring bike for awhile. My ideal would be an '84 Gitane Grantour but they don't come up for sale very often. I have a drop bar Trek 800 Antelope conversion that I initially planned to try some light touring on but I don't like the weight and can't seem to get it as comfortable as I like even though it rides well and has braze on for a low rider front rack.

I've toyed with another mtb drop bar conversion but based on the first experience am a little more hesitant. As I've contemplated all this I forgot that I had just built (and converted to drop bar) a late 80's Peugeot Limestone 70c hybrid. It's already equipped with canti brakes and a triple (now). I'm already planning on having new wheels built up with the existing hubs. Ignore the lack of cantis on the photo - they're on there now. It's equipped with bar end shifters (Suntour) and a Deore XT rear derailleur. It's already got 700X38 tires so there's plenty of room for fenders and some narrower tires. It can't fit a lowrider rack but that's not a deal breaker.

What's your experience touring with a hybrid such as this? I know it'd be fine for easy overnight camping but am seriously wanting to do at least a week tour in the next year or so.

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Old 03-26-13, 01:53 PM   #2
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the ONLY bike i have ever really disliked was a 95ish Cannondale hybrid. oink oink! never again.
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Old 03-26-13, 02:03 PM   #3
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Touring is the activity itself , what you use to do it is just a choice.. it does not Matter which bike..

We see people touring on all sorts of bikes , from around the Globe, on the Oregon Coast..
just finish getting the rest of the setup, mudguards and Racks and all that..

It just has to be something that you can ride all day on; then do it again the next Morning..
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Old 03-26-13, 02:58 PM   #4
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Have you actually fitted a rack and panniers? The bike looks like a great start to me. Heel strike and toe clip overlap looks like your biggest concern. As already stated, the bike is not hugely important as long as carries what you need and can ride it 50-80 miles a day. Go for it and above all have fun.
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Old 03-26-13, 03:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by scozim View Post
I have posted here a couple of times over the past 5 yrs as I've developed some curiosity about touring. I spend 95% of my time in the C&V forum since that's where my primary interest is. I'm cross posting here to hopefully gain some more insight on my question.

I have been seriously considering finding a C&V touring bike for awhile. My ideal would be an '84 Gitane Grantour but they don't come up for sale very often. I have a drop bar Trek 800 Antelope conversion that I initially planned to try some light touring on but I don't like the weight and can't seem to get it as comfortable as I like even though it rides well and has braze on for a low rider front rack.

I've toyed with another mtb drop bar conversion but based on the first experience am a little more hesitant. As I've contemplated all this I forgot that I had just built (and converted to drop bar) a late 80's Peugeot Limestone 70c hybrid. It's already equipped with canti brakes and a triple (now). I'm already planning on having new wheels built up with the existing hubs. Ignore the lack of cantis on the photo - they're on there now. It's equipped with bar end shifters (Suntour) and a Deore XT rear derailleur. It's already got 700X38 tires so there's plenty of room for fenders and some narrower tires. It can't fit a lowrider rack but that's not a deal breaker.

What's your experience touring with a hybrid such as this? I know it'd be fine for easy overnight camping but am seriously wanting to do at least a week tour in the next year or so.
It looks like it has a reasonable wheelbase and longish chainstays. The ride should be okay and I doubt that you'll have heel clipping problems. It doesn't have front lowrider mounts but most bikes of that era didn't have them. There are fit kits that will adapt the bike for those.

Try it. At worst it won't be suitable.

Oh, and ditch the Biopace...ufdah.
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Old 03-26-13, 06:13 PM   #6
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Thanks for the advice. The bike came with a rear rack - I just haven't fit panniers on it to check heel clearance yet. The chainrings are actually a rare Stronglight Biostrong - similar to Biopace. I hadn't ever tried oblong rings before and will be going back to round rings. I like to spin and didn't like the feel of these. Fenders should fit fine I just need to find a wider set than what I have on another bike. I'm set with panniers and plenty of rear rack options. Just need to figure out the front rack situation.
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Old 03-26-13, 08:54 PM   #7
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scozim
Just need to figure out the front rack situation.
Try these:





Good luck.

Being a C&V guy, I thought you might appreciate this: 1974 Peugeot PX10 (in the 1970's)


Last edited by Doug64; 03-26-13 at 08:59 PM.
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Old 03-26-13, 09:33 PM   #8
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It sounds as if you like to tinker with old bikes. With that in mind, you will always need to adjust or change something.

