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Touring bike

Old 11-17-11, 01:45 AM
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attroll
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Touring bike

I have been out of the touring circuit for a long time now. Needless to say my bike is out of date.

I am looking for a new touring bike. I would like to start out doing week long tours and my goal is to go across the US.

I would like to find a good touring bike but have not idea where to start. I would like to see if I can keep the price in the $1,000 range is possible.

I am hoping to get some suggestions and feedback here for everyone.

Thank you
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Old 11-17-11, 02:03 AM
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This topic is renewed almost every day in this forum.

Simply read through the existing threads. Everything that could possibly be discussed, has been, repeatedly.

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...uring-in-Maine
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Old 11-17-11, 06:41 AM
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Originally Posted by attroll View Post
I have been out of the touring circuit for a long time now. Needless to say my bike is out of date.
How long is that? There are many good touring set ups ~30+ years old. What set-up do you have to work with?
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Old 11-17-11, 07:47 AM
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Fit is First.
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Old 11-17-11, 08:09 AM
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Touring bikes may have reached their peak quality and design wise in the mid-eighties with the Miyata 1000 and the Specialized Expedition. Their are other Miyatas, Univegas, Bridgestones and Motobecanes from the eighties which are probably better than any current production bike. If you go to the Classic & Vintage forum you can get a lot of advice on up grading or making your old bike road worthy.
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Old 11-17-11, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by rogerstg View Post
How long is that? There are many good touring set ups ~30+ years old. What set-up do you have to work with?
+1

Let the gurus here know what you have (photos help) and they can suggest updates, if any. Then you can spend more money on panniers and such.

Brad
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Old 11-17-11, 08:35 AM
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There's a sticky list of touring bikes at the top of the touring forum.

Adventure Cycling has a pretty good list, too, at http://www.adventurecycling.org/feat...uyersguide.cfm

Now all you have to do is (a) find a shop that has some you can test ride, or (b) drool over the catalogs until you pick one and order it!

(Note option (a) gets much easier around March, when touring bikes hit the shops.)
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Old 11-17-11, 08:43 AM
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There are plenty of bikes in the $1000 range or close to it. My 2 companions and I did the Trans America as a first tour on pretty close to box stock $599 (delivered) bikes (Windsor Tourists with Sugino XD600 cranks to get lower gearing). Between that and $1200 or so there are a lot of options.

I agree with Cyclebum that fit is the biggest thing. The thing is that fit is an individual thing. Personally I like a smallish frame, low bars and an aggressive posture. Some like a big frame, really high bars and a very upright posture. With that in mind I would suggest that you ride your current bike a good bit while experimenting with various adjustments to figure out what works for you. If you haven't ridden in a while I'd suggest starting with a not too aggressive posture and lower the bars a bit as your body adjusts. Be sure that you are riding with a fit that allows the elbows to be bent rather than having to stretch. That typically means that as the bars go lower they may need to come back farther.

I also think that once some pretty minimal standard of suitability is met the bike is a pretty minor factor in the likelihood of success or failure of a tour. I always say that when I think back on my tours the bike itself just doesn't come up much.

There is a good chance that your old bike might be fine, but also nothing wrong with getting something new. Personally I had a suitable bike but wanted STI brifters so I went with a new bike. The new bike worked great for moderately heavily loaded touring (40-45 pounds of gear and panniers). That said I am going with an older road bike rather than the touring bike on my next tour due to the fact that I have been going lighter and lighter gear wise (shooting for a combined bike and gear weight of 40 pounds not counting food and water on this coast to coast trip).

The best advice I have is to do what is fun for you. For me today that means a lighter setup and minimal load. For some that means a tank of a bike and 150 pounds of stuff. I suspect that either would find the other person's setup totally unsuitable and unpleasant to tour on.
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Old 11-17-11, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I agree with Cyclebum that fit is the biggest thing. The thing is that fit is an individual thing. Personally I like a smallish frame, low bars and an aggressive posture. Some like a big frame, really high bars and a very upright posture.
And some prefer the "compact" frame, with both high bars and good stand-over. That said, think reach.
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Old 11-17-11, 06:25 PM
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I would like to find a good touring bike but have not idea where to start.
how about your local bike shop,? where is it, what brands do they have available?

Lots of ravers about QBP brands, and most shops have a QBP account,
though they may not stock them on the floor,

LBS has a line of credit for their prime brand, QBP is 30 day invoiced or COD.

