What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Specific board for this popular undertaking.
velo-city
Posts: 33
Joined: 17 Aug 2010, 11:33pm
Location: London, UK

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby velo-city » 22 Sep 2020, 1:20pm

speedsixdave wrote:
Nessie23 wrote:Those butterfly bars look interesting. I have hybrid with flat bars and was looking to get something different to give some variation over longer rides. I have ruled out drops due to reduced mobility from back op but these ‘butterflies’ might be the answer.
Would be interested in your thoughts @nickeveson and anyone else with experience.
Eg can you rest your forearms on them in a sort of aero/TT position?



I had a pair on the front of the tandem for a bit, for all the reasons you note, and didn't get on with them at all. Although there are lots of positions, the main one covering the brakes and gears was much narrower than a normal pair of flat bars, and it didn't give me tbe leverage and control I was after on a tandem. The other positions were good though. They went on the back of the tandem after that, and the wife is very happy with them still.

I still have flat bars on the tandem but with Ergon grips with short bar-ends. These are pretty good and allow me to rotate the wrists to a 'forward ' or natural position. There are lots of other ergonomic options too now like Jones H-bars - have a search on this forum for those.


Ergon grips are great. I have the longer ends That angle round and give more options. Very comfortable and in many ways better than drops.

magorhoop
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Joined: 17 Sep 2020, 7:47pm

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby magorhoop » 22 Sep 2020, 1:41pm

greyingbeard wrote:Up to you. Theres no one right answer. People have been touring on bikes since they were invented, but its easier on a suitable one. They all have to be pedalled.
Theres plenty of bikes on the market, even if the local shop has all but sold out; more will arrive.
Get a bike that fits and can take large-ish tyres, racks, mudguards etc as you prefer.
Get a saddle that suits your bum.
A lot of people tour on mountain bikes, especially older ones with bolt holes for all the extras. The mtb has good brakes, low gears and strong wheels and frame, all many people want.
Do you want a low position for speed or to sit up and look at the view ? drop handlebars give more options.
You will need some very low gears to cope with some very steep hills, Cornwall aint flat. It seems to me that the modern bike often doesnt have gears low enough, no granny ring on the front etc.
How to carry all that stuff ? I use racks front and rear. I think they can carry more than a trendy "bikepack". IF you are going to carry a lot of stuff (tent cooker etc) then you might want to bin any cheapo rack and replace with steel ones, but that can wait till the cheapo rack starts to wobble, it;ll be ok for the first couple of trips. There are some very strong and versatile racks on the market, Tubus and Surly spring to mind.

Others will no doubt have their own views :)

Thanks for the reply, lots of good points. It’s just very difficult to get near a bike in a shop let alone buy one. And not knowing what I want/need is really not helping me. I liked the look of a Topstone 2 but it has carbon forks so would that be advisable if I’m going to be loading the bike up


I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my wobbly bog brush using hovercraft full of eels

greyingbeard
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Joined: 24 Mar 2015, 10:41pm

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby greyingbeard » 22 Sep 2020, 2:01pm

If you are camping - a proper tourer that can take front and rear racks

If you are not camping - you only need a change of clothes etc. Then a lighter bike will do. Carbon fork will be fine for road riding.
Youll still want a rear rack option, and mudguards.

I dont like carbon fibre, too disposable, I prefer steel as it wont break.

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Paulatic
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Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Paulatic » 22 Sep 2020, 2:55pm

greyingbeard wrote:I prefer steel as it wont break.


:lol: :lol: Come and have a look in my scrap heap :oops:
Whatever I am, wherever I am, this is me. This is my life

https://stcleve.wordpress.com/category/lejog/
E2E info

Jamesh
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Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Jamesh » 23 Sep 2020, 7:30pm

My scrap heaps made of Aluminium!!!

Cheers James

Nessie23
Posts: 31
Joined: 13 Sep 2020, 1:19pm
Location: Warwickshire

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Nessie23 » 23 Sep 2020, 8:07pm

Velo-city and speed6dave: Thanks for info on alternative bars. I had no idea there was so much out there. I have ruled out Jones-H as would change the geometry too much but am very interested in the Ergon up-stands.

