Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

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irc
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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby irc » 17 Jul 2020, 11:13am

pwa wrote:On a heavily loaded tourer the stiffness of the rack makes a big difference to how the bike handles. Rock solid is best, and the Tubus racks tend to do rock solid. My oldest Tubus rack is a Cargo I bought maybe 20 years ago and it has been used for daily commutes as well as touring. They are costly when you buy them but cheap if you work it out on a cost per mile or per year basis. I'm glad I didn't go for anything cheaper. It would have been a false economy.

This costs £100, which is a lot.
https://spacycles.co.uk/m5b0s79p150/TUBUS-Cargo
But mine, at about 20 years of regular use in all weathers, is still going strong and has cost me £5 per year at today's prices. Is that too much?


Or around £75 delivered from Germany.

https://www.bike24.com/p29660.html

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby slowster » 17 Jul 2020, 11:15am

Vantage wrote:The rack is an Ibera Pakrak. Possibly not the stiffest of racks. Same rack was used on the Touring which on my first tour suffered from shimmy.
Exact same rack was used on the Vantage and that was rock solid.

My guess is that on the Vantage the geometry resulted in the adjustable struts that attach the rack to the seat stays being relatively short, that on the Spa Tourer they were longer, and that on the Wayfarer you have to have them very extended. Not only does the Wayfarer have long 460mm chainstays, the rack eyelet is also positioned ~10mm behind the rear axle, whereas the Tourer has 450mm chainstays and the eyelet is above the axle. I think any weakness in the design of a rack or lack of sufficient rigidity is more likely to be apparent when the struts are lengthened.

I have a Tubus Cosmo on my 54cm Wayfarer, and it surprised me how long I had to adjust the struts. The struts supplied with the rack are 240mm, and there is only 30mm that is unused. I'm certain that if you bought a Tubus rack, you would also need the 350mm aftermarket struts because your seat stay bosses are lower down and further away from a rack than on my 54cm. I've used the 350mm Tubus struts on an MTB, and I did not notice any sway with panniers regularly loaded with shopping.

The German retailers are the cheapest for Tubus, but delivery is another £9 or so. Rose bikes currently sell the Cosmo for £83.45, but they also sell the racks made by Tubus' sister company, Racktime, and they are quite a lot less. I don't know if the aluminium Racktime racks themselves are less stiff than the steel Tubus racks, but it looks like they both use exactly the same struts and fixing hardware.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby Vantage » 17 Jul 2020, 11:45am

Maybe someday after I've done twotr.
I've a Duo Lowrider upfront that I love and quite fancy a Logo classic on the rear.
You're right though, the struts are almost at their limit.

IMG_20200717_112332.jpg
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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby pwa » 17 Jul 2020, 11:50am

In the past I have also found that getting the rear panniers as far forward as they will go (without heel contact) can stop the steering feeling too light.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby slowster » 17 Jul 2020, 12:15pm

Vantage wrote:You're right though, the struts are almost at their limit.

To try to give you some idea of the stiffness of my Cosmo rack and the struts, I've just tried putting my hand on the top of the rack immediately behind the strut attachment points and pushing the rack from side to side (other hand gripping the saddle). It's difficult to judge or measure the movement, but I don't think my rack moves more than about 1mm, and I would estimate certainly less than 2mm. That said, I'm sure someone with more upper body strength than me could produce more movement.

Vantage wrote:quite fancy a Logo classic on the rear

They even do it in stainless steel (although I would recommend the Cosmo if you use the platform for a rack bag or attach anything on top of it with a bungee cord, since the Logo's top platform is quite narrow).

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby pwa » 17 Jul 2020, 12:24pm

slowster wrote:[
Vantage wrote:quite fancy a Logo classic on the rear

They even do it in stainless steel (although I would recommend the Cosmo if you use the platform for a rack bag or attach anything on top of it with a bungee cord, since the Logo's top platform is quite narrow).

