help selecting a touring bike?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Mark Scardiglia, Jan 25, 2003.

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  1. I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek 520
    in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history with
    racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter, too. Any
    help out there?

    Thanks.

    Mark
     
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  2. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
    >
    >

    While I think Waterford makes the best tourer, the price may be prohibitive($1600 for the Adventure
    Cycle frame). http://www.waterfordbikes.com/

    Mercian makes a beautiful frame for far less. The Vincitore touring frame costs about $694 Which is
    nearly $900 cheaper than the Waterford. It's a better looking frame than the Atlantis IMHO.
    http://www.btinternet.com/~merciancycleslimited/pages/frames.htm
     
  3. Scic

    Scic Guest

    >From: Mark Scardiglia

    >I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike...

    Also look at the Bruce Gordon BLT and the more expensive Rock 'n Road.

    http://www.bgcycles.com

    Sig Chicago
     
  4. Bruce

    Bruce Guest

    What kind of touring? How much weight / how many bags, camping gear....?

    If looks matter then we can't help decide. If all you want is a strong bike then Trek, Fuji or
    Cannondale are fine. If you don't plan to carry a lot then any mid-priced road bike (with fender
    clearance is you desire) will do the job.

    -Bruce

    "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
     
  5. Robin Hubert

    Robin Hubert Guest

    That's the 1900 (lugged, brazed). Don't neglect to mention the new-for-2003 TIG'd 853 touring frame.
    Full custom for $1200 (frame only) ... add $200 for the fork.

    Robin Hubert

    "Frank Knox" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been
    > > lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of
    > > the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a
    > > long history with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as
    > > my commuter, too. Any help out there?
    > >
    > > Thanks.
    > >
    > > Mark
    > >
    > >
    >
    > While I think Waterford makes the best tourer, the price may be prohibitive($1600 for the
    > Adventure Cycle frame). http://www.waterfordbikes.com/
    >
    > Mercian makes a beautiful frame for far less. The Vincitore touring frame costs about $694 Which
    > is nearly $900 cheaper than the Waterford. It's a better looking frame than the Atlantis IMHO.
    > http://www.btinternet.com/~merciancycleslimited/pages/frames.htm
     
  6. Robin Hubert

    Robin Hubert Guest

    That's the 1900 (lugged, brazed). Don't neglect to mention the new-for-2003 TIG'd 853 touring frame.
    Full custom for $1200 (frame only) ... add $200 for the fork.

    Robin Hubert

    "Frank Knox" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been
    > > lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of
    > > the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a
    > > long history with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as
    > > my commuter, too. Any help out there?
    > >
    > > Thanks.
    > >
    > > Mark
    > >
    > >
    >
    > While I think Waterford makes the best tourer, the price may be prohibitive($1600 for the
    > Adventure Cycle frame). http://www.waterfordbikes.com/
    >
    > Mercian makes a beautiful frame for far less. The Vincitore touring frame costs about $694 Which
    > is nearly $900 cheaper than the Waterford. It's a better looking frame than the Atlantis IMHO.
    > http://www.btinternet.com/~merciancycleslimited/pages/frames.htm
     
  7. There is touring and there is touring: For 'fully loaded' or "real" touring, you need a bike that
    will hold front and rear racks, and carry you and all of those racks fully loaded with your camping
    gear, etc for days at a time. Answer, as some have noted, Bruce Gordon, Waterford Adventure Cycle,
    or go to the UK sites and check out Thorn, etc. However, few of us really want or need that in what
    we call a 'touring' bike. If most of us 'tour', it is a day trip, stopping at a hotel and carrying
    perhaps a single change of clothes and a 'shave kit'. Our, we tour for the day, want to tote lunch
    and a change of clothes if we want to stop and swim or hike, etc. "Credit card" touring. Some want a
    touring bike to double as a commuter or simply for a relaxed day outdoors and a rear rack to carry
    something you stop and buy. Fenders are nice.