Is the bike good enough for a week long tour? People have gone farther on much less.
Keep tinkering and enjoy the process.
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Old 03-26-13, 10:55 PM   #9
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Try these:





Good luck.

Being a C&V guy, I thought you might appreciate this: 1974 Peugeot PX10 (in the 1970's)

Quote:
Originally Posted by skilsaw View Post
It sounds as if you like to tinker with old bikes. With that in mind, you will always need to adjust or change something.

Is the bike good enough for a week long tour? People have gone farther on much less.
Keep tinkering and enjoy the process.
Those brackets look sweet and could easily work with the front rack I already have. And, PX10 goodness. That's encouraging since I'm building up an early 70's PX10 for my "Eroica" bike right now. Maybe I'll have to take it overnight camping as well.

I got into the C&V hobby in 2008 and have found I really do love to work on the old bikes so making adjustments is becoming more routine as is switching out components and trying different combinations.

Thanks for the encouragement.
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Old 03-27-13, 04:49 AM   #10
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Touring is the activity itself , what you use to do it is just a choice.. it does not Matter which bike..

We see people touring on all sorts of bikes , from around the Globe, on the Oregon Coast..
just finish getting the rest of the setup, mudguards and Racks and all that..

It just has to be something that you can ride all day on; then do it again the next Morning..
.

This is my take on it.

I tour on some bikes that others won't ride around the block. As long as you are comfortable on it, ride it, if not find something that is.

Aaron
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Old 03-27-13, 08:15 AM   #11
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Those brackets look sweet and could easily work with the front rack I already have.
Call Wayne at the Touring Store for them. If you don't have the upper mounts...hard to tell from the picture, you might want to consider the Tubus stay mounts too. Far better than p-clamps. They are more expensive but they are easier to mount and are stronger.
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Old 03-27-13, 01:21 PM   #12
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I've been touring on a Trek 7200 (hybrid) for 13 yrs. After the initial components wore out I changed the crank and cassette to mountain bike gearing. Wish I put a 22 tooth sprocket on the crank initially. It would have made the mountain passes much easier. It's really comfortable. Especially on the hands with the riser handlebars plus the two way adjustable stem. I like to sit upright. Here is a picture with aerobars (and fishing pole)
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Old 03-27-13, 01:38 PM   #13
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I like the fishing pole touch. That's a nice set up. What size tires do you run on it?
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Old 03-27-13, 02:12 PM   #14
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Those are 28 wide x 700c tires. Good for the Kansas state highways.
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Old 03-27-13, 04:56 PM   #15
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I've been touring on a Trek 7200 (hybrid) for 13 yrs. After the initial components wore out I changed the crank and cassette to mountain bike gearing. Wish I put a 22 tooth sprocket on the crank initially. It would have made the mountain passes much easier. It's really comfortable. Especially on the hands with the riser handlebars plus the two way adjustable stem. I like to sit upright. Here is a picture with aerobars (and fishing pole)
My issue with diamond frame bikes is that I either need to be quite upright, or I can be on aerobars, but really not much in between for any length of time (or my hands go numb). I really like the aerobars on the flat bar (I thought of doing it, I've suggested it to other people, but I don't actually remember seeing it). Nicely done, sir!
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Old 04-30-13, 03:04 PM   #16
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Just an update since I'm a month away from trying my first tour, albeit a short one. I've got the new wheels back for the bike with spokes that should withstand added weight. Went with some Weinmann rims. New 28c tires are on it. I don't like the rack that much at this point but it was the one I could get to fit (Blackburn MtnRack). Not sure how strong it is but since the tour will be short I'm not planning on really loading up - no need to. I have smaller front panniers that I could try on the rear if these end up being too big for my short trip (they're a little bent after being in storage for a few years). I also have some 30 yr old REI panniers that are in good shape I could try.

The only things left to do are change out the rings to good 'ol round ones (48-38-26) and the front derailleur (I have a couple of different Suntour options. The XT rear derailleur shifts real nice.

I've mapped out a 315 mile route and will be staying at two campgrounds (I was more comfortable spending a little more for the campsite for this first attempt) and a friends place on the third night. Mostly arid, desert type conditions the 2nd and 3rd days. First day will include a 4100 ft mountain pass.

Gotta say I'm excited to get this thing going.

