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Best options for a light tourer, any suggestions.

Old 10-01-23, 02:59 PM
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Best options for a light tourer, any suggestions.

Hi,

for the first time in many years Iím looking to purchase a new bike. All my recent bikes have been off eBay, for once I wish to buy new. I want a bike - a light tourer - capable of much and costing around £1600. I came across Spa cycles Elan, which I think will suit the bill: steel, tough, clearance for mudguards and bigger tyres, decent gearing and generally an all purpose bike. However, I am starting to think are there decent brands, that I donít know about, that might be just as good. Iíd rather not have something from a Ďbigí name but something a little more niche. Iím looking to do about 80-120miles per day,

Suggestions gratefully received.

thank you, Gerald.

https://www.spacycles.co.uk/m1b0s223p3553/SPA-CYCLES-Elan-725-Mk1-105-R7000-11spd-Double-%28Hydraulic%29
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Old 10-01-23, 05:38 PM
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The only way you can nail this decision is to ride more bikes until you get a better idea of what fits your riding best.
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Old 10-01-23, 07:16 PM
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That Spa bike is a solid mix of price and spec.

The brake mounting is an old style, and you won't be able to mount gear on the fork, so it definitely will be a light touring bike vs full touring bike.

No idea if it's what you want or what you need, or if the geometry works for your body, but on paper it's a good deal.
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Old 10-01-23, 07:52 PM
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If you want to average 80 to 120 miles a day, that is pretty ambitious distance for most touring. You would have to travel light. Is this for sleeping indoors, thus no need to carry any camping kit? If so, you could use a pretty light bike. And that looks like a good light bike. It looks like the fork can't take a front rack. It looks like 32 spoke wheels, front and rear.

If the spokes are an option, then all wheel parts should be options. If they build up the wheels at the shop, then if you wanted to add a dynohub, it should not cost to much to add the cost of a dynohub and subtract the cost of the regular hub. It costs much more to add one later if you wanted one later.
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Old 10-02-23, 05:15 AM
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Consider a gravel bike for touring. My 2X gearing gives me a 34/32 low gear, which I think is good for light touring. Racks and fenders are easy to install. There may be more of those on the market now. It might widen your search range.
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Old 10-02-23, 10:18 AM
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That is NOT a tour bike. Rear end looks very flimsy, IMO.
Sure, we can do 100 miles SOME days. Doing that every day is TdF, not a tour. LOL.
What is realistic is picking a town and getting there. Most often it's 60 or 70 miles.
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Old 10-02-23, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
That is NOT a tour bike. Rear end looks very flimsy, IMO.
Sure, we can do 100 miles SOME days. Doing that every day is TdF, not a tour. LOL.
What is realistic is picking a town and getting there. Most often it's 60 or 70 miles.
I know this comment is intended to evoke a reaction so hereís mineÖ
If life is flat 80+ miles is what I plan when travelling, 40-60 if I need to climb.
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Old 10-02-23, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
That is NOT a tour bike. Rear end looks very flimsy, IMO.
Sure, we can do 100 miles SOME days. Doing that every day is TdF, not a tour. LOL.
What is realistic is picking a town and getting there. Most often it's 60 or 70 miles.
What part of the rear half of the bike looks 'very flimsy'?
I dont see anything about the rear that makes it look that way.
Regardless, the title of the thread is 'light tourer'. That means different things to different people, but it clearly doesnt need to hold 80# for a trip across a desert.

Hey, why dont you post a pic of your touring bike to highlight what the OP should be looking for in a stiff rear end.

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Old 10-02-23, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
That is NOT a tour bike. Rear end looks very flimsy, IMO.
Sure, we can do 100 miles SOME days. Doing that every day is TdF, not a tour. LOL.
What is realistic is picking a town and getting there. Most often it's 60 or 70 miles.

i think itís the case weíre thinking of different things. When I say light touring then I really do mean light, spending the evening in B&Bs not camping. Looking at the east and south of the UK it is predominantly flat. A week of 80-100 miles per day wouldnít be a problem, with the occasional hill of the South Downs being tackled. Maybe you would classify it as something different, to me itís light touring.
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Old 10-02-23, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by andrewclaus
Consider a gravel bike for touring. My 2X gearing gives me a 34/32 low gear, which I think is good for light touring. Racks and fenders are easy to install. There may be more of those on the market now. It might widen your search range.
i did think about a gravel bike as part of what Iím looking for is a bike that has a strong sense of utility about it, much like a gravel bike Iím assuming.
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Old 10-02-23, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
If you want to average 80 to 120 miles a day, that is pretty ambitious distance for most touring. You would have to travel light. Is this for sleeping indoors, thus no need to carry any camping kit? If so, you could use a pretty light bike. And that looks like a good light bike. It looks like the fork can't take a front rack. It looks like 32 spoke wheels, front and rear.

If the spokes are an option, then all wheel parts should be options. If they build up the wheels at the shop, then if you wanted to add a dynohub, it should not cost to much to add the cost of a dynohub and subtract the cost of the regular hub. It costs much more to add one later if you wanted one later.
thank you. Yeah, it would be spending the nights well tucked up in a B&B. Minimal baggage. Iím thinking a little old fashioned when i say touring. A couple of panniers on the back with a few clothes and spares in. Nothing too ambitious. Just a tour around the country starting with the east and southeast of the UK.
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Old 10-02-23, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
If you want to average 80 to 120 miles a day, that is pretty ambitious distance for most touring. You would have to travel light. Is this for sleeping indoors, thus no need to carry any camping kit? If so, you could use a pretty light bike. And that looks like a good light bike. It looks like the fork can't take a front rack. It looks like 32 spoke wheels, front and rear.

