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Touring Frames / Fender Issues

Old 09-26-10, 11:49 AM
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Touring Frames / Fender Issues

I put Planet Bike Cascadia fenders on my (light) touring bike and, although I have become a believer in fenders, I have an issue. The frame is a Jamis Nova and the fenders are the widest that the frame can accommodate, 45mm. I am running 700 x 35c tires but it seems that the fenders are not wide enough as I am getting debris sprayed all over my frame and body. Also, on this frame, the fenders fit quite close to the tires and everything that the tires pick up gets dragged against the fenders when riding. It is quite noisy and distracting.

I think I need wider fenders. I am now considering purchasing a true touring bike frame.

Question: Are wider fenders available for 700c wheels and what frames will accommodate the wider fenders?

I have been a bit reluctant to consider a touring frame for 26 inch wheels because I want to build a light weight rig with low rolling resistance. Also, it seems the trend is away from 26 inch wheels and toward 29 inch, at least for the larger frame sizes (I use a 56cm frame).

Thoughts?
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Old 09-26-10, 12:17 PM
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You have the mudguards too close to the tire,
I Live on the Wet coast , My bikes all have them, But the 2 that don't,
but they are dry day sport toys, not transportation tools ..

My Touring bike , due to anticipating the stuff wanting to stick in between, has better than an inch
between the tire and the underside of the mudguard ,
and as water is spun off the highest point of the wheel, having the tire and Mudguard about similar widths
has worked fine..

Esge/SKS mudguards 7oo 35~40 tires

Koga WTR came outfitted with 26-1.75" tires. & appropriate mudguards.

Last edited by fietsbob; 09-27-10 at 08:45 AM.
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Old 09-26-10, 01:06 PM
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The Rocky Mountain Sherpa and Salsa Fargo are two touring bikes that will take Planet Bike Cascadia 29er fenders without any problem. The Sherpa is technically a 700C bike (which will take up to 50mm tires), while the Fargo is a true 29er (at least in tire clearance).

I wouldn't say there is any trend away from 26" and toward 29er, though a larger wheel size does look better on larger frame sizes, purely from an aesthetic viewpoint. But if you're going anywhere in the third world, South America etc then 26" is probably the wisest choice, since that wheel size is inherently stronger (all other things being equal) and also easier to find (you won't find 700C or 29er replacements much outside of the mainstream American market, and even there it's 50/50 as to what you'll find in any given shop... but down in South America, from what I hear, you won't find anything but skinny racing tires, if that, for 700C, and likely no 29er at all... yet).

That said, you should be able to put slicks or other thinner tires on a 26" bike to get whatever rolling characteristics you want. The nice thing about a 26" expedition touring bike is that you CAN put big tires on, but you don't have to, and this makes it extremely flexible. I like all three sizes - 26" is like a classic jeep in terms of "go anywhere", 700C is like your elegant road sedan for eating up the miles, and 29er is like a hybrid beast that can take nice big tires, and gives a very smooth ride due to the larger diameter. They all have their pros and cons, really.

26" - for round the world, or any trip where rougher roads and tracks are a possibility, but a little slower perhaps on the open road because of the smaller hoop (not as smooth rolling)
700C - for mainstream American and European touring mostly on good roads, where eating up the miles is something you want, but not so great for rough roads, since you can't put larger tires on there
29er - for smooth ride and flexibility in on- or off-road, where it's not the end of the world if you break down, since you're unlikely to be able to find replacements as easily

Nothing is perfect, you just choose what you care about and go with that, knowing the tradeoffs.

Neil
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Old 09-26-10, 06:45 PM
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I am basing my observation of fender performance on the trip I just completed on the C&O canal path. It is not paved. The surface is largely compacted, fine crushed stone. Also, sticks, leaves, mud, sand, etc. I was running Schwalbe Racing Ralph cyclocross tires at fairly high pressure. These tires are knobby but the knobs are small. It rained overnight and the trail was damp with puddles here and there. Perhaps on wet pavement the fenders would be fully capable of handling water. The stickiness of the materials on the surface on the canal path may have caused the issues, sort of like riding in mud.

Normally, I would use this bike for road touring; however, considering the surface of the trail, the fact that I could put sufficiently large tires on this bike, and the fact that it had the rack and panniers, I chose to use it off-road.

Last edited by MTBaddict; 09-26-10 at 06:52 PM. Reason: clarification
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Old 09-27-10, 12:47 AM
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Out of interest, I just checked my 2 bikes:
Bike #1 has 700 x 32 tires and 45mm wide fenders.
Bike #2 has 26 x 1.75 tires and 55 mm wide fenders.

Riding #1 in the rain on unpaved cycle paths, the bb and crankset get covered in mud, but there seems to be adequate clearance for small debris.

Bike #2 is brand new and hasn't been out in the mud yet. I've ordered 26 x 2.0 tires and I hope they fit inside the fenders.
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Old 09-27-10, 04:22 AM
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The biggest pile up of debris on my bike was on the rear cantilever bosses.
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Old 09-27-10, 08:39 AM
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I think your problems would be solved if you stopped using cyclocross tires at high pressure. Try a similar sized tire with less pressure.
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Old 09-27-10, 05:40 PM
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Slicks would probably reduce pickup. I say the pressure was high, it was actually around 65 psi (35c tires). That may have been a bit high for trail riding on fine compacted stone. I only used knobs because I thought that there would be more mud.
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Old 09-28-10, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by MTBaddict
I am running 700 x 35c tires but it seems that the fenders are not wide enough as I am getting debris sprayed all over my frame and body.

Question: Are wider fenders available for 700c wheels and what frames will accommodate the wider fenders?
Google "Honjo" and "Berthoud" along with "fenders" and you'll find examples up to 60mm wide. Note that length is also important for keeping spray off you and your bike. You can try adding a front mudflap to your Cascadias to see if it helps. As for touring frames, I would expect a lot of makers to list fender compatibility information. One brand that markets this specific aspect of their frame design is Surly, with their "Fatties Fit Fine" motto. Good luck!
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Old 09-28-10, 10:54 AM
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https://www.velo-orange.com/fenders.html
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Old 09-28-10, 11:55 AM
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For mudguards (aka buddy flaps), you can take an old water bottle, cut it in half lengthwise, and attach half of it to the bottom of each fender.
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