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What's the mileage on your touring bike(s)?

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What's the mileage on your touring bike(s)?

Old 10-22-19, 08:18 PM
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What's the mileage on your touring bike(s)?

Just curious to know how many km or miles are on your rigs and when you would go about retiring them.

When I bought my 1991 Miyata 1000 LT the owner said he put about 20,000km over the years, which I consider to be fairly young and low. The paint and overall condition of the bike still looks brand new even after my tour this summer.

Anywho, how many kms/miles have you racked on your rigs? And when would you retire them for a new touring bike?
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Old 10-23-19, 04:58 AM
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I'm just about to retire my 1996 Trek 520. I'm not sure how many miles on it, but I'd guess close to 30,000. The bike is still going strong, but the type of touring I'm doing these days has changed. I'm doing lighter/shorter credit-card style touring and equally likely to be on what these days is called "gravel" vs. all on road. Another consideration is reducing my overall number of bikes (along with other stuff.) To be honest: the reduction in bikes is also an excuse to play with new technology, like a 1X drive train.

So, I've decided to do a "N+1-2" - I've added a Jamis Renegade to be my touring bike plus "gravel bike" for those non-paved rides, or rides with my wife. I donated my 1990 vintage Schwinn hybrid to Bikes for the World - that was my beater bike/gravel bike equivalent and what I used for touring on the C&O Canal Towpath, Great Allegheny Passage trail, etc.

I'm still not sure what to do the 520. Bikes for the World doesn't seem to be the right fit for a touring bike, ACA didn't have any good ideas for how to donate to someone wanting to get started, so still looking. Right now, it is my Zwift bike down in the basement, but that means I have only done a N+1-1!
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Old 10-23-19, 05:05 AM
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Countless kms.
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Old 10-23-19, 05:14 AM
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I really don't know, but here are my best guesses...
  • Windsor Touring that I started my touring career on - 20,000 miles
  • 1990 Cannondale Crit bike that I rode the ST on - 200,000 miles
  • 1990 Cannondale MTB that I did some on/off road touring on - 30,000 miles
Note that in all three cases the majority of miles are not touring miles. For the two Cannondales the touring miles are a tiny fraction of the total miles.

I actually prefer to tour on a bike that isn't a touring specific bike these days, so the touring bike is more or less retired because it is a touring bike. I may actually ride the 1990 Cannondale Crit bike on my next tour if my ride across Florida pans out as planned. That is in part because I look at the ride as finishing the ST ride I started on that bike, but also because I like riding it. It has always been a favorite of mine.

I do have to admit that I am sometimes tempted with some of the new gravel bikes. The funny thing is that they would be more likely to replace my newer bikes than my older ones. Also if I could only have one bike they do seem best able to be an only bike of anything I can imagine. So if I ever downsize to the point where I only want one bike I'd buy one in a heart beat. It would be tough to say good bye to the 1990 Crit bike though.

Edit to clarify:
I think those are probably conservative estimates. Also, I own other bikes (probably way too many), some of which have quite a few miles on them, but I didn't include them since I haven't toured on them.
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Last edited by staehpj1; 10-24-19 at 07:33 AM.
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Old 10-23-19, 06:47 AM
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Dunno. I also commute, etc., on my current LHT, and I am not a mileage tracker. I have what I consider better things to do with my time.
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Old 10-23-19, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by BikeWonder View Post
Just curious to know how many km or miles are on your rigs and when you would go about retiring them.
As for the retirement of a bike question - that is a loose question. The way I interpret what you are asking is the frame and fork. That is "the heart" of "the bike". There are so many other components that tend to get swapped around and replaced - wheels (if not broken down to rims and hubs), cranksets, stems, handlebars, shifters, derailleurs, etc, etc. Now - if someone had the same wheel and crank sets on their bikes for 100,000 miles I'd be impressed. So again, so me, the way I interpret the retirement question is you are asking about the frame set alone (frame and fork, nothing else).

There are are 3 conditions I can think of that would be cause for retiring a frame set due to mechanical reasons:
- The fitment between the fork and frame in the head tube becomes wallered out due to improper fitment causing accelerated wear, or normal wear over a long period of time
- The welds (or brazed joints, either construction method) of the frame and/or fork show signs of stress cracks indicating the frame and/or fork are failing
- The dropouts show signs of weakening or the position the axles ride in are worn excessively

Aside from the frame and fork components (the raw metal of the bike structure) everything else can be replaced when it is worn out. Just like ball joints in a car - yea they are part of the "structure" of the car and how it functions, but they are ultimately a "wear item" that can be replaced when worn out. You don't need to trade your car in, or trailer it to the junk yard and sell it off for scrap, just because a "wear item" is worn out. Same with a bike.

