I need help on choosing a Touring bike

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Doormat
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Joined: 10 Feb 2015, 8:39pm

I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Doormat » 10 Feb 2015, 8:57pm

Hi, this is my first post :)

I need help choosing a tour bike.

Ridgeback Voyage 2015 -£800 + £120 off very over priced equipment on the same site if I buy it. (also not great brands)
http://www.ukbikesdepot.com/m115b187s860p15285/RIDGEBACK_Voyage_2015/RS_GB/51965?gclid=Cj0KEQiA9eamBRDqvIz_qPbVteABEiQAnIBTEORqlyJsjlsxwkGY2fTPzN1YJa2BdtmHJeczWBXIfOsaAnKB8P8HAQ

Dawes Super Galaxy 14 - £800 its down from £1300 which is very tempting.
http://www.winstanleysbikes.co.uk/product/59705/Dawes_Super_Galaxy_2014_Bike

Revoultion Country Traveller - £600
This seems to be very similar to dawes bike but cheaper. Its also more to my liking in price but I'm not sure if its worth it if I'm getting a £1300 bike for £800.

Has anyone any experience with these bikes because it is hard to get reviews for a tour bike or does anyone know if they are overpriced or not?
I am planning on doing a tour of Norway in August by myself for 3/4 weeks.
Its my first tour... very scared.
Thanks

fluffybunnyuk
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby fluffybunnyuk » 10 Feb 2015, 11:15pm

I ride a dawes galaxy. wouldnt trade it for anything! Its very sturdy,reliable, and the handling is great under load(a bit fast unloaded). Only real complaint is front rings are too big 44/32/22 would probably be better for the hills. Very comfortable to ride over distances.
Whatever you pick, take the time to protect it with helicopter tape on the frame,and a nice dose of oil on the bolts,screw threads before using it, and it'll repay you for years.
Good additions would be a dynamo hub, and suitable tyres for norway.

Bonefishblues
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Bonefishblues » 11 Feb 2015, 8:42am

Have a look at the Spa Cycles site. I think they have a good range of brands which will allow you to see the true price relativities (Dawes are heavily discounted, perhaps suggesting that they were overpriced to start with, but draw your own conclusions).
They have demo bikes too, which is important.

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honesty
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby honesty » 11 Feb 2015, 8:44am

Dawes always massively discount their last year models. Its a really good way to pick up a decent bike. Of the 3 you've highlighted I'd go for the Dawes myself, though as suggested you may want to look at the Spa cycles steel tourer as well.

Doormat
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Doormat » 11 Feb 2015, 9:24am

fluffybunnyuk wrote:I ride a dawes galaxy. wouldnt trade it for anything! Its very sturdy,reliable, and the handling is great under load(a bit fast unloaded). Only real complaint is front rings are too big 44/32/22 would probably be better for the hills. Very comfortable to ride over distances.
Whatever you pick, take the time to protect it with helicopter tape on the frame,and a nice dose of oil on the bolts,screw threads before using it, and it'll repay you for years.
Good additions would be a dynamo hub, and suitable tyres for norway.


Thanks everyone for the reply.
Fluffybunnyuk, is the helicopter tape for the frame? How often should I oil my bike
and does it matter what oil I use?
lastly is the dynamo hub for powering lights on my bike? for tunnels etc?

fluffybunnyuk
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby fluffybunnyuk » 11 Feb 2015, 10:01am

Fluffybunnyuk, is the helicopter tape for the frame? How often should I oil my bike
and does it matter what oil I use?
lastly is the dynamo hub for powering lights on my bike? for tunnels etc?


the tape is like a seethrough film that covers the frame. It takes time and care to fit without bubbles forming. A heavy object like a ruler is good for forcing bubbles out as it is applied to the frame.
Oil is good on bolts and threads so as to prevent rust. My number one priorities are the things the rack screws into on the frame, the holes in the inside of the bottom of the fork (airholes? not sure why theyre there but they can rust too.)
The dynamo hub is useful for powering lights, and charging usb devices of low power. Also dynamo works better than some modern batteries in cold temperatures.

I acquired my bike 2nd hand, so for me its an ongoing process of protecting it, and trying to shore up the damage that was caused. I had to use liberal amounts of clear nail varnish to cover up scratches on the frame because it hadnt been protected. I came to the conclusion, its much easier on a new bike to prevent the damage rather than after...

