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Proposed "light" touring setup

Old 01-10-11, 11:06 PM
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Proposed "light" touring setup

Ok, since I decided to put the trip off until Thursday for warmer temps, that means more obsessing over my setup and the more you have to put up with my insanity. Below is a list, largely for my own reference, but something I thought others might enjoy laughing at/taking away a few ideas from.

Note that all weights are in pounds. I have it written down in pounds and ounces, but I had to go with decimal form pounds for my spreadsheet. Unless there is a simple, easy trick in Excel (there probably is) that would allow me to format it otherwise. I'm too lazy to check and I've already done the list.

I also just noticed I totally forgot a first aid kit, Ha! I'll have to gather some items and throw them in a plastic bag. Shouldn't weigh more than a few ounces.

First, the main sack:



Stove detail:



Main Stuff Sack:
35L Stuff Sack (1) 0.25 NOTE: Seat to Summit brand eVent waterproof bag

Sleep gear:
Kelty Cosmic 20 down bag (1) 2.578
Big Agnes IAC mummy long (1) 1.591
Quixote Primaloft Pillow (1) 0.863

Clothing:
Columbia Cotton Pants (1) 1.038
Merino Wool Sweater (1) 0.728
Merino Wool Base Layer (1) 0.528
Underwear (2) 0.35
Socks (2) 0.447
Silk scarf (1) 0.075

Toiletries:
Drawstring bag (1) 0.022
Tooth brush (1) 0.025
Tooth paste (1) 0.05
Deodorant (1) 0.097
Camp Soap (1) 0.303
Shower wipes (3) 0.203
REI pack towel (1) 0.116

Stove set:
Ziploc container (1) 0.134
Heineken pot (1) 0.078
Supercat stove (1) 0.016
Bottle w/fuel (1) 0.622
Foil windscreen (1) 0.019
Matchbox (1) 0.016
Candle Fire Starters (7) 0.022
Sea to Summit AL Spork (1) 0.019

Other:
Hand/foot warmers (4) 0.194
Bandanna (1) 0.072
BD Orbit Lantern (1) 0.297

Total Base: 10.753 NOTE: not including heavy tent

Food (3 day trip):
BP freeze dried meals (2) 1.025
Raisin Date Walnut Oatmeal (6) 0.503
Hot cocoa mix (3) 0.2
Clif bars (5) 0.806

Total stuff sack: 13.287


Tent is a very heavy Nemo Losi 3P. It's the one my wife and I take backpacking. I'll get a smaller tent in the near future, but this is just what I have on hand. It weighs in at a whopping 6.875 pounds with stuff sack and spares. (pic of packed tent on bike comes later).


Handlebar bag:



Transit w/ plastic removed (1) 0.406

Food:
Clif bars (2) 0.3
Propel powders (9) 0.131

Health:
Burt's bees (1) 0.019
Sun Block (1) 0.088
Wet wipes (6) 0.088

Electronics:
Nikon Coolpix (1) 0.394
iPhone (1) 0.297
Headphones (1) 0.034
Phone charger (1) 0.1
Extra AA batteries (4) 0.234
Petzl headlamp (1) 0.063

Securities:
U-lock (1) 1.391
Cards (3)/keys (2) 0.06 NOTE: not pictured
Emergency poncho (1) 0.113

Total HB bag: 3.718


Tool bag:



Mini frame bag (1) 0.169
Tube (1) 0.194
Blackburn Airstik SL (1) 0.128
Park no glue patches (5) 0.01
Planet Bike EMT 18 (1) 0.147

Total tool bag: 0.648


Total overall weight of gear including food is 24.528 pounds. Add 3 lbs for two filled camel back 21 oz. bottles. and the bike itself w/rack and lights weighs in at 25 lbs. 14 oz.

Here are shots of the bike fully loaded:





Areas I'd like to improve on are obviously my tent. I plan on using my REI dividend+20% off+gift certificate I received for Christmas when March comes around. My pillow is also pretty heavy. It's beautiful to sleep on, and I got it for 10 bucks at an REI garage sale, so I'm dealing with it. I plan on replacing one about half it's size and down filled. The pad is heavy, but it's also really nice, so I don't plan on downsizing there, but that could always change.

I'd like to eventually get the weight for a short 3-4 day trip like this into the 15 pound range before food and water, maybe even lower. That is anything that's not food and water including tools, camera, phone, etc. We'll see. I might be able to do another trip come spring break and one just after the semester. I look forward to enjoying some long miles!
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Old 01-10-11, 11:17 PM
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You need another spare tube.
You can't always patch them.
I had this BlowOut on my front wheel.


