Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Ideal Weight Distribution with 2 Panniers?

Notices
Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Ideal Weight Distribution with 2 Panniers?

Old 10-20-13, 09:40 PM
  #1  
mdilthey
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
mdilthey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,923

Bikes: Nature Boy 853 Disc, Pugsley SS

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 251 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Ideal Weight Distribution with 2 Panniers?

Ok, serious question. It doesn't HAVE to be answered, but I would love to know what the "best" way to load a touring bike is.

I see some people putting everything up front, others putting everything in back.

I didn't think I'd have a hard time knowing after the distances I've covered, but how does a bike's frame redistribute the weight of a touring cyclist plus gear? Can anyone make a best-guess at the most comfortable setup for me?

Here's my info:

Two Ortliebs
One Drybag


Front wheel is a 32 spoke with a 32mm tire, rear wheel is 36 spoke with a 35mm tire.

My front rack is wide and flat, so the drybag straps on fine. My rear one is narrow, so the drybag won't strap unless the panniers are on it too (it falls to the side)

Setup 1: Drybag front, panniers rear. Bike handles fine, not exactly zippy but it's been fine. Hard to handle at low speed. Also, the front wheel turning while I set the bike against something is more than a little bit annoying. A parking brake is tedious.

Setup 2: Panniers and Drybag Rear, no front rack. All the weight behind me will make steering awesome, but will I get more flats or less speed with the full touring load and myself all on the back wheel? Or, will the frame redistribute all the weight evenly?

Setup 3: Panniers and Drybag on Front Rack. This doesn't sound great, but I see a lot of tourists decide to go like this. Why? Only theory I have is that MY weight will be on the back wheel, and my gear will be on the front, and the bike will be in equilibrium.

Would love feedback. Ultimately, "Just ride" is the correct answer but I feel like knowledge on this is useful to have.

Last edited by mdilthey; 10-20-13 at 09:57 PM.
mdilthey is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 01:24 AM
  #2  
Machka 
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 51,564

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2942 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 93 Posts
Here's our 2 pannier setup ...




Machka is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 04:01 AM
  #3  
ekibayno
Sage
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 58

Bikes: Chesini Precision 84, Kuota Kredo, Sabbath Silk Route, Van Nicholas Pioneer,

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mdilthey View Post
Ok, serious question...I would love to know what the "best" way to load a touring bike is.
The best way is to distribute the load across 4 panniers.
ekibayno is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 04:07 AM
  #4  
Machka 
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 51,564

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2942 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 93 Posts
Originally Posted by ekibayno View Post
The best way is to distribute the load across 4 panniers.
No, not the best. That's one way, and it works for some people, but we find it is better to travel with fewer panniers. Especially if we're doing a multi-modal tour. There's a lot less to pack and carry with 2 panniers.
Machka is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 05:08 AM
  #5  
Lucky13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
This setup works fine for me. But then, I require* a very upright riding position and there is already enough weight on the back end. A more aerodynamic position would transfer more weight to the front - and placing the panniers on a rear rack might work better.

*...trying hard to avoid the dreaded "R" word.

Attached Images
File Type: jpg
DSCN0143.jpg (100.3 KB, 40 views)
Lucky13 is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 05:54 AM
  #6  
andrewclaus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Golden, CO
Posts: 1,590

Bikes: 2016 Fuji Tread

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 240 Post(s)
Liked 30 Times in 26 Posts
I can't see any physical way a frame can transfer weight from the rear to the front (in steady-state conditions) in your Setup 2.

But consider that when braking, most the weight is transferred to the front wheel, so keep that in mind when choosing a lighter, weaker front wheel. (I found that out in the School of Hard Knocks.)

I recently reduced my touring load from five packs to two and put it all on the rear. I've never tried it all on the front because it works just fine on the rear. I happened to have a better rack and packs for the rear (my old front rack was a low rider and I like to strap my sleeping pad on top of the rack, and my old front packs were just a bit too small). I see no need to buy another front rack and new packs to fix a problem that doesn't exist for me.

Like you say, plenty of cyclists are very happy with a front-only set up and the physics make some sense. And I would try it if someone gave me the right rack and packs. If you have the money and flexibility, give it shot.

One big unknown here is what's in the packs. The relative weight to other packs and your body weight, as well as frame geometry and riding position, are variables no one here can know. Another variable is handling in cross winds. Good luck figuring it out.
andrewclaus is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 06:17 AM
  #7  
Machka 
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 51,564

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2942 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 93 Posts
On my 2004 Australian tour, I thought I needed 4 panniers. Within days of arriving in Australia, I had removed 2 of them and put about 10 lbs of stuff into storage. 4 panniers were just too cumbersome and unnecessary for a 3-month tour.

