What to take on tour = Cut That Kit!

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
Reigncloud
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Reigncloud » 21 Jun 2011, 4:00pm

I used to have a pretty heavy rear rack (Tortec expedition) but changed it for a Tortec velocity which saved a few hundred grams. It's a good sturdy rack too.

tramponabike
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby tramponabike » 22 Jun 2011, 10:25pm

I would second bealer's suggestion of a large Alpkit drybag as a rack bag. Neater and lighter than many rack bags and great to keep the precious dry clothes and sleeping bag safe whatever disasters happen in the panniers. Their Gourdon dry bag with rucksack straps doubles as a great daysack while camped.

tonythompson
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby tonythompson » 22 Jun 2011, 11:08pm

If you want to get extreme cut your toothbrush handle in half, actually met someone who did that.

My contribution would just add to your load as I see a "pee" bottle as essential when camping, don't get mixed up with you drinking bottle at night.

On a safety aspect you don't mention a bike mirror.
Crossed Oz Perth to Adelaide to highlight Barrett's Disease http://www.tonystravels.com

Cachao
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Cachao » 28 Jun 2011, 9:46pm

Thanks for all the help :D

ossie wrote:Are your straps for the tents ? Use a bunjee each mate. So much easier than straps. I agree about their limited longevity but you arent going around the world. Plus you can hang your wet washing from them, extra things slip under them. I took both on my recent Spain / UK tour and binned the straps in France, they are a pain. It was a 10 second job to bunjee the tent on but a a right pain to put straps on - plus straps dont stretch to stick stuff under...you can also bunjee your bike to the tent at night if you are worried...they stretch so hang washing on them or wet kit.

I took a compass but what a waste of time..even in remote mountain areas I didnt use it. Brake cable / Gear cable? - honestly what are the chances of them going? More chance of your chain snapping on a hill but you arent taking a chain tool. Longs? I took some but put the insect repellent on my legs and didnt need them.

Tape :duct tape dont take the electrical tape- where are your zip ties? - essential

Do you know what the reality will be? You will be super cautious about weight then hit a supermarket on the second day and load yourself down with cakes, biscuits, chocolate, etc etc. By day 3 your panniers will be a mess by day 5 you wont give a monkees about weight- all you will want is food, food and more food :D


Straps: we used bungees last year and bungees and straps this year and straps are far easier and more secure and we're not bothered about hanging wet washing
Compass: we didn't take one on our first tour and have found it indispensable ever sinve
Brake and gear cables, chain tool: They are only 42g so it's worth it - we have old bikes so it's possible - and we have a chain tool on the multi-tool
Duct tape: Any reason not to take electrical tape?
Zip ties: We're taking velcro ties as they can be re-used

I take your point, but since cutting down weight, we've enjoyed the cycling significantly more and we feel every gram when going uphill.

bealer wrote:Your kit list looks about right. An extra kilo or two won't be noticed after the first day.

Having said that I like a lighter bike, purely for the enjoyment of it not feeling like a loaded truck, stuff is less likely to break, you use less energy etc... etc... You could cut some of the individual smaller items, or switch to things like soap. Or drop the cables, but you'd save like 40g. To be honest, the best way to save weight would be to change some of the heavier items you already have. But that means additional expenditure.

If it were me...
- Lighter tent, close to 1.5kg all in for a two or three man
- Lighter down sleeping bags, 500g per bag
- Drop the D-Lock or whatever the heavier lock is. Go with a cable lock, the thicker type with metal casing. They usually weigh nearer 800g.

The above would save you nearly 4kg. Most of that is done via a different tent. That's quite a bit though, I'm carrying 5.5kg in each pannier for my london to oz trip, so 4kg would make a difference.


Tent: This is the tent we have and I'm afraid we don't have the money for another :S
Sleeping bags: Same as above
D-lock: I have to take this one for insurance

bealer wrote:Also forgot to mention. Think about the bike itself. I switched from Schwalbe Marathon 32C to Schwalbe Marathon Supreme 28C. So far they're working well for me, and I'm quite liking 28C. The bonus is the Supreme's saved me 600g for an additional £14. Instead of a rear rack bag which can be heavy-ish I opted for a more simple AlpKit xtra dry bag. The 35L one is around 250g or so, the 20L is probably around 200g. That's typically a saving of around 250-400g on some rack bags I've seen. Both of those changes saved me near a kilo I reckon.

The only thing I haven't been able to get down is the 1700g weight of my Ortlieb back roller plus's. I still find that quite heavy for what they are. Something nearer 1-1.2kg would be more acceptable for me.