I love my bike...its not the fastest (a road bike is better), the most reliable (a thorn), or the best on dirt(a mountain bike). But it does carry a decent load, at a decent pace. And at the end of a 12hr day, i just tend to have a deep ache in my thighs. I've never used creams or had any rashes. I dont feel like im riding a cheesewire...
My only gripe is getting up hills but thats due to fitness, and it all being in my head rather than the bike.
Take a testride if you can, and make sure you get a frame to fit you.

pwa
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby pwa » 11 Feb 2015, 10:04am

Of the bikes you suggest, the Dawes is the better bike. The Revolution, whilst practical, is the least attractive. As suggested elsewhere, why not get on the phone to Spa Cycles and see if they have a better deal on something?

Merry_Wanderer
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 11 Feb 2015, 10:47am

I don't have a Spa Cycles bike as they don't come in giant size to fit me but I would strongly suggest going to their shop in Harrogate to try the Galaxy because you can then compare it with their own steel framed tourer (which a friend of mine has). Don't be taken in by 'brand' names, go to a recommend shop and get test rides on as many bikes as you can. I do have Spa own brand components on my and my wife's touring bikes. They are good quality items at low prices - chainset, etc

pwa
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby pwa » 11 Feb 2015, 10:53am

Doormat

which part of the country do you live in? I am sure the folks on this forum could direct you to a good bike shop.

Merry_Wanderer
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 11 Feb 2015, 10:54am

If you can't get to Harrogate for a day what you could do is tell the forum where you live and ask for a recommended shop nearer to you

Doormat
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby Doormat » 11 Feb 2015, 3:01pm

Thanks everyone! This is a really helpful forum :)
I'm from Northern Ireland.. Not sure if there is many good bike shops here, most of them have only road/mountain bikes.
I'm 5"8 and I've a 33 leg. I'm recommended to get a 57cm frame but the Dawes Galaxy I want it only in 58cm which isn't much of a difference but I heard its good to get a smaller rather than a bigger frame? Is this true.
Also the Dawes super Galaxy on spa cycles is a 2012 model and more expensive than the 2014 on the site I'm looking at on winstanleys bikes.

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531colin
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby 531colin » 11 Feb 2015, 3:36pm

A 57 cm Galaxy with a sloping top tube is like a field gate with wheels on. OK if you are six feet tall or more.

Merry wanderer.....how tall are you if a 60cm sloping top tube frame is too small?
I'm 5' 10", I ride a 54cm.

pwa
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby pwa » 11 Feb 2015, 3:44pm

I've had a quick look at the Super Galaxy from Winstanleys and it looks a good buy. I would call the shop and discuss your size questions. They are a well known shop and will give you good advice. If it's on the larger side of OK they may suggest a shorter handlebar stem to make the fit just right. The bike has a very good frame and nice components, and I can't see you doing much better for the money. Enjoy.

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foxyrider
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby foxyrider » 11 Feb 2015, 3:47pm

Doormat wrote:Thanks everyone! This is a really helpful forum :)
I'm from Northern Ireland.. Not sure if there is many good bike shops here, most of them have only road/mountain bikes.
I'm 5"8 and I've a 33 leg. I'm recommended to get a 57cm frame but the Dawes Galaxy I want it only in 58cm which isn't much of a difference but I heard its good to get a smaller rather than a bigger frame? Is this true.


Who recommended that? You really have a 33il? if that's the case you will struggle with reach on that huge 58cm, I'd be thinking 54cm tops, I have 2 inches on you and ride a 51cm!

if in doubt on size, always go smaller - you can do something about that, bigger you're stuffed!

There are always plenty of used Galaxies for sale - just ask yourself why if they are so good?
Convention? what's that then?
Airnimal Chameleon touring, Orbit Pro hack, Orbit Photon audax, Focus Mares AX tour, Peugeot Carbon sportive, Owen Blower vintage race - all running Tulio's finest!

pwa
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Re: I need help on choosing a Touring bike

Postby pwa » 11 Feb 2015, 3:50pm

Make that call to Winstanleys to sort out this size issue. Maybe you can fit the 53cm they have in stock.