However, I left both the front and rear racks on the bicycle. So I experimented with riding with panniers on the front and panniers on the rear.

The bicycle was comfortable with either setup, with one exception. My hands hurt. Turns out the front rack stiffened what should have been a softer, more comfortable ride.



Machka is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 08:56 AM
  #8  
Cyclesafe
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: San Diego
Posts: 1,435

Bikes: IF steel deluxe 29er tourer

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I mount modified Arkel T42's, bags intended for the rear only, on the front. I believe that this affords greater stability, especially on steep uphills. It also reduces flats in the rear. However, too little weight in back could conceivably cause the rear to leave the ground when braking while standing on the pedals.

You need to test all configurations and decide for yourself.
Cyclesafe is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 09:03 AM
  #9  
10 Wheels
Galveston County Texas
 
10 Wheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: In The Wind
Posts: 30,977

Bikes: 2010 Expedition, 03 GTO

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 709 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by ekibayno View Post
The best way is to distribute the load across 4 panniers.
Agree.

A Happy bike is a Well balanced bike.
Was able to ride this no handed.

__________________
Fred "The Real Fred"
10 Wheels is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 09:32 AM
  #10  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 23,529
Mentioned: 176 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9246 Post(s)
Liked 819 Times in 508 Posts
I think the "answer" depends in part on how much weight you are talking about. For example, if you are talking 50 lbs., putting all on the back might cause the tail to wag the dog.

Personally, I like to have a noticeable amount of weight on the front. I have ridden with the front empty and have felt the bike to be unbalanced. And I have never felt that weight/bulk on the front (even a signifcant amount) causes handling issues except is very strong crosswinds.
indyfabz is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 09:55 AM
  #11  
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 41,396

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 188 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6925 Post(s)
Liked 246 Times in 204 Posts
I use 2 front panniers on my B-Fri, all the time , with it's short trail, it handles better, that way..
Likewise, when loading up the touring bag, on the Brompton,

after months of touring with 4 panniers.. you get used to running with the stability
a front load offers.. (particularly when riding Low.)

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-29-13 at 11:59 PM.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 11:02 AM
  #12  
mdilthey
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
mdilthey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,923

Bikes: Nature Boy 853 Disc, Pugsley SS

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 251 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Good info. Shout out to Machka for having some of the most touring experience on this forum, very helpful.

My weight carried is low enough that it won't matter what I choose. With two days worth of water for desert riding and 3 days worth of food I'm still under 40lbs. That being said, *knowing* what the best way is is valuable. I would love a die-hard front-loader to chime in with some opinions and experience.

Handling in crosswinds is going to matter a lot- I'm headed to the West. I actually have a ticket to Denver. So, I want this bike to handle at peak performance.

I'm going to load everything on the back, but I'm going to leave my front rack on there so I can change my mind mid-tour. If I'm still not using it after 1,000 miles, I'll mail it home.

Good to hear from other 2-pannier tourists, every time I see a 5-bagger I feel like a minority. I don't even own ​more than 2 panniers...
mdilthey is offline  
Old 10-21-13, 11:38 AM
  #13  
arctos
40 yrs bike touring
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Santa Barbara,CA.
Posts: 1,013

Bikes: Bruce Gordon Ti Rock N Road [1989], Fat Chance Mountain Tandem [1988]

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
After initially trying every mounting and bag permutation when I first went touring, I long ago settled on two panniers mounted high up front and a drybag on top of my rear rack. The size of the dry bag changes with the season to accommodate bulkier cold weather gear.
The main benefit from front panniers comes off pavement. I can lift the front end while riding over obstacles and then un-weight the saddle to allow the rear wheel to slide over the obstacle rather than slamming into it. My anecdotal experience says that my wheels last a long time and almost never need retruing even after the Divide Ride.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
BGRNRTi.jpg (94.4 KB, 30 views)
arctos is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:29 AM
  #14  
ekibayno
Sage
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 58

Bikes: Chesini Precision 84, Kuota Kredo, Sabbath Silk Route, Van Nicholas Pioneer,

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Agree.

A Happy bike is a Well balanced bike.
Was able to ride this no handed.
Ah yes. Nice weight distribution and no bulky overstuffed rear panniers. Underfilled panniers are easier to pack and are no great inconvenience to handle.