My Disk Trucker has somewhere around 4,000 miles on it, not quite. I lost my biking data when I reformatted my HD a couple years ago. I thought I had everything backed up to an external drive but apparently the bike folder didn't make it. So I don't have a way to tell exact mileage. I know that isn't a lot of miles in the grand scheme of things, but for me it is considering what my schedule was and how much riding I fit in.
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Old 10-23-19, 07:50 AM
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I've retired bikes for changes in technology, not age, condition, or mileage.

The last one was my 1996 Novarra Randonee, after 22 years of use, guessing 3-5000 miles/year (touring, commuting, errands and fun rides), so definitely over 50K, maybe 100K miles. There was absolutely nothing mechanically wrong with it, but I replaced it with a disk brake bike because I was getting tired of the fussy old cantis. I must have adjusted those at least four times a year, close to 100 times.

I got the Randonee because it was on sale and had brifters, which was a new tech on production bikes back then. Before that, it was for indexed downtube shifting in the '80s.

I had new one bike stolen in the early 80s (a wedding present), but the replacement was almost identical. Luckily I'm with the same spouse, though.
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Old 10-23-19, 08:08 AM
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God knows!
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Old 10-23-19, 09:10 AM
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every decade or so i like to change everything. that means selling off (most) everything i own and getting a brand new life. the bare minimum is kept.....toted along with me, or stuffed in someone's attic to (maybe) retrieve one day....bikes are expendable.

that might mean finishing college, joining the military and being stationed in europe.

that might mean leaving europe to go back to college and work a few years.

that might mean quitting work to take a multi-year bike tour, followed by some years of contract engineering.

that might mean selling the house and motorcycle and truck and assorted stuff and moving to china.

and then that might mean leaving china to retire in thighland.

......currently planning the next adventure.......
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Old 10-23-19, 09:27 AM
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My 2009 Novara Randonnee, the TransAm veteran, has some 24,000 miles on it. Obviously 20,000 miles came after the TransAm, in commuting, weekend rides, shorter tours, etc. It's still going strong, only really needs some older, out of production replacement hoods.

I generally prefer riding the Fuji Touring. I got a new frame 12 years ago, and that frame has close to 50,000 miles on it. The fork didn't crack and so wasn't replaced like the frame, so the fork from 1998 has some 12,000 miles more. Frame and fork are still doing fine, although I need to figure out how to paint some rust spots and have them stay painted, dang it!
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Old 10-23-19, 10:04 AM
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I don't normally count miles either. That said, I've logged 11,000 miles just around town over the past 3 years. I had to electrify my bike in November of '16 and that console included the first odometer I've ever used.

I agree with KC and Andrew above. A bike is just a group of components that get replaced individually as needed when they wear out or when you want to upgrade.

My current frame is 25 years old and going strong. I had to retire a previous frame after 12 years due to a rust hole at the top tube.
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Old 10-23-19, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by BikeWonder View Post
Just curious to know how many km or miles are on your rigs and when you would go about retiring them.
I don't know. More than 10km

I've gone through a succession of touring bikes and also retired some:
- Lotus Odyssey '82; my college touring bike. Effectively retired in '92 when I bought a new touring bike to go across the USA. Functionally retired in '01 when I gave it to a roommate.
- Cannondale T1000 '92; across the USA, across Canada, half way around Australia; retired in '01 when the chain stay cracked.
- Cannondale T600 '96; backup bike I continued my trip around Australia; functionally retired in '06 when I bought a new bike for my Russia trip. Became my snow bike for a while, but donated to local bike coop when I moved in '09
- Trek 520 '07; my cross-Russia bike. Still been touring on it now.
- Trek 4500 '11; my mountain bike in India for a while. Brought it back to US in 2014 and refitted it for my Pan-American trip. Functionally retired in 2017 after the chainstay was welded. It is now my daily commuting bike.
- Trek 4500 '12; my cross-Africa mountain bike. Still have it though I do more touring on my 2007 Trek 520.

In general, I have sometimes bought a new bike prior to an extended trip or just because. I've also retired two bikes after frames were cracked. Components I can generally keep updating.
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Old 10-23-19, 11:05 AM
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There is no reason to retire a bike just because it has high mileage. You replace the parts that need replacing. A friend of mine is riding Pacific Coast right now. He needed a new rear wheel in Oregon, one of the cartridge bearings in the hub locked up. In Northern California where he is now he needed a new fork, that was a bit over a week ago. His old rear wheel was on its second rim, so he is now on rear rim number three. He replaced shifters and brake levers two years ago, along with the front wheel before he did Northern Tier that year. After that tour he replaced the pedals and crankset. But I think his racks are still original.

When I rode Pacific Coast I met a gal that was on year seven of her long tour, she estimated the bike had over 100,000 km on it. But the wheels had been replaced, along with the rest of the drive train, some parts were replaced more often than others. The front rack was no longer made, so she kept getting it repaired instead of replacing it. There were so many location stickers on the frame that I could not tell who the manufacturer was.