More tie downs needed on the grey-orange bag.(20-30 mph wind insurance).
I would carry one can of Coke or Pepsi for emergency energy.
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Old 01-10-11, 11:27 PM
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Very nice looking bike.
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Old 01-10-11, 11:32 PM
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I hear you on the tube. I keep telling myself it's only 220 miles, but freak things do happen. I can always fit another in the handlebar bag.

I tested out the straps on the rear and they seem pretty good. I had looser ones and leaning the bike over, the bag fell right off. With the current bungees, there is minimal movement, even rocking the bike back and forth like in an uphill climb or sprint. Also, the straps of the tent stuff sack are tied onto the rack for extra stability there. I was thinking of bringing one of the multi-adjustable canvas belts to haul firewood if there was a store nearby. I'll see if I can incorporate it into the strap system.
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Old 01-10-11, 11:36 PM
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I know you are trying to go light and Less is Better.

My first tour I use my sleeping mat bag with my clothes inside as a pillow.
Pillows are nice if you can bring one.

Most of all have fun.

I have done 5 tours and learned much.
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Old 01-10-11, 11:51 PM
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And just because I think my bike looks awful with the flash photos:



There! Her honor is saved....
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Old 01-11-11, 12:19 AM
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Not sure how far you will be going but even for shorter trips, I tend to take a few more tools to ensure that I'm more self-reliant. Bike and gear does look great, have fun.
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Old 01-11-11, 12:25 AM
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Bike clothes? Hat? Gloves? Rain jacket? Book?
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Old 01-11-11, 12:27 AM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
You need another spare tube.
You can't always patch them.
I had this BlowOut on my front wheel.
I agree with the 'more tubes' statement. I did a 200 mile trip last summer. Packed four spare tubes, and two patch kits. Only needed to use one patch; for another rider. She had the only flat amoung eleven riders on that trip.
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Old 01-11-11, 01:28 AM
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Really nice setup, very similar to mine. Definitely replace that tent with a lighter one, it will make a world of difference. There are plently of sub-3lb tents out there, for relatively cheap too.

Like others have said, you'll want to strap that rear bag down some more.

Also, nice to see someone else using the heiney pot, I love mine.
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Old 01-11-11, 02:13 AM
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Your 3 person tent under 7 lbs is pretty good... if you need space for 3 people.

I had a 1 person tent that was exactly the size of my sleeping mat. While everything looked nice in the summer, all my gear was left outside which takes the joy out of camping in the rain.
My solution was to purchase a 2 person tent. This tent really has room for 2 people, no gear inside.
I just saw a super small 2 person tent. It would be really tight for 2, but one person would have room for gear... The perfect 1 person tent.

There is no "perfect" set up. Part of the joy of touring is thinking how to do it better, and adjusting as I go along.
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Old 01-11-11, 02:25 AM
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Funny how the weight adds up. Ditto on two tubes and another bungie. Back in my 20's when I rode a lot carrying two tubes became a habit for training because I didn't want to be stuck on the road looking for holes in drizzly cold weather waiting for the glue to dry or hoping the rubber was dry where the patch was going. Also there were those days when everything goes wrong, not often, and you get multiple punctures.
Did you try orienting the large bag lengthwise on the rack?
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Old 01-11-11, 06:40 AM
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Have fun on your trip. What is your route?

As far as spreadsheets and the lbs/oz thing goes, I weigh my stuff in ounces, and then use two columns, one in ounces and the other next to it divided by 16 to show pounds. I find it easier to get my head around ounces for small amounts, and of course want to know the totals in pounds.

Regarding locks, security is always a tough call. You could save some weight by using a lighter cable lock instead of the U-lock, with the strategy being to keep away opportunistic thieves. But, if you're going to be away from your bike for periods of time, then you need to do what makes you comfortable.

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Old 01-11-11, 07:18 AM
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Ditch the tent, you should be able to save 3-4 lbs easily. I use a Tarptent Cloudburst 2. Sleeps 2, but has lots of room for 1 and weight is a little over 2 lbs. After that, just minor things:

1) forget the spare batteries. Put fresh batteries in everything. You can always find a store with batteries along the way.

2) Is that Ipod a new one with built in camera? If so, you could forget the camera.