    I call that a 'station wagon' and bought a Rivendell Atlantis to fit the bill. For just under a
    $1,000. for the lugged steel frame, contrasting cream-colored 'windows' and details on the mint
    green paint, and fit and finish that cannot be faulted, the bike is an incredible bargain. Built in
    Japan, not Taiwan, to Grant Peterson's relaxed design the only real issue you may have with it (and
    one that is really not an issue for its intended use) is that the chain stays are designed to let
    you use fat tires for comfort or light off road use. They flair out just behind the BB, so you
    cannot use a Shimano triple crank. Going with the Sugino, a Ritchey or the excellent TA cranks allow
    you to get all the gears you need. I used a 'donor' bike to mate a TA Zephyer triple 45/35/22 to my
    DA triple and STI road levers (it does work, contrary to what some thought), bought some hammered
    aluminum fenders from American Cyclery that look like the French Lefoils that are now impossible to
    find, added a Tubus rack to the rear, and have a very comfortable light touring bike, commuter, that
    looks like a mid-40s or 50s touring bike that one could have found rambling around the Continent.
    Add a set of SPD pedals and the relaxed handling and ride suit me just fine, for a reasonable
    investment. Don't need the more elaborate touring bikes since at my age and given my time
    constraints, I am not going to be hauling much gear with me when I ride.

    Pick your weapon for its intended use. The Atlantis should suit 99% of most real world 'touring
    bike' needs. Dave "Bruce" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > What kind of touring? How much weight / how many bags, camping gear....?
    >
    > If looks matter then we can't help decide. If all you want is a strong
    bike
    > then Trek, Fuji or Cannondale are fine. If you don't plan to carry a lot then any mid-priced road
    > bike (with fender clearance is you desire) will
    do
    > the job.
    >
    > -Bruce
    >
    > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been
    > > lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of
    > > the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a
    > > long history with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as
    > > my commuter, too. Any help out there?
    > >
    > > Thanks.
    > >
    > > Mark
    >
     
  8. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    > > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring,
    not
    > > > as in hybrid) and was wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular
    > > > models. I've been lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some
    > > > satisfactory opinions of the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji
    Touring
    > > > has gotten some mentions. I have a long history with racing type
    bikes,
    > > > but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my
    commuter,
    > > > too. Any help out there?
    > > >
    > > > Thanks.
    > > >
    > > > Mark
    > > >
    > > >
    > >
    > > While I think Waterford makes the best tourer, the price may be prohibitive($1600 for the
    > > Adventure Cycle frame). http://www.waterfordbikes.com/
    > >
    > > Mercian makes a beautiful frame for far less. The Vincitore touring
    frame
    > > costs about $694 Which is nearly $900 cheaper than the Waterford. It's
    a
    > > better looking frame than the Atlantis IMHO.
    > > http://www.btinternet.com/~merciancycleslimited/pages/frames.htm
    > >
    > >

    "Robin Hubert" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > That's the 1900 (lugged, brazed). Don't neglect to mention the new-for-2003 TIG'd 853 touring
    > frame. Full custom for $1200 (frame only) ... add $200 for the fork.
    >
    > Robin Hubert
    >
    Getting clearance from the wife to use a lot of the available family spending money on a bike
    involves a great deal of enthusiasm and persistence. The purchase and pride of ownership is an
    emotional thing. At least it was for me when I bought a Waterford sport touring bike. When you've
    been looking at an Atlantis, somehow a welded frame is hard to get excited about. I used to weld for
    a living and I realize a competent welder can make a strong frame. But for me a bike with welded
    joints is a hard thing to love or look forward to.

    TIG WELDED ??!! :-(
     
  9. > That's the 1900 (lugged, brazed). Don't neglect to mention the new-for-2003 TIG'd 853 touring
    > frame. Full custom for $1200 (frame only) ... add $200 for the fork.

    Is 853 really available in a wall thickness appropriate for a touring bike? The stuff I'm used to
    isn't the sort of tubing I'd want on a bike that might fall over onto something when fully loaded up
    with panniers etc.; I'd be very concerned about putting a good-sized dent into it.

    It's amazingly-strong as far as building a bike that rides nicely and such, but it wouldn't be my
    first choice of material to handle severe abuse.

    Bikes like the TREK 520 may be a bit heavier, and perhaps considerably more boring, but they're very
    good at getting the job done, at reasonable cost.

