Backpacks...

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
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professorlandslide
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Backpacks...

Postby professorlandslide » 1 Dec 2008, 7:54pm

I'm thinking of doing a very minimalist as-much-off-road-as-viable tour next summer. Nothing major, i'll probably get the train from plymouth to penzance and bike it back. And i'm thinking luggage. I'm not into hanging things on my bike (although if i decide to camp i'll load on a rack and strap a bivvy sack to it) so i'm thinking backpack. I want to be able to move around on the bike properly without its weight distribution going wierd. I normally to a 12 mile round trip commute (occasionally with an extra 9 on top if i don't feel like waiting for the train) with a messenger bag but i'm thinking thats probably not ideal.

Any recommendations? Other than 'get panniers'? Tried 'em, don't like 'em...

Thanks.. :)

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meic
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Postby meic » 1 Dec 2008, 11:31pm

It would look weird but something along the lines of army webbing or these multi-pocketed mesh waistcoats. They would put the weight lower down on your body, where it would be more comfortable and allow you to sweat more.
I have actually done a fair bit of cycling (a long time ago) wearing loaded army webbing (dont ask!) and it was not bad at all.
Yma o Hyd

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johnonthetyne
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Postby johnonthetyne » 2 Dec 2008, 12:44am

itd have to one of the larger camelbaks with hydration system such as the octane 14,have a look on there site here

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pjclinch
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Postby pjclinch » 2 Dec 2008, 1:20pm

I'd look at a close fitting bag designed to keep the weight low to keep balance and look-around as good as possible. As well as cycle-specific ones running sacks tend to be okay (e.g., Lowe Rush 25, MM32, OMM Classic Marathon and Adveture packs)

Ones with a suspended back aren't so sweaty but you lose a little of the balance optimisiation.

Make sure it has a chest strap, whatever it is.

Oh, do it with panniers... :wink: you might have tried them and not liked them, but you'll quite possibly not be that thrilled about touring with a rucksack when it comes to it... Another alternative is take an Ortlieb pannier with one of their clip-on rucksack harnesses for the balancey bits.

Pete.

Asdace

Postby Asdace » 2 Dec 2008, 3:01pm

I prefer pannier's for touring, however I maybe doing a mountain bike coast to coast next year and would rather be camping it, very lightweight that is. I would use a ruc-sac and my preference to a ruc-sac would a Berghaus Freeflow IV 30+6 litre, which should be ideal for carrying a cook-kit, sleep-bag and bivi bag.

bretonbikes
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Postby bretonbikes » 3 Dec 2008, 1:00pm

Have to say that backpacks are horrible above a certain weight and even a big saddlebag better. If your bike won't take them then a BOB is brilliant and though pricey doesn't come in much more expensive than decent racks and a set of panniers. Not suitable for serious off-road of course, but keeps the C of G low.

http://www.bretonbikes.com/bob.htm

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Postby brianleach » 3 Dec 2008, 1:12pm

I second panniers. When I go camping I load the panniers and the rack and then for the outward and inward journeys (I usual go for a fixed base) I carry the excess in a normal backpack.

Not only is it not particularly comfortable but it makes your centre of gravity so much higher so that when you carelessly stop without unclipping from the pedals you are on the ground in no time with no chance to save yourself.

I speak from experience here.

Brian

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professorlandslide
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Postby professorlandslide » 20 Dec 2008, 7:16pm

Actually i'm now drifting towards panniers after a few hungover commutes where i'm having to carry two days worth of clothes.. :D

Ok, so any recommendations for racks and panniers that won't fly off or break going over bumpy stuff?

willem jongman
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Postby willem jongman » 21 Dec 2008, 5:34pm

Good. Excellent. Backpacks are awful on a tour. Go (ultra)light, and you will only need rear panniers. The best bags are Ortlieb classics with roll tops. They will not come off, but even so, I would use a strap around them and the rack, to make them fit even better. Best rack in my experience is the Tubus Cargo, as long as your chainstays are not too short, or your feet too big. The cargo is the stiffest high price rack I know, and very reliable. The best alternative, particularly if the Cargo does not fit, e.g. because you have rear suspension, are various Old Man Mountain racks. None of these are cheap, but they will last, and do what they are supposed to do.
Willem

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meic
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Postby meic » 21 Dec 2008, 6:14pm

Cycle panniers are designed with anti-sway so they are able to move from side to side while being part restrained by an elastic.

I have had the panniers fastened to my motorbike (a pair of large army rucksacks) for over ten years for on and off road use. They are secured with standard cable ties. So cable ties will certainly work for cycle panniers.

It is a question of whether you let the panniers "hinge" when riding or bind them tightly to the rack. This will put more strain on the rack and bike and effect riding style but the panniers will be more securely fixed to the rack when it breaks!!! :lol:
Yma o Hyd

Cyclenut
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Postby Cyclenut » 21 Dec 2008, 6:36pm

professorlandslide wrote:Ok, so any recommendations for racks and panniers that won't fly off or break going over bumpy stuff?

Tubus carrier, Arkel panniers.
Chris Juden (at home and not asleep)

Lio
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Postby Lio » 21 Dec 2008, 11:21pm

Ok, so any recommendations for racks and panniers that won't fly off or break going over bumpy stuff?[/quote]

Tubus rack and Ortlieb rolltops. Used for commuting and touring, no problems.

barn
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Postby barn » 22 Dec 2008, 9:53am

arkel panniers,wouldnt use anything else

random37
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Postby random37 » 24 Dec 2008, 9:02am

Just to throw an extra layer of confusion in, I have been using a Carradice saddlebag for a while now, and it's brilliant on towpaths, because it doesn't catch on undergrowth.

willem jongman
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Postby willem jongman » 25 Dec 2008, 8:08am

This is indeed what I have also been considering. The good news is that they locate much of the weight in the centre of gravity, and that they are considerably cheaper and lighter: even the Camper longflap with a sturdy support (which you will need) is still at least a kg lighter than a decent rack and panniers. The bad news is their limited capacity. For a lightweight camping tour I think 10 kg (plus bag) weight and 35 litres volume is a realistic minimum if you can avoid extreme conditions. The biggest Carradice saddle bag is 24 litres, so you will need to put another 10 litres or so elsewhere. A large handlebar bag for the lighter stuff and a small frame bag for heavy stuff such as tools might just do it.
I wonder about the handling of the bike, however. I love saddle bags, but I have only used them with lighter loads. My instinct would be that the smaller Nelson Longflap is the practical upper limit of the concept, but I would be curious to hear other people's experiences. You do not often get a chance to shave 1 kg off your luggage weight, and the looks are so classic.
Willem