I'm buying my panniers now, but I think I'll go for some Altura Drylines so that I can carry a lot if needed - any better suggestions? I'm afraid I have 27" tyres so I have no choice with tyre.

And tonythompson, we are daring and do wild-pees while cycling. I am considering a rear-view mirror, but haven't looked into it (no pun intended); apparently the view with some is obscured by panniers.
Last edited by Cachao on 28 Jun 2011, 10:28pm, edited 1 time in total.

Vorpal
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Vorpal » 28 Jun 2011, 9:55pm

Cachao wrote: I am considering a rear-view mirror, but haven't looked into it


:lol: :lol:
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BeeKeeper
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby BeeKeeper » 29 Jun 2011, 8:00am

I can recommend the Mirrycle rear view mirror. Mine fits on the STI shifter but you can get versions for bar ends. The advantage of the STI version is the mirror is pretty close to your line of sight and it can see round my rear panniers. It can be swapped left or right and the only disadvantage I found is of course you can't park the bike against a wall on the mirror side.

ossie
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby ossie » 29 Jun 2011, 8:37pm

Get a mirror if you can. I got one at the last minute from a mate who runs a bike shop. One of these : fitted it to my drops

http://www.awcycles.co.uk/brands/Zefal/ ... index.aspx

It was fantastic for me in France. I was able to see HGVS and traffic coming from a long distance back and slow down, adjust my speed etc to assist traffic flow past me on some really tight roads. Would thoroughly recommend it. Thought it would be 'nerdish' but has to go down as one of my best purchases yet.

Cachao
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Cachao » 2 Jul 2011, 3:56pm

ossie wrote:Get a mirror if you can. I got one at the last minute from a mate who runs a bike shop. One of these : fitted it to my drops

http://www.awcycles.co.uk/brands/Zefal/ ... index.aspx

It was fantastic for me in France. I was able to see HGVS and traffic coming from a long distance back and slow down, adjust my speed etc to assist traffic flow past me on some really tight roads. Would thoroughly recommend it. Thought it would be 'nerdish' but has to go down as one of my best purchases yet.


I think I will get a mirror, but I'm worried about its view being obscured by the panniers as I have seen no pictures of one actually on a bike. Any recommendations?

(just a reminder the kit list is on page 4 and here https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreads ... pJYL#gid=0 further suggestions would be appreciated)

Tonyf33
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Tonyf33 » 2 Jul 2011, 10:03pm

Some observations:
I'd say 4 cycle tops = about 1kg
If you've bike lights do you really need head torches especially given the time of year.
Mirror, don't. IMO pointless, do you use one normally, if not why consider one now?
Headphones instead of speakers, the speakers will be tinny anyhow, no?
25g of suncream doesn't seem a lot for two of you. I'd suggest taking a full tube, last thing you need is to get burnt & even in low light you're going to be out for long hours. Get factor 20 unless you like to go for the half arm deep brown adonis look :lol:
If you ride in just shorts maybe take a spare pair or are you going to wash/dry them each night?
You've put down underwear, what are you wearing on top of them or is that just for night-time in the sleeping bag. What about taking a normal pair of walking shorts to wear rather than the sweaty cycling shorts at the end of each day(or do you plan to sit in your undies 8) :lol:
If I had a choice I'd take a bar of soap rather than shower gel, it makes it easier to wash your shorts with too.
Are you taking washing up liquid or you just rinsing stuff out where you're camping?
Are the pumps the little mini dudes? Have you tried pumping up a tyre from flat to 100psi with one before? Is yours capable of doing that in any case?
If you've got a map & a phone why the need for a compass?

Just some thoughts anyway

bealer
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby bealer » 2 Jul 2011, 10:33pm

I personally would get a mirror depending upon what roads and routes you'll be taking. I did LEJOG without but we stuck to GPS guided country lanes (my legs paid for that). However, as an example I'm in France now, using less familiar roads and a mirror would be appreciated. Just for the times when I'm going up hill around 1/4 the speed limit and big trucks are whizzing by.

I agree with loads of sunblock too. If you're cycling for 4-8 hours a day you'll need plenty over a matter of days. I took loads and still ended up like this:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bealer/487 ... 4701157790

Soap > Shower gel. Take a poofy shower thing. I cut it down to a better size, but it makes the soap last ages. Plus it'll weigh less and be smaller.

