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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:23 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm
Posts: 587
I have a frame that was damaged last year, a Bianchi Infinito CV. Has a crack on the seatstay, but it's still rideable. Going to get it repaired shortly too. Doubt anyone will buy it, even though the repair is guaranteed for life.

Anyway, always wanted a fast touring bike and want to try my first multi-day trip this summer (500 miles roughly). Not insane, but will be a nice way to test the waters and see if I enjoy this sort of ultra-distance thing and if I can hack sleeping alone. In a field. Or roadside. In a bag. :shock:

Route:
https://www.strava.com/routes/2943218?hl=en-GB

Was thinking that I could try and turn the Infinito CV frame into a tourer. I have no other use for it now, it's just sitting in a box waiting to be repaired, and I've since bought a main bike to replace it. It can take 28mm tyres apparently, though haven't tried.

What do you reckon, could it be done? It doesn't have mounting options for bottles under the down tube or anything like that, but there's loads of straps on the market recently and it looks like you could almost turn any bike into a tourer.

Any thoughts on wheels, finishing kit, tyres, bags etc? Water options? Bivvy bag, lightweight clothing? Comfortable saddle maybe needed, all my saddles have been pretty rock like, so anything just a bit more padded than usual would be nice. Need some sort of recharge option too.

Some inspiration:

Image


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2009 1:41 pm
Posts: 261
Location: Shetland, Scotland
I've hoping to dip my toe in similar waters this summer, probably starting fairly easy with an Aberdeen to Thurso route, taking in the west side of the NC500.
I'm thinking CAAD8 with 27mm tyres, clip ons and fore and aft dry bags. I'd be hosteling though, not going full bivi style, so fairly light loads to carry.

Article I noticed today, on Mike Hall's setup for the upcoming Indian-Pacific race in Australia.
http://grit.cx/news/2017/03/mike-hall-h ... wheel-race


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Posted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:07 pm 


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:08 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 11:55 pm
Posts: 18
The North Coast 500 is fantastic, I did a 5 day tour last year which took in a good section of it. You don't need any sort of special bike to ride that route, it is all good surface roads. Your Bianchi would be fine and as there are plenty of steep climbs (most coast hugging routes are full of them) then something fairly light and fast is perfect. I did it on my steel framed Condor Heritage (12.5kg without any luggage..) with two full panniers for a total weight of about 23kg... (including a tent etc). I did wish at times I had a light bike with me but the scenery and roads are so epic there it didn't really matter.

The wind can be brutal so I wouldn't go too deep on the wheels and go a little bit higher on the spoke count (depending on your weight). If you are going to wild camp then Son Delux hub perhaps? Or you could just take the biggest rechargeable battery pack you can get hold of? I'm sure the big Anker ones would be fine.

I'm assuming its 28mm with no mudguards (and every bit of extra comfort in the tyres is worthwhile) in which case I'd probably take some clip ons for Scotland as the weather is so unpredictable and if you are wildcamping then you probably don't want to have 5 days of water being kicked up onto your feet and arse for 7-8 hours a day.

Fit wise you will probably want to make it a bit less aggressive, I also wouldn't bother with aero bars, you aren't racing and you may as well enjoy the scenery (and save 500 grams I suppose). Also I'd go for a softer bar tape (even something like Lizard Skins 3.2mm).

I have an Ortlieb bikepacking saddle bag which seems pretty good (I use it with my MTB) though quite big - could be a plus or minus. A lot of people seem to use Apidura over here though I think some of their's aren't totally waterproof.

Tyres.. loads of options out there, I use Compass Bicycles Chinook pass with their ultra light casing which are 28mm clinchers. I like them a lot, they feel fast and supple and I've only had 1 puncher in over 8,000km (more than one set) despite their low 226gr weight. I imagine tubeless would be a good option too.

Saddles.. I have a Brooks B17 on my touring bike which is brilliant for long distance comfort. I think the less padding but more hammock/flex type saddles work well for touring. More modern/lighter options I've been using on more modern bikes would be Cambium (which was great apart from the creaking noises) and lately a Fizik Kurve. This is definitely the area to sacrifice some weight saving for a day in day out long distance ride.

In terms of water I'm sure you will be fine with a couple of 750ml bidons. Scotland is 'wild' but you are doing a road route and there are small towns/villages with shops/pubs all along the way. You could take a water filter/purifier of course to supplement camping?

May want to consider gearing as well. What is fine on day 1 may become a bit tougher on day 2 and so on.

Another thing I'd add is that I'd recommend MTB pedals/shoes (or touring ones) with recessed cleats as you will end up walking around a fair bit / climbing a hill for a great camping spot etc or even catching your flight/train to the start.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Posts: 1981
Location: Vienna Austria
Excellent advice from Ulver above. Nothing to add really.

Any road bike will be fine.

Think long and hard about lighting (daylight rear light?) & gearing.

Pack as lightly as possible.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:38 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm
Posts: 587
@ Ulver, Carlos, Marin That's brilliant stuff.. going to need a bit of time to process and Google it all, but mostly glad that using the frame is feasible. Really appreciate the info thanks! :)

I see Apidura have a 'dry' range, which is essentially fully waterproof, including the seams. Talking around £400 for the typical full setup though. Pricey. Need to think hard about whether that investment is worth it or not. Worried that I'll follow the Indiepac, get hyped, buy a ton of crap and not end up using it later, although I'm quite good that way, if I spend on kit I do tend to use it.

Thinking right to mess around with mudguard options, tyres and the recharging. They seem pretty core to making this work. You guys are certain on no using the clip on bars though? I see they're really popular with the fast touring crowd recently..


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:58 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Posts: 1981
Location: Vienna Austria
I have a bag from Bikepack.pl that's been very useful so far. You can put your stuff in a plastic bag and then into the bag if you don't trust the water resistance.