I met and Englishman while touring Tasmania. He had decided it was more convenient to bring only rear panniers out from the UK. Unfortunately, he wasn't going anywhere. Two spokes had pulled out of his rear wheel and the rim was cactus.

If you are a heavy rider it makes sense to get some weight off the back wheel.

ekibayno is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:47 AM
  #15  
Machka 
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 51,564

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2942 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 93 Posts
Originally Posted by mdilthey View Post
Good info. Shout out to Machka for having some of the most touring experience on this forum, very helpful.

Good to hear from other 2-pannier tourists, every time I see a 5-bagger I feel like a minority. I don't even own ​more than 2 panniers...
I own heaps of panniers (8 or 10, I think), and every now and then I think about using 4 on a tour, but I just don't have enough stuff to fill 4 panniers.

Part of the reason I brought 4 to Australia on my first visit was because my cycling partner then (who was/is also a 2 pannier cyclist) and I were talking about cycling in more remote areas, and so I wanted room to carry food and water. But within the first few days here, we nailed down our route, and it wasn't particularly remote ... so bye-bye extra panniers.

So I could see 4 panniers if it were days between food and water sources.

And as you can see from the pictures I posted, Rowan is a 2 pannier cyclist too.
Machka is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 05:30 AM
  #16  
Tourist in MSN
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 6,026

Bikes: 1961 Ideor, 1994 Bridgestone MB-6, 2006 Airnimal Joey, 2009 Thorn Sherpa, 2013 Thorn Nomad, 2015 VO Pass Hunter, 2017 Lynskey Backroad, 2017 Raleigh Gran Prix, Perfekt 3 Speed -age unknown, 1980s Bianchi Mixte on a trainer. Others are now gone.

Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1364 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 37 Times in 32 Posts
Matchka,

What is the weight of your packed panniers and other stuff on the back?

And what is the weight of your packed handlebar bag?
Tourist in MSN is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 05:59 AM
  #17  
Machka 
In Real Life
 
Machka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Down under down under
Posts: 51,564

Bikes: Lots

Mentioned: 134 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2942 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 93 Posts
Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
Matchka,

What is the weight of your packed panniers and other stuff on the back?

And what is the weight of your packed handlebar bag?

Not much. I usually aim to carry somewhere around half my body weight or less ... bicycle, gear, and all.

During my first tour of Australia, I think my total load was about 65 lbs. Machak weighs 27 lbs, which left about 38 lbs divided between my panniers, Carradice and handlebar bag. I had maybe 4 lbs in the handlebar bag, maybe 10 lbs in the Carradice, and I used Axiom LaSalles which aren't large panniers, so maybe about 12 lbs in each.

That is the same setup I've used on most of my tours.

On our most recent RTW tour, I upgraded to larger panniers and carried a bit more stuff. After all, it was 8 months on the road. My Thorn probably weighs about 30 lbs. I would have carried approx. the same amount in the handlebar bag and Carradice, and probably about 14 lbs in each pannier. Something like that.
Machka is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 09:14 AM
  #18  
Carbonfiberboy 
just another gosling
 
Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 15,245

Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004

Mentioned: 95 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1935 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 70 Posts
Front panniers also create a lot of wind resistance. A dry bag on the front rack, not so much. A bar bag may even lower wind resistance. Rear panniers are largely sheltered by the rider. With front and rear both, one also has the extra weight of the empty front panniers and the weight of the more extensive rack to accommodate them. We tour on our tandem with 43 lbs. for full camp touring for 2 people, counting everything, all in the back except for a small bar bag each for captain and stoker and a small frame bag. Our all-up weight is about 400 lbs. We have never had to even true our wheels on tour, even riding cobbles, etc. I've never broken a spoke on any bike. Our tandem has 36H Deep-V rims. Properly built and maintained wheels are a big help.

We're about .5 mph slower on the flat when loaded, average about 2 mph slower in hilly terrain, though that's at touring effort, not sporting effort, so that's part of it.
Carbonfiberboy is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 09:25 AM
  #19  
boomhauer
Senior Member
 
boomhauer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 671
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 176 Post(s)
Liked 9 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Front panniers also create a lot of wind resistance. A dry bag on the front rack, not so much. A bar bag may even lower wind resistance. Rear panniers are largely sheltered by the rider. With front and rear both, one also has the extra weight of the empty front panniers and the weight of the more extensive rack to accommodate them. .