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Paulatic
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Location: 24 Hours from Lands End

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Paulatic » 23 Sep 2020, 8:59pm

Nessie23 wrote:Velo-city and speed6dave: Thanks for info on alternative bars. I had no idea there was so much out there. I have ruled out Jones-H as would change the geometry too much but am very interested in the Ergon up-stands.

How will it change the geometry?
I bought a bike last year and whilst it was great value it had one drawback for me with straight handlebars. I thought I’d get used to them after all some people prefer them. I persevered for 12 months but my hands weren’t happy. Seriously thought of selling the bike as in the current climate I’d have made a small profit. Only problem with that idea was I’d need a big outlay to get a similar bike with drops.
For £30 I thought I’d give the Geoff Bars a try ( On One cheap Jones copy) Early days perhaps, as Ive only done 100 miles on them so far, but I’m very happy so far.
They haven’t changed the geometry, I’ve used the same stem but lifted the stem about 20 mm. Loads of hand positions on a natural hand angle. A sweet spot for me is just after the cross of the H That position there is identical to the hoods on my drops and coming closer is the same as the flats were with a better angle.
Whatever I am, wherever I am, this is me. This is my life

https://stcleve.wordpress.com/category/lejog/
E2E info

Nessie23
Posts: 31
Joined: 13 Sep 2020, 1:19pm
Location: Warwickshire

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Nessie23 » 23 Sep 2020, 10:00pm

Paulatic wrote:
Nessie23 wrote:Velo-city and speed6dave: Thanks for info on alternative bars. I had no idea there was so much out there. I have ruled out Jones-H as would change the geometry too much but am very interested in the Ergon up-stands.

How will it change the geometry?

My issue is the opposite of yours. I have got back into cycling during lockdown/furlough on a 10 year old flat bar hybrid bike. The bike fits me perfectly but having done lots of touring many years ago on drops i want to have option of variable hand positions, particularly the ‘on hoods’ position. I feel the H-bar is wider and more swept back than my current bar and believe the Ergon up-turns is the best way to replicate ‘on hood‘ position, albeit wider apart than on drops. I also want to get a bit lower (aero position) for headwinds, hence the interest in butterfly bars (possibility of resting forearms on double bar.) Maybe with a bit more cycling and stretching i will be able to consider/use drops again. However, drops on an upright hybrid might look odd. I love my hybrid but maybe i have ‘outgrown’ it as i get fitter and want to go further and faster.

Jamesh
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Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Jamesh » 23 Sep 2020, 10:27pm

Sounds like you need an endurance road bike.

Your hybrid is great for trails and the pub but for real adventure something of a touring, gravel or endurance bike might serve you better ?

Cheers James

Swaggers
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Joined: 24 Sep 2020, 2:14am

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Swaggers » 24 Sep 2020, 2:45am

Ride whatever you want, there is no defined option, regardless of what anyone on here or elsewhere tells you.

I'm presently 600 miles into LEJOG, doing an East coast route on board a Larry vs Harry Bullitt cargobike weighing a spritely 30kg unladen. It's not the ideal bike for the route, unless you want to carry the kitchen sink too, but it is far more capable than many would imagine, turns heads, creates conversations, is far less nickable and isn't the latest carbon fibre/titanium/steel show pony.

Sure, it's cruising speed is slower than many and is a bit more of a workout on the uphills, but that's part of the appeal, it defines me, just as much as I do it. In a nutshell there is no right or wrong answer, ride what you want rather than what you think you should, afterall regardless of whether it's a carbon fibre weight weenie, or has a frame welded from girders it's you who provides the power, chooses the route and ultimately pays for it.

Nessie23
Posts: 31
Joined: 13 Sep 2020, 1:19pm
Location: Warwickshire

Re: What bike for loaded touring ? ( LeJoG + other tours )

Postby Nessie23 » 24 Sep 2020, 6:50pm

Jamesh wrote:Sounds like you need an endurance road bike.

Your hybrid is great for trails and the pub but for real adventure something of a touring, gravel or endurance bike might serve you better ?

Cheers James

I agree, and have been looking at endurance bikes such as Trek Domane, Synapse, Giant Defy and Canyon Endurace. I have always been a fair weather cyclist (as far as north Scotland permitted!) but plan to use the hybrid over winter and hope to pick up a reasonable endurance type bike in the New year. Hopefully, there will be a glut of seldom used Covid purchases on the 2nd hand market.