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Old 04-30-13, 03:36 PM   #17
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Personally , I have preferred a set up of drop bars where the top is level ,
and the drop points back at the rear axle,

at an angle.. , because the top is where my hands spent the most time..

& I added a bit more padding under the tape on the top..
straight ruler edge along the drops, tip of brake lever a bit up from. or touching the ruler ..

But If you can ride all day for weeks, as it is , its your choice.
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Old 04-30-13, 08:03 PM   #18
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I don't like the rack that much at this point but it was the one I could get to fit (Blackburn MtnRack).
I don't think I'd worry too much about the rack. I had a pair of these Blackburn racks that look like they could be similar to the one you have. They originally attached to the rear brake bolt (on side pull brakes) with a single strut. I modified this one by welding the plates on each side of the center attachment point. This allowed me to use 2 struts and attach it to my mountain bike's seat stays. My daughter is still using the unmodified one on her road bike, and the one in the photo went with my mtn bike when I sold it. They were 30-35 years old, and had been used a lot. C&V-- That bike was a 1993 Trek 820 that I bought brand new still in the original box in 2009!



OT- but again I thought you might appreciate an "old" bike.
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Old 04-30-13, 09:20 PM   #19
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I don't think I'd worry too much about the rack. I had a pair of these Blackburn racks that look like they could be similar to the one you have. They originally attached to the rear brake bolt (on side pull brakes) with a single strut. I modified this one by welding the plates on each side of the center attachment point. This allowed me to use 2 struts and attach it to my mountain bike's seat stays. My daughter is still using the unmodified one on her road bike, and the one in the photo went with my mtn bike when I sold it. They were 30-35 years old, and had been used a lot. C&V-- That bike was a 1993 Trek 820 that I bought brand new still in the original box in 2009!



OT- but again I thought you might appreciate an "old" bike.
Nice - similar to my '87 Antelope I originally planned to have as a touring rig but found I couldn't get comfortable. Not sure if it was the longer top tube but something just hasn't been right.
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Old 05-01-13, 12:05 PM   #20
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The only things left to do are change out the rings to good 'ol round ones (48-38-26) and the front derailleur (I have a couple of different Suntour options. The XT rear derailleur shifts real nice.

I've mapped out a 315 mile route and will be staying at two campgrounds (I was more comfortable spending a little more for the campsite for this first attempt) and a friends place on the third night. Mostly arid, desert type conditions the 2nd and 3rd days. First day will include a 4100 ft mountain pass.
I'm not sure what you have for a cogs in the rear but as long as you are changing out the rings I would advise going to a 24 in stead of the 26 in front. It sounds like you have enough FD options to accomodate the tooth differential and the XT will swallow up a lot of chain. I've found you can never have too low of a gear inch for a granny and being from WA you will always find climbs! Looks like a nice build - have fun!

I set up a '93 Univega Via Carisma with the intent of using it for gravel rail trail tours but have yet to use it loaded so I'm sorry I can't give you hybrid experiences. All my touring has been on vintage road tourers
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Old 05-01-13, 12:55 PM   #21
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The only things left to do are change out the rings to good 'ol round ones (48-38-26) and the front derailleur (I have a couple of different Suntour options.
You might want to keep the Biopace chainrings. IIRC, Sheldon Brown wrote a bit describing them as ideal for touring. Elliptical chainrings have been making a comeback for a few years now:

http://www.rotorbikeusa.com/products...s_compact.html
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Old 05-01-13, 01:07 PM   #22
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You might want to keep the Biopace chainrings. IIRC, Sheldon Brown wrote a bit describing them as ideal for touring. Elliptical chainrings have been making a comeback for a few years now:

http://www.rotorbikeusa.com/products...s_compact.html
Biopace are the effectively the "anti-elliptical" chain ring as they are timed 90 out of phase as the elliptical rings that most people use now...
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Old 05-06-13, 03:44 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Personally , I have preferred a set up of drop bars where the top is level ,
and the drop points back at the rear axle,

at an angle.. , because the top is where my hands spent the most time..

& I added a bit more padding under the tape on the top..
straight ruler edge along the drops, tip of brake lever a bit up from. or touching the ruler ..

But If you can ride all day for weeks, as it is , its your choice.
I suspect I'll change them out eventually. I went for a decent shake down ride today and I think the problem is more the style of the bars. I'll need to look for one that might be a little wider with a little longer flat section before the drop starts. I'll mess with it a little more this weekend and see if I can rotate them with a little more flat area for riding comfortably.
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