It does not matter what the miles are, if you want a different bike because of changes in technology, you get a bike at that time. If your frame is damaged, get a bike at that time. If your touring style changed and you want a different bike to match that, replace it.

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Old 10-23-19, 01:25 PM
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hardly any miles on my touring bike, maybe a couple thousand.
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Old 10-24-19, 07:18 AM
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2011 Specialized Allez Comp, had it on four separate trips, 2700, 1700 and 5000+ miles. Currently it has around if not over 100,000 miles on it and is the only rideable bike I own at the present time
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Old 10-24-19, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
There is no reason to retire a bike just because it has high mileage. You replace the parts that need replacing.
Makes me think of the joke about the old axe that has had 8 new handles and 2 new heads and was still good as new.
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Old 10-24-19, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Makes me think of the joke about the old axe that has had 8 new handles and 2 new heads and was still good as new.
You mean like this?

1998 Specialized Stumpjumper Pro

(Image stolen from Bicycle Blue Book because I don't have a picture of the original)

After the frame broke in 2003, Specialized replaced the frame with this

93590004 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

Even at this point I think only the front hub was original.

Eventually I got tired of the white color and it became this in 2013

DSCN0167 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

No original parts but it's still the same bike

And then I found something even better in 2017

DSCN0934 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

I think the crank was originally on the 2003 but that crank my be on one of my other "grampa's axe" bikes. Even the one above hasn't stayed "original". I just put Paul Klampers on it last night.
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Old 10-24-19, 10:49 AM
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Depends on what you mean by 'bike'... The last original part of my Bike of Theseus was a front hub that had the axle break last year. The bike as it exists right now probably has about 6000km without changing anything but tires and handlebar tape. That was mileage after I replaced an identical frame that cracked after about 10000 km. That frame had been built up with parts coming from a couple of donor bikes, the oldest of which, and original home of the front hub, was from 1991 and had at least 10000 km on it. The aluminum fork has been in heavy service since about 2006 and was on my original hybrid/touring frankenbike I built during my last year working at a shop. The fork has probably probably 20000 km on it.

Most of the drivetrain was originally taken off my father-in-law's bike after he passed. His bike probably had ~10000 kms on it, mostly as an all-weather commuter.
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Old 10-27-19, 08:59 PM
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My new to me Bianchi Volpe1987 or so , has about 100 miles and only toured around town.. hehe. Will get some touring soon I hope.
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Old 10-27-19, 09:26 PM
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Lots. On 4 bikes.
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Old 10-27-19, 09:36 PM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
retire in thighland.

......currently planning the next adventure.......
interesting thought

Replace the bike or parts as they wear out. not buy a number on a meter
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Old 10-28-19, 10:44 AM
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My milage on individual bikes is hard to figure out. I move one computer around on 3 different bikes. But my wife's mileage is easy. She has 23,000 miles on her 9-year old touring bike.

Last edited by Doug64; 10-28-19 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 10-28-19, 01:38 PM
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Mileage on my touring bike? I get about 20 miles per gallon (of water).
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Old 10-29-19, 08:04 AM
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My old touring bike had probably 4000mi from me. It was a frame I bought here from the C&V forum- a 1990 touring frame built by Fuji for a private touring company. Built it up almost 5 years ago with a mix of old, middle-aged, and new components to fit what I wanted. I sold it to another C&V forum member a few months ago. Most all my touring is weekend trips, so 2-4 days and 70-300 mi in total, so the miles dont pile on quickly.

My current touring bike is my old gravel frame- a Black Mountain Cycles Monstercross frame. It has all the rack and fender attachments, fits great, and is lighter as well as stiffer than my old frame. I built it up with all the components from my old touring frame. I think everything is from the old frame except for some headset spacers and the canti brakes. I kept the old SunTour canti brakes that were already on the gravel frame.
That frame has probably 3000mi on it so far? Not sure exactly.

Like so many others have mentioned- its tough to say what has the miles on it- the frame, components, or both?
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Old 10-29-19, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Makes me think of the joke about the old axe that has had 8 new handles and 2 new heads and was still good as new.
I think that sums up my bike. Just celebrated 4 years on my Troll. Built it up with parts on hand, slowly replaced pretty much every single component. Then this spring I broke the frame and had to replace that.

That water bottle cage might have around 30,000 miles on it. Everything else, considerably less.

There's no mile marker I look to for replacing stuff, but the longer I ride, the better idea I have of what I want to ride. And even if I started out with the right thing, needs change. My Long Haul Trucker went about 6 years, and probably close to 20K miles. It was only retired because I thought the Troll would suit me better. Even so, I planned to get the LHT running again, but it never happened. I've ridden close to 15K on the Troll, but on my current frame, probably under 4,000. On those rims, I can't even guess because I regularly swap between two wheelsets. Stuff gets replaced because it breaks or because it's outlived it's usefulness, not because it reaches a certain mileage. If it ain't broke...
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