Touring Gears

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Jimbob, Jan 26, 2003.

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  1. Jimbob

    Jimbob Guest

    Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.

    Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX. I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52
    triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the racer to campy perhaps). Could I use this in
    conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still be too high? I'm not very knowledgable
    in this area!

    Is a beard also a requirement?
     
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  2. Peter B

    Peter B Guest

    "JimBob" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    > Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    > seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX. I
    was
    > contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52 triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the racer
    > to campy perhaps). Could I use this in conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still
    > be too high? I'm not very knowledgable in this area!
    >
    > Is a beard also a requirement?

    You can fit an mtb type cassette, however I believe the 105 rear mechs upper jockey wheel will
    engage any sprocket bigger than a 27. (Some say not but IME experience it does and loads of fiddling
    to reach an unreliable working state doesn't impress me).

    Your 30 mated to the 27 rear gives a 33.8 inch gear, (courtesy of
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/index.html ). As I know nothing of touring I don't know if this is
    low enough, likewise the beard requirement :)

    If it isn't low enough you could fit an mtb rear mech that will work up to a 34 sprocket, this will
    work with your roadie shifters with the usual considerations re 7, 8 and 9 speed compatibility. On
    this I can speak from experience having used an 11-32 cassette, XT rear and Ultegra STI's in perfect
    harmony on my road bike.

    Pete
     
  3. "JimBob" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >
    (snip)
    > Is a beard also a requirement?
    >
    Having toured with and without beard, the beard has distinct advantage of not having to worry about
    where you are going to shave if sleeping rough.

    Cliff
     
  4. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Sun, 26 Jan 2003 10:49:13 -0000, "JimBob" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    >seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX.

    That certainly works well, and bits are easy to get.

    >I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52 triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the
    >racer to campy perhaps). Could I use this in conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing
    >still be too high? I'm not very knowledgable in this area!

    Very close to the gearing on my tourer, so you certainly can, although I might be tempted to swap
    the rings for fractionally smaller ones as they wear out. LX is rated for 34T and certainly works
    with 32T. It's also reliable, IME.

    Avoid the standard 11-32 cassette, though, and see if you can get something like 13-34 Megarange;
    don't worry too much about the overall capacity of the mech as you'll never use 30-13 or 52-34. For
    loaded touring you might need lower gears, but for gentle trundles and nothing more than the
    occasional short 1 in 4 something with a 13-30 spread should work fine, as long as you're tolerably
    fit. I found a double-chevron hill which gave me some difficulty unloaded with my standard 31-26
    bottom gear - I couldn't sit and spin, I had to stand up and hoof it, so as I was the leader for the
    ride I was scouting out I fitted the cassette with the 30T bottom cog, because I didn't want to have
    to sprint away and wait at the top. And then put the 13-26 back on afterwards, obviously :)

    Some people don't like megarange. I'm not one of them. YMMV on this.

    Also, I find bar-end shifters nice as they give you a good feel for how things are going "back
    there" and with the 8sp LX give delightfully precise shifting. You also get the option of going to
    friction if things go pear-shaped on tour - which you may not consider an issue, of course;
    flight-deck is quite reliable and it's not too hard to adjust indexing anyway. But I like the
    security of knowing I can go to friction. Make sure you get a good quality chain as this makes a
    huge difference to the shifting with Shimano, IME.

    >Is a beard also a requirement?

    No more than the SKS mudguards with squeezy-bottle mudflaps or the Carradice saddlebag. Yes, in
    other words :-D

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com (BT ADSL and
    dynamic DNS permitting)
    NOTE: BT Openworld have now blocked port 25 (without notice), so old mail addresses may no longer
    work. Apologies.
     
  5. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    JimBob wrote:
    > I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52 triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the
    > racer to campy perhaps).

    If using this crankset, I would replace the rings for smaller ones, eg. 24-38-46 or 26-39-48. Not
    cheap but needn't be prohibitively expensive if shop arounnd and even consider slightly used rings.

    > Could I use this in conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still be too high?

    You'd get low gears but with big jumps between the gears and unnecessarily high top gears. Something
    like a 13-26 or 13-28 cassette would be better,
    imo.

    ~PB
     
  6. M Series

    M Series Guest

    On my tourer which I have used for 6 month long unsupported tours I use Sugino 50/36 rings, Shimano
    13-32 (in 6) rear block. I have Deore (the original top of the range) rear mech, 105 front mech and
    105 downtube shifters. Not necessarily recommending this configuration but its what I have and what
    I put together in 1990.

    "JimBob" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    > Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    > seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX. I
    was
    > contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52 triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the racer
    > to campy perhaps). Could I use this in conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still
    > be too high? I'm not very knowledgable in this area!
    >
    > Is a beard also a requirement?
     
  7. "JimBob" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    >
    > Is a beard also a requirement?

    Yes, but some of the women shave for aesthetic reasons!

    cheers

    Rich
     
  8. On Sun, 26 Jan 2003 05:49:13 -0500, JimBob wrote:

    > Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    > Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    > seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as
    > LX. I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52 triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade
    > the racer to campy perhaps). Could I use this in conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the
    > gearing still be too high? I'm not very knowledgable in this area!