3) Ditch the Camp Lantern, you have the mini headlamp to provide light

4)Alcohol (for the stove) - do some test to determine qty required to boil a cup of water, then multiply by # of meals you'll be cooking. Don't just fill that saline bottle full of alcohol, that's a waste of weight for a short trip. Also I found that the bottles from gasoline stabilizer work better since they have graduations on them. That helps in dispensing the correct amount of alcohol.
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Old 01-11-11, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by VT_Speed_TR
Ditch the tent, you should be able to save 3-4 lbs easily. I use a Tarptent Cloudburst 2. Sleeps 2, but has lots of room for 1 and weight is a little over 2 lbs. After that, just minor things:

1) forget the spare batteries. Put fresh batteries in everything. You can always find a store with batteries along the way.

2) Is that Ipod a new one with built in camera? If so, you could forget the camera.

3) Ditch the Camp Lantern, you have the mini headlamp to provide light

4)Alcohol (for the stove) - do some test to determine qty required to boil a cup of water, then multiply by # of meals you'll be cooking. Don't just fill that saline bottle full of alcohol, that's a waste of weight for a short trip. Also I found that the bottles from gasoline stabilizer work better since they have graduations on them. That helps in dispensing the correct amount of alcohol.
Like I said, tent will be purchased soon. Don't have the money at the moment.

1) The batteries are pretty much required for my headlight. I'm paranoid about visibility and I think battery life is only like 15 hours. I want to be sure my headlight works and my paranoia keeps it on flash mode any time I'm riding.

2) It's the older 3G iPhone, so yes, it has a camera, but no, it isn't really any good.

3) I like a lantern. This may change, but it's generally nice to have. I'll see how useful it is on this trip, but it definitely gets used when the wife and I are on a trip.

4) The bottle is not full, but again, I didn't measure it down to the ounce either. I'd rather have too much rather than too little. It's nice if something weighs a couple of ounces less, but it's not nice when that couple of ounces less means you can't boil water for your breakfast on the last day.


And valygrl, I didn't bother putting bike clothes on the list because I will be wearing pretty much everything and the list was mainly for the purposes of loaded bike weight.

I'm a Texas boy, and it will be a cold trip, so I'll be wearing bib shorts, insulated tights, long sleeve merino wool base layer, short sleeve wool jersey, full fingered gloves, descente jacket which is also extremely water resistant (not waterproof) though there is no forecast for rain, wool skull cap, helmet, glasses, wool socks, shoes, shoe covers and that's about it. If I'm sure I'll be having a fire, I'll wash the shorts and tights in the bathroom sink on site and dry them that night. All the wool stuff can take quite a bit of wear before it needs a wash.

Oh and my route will be from my front door, which is close to Six Flags, Texas Stadium, etc. all the way down to Granbury for the night, which is about 65 miles. Then I will wake up and attempt to ride all the way to Dublin and back to Granbury, 90 miles total. Then ride back home.
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Old 01-11-11, 11:19 AM
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If you are handy with a sewing machine, you can make a tarp tent based on Henry Shire's instructions. Only costs about $70 and has plenty of room for you + gear, or two people.

I wouldnt drop the camera, i would still carry a good camera with me even if it weighed 10lbs, its one of those important items for me.
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Old 01-11-11, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
More tie downs needed on the grey-orange bag.(20-30 mph wind insurance).
Best option IMO
https://www.rei.com/product/797996
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Old 01-11-11, 12:41 PM
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buckle secured straps better than bungees. a side release buckle will open easily
there are buckle versions that tighten from both ends, so no sewing is required.
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Old 01-11-11, 01:51 PM
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Nice set up and bike. IMHO carrying a light load makes touring far more rewarding.
I'd replace the U-lock with a lighter thin cable lock, as it's mostly to deter the amateur thief.

You also seem very light on clothes. The merino tops you can wear on or off the bike, but what about shorts etc for on the bike. It's good to have one spare of those in case the other pair don't dry out over night. Also you should think about some rain gear, booties and a jacket maybe and a pair of off bike shoes for walking to and wearing in the showers.

Your cooking set up is a classic ultralight approach. If you have experience with it are are comfortable with it's limitations great. But I've found that something like a Trangia and a small pot work better for extended tours as cyclists have the opportunity to buy and cook more varied food than ultralight hikers so it's nice to have the ability to cook something rather than just boiling water.

But there's a million ways to skin a cat and I like the way you are going.