Just looked and the Cosmo is 12cm wide across the top, which means it would work with my favourite Carradice rack top bag. 890g with all the fittings. That compares to 755g for the Tubus Cargo. (SJS figures from weighing the racks and fittings themselves)

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby slowster » 17 Jul 2020, 12:57pm

pwa wrote:Just looked and the Cosmo is 12cm wide across the top, which means it would work with my favourite Carradice rack top bag. 890g with all the fittings. That compares to 755g for the Tubus Cargo. (SJS figures from weighing the racks and fittings themselves)

If you mean the Super C Rackbag, it fits but it's not quite optimal. The front plastic feet are 105mm apart, and the top surfaces of the tubes at the front of the Cosmo are 110mm apart. Consequently the Super C Rackbag will not sit quite square on the Cosmo: the plastic feet have to go either to the left or the right of the tubes. That said, the velcro strap fastenings allow for variation in where/how the bag sits on a rack.

I use a Camper Longflap, but I am concerned that the two upward facing prongs at the front of the Cosmo rack will eventually abrade and wear through the cotton duck. The Cargo Evo would be better in that respect because the two uprights are joined together in a complete smooth loop, but it's not stainless and the bag would rub the paint off. You just can't win...

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby seph » 17 Jul 2020, 6:13pm

I used a kona hybrid,(the yee ha..) http://www.classickona.com/oldgold/2k/i ... -yeeha.jpg
As a tourer for years. It was great. It still is, doing service with studded tyres on winter commutes and as a proto gravel bike in summer. It’s 21 this year :D
It’s mtb heritage meant a sloping top tube, leaving about a foot of seat post showing. This can make it look a bit small, but it isnt.
The compact frame always made it a good load carrier, the frame being less prone to twisting forces than one with large triangles, all other things being equal. I ran it with a low rider rack and some cheap front panniers for a while, touring Spain ( via the bike bus) with my six year old on a tag along. It was always very confidence inspiring. And fun.
It feels good unloaded too.

If you want a new bike, go for it, but ones like yours have a lot going for them.

Regarding knees, I found shorter cranks, 160mm, helpful. I can’t prove that changing the cranks helped, as opposed to developing more supportive muscles in my legs, getting fitter or changing the way I pedal etc, ( or that I m not just imaging it!) but I’m am happily habituated to them now and wouldn’t go back.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby Sweep » 17 Jul 2020, 6:32pm

On seatposts, though not as much as in the OPs current case, I always find a fair bit of exposed seatpost is handy if stacking a fair amount of stuff on the back - I often have tons of stuff and the seatpost keeps the junk away from me.

Vantage - I would encourage you to get a Tubus - won't be lost - cost as nothing to your constant bike switching, and when you do switch again, you can of course just swap the rack over.

I have used a Tortec expedition - a fine rack for the money, but nowhere near as solid when loaded up heavily.

If you have more than one bike, nothing stopping you swapping the Tubus over to whichever bike is just about to go out on a tour.

My tubus fly has outlived one bike. It may well outlive me.
Sweep

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby Jamesh » 17 Jul 2020, 10:43pm

I'd suggest keeping your present bike and getting another one.

Thus if you don't like your new one you can sell it on.

If buying second hand you won't loose any money either.

Just s thought.

Cheers James

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby pwa » 18 Jul 2020, 10:07am

slowster wrote:....... The Cargo Evo would be better in that respect because the two uprights are joined together in a complete smooth loop, but it's not stainless and the bag would rub the paint off. You just can't win...

My venerable old Cargo (non-Evo of course) is just painted, not stainless, but it really doesn't seem to matter. If you don't quite succeed in protecting all the rub areas with insulation tape and paint rubs off, the rust that forms seems to be superficial and protective of the steel beneath. It is self-sealing. You don't get the sort of rust that eats through. And I suspect the non-stainless steel is stronger.