Instead of normal bike bottles, find 1.5 litre water bottles that'll fit the cages. They're lighter, carry more, and the weight is in the middle of the frame (rather than carrying more water on the rear).

Tonyf33
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Tonyf33 » 2 Jul 2011, 10:40pm

:lol: I had a mate back in my college days who was of the auburn persuasion 8) he caught the sun a bit too much (out on his Pug) and his freckles went green, still haunts me 25 years on :D

I've just come back from France and was on very busy narrow twisty roads with steep drops on either side. Still not seeing how a mirror helps in any cycling situation, what does it do that eyes cannot? :?

soton
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby soton » 3 Jul 2011, 12:19pm

Cachao wrote:I think I will get a mirror, but I'm worried about its view being obscured by the panniers as I have seen no pictures of one actually on a bike. Any recommendations?

Mirrycle. I have them on bar ends on a Brompton, and on brake handles on road bikes. They work well and are high enough to clear any panniers I can imagine.

Cachao
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Cachao » 3 Jul 2011, 2:11pm

Can anyone beat this? http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/mirrycle-ori ... s-prod658/
I am now set on taking a mirror.

Any more advice on soap? I would really like one type to do pots and pans, clothes, shaving and showering.
Sun-cream-wise I'll stick to what we have. If we need more, we can buy more; but we've cut so much that I don't want to carry more than is absolutely necessary at that moment. We both have 750ml water bottles
Tonyf33 wrote:Some observations:
I'd say 4 cycle tops = about 1kg
If you've bike lights do you really need head torches especially given the time of year.
Mirror, don't. IMO pointless, do you use one normally, if not why consider one now?
Headphones instead of speakers, the speakers will be tinny anyhow, no?
25g of suncream doesn't seem a lot for two of you. I'd suggest taking a full tube, last thing you need is to get burnt & even in low light you're going to be out for long hours. Get factor 20 unless you like to go for the half arm deep brown adonis look :lol:
If you ride in just shorts maybe take a spare pair or are you going to wash/dry them each night?
You've put down underwear, what are you wearing on top of them or is that just for night-time in the sleeping bag. What about taking a normal pair of walking shorts to wear rather than the sweaty cycling shorts at the end of each day(or do you plan to sit in your undies 8) :lol:
If I had a choice I'd take a bar of soap rather than shower gel, it makes it easier to wash your shorts with too.
Are you taking washing up liquid or you just rinsing stuff out where you're camping?
Are the pumps the little mini dudes? Have you tried pumping up a tyre from flat to 100psi with one before? Is yours capable of doing that in any case?
If you've got a map & a phone why the need for a compass?

Just some thoughts anyway


We are taking four cycle tops (I don't think that's made clear on the spreadsheet).
We tried going without just one head-torch (I had argued for none) and it was very difficult. They are essential at night.
As mentioned above, I am definitely getting a mirror
The speaker allows us to move around
As mentioned above, the suncream should be fine
We don't generally sit around in the evening, so just cycling shorts should be fine - and we will wash them every evening.
As mentioned above, I am still clueless about soap
We can pump up our tyres to good pressure (eventually) with our mini pumps
When we're lost, the compass is good for 'just go north' and working out which road we're on.

Cachao

Tonyf33
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby Tonyf33 » 3 Jul 2011, 3:05pm

I saw the 4 tops but your spreadsheet shows you're only allowing only 298g for them hence why I mentioned it. that's another 700g or so of clothing to take into account.
You dont need a compass to find North, the sun & a watch (or virtual watch/clockface on your phone will do) but I guess an extra 30g is no big deal.

PH
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Re: Cut That Kit!

Postby PH » 3 Jul 2011, 3:06pm

Cachao wrote:Any more advice on soap? I would really like one type to do pots and pans, clothes, shaving and showering.
Cachao


Lifeadventure All Purpose soap will do all that. There's probably others, but this one is available all over the place, Millets, Yeomans, Blacks, Field & Trek...
http://www.cotswoldoutdoor.com/index.cf ... e/B1310011
The bigger the size you buy the cheaper it is, I bought the smallest and biggest, take the small and top up before each trip.
One of the best ways to save weight is to get stuff that serves more than one purpose. The cycling shirts I take on tour are fine for evening wear (2 X Merino) I take a superwarm jacket for an evening and that makes a comfy pillow. You'll refine your own list as you go and we're all different, so I'm reluctant to make specific recommendations. the only thing I've learnt that I'm happy to pass on is that getting a poor nights sleep due to lacking the right kit has slowed me down far more than carrying a couple of extra kilos ever has.