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Old 01-11-11, 02:51 PM
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Knife
Pedal wrench
Hypercracker
Spokes
Chain tool or Pliers w/quicklink
Spare cable
Zip ties
Spoke wrench

maybe I missed these on the list.
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Old 01-11-11, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by rogerstg
Knife
Pedal wrench
Hypercracker
Spokes
Chain tool or Pliers w/quicklink
Spare cable
Zip ties
Spoke wrench

maybe I missed these on the list.
Yes I'd beef up the tool and parts kit too. A leatherman is a useful addition to a bike multitool that should have all the wrenches and allen keys and chain and spoke tools you need. Tire boots are also good so you don't have to carry a spare folding tire.
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Old 01-11-11, 02:59 PM
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As long as you're soliciting opinions consider replacing the petzl, camp lantern and bike light that requires 4AA batts with one 3AAA headlamp that can remain on the helmet. Back before LEDs I toured with one 2AA flashlight that could burn for only 2 hrs before it was dead. My night vision was much better back then but basically I was off the road long before dark and only used the light intermittently. Last one week tour I used the 3AAA helmet headlamp and the batteries lasted all week. I didn't use it more than 15minutes/day. Just something to consider, you can put three spare lithium batteries in a cut off latex glove finger then put them in with the spare tube/tools. I've used that set-up for commutting using it on BRIGHT strobe or med/low constant. On high setting it'll burn out in a few hours but on low and strobe turning off when not needed I've gone a couple weeks without recharging the AAA batteries. One time commuting I forgot my main headlight and only had the 3AAA Eos headlamp to ride 10miles home in the dark. I replaced the rechargables with the 3AAA lithiums and had a useful 1watt headlamp for the ride home at 11pm. Not ideal but adequate.
My impression with area lights is that it takes a LOT of lumens to light up an area and if you need a reading light you're better off with a flood light on low setting a couple feet from the book and a regular LED light pointing into a water bottle makes a fine area light. LED lights with low settings give one the option of stretching battery life a long time by using low output.

bungies, instead of the regular 1/4"-5/16" heavy duty bungie make your own with 3/16" bungie and plastic clips like these :

in the 5/32" hook size. I've been making 2 1/2' bungies with these and they enable one to wrap multiple times around a bag onto the rack. A long 3/16" bungie can securely hold a bag down at four contact points to the rack.
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Old 01-11-11, 03:11 PM
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I rationalized all my battery usage so that I only need AAAs. I use a Petzl headlamp around camp and for if I'm riding at night. I have a small red blinky mounted
of my saddlebag and have a tiny Sony radio that uses a single AAA battery. I'm thinking of getting a Powermonkey Explorer to recharge my iPhone.
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Old 01-11-11, 03:16 PM
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You're gonna roll pretty close to Truman Towers. Shoot me a PM when you get going, and if the timing/routing's right, I'll come and ride with you a ways.

You camping at Dino Valley?
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Old 01-11-11, 04:00 PM
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As far as batteries go, I'm not about to buy another camera, and that takes AA. I just bought a new front light (much brighter than my old one) that actually requires two AA batteries. The rear light uses 2 AAA's, but the lantern is carrying 4 AAA's, so I can always take from that if I run out. But the rear light has a 100+ hour battery life as compared to the two watt front light at 15 hours. If I dropped the lantern, I'd still carry two spare AAA's and the spare AA's for the front light. This may change, but for the forseeable future, this makes the most sense. I definitely see the advantage of having all your lights use the same batteries, but I really like my current lights. Maybe in the future I can track down a much brighter frontlight/head lamp that takes AAA's as well.

On the tool kit, I do agree that I need to look at getting some power links and throwing a chain tool in there. I do not however, believe I really need extra cables and spokes, etc. For one, the cables don't have that many miles on then and the RD cable is brand new. Also, the wheels are brand new, so I don't expect broken spokes. The multi tool does have open end wrenches, allen keys, spoke wrenches, and more, so it's pretty extensive for a small package. And a pedal wrench? I really don't know why I would need that at all. Enlighten me? And remember, this is only for three days and about 220 miles on a bike with freshly packed bearings, a headset with only a couple of hundred miles, and new wheels.

I do need a knife. But I always have a knife on me, so I kept forgetting to put it on the list. It will go in the handlebar bag. I'll probably just take my cheapie benchmade. It's the lightest one I have and does a good job. Good point bringing it up, though. It is a must have.
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