If the spokes are an option, then all wheel parts should be options. If they build up the wheels at the shop, then if you wanted to add a dynohub, it should not cost to much to add the cost of a dynohub and subtract the cost of the regular hub. It costs much more to add one later if you wanted one later.
it would certainly be Ďlightí touring. Definitely spending the nights in B&Bs so minimal
baggage. I would upgrade the wheels for sure. Iíve managed 110 on a road bike, 1989 Perthus Pro, which is light and managed the same for the day after. Iím being a little
ambitious with the distance but it would be on the flat roads of East Anglia and the south east UK.
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Old 10-02-23, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by maiello
it would certainly be Ďlightí touring. Definitely spending the nights in B&Bs so minimal
baggage. I would upgrade the wheels for sure. Iíve managed 110 on a road bike, 1989 Perthus Pro, which is light and managed the same for the day after. Iím being a little
ambitious with the distance but it would be on the flat roads of East Anglia and the south east UK.
I think the bike would handle that just fine.

Another option might be using a large Carradice saddle bag, something like the Camper or the Nelson Longflap instead of panniers. You would have to assess your volume needs to figure out if one of those bags would be adequate. Those bags work better if the saddle is up pretty high above the rear wheel so you do not have any wheel rub on the bottom of the bag, I have no clue how big a frame size you are looking at. There are a variety of ways to support Carradice bags.
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Old 10-02-23, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
I think the bike would handle that just fine.

Another option might be using a large Carradice saddle bag, something like the Camper or the Nelson Longflap instead of panniers. You would have to assess your volume needs to figure out if one of those bags would be adequate. Those bags work better if the saddle is up pretty high above the rear wheel so you do not have any wheel rub on the bottom of the bag, I have no clue how big a frame size you are looking at. There are a variety of ways to support Carradice bags.

Brilliant. Thank you, Iíll look in to that. I like the idea of Carradice bags. Reminds me of the RSF pictures, lugging bikes across all sorts of terrain. 👍
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Old 10-02-23, 04:18 PM
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Yup, sounds like a Gravel Bike in a 'bike packing' configuration.

Also check out: https://www.ellisbriggscycles.co.uk/...8%2F32%20tyres.
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Old 10-02-23, 04:32 PM
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+ 1 on the Carradice bag if doing light touring, staying in B&Bs, etc. They make racks for the bags which might be a good idea if you get a large volume one. If it doesn't fit what you need for a non-camping tirp, then you're not doing "light" touring.

I like the gearing options for the Spa cycles bike as it has a few different, sensible choices. Personally I'd get the 46/30 or one of the super compact options for the crankset. That way you have the gearing for somewhere hillier or more mountainous than the south of England where you plan to do the bulk of your riding.

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Old 10-02-23, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by maiello
Brilliant. Thank you, Iíll look in to that. I like the idea of Carradice bags. Reminds me of the RSF pictures, lugging bikes across all sorts of terrain. 👍
This is a smaller Carradice bag on one of my bikes. My saddles lack the loops for straps, but I can use the springs to put the straps around. I do not like the way the bag hangs forward, so I used a stem (with appropriate shim) and a 1 inch wood dowel sprayed black to push the bag further back off of my legs when I pedal.




I put a piece of coroplast in the bag to give it better shape and structure, also this keeps it from hanging down like a pillowcase. And that means it is less likely to hang down onto the fender or tire. The coroplast is white, it is just loose in the bag.



Same bag on a different bike.



But, I am tall enough that my bag is well above the fender (mudguard), so that is not a problem. If I put a large bag like the Carradice Camper on there, I would likely need to have a small rack below the bag for more support.
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Old 10-03-23, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Xavier65
Yup, sounds like a Gravel Bike in a 'bike packing' configuration.

Also check out: https://www.ellisbriggscycles.co.uk/...8%2F32%20tyres.
Thank you, Iíll check them out. 👍
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Old 10-03-23, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
This is a smaller Carradice bag on one of my bikes. My saddles lack the loops for straps, but I can use the springs to put the straps around. I do not like the way the bag hangs forward, so I used a stem (with appropriate shim) and a 1 inch wood dowel sprayed black to push the bag further back off of my legs when I pedal.




I put a piece of coroplast in the bag to give it better shape and structure, also this keeps it from hanging down like a pillowcase. And that means it is less likely to hang down onto the fender or tire. The coroplast is white, it is just loose in the bag.



Same bag on a different bike.



But, I am tall enough that my bag is well above the fender (mudguard), so that is not a problem. If I put a large bag like the Carradice Camper on there, I would likely need to have a small rack below the bag for more support.
thank you for the advice. I have always liked the look of these as they hark back to the RSF of the 1970ís and Ď70ís.
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Old 10-04-23, 07:02 AM
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Have you considered a rear rack with, say, a 30 litre backpack bungied to it? It would let you park the bike and go for a walk 😊
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Old 10-04-23, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by imi
Have you considered a rear rack with, say, a 30 litre backpack bungied to it? It would let you park the bike and go for a walk 😊

Like that!👍😃
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Old 10-10-23, 11:56 AM
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I know you're looking for a new bike, but for credit card tours, you could probably use one of your existing bikes with a couple of bikepacking bags strapped to it. Check out Apidura's stuff

A rear rack and panniers is a big weight and aero penalty. That setup seems unnecessary for what you plan to do: long rides with minimal gear.
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Old 10-11-23, 03:38 PM
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Hmm. That Spa looks pretty good. I dunno. Maybe a Thorn Audax? Cannondale Topstone 1? For a walk on the wild side, how about a Specialized Sirrus X 5.0?
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