Clip-ons can be had for cheap, try them. The problem is that a proper aero position will have you either looking at your front tire or strain your neck A LOT.

Riding in full rain is a problem because a) it requires *lots* of expensive gear and b) it's not fun. Are you flexible enough to do the tour in decent weather?


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 4:09 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Posts: 3113
Lots of bikepacking saddlebags around now, most of which can be "waterproofed" by using a plastic bag!

Alpkit koala is only 70 quid.
Revelate stuff is a bit more (still not 400 quid!) but a bit better made.

Just need to get yourself set up with something like a 105/11 speed groupset and the biggest tyres you can fit.

We've got options from bivvy bags, tarps, lightweight tents through to creditcard touring. All built up round either some crappy on-ones for offroad and a couple of kinesis training bikes.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 5:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 11:55 pm
Posts: 18
Shrike wrote:
@ Ulver, Carlos, Marin That's brilliant stuff.. going to need a bit of time to process and Google it all, but mostly glad that using the frame is feasible. Really appreciate the info thanks! :)

I see Apidura have a 'dry' range, which is essentially fully waterproof, including the seams. Talking around £400 for the typical full setup though. Pricey. Need to think hard about whether that investment is worth it or not. Worried that I'll follow the Indiepac, get hyped, buy a ton of crap and not end up using it later, although I'm quite good that way, if I spend on kit I do tend to use it.

Thinking right to mess around with mudguard options, tyres and the recharging. They seem pretty core to making this work. You guys are certain on no using the clip on bars though? I see they're really popular with the fast touring crowd recently..


If you really want to just dip your toe in the water then I'd suggest do an overnight trip. Ride out to somewhere to camp/bivvy then back early the next morning. Have a look at bikepacking.com at their suggestions for cheap set ups. I'd say a dry bag (£10-15) strapped behind your saddle would be fine with your sleeping bag, bivvy/tent etc. Just use whatever bike you have for now, go out and do a 'S24O' (sub 24 hour overnight) and see how it goes. I've also done some rides where I just velco strapped a compressible dry bag under my handlebars.

Its like a lot of the stuff on weight weenies, the important thing is the ride, the adventure etc, substitute blingy wheels for blingy bags.. :beerchug: (Not judging, I have bags from ortlieb, apidura, alpkit and restrap...)


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 10:32 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:21 pm
Posts: 40
As for kit, no specific recommendations. I do want to say that a good set of bars with some dampening and a dampening seatpost 1) do work and 2) you should get one. It is important that the handlebars move at the same rate as the rear.
I use my CX bike for everything. The ride was taking it's toll on me. I put that zigzag Specialized seat post on, and it worked as promised. It doesn't bounce, but you do notice it in the handlebar taking the peak gs off the major bumps. If you're at a decent cycling weight, the Cayon/Ergon unit looks be the one to go with -http://www.bikeradar.com/us/road/gear/article/best-soft-riding-rigid-seatposts-for-road-dirt-and-gravel-46208/ .
Like I said though, when you soften your saddle, you now have the bars moving at a much more aggressive rate proportionally to the rear; this can beat you up quit a bit. A horse jumping vs a horse bucking type of situation. I put 3T Ergonova carbon bars on the front, and they did a lot better dampening than my prior stock Trek AL bars.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:08 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm
Posts: 587
@ jfranci3 could a carbon seat post handle the pack and weight? Would like to use some carbon pieces but worried about the extra loads from bags on them..


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:21 pm
Posts: 40
Specialized specs the CG-R on the Sequoia https://www.specialized.com/us/en/bikes ... e/sequoia# , AWOL, and Diverge. All are marketed with big ass saddle packs attached. I don't see a weight limit mentioned. The Ergon Canyon unit just says 100kg http://www.ergon-bike.com/infocenter/do ... al_cf3.pdf

I forgot to ask about your frame. Is it a crack or scratch? Is it past the gel coat? Do you have pics? It'll be fine till the crack propagates then suddenly fail in the most unfun of ways. Once you get a crack or score going in just about anything, you're DOOOMMMMEEDDD. I'd send it in for carbon repair, which shouldn't be to crazy. That or use it as an excuse to buy a Trek Boone / Domaine which will probably give you the best ride possible on a fast tourer.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:10 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm
Posts: 587
Properly cracked..

Image

Actually rode about 300 miles on it after this, and it seems like it doesn't get worse. Even still, I boxed it up at the end of last summer and just rode a £400 frame winter bike until Jan then got myself a new main ride. I'd still ride this on normal rides with the crack, but wouldn't risk taking it far from home and loading it up etc in case it explodes :P

Have quotes for repair around £300. Maybe shop around a bit more, £300 seems steep, which is why I haven't really sent it off yet..


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Posts: 3113
Only issue i've found with carbon and bags is the rubbing.
Soon as you get any dirt in there it carves through quite quickly.

Bit of helicopter tape fixes that.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:02 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Posts: 1981
Location: Vienna Austria
Shrike wrote:
Properly cracked..

Image

Actually rode about 300 miles on it after this, and it seems like it doesn't get worse. Even still, I boxed it up at the end of last summer and just rode a £400 frame winter bike until Jan then got myself a new main ride. I'd still ride this on normal rides with the crack, but wouldn't risk taking it far from home and loading it up etc in case it explodes :P

Have quotes for repair around £300. Maybe shop around a bit more, £300 seems steep, which is why I haven't really sent it off yet..


Consider a DIY repair, there are kits available and instructions can be found online. I'd definitely try this if it was my frame.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:10 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:21 pm
Posts: 40
If you're going ride that, at least put a clamp on it. That way, when it give up the bits have no where to go quickly.


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Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:10 pm 


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