Tyre Lady wrote:Hey Simon and MrsH
Thanks so much for the suggestions. Am checking in with my local zero waste group and will find my local tri-club.
Went to Halford's and Decathalon today to look at bikes and see if I could be tea lady to watch the bike mechanics work. Halfords no, Decathalon yes as part of their workshop is in the public area So have a date to see Jordan on Thursday afternoon to begin to understand the tools that are used and repairs that are done.
So now have a bike specification from all of you
- If I get a road bike, change the tyres over to a multi-terrain type - otherwise trail or hybrid
- Cable brakes vs hydralic brakes - cable is recommended
- Normal handle bars if possible
- Hard seat
- Gears preferable
- Light is better
- Mud guards
- Dynamo light - hub dynamo - still need to look that up
- Cable lock
Have 3 potential routes:
1. By MrsH: https://cycle.travel/map/journey/88392 + https://cycle.travel/map/journey/88393
2. http://www.fahrrad-tour.de/Alpen/Index.htm - routes 16 & 21
3. There has been a suggestion to go down towards Nice to avoid the mountains and then into Trieste along the coast which would add plenty more miles
You’re welcome. On tyres I’d go for as wide road/trail and fairly smooth tyres as will fit in the bike (basically not super nobbly mountain ones although they are out of fashion anyway these days). If you tell the bike shop what you are doing they’ll fix you up. swalbe are very popular with riders here- maybe the marathon plus? They have a reputation for being very puncture resistant.
I am not nearly as capable as some others here with fixing my bike and I don’t think you have time to learn how to build up a bike in the time available- obviously if you want to that’s great. Otherwise one strategy might be to spend about £450 on a decent enough new one- if not you will ideally be buying a reasonably priced one from a bike enthusiast who has maintained theirs or borrowing one. My bike is a 12 year old dr dew from kona. The local bike shop put a new drive chain etc on it last year and whilst I’ll check it before I go I’m expecting it to be fine for a couple of thousand miles in the USA.
Your early start sounds good- a bit more time to enjoy it. It may be a bit chilly in the mornings so I’d not be aiming to do really long days- with good light at that time of year I don’t think you’ll need the lights much- but they do come in useful for tunnels in the mountains.
On the map it’s Richard Fairhurst’s website- I only entered the beginning and end points! It should link in to those routes you referenced if you put a “via” for the relevant towns and it will save it onto your routes then I think if you press save. The Eurovelo Network and various national bike networks are covered in the mapping- they are the linear red dots on the map. I might lean to using those quite a lot to avoid having to do too much planNing and navigating.
In my America route I’ve tweaked it to make sure it goes through somewhere I can stay every so often but given the density of the areas you’ll be visiting places to stay should be largely covered. It’s here: https://cycle.travel/map/journey/86594 . I have an excel spreadsheet with an outline distance and place to stay for each night but that’s because I’m accountant. I’ve done plenty of tours with just a Michelin map and my Nose and I fell ill on my last tour on Eurovelo 17 so didn’t keep to my schedule anyway. Cycle touring is very much for people who can adapt their plans and don’t need a fixed schedule.