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com

    "Robin Hubert" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > That's the 1900 (lugged, brazed). Don't neglect to mention the new-for-2003 TIG'd 853 touring
    > frame. Full custom for $1200 (frame only) ... add $200 for the fork.
    >
    > Robin Hubert
    >
    >
    > "Frank Knox" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > >
    > > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring,
    not
    > > > as in hybrid) and was wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular
    > > > models. I've been lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some
    > > > satisfactory opinions of the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji
    Touring
    > > > has gotten some mentions. I have a long history with racing type
    bikes,
    > > > but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my
    commuter,
    > > > too. Any help out there?
    > > >
    > > > Thanks.
    > > >
    > > > Mark
    > > >
    > > >
    > >
    > > While I think Waterford makes the best tourer, the price may be prohibitive($1600 for the
    > > Adventure Cycle frame). http://www.waterfordbikes.com/
    > >
    > > Mercian makes a beautiful frame for far less. The Vincitore touring
    frame
    > > costs about $694 Which is nearly $900 cheaper than the Waterford. It's
    a
    > > better looking frame than the Atlantis IMHO.
    > > http://www.btinternet.com/~merciancycleslimited/pages/frames.htm
    > >
    > >
    >
     
  10. Todd Kuzma

    Todd Kuzma Guest

    There are lots of considerations for touring bikes: how much do you want to spend, how much gear
    will you carry, what type of terrain will you cover, what type of gearing will you need, will the
    bike need to be multipurpose (loaded touring plus commuting plus unloaded recreational riding?).

    Every bike is a compromise of some sort. You need to find the bike that best fits your needs. You
    mentioned the Atlantis. I have a brief comparison of the Heron Road, Heron Touring, Rivendell
    Atlantis, and Rivendell Rambouillet in the FAQ on our website that might give you a start:
    http://www.heronbicycles.com/faq.html

    Todd Kuzma Heron Bicycles LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776 http://www.heronbicycles.com
     
  11. Michael Hoyt

    Michael Hoyt Guest

    What about the Cannondale T2000 or T800?

    M

    Mark Scardiglia wrote:

    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
     
  12. Tbgibb

    Tbgibb Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Mark Scardiglia <[email protected]> writes:

    >I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    >wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    >after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek 520
    >in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history with
    >racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter, too. Any
    >help out there?

    Bruce Gordon has been mentioned. No matter what bike you get his racks bear consideration. The
    hollow chromolly tubed racks are lighter and stronger than solid aluminium (but more expensive).
    http://www.bgcycles.com/

    Robert Beckman was making touring bikes with lugged construction and also makes racks of hollow
    chromolly and may still be. He mates the mounting system on the racks to his panniers so look
    carefully at his panniers or prepare to pay for an adaptation for the panniers you want. The last I
    looked at his web site his panniers are of the "zip up" variety and I prefer the flexibility of top
    loaders and/or the water proofness of Ortliebs. http://www.coinet.com/~beckman/entryX.html

    But don't forget Bilenky. Perhaps a fillet brazed frame would more acceptable than a TIG welded one.
    My wife and I both have bikes on order from him. http://www.bilenky.com/index.htm

    While you are at it decided if travel by public transportation with your bike is something you want
    to do and consider S&S couplings on the bike. It wouldn't take many $50 - $75 airline charges for a
    bicycle to pay for them. I think Rivendale does them, I know Bilenky does, but the last I heard
    Bruce Gordon does not. I don't know about Beckman. http://www.sandsmachine.com/

    If you can reconcile to the idea of TIG welded consider the Cannondale and Trek entries in the area,
    they both make good bicycles. Make sure whatever you use has long enough chain stays to give you
    heel clearance.

    Tom Gibb <[email protected]
     
  13. John Everett

    John Everett Guest

    On Fri, 24 Jan 2003 23:44:44 -0500, Mark Scardiglia <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    >wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    >after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek 520
    >in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history with
    >racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter, too. Any
    >help out there?

    My girlfriend has had a Trek 520 for a few years now and has been very happy with it. We did some
    riding in the Colorado Rockies last summer and she had an easier time of it on some of the climbs
    that I did with only two chainrings. With another trip to Colorado planned for this summer I started
    looking at touring bikes. I came close to purchasing a 520 when one of our club members posted a
    Fuji Touring Series for sale (used, but barely). I bought it last September, and so far so good.
    Only problem, I'm pretty unhappy with the effectiveness of the brakes. It has RSX STI levers with
    canti brakes, and it seems to require a lot more pressure than I'm used to to slow the thing down; a
    problem that I need to address before my next descent down a pass in the Rockies.