Fit is First.
test rides will tell you much.
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Old 11-17-11, 07:16 PM
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Spend a bit extra and get the Surly LHT.
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Old 11-18-11, 12:58 AM
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I believe my local bike shop only carries Trek's Fuji. I am planning on visiting my bike shop very soon. Another one recommended to me was the Salsa Casseroll. There are so many choices.
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Old 11-18-11, 08:01 AM
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Well at least you are honest about identifying yourselff as a troll.
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Old 11-18-11, 11:24 AM
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attroll from whiteblaze**********
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Old 11-18-11, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
Well at least you are honest about identifying yourselff as a troll.
Sorry but I was not trolling here, I am asking for some advice. Take it the way you want.

Originally Posted by campylover View Post
attroll from whiteblaze**********
That would be me.
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Old 11-18-11, 12:34 PM
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I expect the LBS has a QBP account. most do.
after you determine size from the bikes you can test ride, those treks
and know the size numbers in cm/inches
they would certainly special order one of those brands from QBP
if that is what you really want.
the company , Trek, makes credit available to their dealers.
QBP does not.. 30 day net invoices or COD ,
is part of why they're not as often in smaller shops,, inventory cost.
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Old 11-18-11, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
I expect the LBS has a QBP account. most do.
after you determine size from the bikes you can test ride, those treks
and know the size numbers in cm/inches
they would certainly special order one of those brands from QBP
if that is what you really want.
the company , Trek, makes credit available to their dealers.
QBP does not.. 30 day net invoices or COD ,
is part of why they're not as often in smaller shops,, inventory cost.
When you say QBP, what are you referring to?
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Old 11-18-11, 12:43 PM
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Quality Bike Products, the huge importing distributor, in MN, they own the brands
Surly, Salsa, Civia, .. Problem solvers, small parts, and etc. they design
and have contract manufacturers overseas make those things.
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Old 11-18-11, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by attroll View Post
Sorry but I was not trolling here, I am asking for some advice. Take it the way you want.


That would be me.
Hawkeye here. Going back to bike touring after 25 years! Still backpack a little I just got a Surly Long Haul Trucker bike and Ortlieb panniers. Can't wait for next Spring to start touring!!!
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Old 11-18-11, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by attroll View Post
I believe my local bike shop only carries Trek's Fuji. I am planning on visiting my bike shop very soon. Another one recommended to me was the Salsa Casseroll. There are so many choices.
there are many choices. One way to narrow down the choices is by price, the next is fit and intended load and roads. The problem with trying out any bike is that how it rides with 30lbs can be a LOT different than how it rides unloaded, which is why one might consider a bike that a manufacturer designated for touring. The Trek 520 is more than $1000. You could tour on a Trek FX model. Not very many bikes handle well with rear only loads although many people load up their bike that way. Moving some of the weight onto the front wheel will help your rear wheel last longer and as the total load gets larger becomes a necessity.



A bike built specifically for touring can be found for less than $1000 primarily through BikesDirect then having your bike shop go over the assembly for an extra $150 or so if you are not familiar with overhauling and assembling a bicycle. You can buy a Trek bike or any other bike for under $1000 and tour on it but a touring specific design from a bike shop will start upwards of $1200. REI has some models for less than $1000. There's no hurry, if you're stuck thinking something matters it probably won't when you're finally on the road.
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Old 11-18-11, 09:42 PM
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Thank you LeeG. I should have clarified my price range more. I was hoping to find something between $1000 and $1500.
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Old 11-18-11, 11:15 PM
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I've got an LHT with XT cranks, etc for under $1,500.00. Stock LHT, which is good, is, what, $1,200.00? If you want to carry stuff, it's a good bike.
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Old 11-18-11, 11:59 PM
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From the research I have done so far, I have narrowed it down to these three. Salsa Casseroll, Surly Long Haul Trucker, Trek 520.
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Old 11-19-11, 06:55 AM
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The reason I thought you were a troll was the following sentence:
Originally Posted by attroll View Post
I believe my local bike shop only carries Trek's Fuji.
This doesn't make sense so I figured that you were a troll, plus the fact that your name is attroll, which now I realize is AT troll.

As Cyclebum said above, fit is first. Think of a touring bike as a pair of hiking boots. The best, most expensive, boots are no better than a pair of Crocs if they don't fit properly. If you are lucky, you might get a complete stock bike that fits properly, but I have had to modify every bike I've ever owned, by changing the stem, and often the bars. Two good sites to explain fit are the rivendell site,www.rivbike.com and Peter White's site, www.peterwhitecycles.com.

As I mentioned before, your old bike from the eighties might be just as good as anything you can get now at a reasonable price.
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Old 11-19-11, 07:31 AM
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Cyclebum and Ironwood make good points about fit. You have narrowed your search to three great bikes for touring. Now, all you have to worry about are the panniers, racks, tires, saddle, and all the myriad accessories that add weight to the bike, but take the drag out of touring.
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