    "Touring" means different things to different people, with correspondingly different gearing
    requirements. If your idea of touring is "credit card touring" you can do just fine with something
    like a Carradice Camper and any set up you would use to ride the terrain you're planning on
    traversing.

    If, on the other hand, by "touring" you mean self-supported camping, and plan to carry 40-50 lb of
    gear, particularly in very hilly country, you're going to need substantially lower gears than that.
    In addition, with that much weight you would do well to get a frame specifically designed with this
    kind of load carrying in mind - generally made with thicker gauge tubing, geometry designed to
    handle securely with heavy loads aboard, wheels built to last under that kind of punishment.

    For guidance, take a look at how some well respected loaded touring bikes come equipped. The Bruce
    Gordon Rock 'n Road Tour (which I own) has 22-32-44 and a 32 or 34T large rear ring. On my bike that
    works out to an 18" low gear. And believe me, on at least one long steep mountain, loaded with over
    40lb of gear, I used that 18" gear and was extremely happy I had it.
     
  9. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, JimBob <[email protected]> writes
    >Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    >Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    >seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX. I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52
    >triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the racer to campy perhaps). Could I use this in
    >conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still be too high? I'm not very knowledgable
    >in this area!
    >

    What sort of touring are you thinking of, and how low a gears do you think you will want. Are you
    thinking of lightly loaded 'credit card ' touring staying in hotels and B&B's eating in cafes etc.
    and just carrying a few clothes. Or fully loaded camping? or somewhere in between?

    For some for lightly loaded touring, then a 'road triple' with a suitable cassette will be
    sufficient, and they may prefer that. Most tourers - at least those who use a specific bike for it
    are going to carry a decent load sometimes and so like some nice low gears and are less bothered
    about the high gears. ( a bottom gear in the low 20's at least)

    So nowadays they tend to use 'MTB' gears - though the MTB pinched them from tourers in the first
    place.......

    For me I like nice low gears o your suggested setup wouldn't be low enough for me, YMMV. (I
    currently run 28 - 40 -44) upfront with a 13-32 7 spd rear block - this is an old, but nice
    Stronglight chainset, if I was building up something new I'd use a smaller 24 or 22 small ring)

    I would think though that if you were to put a wider ramge cassete on with the 105 chnager you would
    probably have problems, so that would need changing as well.

    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  10. Chris French

    Chris French Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, JimBob <[email protected]> writes
    >Toying with the idea of putting together a bike to do some touring.
    >
    >Already got a frame in mind but I need to know what kind of gears to use? Most tourers that I have
    >seen seem to have MTB type gears, such as LX. I was contemplating using the Shimano 105 (30-42-52
    >triple) gears from my race bike (upgrade the racer to campy perhaps). Could I use this in
    >conjunction with an MTB cassette or would the gearing still be too high? I'm not very knowledgable
    >in this area!
    >

    What sort of touring are you thinking of, and how low a gears do you think you will want. Are you
    thinking of lightly loaded 'credit card ' touring staying in hotels and B&B's eating in cafes etc.
    and just carrying a few clothes. Or fully loaded camping? or somewhere in between?

    For some for lightly loaded touring, then a 'road triple' with a suitable cassette will be
    sufficient, and they may prefer that. Most tourers - at least those who use a specific bike for it
    are going to carry a decent load sometimes and so like some nice low gears and are less bothered
    about the high gears. ( a bottom gear in the low 20's at least)

    So nowadays they tend to use 'MTB' gears - though the MTB pinched them from tourers in the first
    place.......

    For me I like nice low gears o your suggested setup wouldn't be low enough for me, YMMV. (I
    currently run 28 - 40 -44) upfront with a 13-32 7 spd rear block - this is an old, but nice
    Stronglight chainset, if I was building up something new I'd use a smaller 24 or 22 small ring)

    I would think though that if you were to put a wider ramge cassete on with the 105 chnager you would
    probably have problems, so that would need changing as well.

    --
    Chris French, Leeds
     
  11. I've toured for years and years, and if you don't want to shag your back and knees, a triple is
    essential. What I currently use on my tourer is

    46,36,26 and 11-28 but on my older tourer I had 42,32,22 and 11-28. That's the best.
     
  12. I've toured for years and years, and if you don't want to shag your back and knees, a triple is
    essential. What I currently use on my tourer is

    46,36,26 and 11-28 but on my older tourer I had 42,32,22 and 11-28. That's the best.
     
  13. Robin4340

    Robin4340 Guest

    I'd agree with this setup of 46,36,26 with an 11-28. My current tourer has 50/40/30 which is just
    too high now that the knees are getting older. When funds allow, I'll change the chainset/rings.
    Although my days of touring with 2 panniers and a saddle bag are over, I need the low gear of 26 x
    28 just to get up the hills comfortably.

    robin4340

    "Gear id Laoi, Garry Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I've toured for years and years, and if you don't want to shag your back and knees, a triple is
    > essential. What I currently use on my tourer is
    >
    > 46,36,26 and 11-28 but on my older tourer I had 42,32,22 and 11-28. That's the best.
     
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