Regarding the rack top bag, if I wanted to put it on a wide rack top that had the rails spaced in an unhelpful way I think I would attach two left-to-right strips of thin foam (possibly old Karrimat) to the bottom of the bag to allow it to sit right.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby slowster » 18 Jul 2020, 11:24am

pwa wrote:My venerable old Cargo (non-Evo of course) is just painted, not stainless, but it really doesn't seem to matter. If you don't quite succeed in protecting all the rub areas with insulation tape and paint rubs off, the rust that forms seems to be superficial and protective of the steel beneath. It is self-sealing. You don't get the sort of rust that eats through. And I suspect the non-stainless steel is stronger.

You are quite right, and I know I am being overly precious. I have a steel painted Tubus on my MTB and the loss of paint as a result of using a rack top bag is trivial

pwa wrote:Regarding the rack top bag, if I wanted to put it on a wide rack top that had the rails spaced in an unhelpful way I think I would attach two left-to-right strips of thin foam (possibly old Karrimat) to the bottom of the bag to allow it to sit right.

Another couple of options might be to use a round file on the plastic feet to create a recess which matched the spacing of the rack's tubes, or to drill out the rivets securing the feet and replace them with a different shape of foot.

However, for me the ideal would be to fit the quick detach base from an Ortlieb rack bag to a Super C, which would make it perfect for removing the bag to go into a shop or to take off the bike at the end of a ride. Unfortunately Ortlieb don't appear to sell the base on its own as a spare part.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby jimlews » 18 Jul 2020, 6:06pm

Vantage wrote:The rack is an Ibera Pakrak. Possibly not the stiffest of racks. Same rack was used on the Touring which on my first tour suffered from shimmy.
Exact same rack was used on the Vantage and that was rock solid.
Might be a steel frame thing.
A Tubus would be nice but their prices are shocking.
Tried a Tortec but that was stupidly tall.


Thread drift alert!
I'm the guy who bought "Vantage"'s Spa 26" tourer.
It's interesting to learn that it suffered from shimmy. I haven't ridden it fully loaded yet so maybe that pleasure awaits.
It is been a nice enough commuter thus far, but I did find the steering a bit twitchy, with quite a harsh front end. This I attributed to the fact that the fork seemed to be rather overbuilt and with quite a short rake almost as if it was designed for a disc brake, but minus the braze-on. I am fortunate to have a reasonable sized collection of touring cycles, so as an experiment I fitted the forks from my Thorn XTC and I have to say, it was a great improvement. Thus encouraged, I punted out 120 "iccies" for a Sherpa fork which furnishes me with about 25 mm of extra offset. The whole machine seems much more balanced now and I'm very pleased with the result. Perhaps it's no longer a Spa, but a Spaorn.

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby pwa » 18 Jul 2020, 6:33pm

I'm a bit mystified, because my own Spa Tourer, with a titanium frame but the same steel fork as used with a steel 700c tourer, handles very nicely with 35c tyres. The fork is no more or less compliant than the fork on the Thorn Club Tour (Reynolds 725) that this build replaced. It is definitely not twitchy, and it is not overbuilt for a fork that is meant to allow you to carry front panniers. I have ridden a bike with panniers attached to narrow forks and it isn't an experience I would care to repeat. The Spa forks are confidence inspiring. At 45mph the bike goes where you point it, no shimmy and no doubts.

download/file.php?id=64963&mode=view

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Re: Bike Fitting for Touring - Bodge vs Bespoke

Postby jimlews » 18 Jul 2020, 6:37pm

pwa wrote:I'm a bit mystified, because my own Spa Tourer, with a titanium frame but the same steel fork as used with a steel 700c tourer, handles very nicely with 35c tyres. The fork is no more or less compliant than the fork on the Thorn Club Tour (Reynolds 725) that this build replaced. It is definitely not twitchy, and it is not overbuilt for a fork that is meant to allow you to carry front panniers. I have ridden a bike with panniers attached to narrow forks and it isn't an experience I would care to repeat.

download/file.php?id=64963&mode=view


There is more offset on the 700c fork than on that for the 26"; aprox. 25 mm more.