This is exactly my experience. I've tried every imaginable set-up and my large panniers on the front rack made the ride stable but the wind resistance is definitely higher.
boomhauer is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:08 PM
  #20  
andrewclaus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Golden, CO
Posts: 1,590

Bikes: 2016 Fuji Tread

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 240 Post(s)
Liked 30 Times in 26 Posts
I met a cyclist in Montana, camping in a city park, who was consolidating his load into his rear panniers and throwing the front panniers into the dumpster. We'd had several days of tough cross winds and he'd had it.
andrewclaus is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:18 PM
  #21  
Standalone 
The Drive Side is Within
 
Standalone's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: New Haven, CT, USA
Posts: 3,328

Bikes: Road, Cargo, Tandem, Etc.

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 86 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
while musing on the road, I've imagined a sort of connector across my front panniers that would be some kind of aero cowl... I have these '70's bulky but very lightweight Cannondale panniers that would work pretty well that way. I wonder why more panniers aren't designed with wind resistance in mind. I like to go kind of light and kind of fast. I also choose pretty flat places to tour.

Also important is weight distribution within the pannier itself. Just like a backpack, you don't want to load heavy things on top or to the outside. Front panniers need to be packed thoughtfully so that their center of gravity doesn't impact the steering to badly.
__________________
The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets. Christopher Morley
Standalone is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 03:19 PM
  #22  
Rowan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 16,750
Mentioned: 124 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1434 Post(s)
Liked 24 Times in 16 Posts
Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Front panniers also create a lot of wind resistance. A dry bag on the front rack, not so much. A bar bag may even lower wind resistance. Rear panniers are largely sheltered by the rider. With front and rear both, one also has the extra weight of the empty front panniers and the weight of the more extensive rack to accommodate them. We tour on our tandem with 43 lbs. for full camp touring for 2 people, counting everything, all in the back except for a small bar bag each for captain and stoker and a small frame bag. Our all-up weight is about 400 lbs. We have never had to even true our wheels on tour, even riding cobbles, etc. I've never broken a spoke on any bike. Our tandem has 36H Deep-V rims. Properly built and maintained wheels are a big help.

We're about .5 mph slower on the flat when loaded, average about 2 mph slower in hilly terrain, though that's at touring effort, not sporting effort, so that's part of it.
This reflects my experience as well. I tour always with two panniers on the rear, plus a tent on top of the rack, and a handlebar bag for the odds and sods.

I have toured with four panniers, but that was quite early on, and I really consolidated my packing when I went on my first international travels. Airline baggage weight restrictions and the quite high monetary penalties for exceeding them encouraged me to look seriously as what I packed, and to weigh everything (yes, even down to the clothes I wore on board).

On our RTW trip last year, the total came to 81lbs, or 37kg. Included in that were 3kg (6.6lbs) for the bike box that I started with, 13.7kg (around 30lbs) for the bike, and 2.6kg (around 6lbs) for the pannier, which was rather high, but they were heavy duty, waterproof, with a very stiff backbboard, and roomy. A previous trip had me at 95lbs (43kg) total.

I haven't had any rear wheel issues since a lightweight trip from Canberra to Melbourne a decade ago with Alex rims that came standard with the Fuji Touring I used at the time. The wheels we use on the touring bikes now comprise 36H Mavic A719 rims with straight-gauge DT-Swiss spokes and Shimano XT hubs, and I built them myself. If they can handle the tandem in 32H form, they sure can handle the extra load on the rear of a touring bike with 36H.

I prefer the lighter steering effort from not having panniers on the front. I also tend to agree with Machka that ride comfort can be compromised by using racks that triangulate the fork drop-outs with mid-fork eyelets, and therefore reduce the ability of the fork to dampen the road shocks. I've broached this subject several time before here, but haven't received any meaningful response.

Last edited by Rowan; 10-22-13 at 03:23 PM.
Rowan is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 03:28 PM
  #23  
Rowan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 16,750
Mentioned: 124 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1434 Post(s)
Liked 24 Times in 16 Posts
Originally Posted by mdilthey View Post
Ok, serious question. It doesn't HAVE to be answered, but I would love to know what the "best" way to load a touring bike is.

I see some people putting everything up front, others putting everything in back.

I didn't think I'd have a hard time knowing after the distances I've covered, but how does a bike's frame redistribute the weight of a touring cyclist plus gear? Can anyone make a best-guess at the most comfortable setup for me?

Here's my info:

Two Ortliebs
One Drybag


Front wheel is a 32 spoke with a 32mm tire, rear wheel is 36 spoke with a 35mm tire.