    Coincidentally, I just now have a Waterford 1900 (touring model) down in the garage that I'm working
    on for a friend. It was custom made for her and seems to be a really nice bike, but knowing what she
    paid for it I'm pretty happy with my $300(US) Fuji.

    I'd say it would be hard to go wrong with either the Trek or the Fuji, and if you're like me with a
    stable of racing type bikes it would be hard to justify the added expense of a Rivendell or
    Waterford.

    jeverett3<AT>earthlink<DOT>net http://home.earthlink.net/~jeverett3
     
  14. Todd Kuzma

    Todd Kuzma Guest

    Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:

    > Is 853 really available in a wall thickness appropriate for a touring bike?

    Yes. Waterford uses 853 tubes with wall thicknesses that are quite appropriate. This is why their
    853-tubed touring frame weighs about a pound more than their 853-tubed racing frame.

    Todd Kuzma Heron Bicycles LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776 http://www.heronbicycles.com
     
  15. > > Is 853 really available in a wall thickness appropriate for a touring
    bike?
    >
    > Yes. Waterford uses 853 tubes with wall thicknesses that are quite appropriate. This is why their
    > 853-tubed touring frame weighs about a pound more than their 853-tubed racing frame.

    Thanks! I went to the Reynolds website and couldn't find any information on
    it. 853 is pretty incredible stuff; makes sense that they'd make it available in something other
    than ultra-light versions.

    Kinda funny when I think about the fact that I'm selling 3.5lb steel frames that are far stronger
    than the 5lb steel frames I sold 20+ years ago. People assume that it's just the introduction of
    newer materials that have changed the bicycle, but even the older stuff continues to evolve.

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReaction.com

    "Todd Kuzma" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    >
    >
    > > Is 853 really available in a wall thickness appropriate for a touring
    bike?
    >
    > Yes. Waterford uses 853 tubes with wall thicknesses that are quite appropriate. This is why their
    > 853-tubed touring frame weighs about a pound more than their 853-tubed racing frame.
    >
    > Todd Kuzma Heron Bicycles LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776 http://www.heronbicycles.com
     
  16. Gocycle

    Gocycle Guest

    Check out the Marinoni Tourismo......Steel.......made in Canada by Italians. Very
    reasonable in price.
    --

    LOU {{{{{GoCycle}}}}} "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
     
  17. John Albergo

    John Albergo Guest

    Mark Scardiglia wrote:

    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
    >
    I don't think you can go wrong with the Trek as long as you fit one of the sizes. The 520 is a fine
    bike and has been around for years. I have one and it's the only bike I have (or need). It will do
    what you want and then you can decide if you want to start saving the $$$$$ for something fancier or
    custom built.
     
  18. Erik Freitag

    Erik Freitag Guest

    In <[email protected]> Mark Scardiglia wrote:
    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Mark
    >
    >

    I can recommend the Trek 520 as a commuter - about 2300 miles in six months with minimal
    maintenance. Terrain is everything from industrial with lots of RR tracks, pointy steel fasteners
    and broken glass, to freshly laundered office park asphalt. Cheap transportation for a heavy rider.
     
  19. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been lusting
    > after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of the Trek
    > 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a long history
    > with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as my commuter,
    > too. Any help out there?

    Go for that cold steel or retro-boutique stuff if you want, but I'm a hi-tek guy, I like the light,
    strong, stiff-yet-supple, quality of laser cut, precision *welded*, big-toob, aluminum. Cannondale!
     
  20. Robin Hubert

    Robin Hubert Guest

    "Peter Cole" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Mark Scardiglia" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > I'm going to buy my first ever touring bike (as in bicycle touring, not as in hybrid) and was
    > > wondering if anyone can make some solid recommendations about particular models. I've been
    > > lusting after the Rivendell Atlantis ($$$$$), but have unearthed some satisfactory opinions of
    > > the Trek 520 in dejanews. For that matter, the Fuji Touring has gotten some mentions. I have a
    > > long history with racing type bikes, but am a complete touring newbie. This bike would serve as
    > > my commuter, too. Any help out there?
    >
    > Go for that cold steel or retro-boutique stuff if you want, but I'm a
    hi-tek
    > guy, I like the light, strong, stiff-yet-supple, quality of laser cut, precision *welded*,
    > big-toob, aluminum. Cannondale!

    I've got a '92 vintage T1000. Great bike.

    Robin Hubert
     
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