My front rack is wide and flat, so the drybag straps on fine. My rear one is narrow, so the drybag won't strap unless the panniers are on it too (it falls to the side)

Setup 1: Drybag front, panniers rear. Bike handles fine, not exactly zippy but it's been fine. Hard to handle at low speed. Also, the front wheel turning while I set the bike against something is more than a little bit annoying. A parking brake is tedious.

Setup 2: Panniers and Drybag Rear, no front rack. All the weight behind me will make steering awesome, but will I get more flats or less speed with the full touring load and myself all on the back wheel? Or, will the frame redistribute all the weight evenly?

Setup 3: Panniers and Drybag on Front Rack. This doesn't sound great, but I see a lot of tourists decide to go like this. Why? Only theory I have is that MY weight will be on the back wheel, and my gear will be on the front, and the bike will be in equilibrium.

Would love feedback. Ultimately, "Just ride" is the correct answer but I feel like knowledge on this is useful to have.
If the weight distribution thing is of concern, I would get two bathroom scales, set the bike up on them with one under the front wheel, the other under the back. Prop yourself up and get on the bike with your load on the rear, then on the front. Measure. Then go out and do some testing on handling covering the same corners. Take into account the "feel" factors such as being able to steer at low speeds, what it feels like taking off from a standing start, whether there is shimmy, and I suppose riding with no hands (if you are able to do that with your bike unloaded, and geometry does play a role there).

When you have the information, you can make a decision on what suits you.

It's not an experiment that I have done, but then I have made a decision to go with rear loading and am happy with it.
Rowan is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 05:27 PM
  #24  
arctos
40 yrs bike touring
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Santa Barbara,CA.
Posts: 1,013

Bikes: Bruce Gordon Ti Rock N Road [1989], Fat Chance Mountain Tandem [1988]

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
I prefer the lighter steering effort from not having panniers on the front. I also tend to agree with Machka that ride comfort can be compromised by using racks that triangulate the fork drop-outs with mid-fork eyelets, and therefore reduce the ability of the fork to dampen the road shocks. I've broached this subject several time before here, but haven't received any meaningful response.
Rowan: I must have missed your previous inquiry about this issue. Glad you brought it up again.
Low Rider Front rack dampening fork movement also concerned me long ago after using a front low rider rack. I changed to a Bruce Gordon Mountain rack which mounts near the top of the fork blades via clamps or braze-ons. Forks have dampened properly after the change.
arctos is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 09:19 PM
  #25  
mdilthey
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
mdilthey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,923

Bikes: Nature Boy 853 Disc, Pugsley SS

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 251 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
This reflects my experience as well. I tour always with two panniers on the rear, plus a tent on top of the rack, and a handlebar bag for the odds and sods.

I have toured with four panniers, but that was quite early on, and I really consolidated my packing when I went on my first international travels. Airline baggage weight restrictions and the quite high monetary penalties for exceeding them encouraged me to look seriously as what I packed, and to weigh everything (yes, even down to the clothes I wore on board).

On our RTW trip last year, the total came to 81lbs, or 37kg. Included in that were 3kg (6.6lbs) for the bike box that I started with, 13.7kg (around 30lbs) for the bike, and 2.6kg (around 6lbs) for the pannier, which was rather high, but they were heavy duty, waterproof, with a very stiff backbboard, and roomy. A previous trip had me at 95lbs (43kg) total.

I haven't had any rear wheel issues since a lightweight trip from Canberra to Melbourne a decade ago with Alex rims that came standard with the Fuji Touring I used at the time. The wheels we use on the touring bikes now comprise 36H Mavic A719 rims with straight-gauge DT-Swiss spokes and Shimano XT hubs, and I built them myself. If they can handle the tandem in 32H form, they sure can handle the extra load on the rear of a touring bike with 36H.

I prefer the lighter steering effort from not having panniers on the front. I also tend to agree with Machka that ride comfort can be compromised by using racks that triangulate the fork drop-outs with mid-fork eyelets, and therefore reduce the ability of the fork to dampen the road shocks. I've broached this subject several time before here, but haven't received any meaningful response.

I use almost the same rims. my front is a Mavic 719 with DT Swiss spokes, brass nipples, and a 32 XT hub. My rear is a 36 Ultegra hub, same spokes and rims. Front fork is a disc fork and I've got a mid-fork rack on it, but I hadn't noticed any comfort issue so far. I've only done about 300 miles on this fork, but I did 80 consecutive ones and I have pretty measly handlebar tape (a single layer of Fizik.) I was thinking about beefing up my handlebar tape but wasn't pressed by pain.

I'm still pretty young and spry.
mdilthey is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.