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Bike for LEJOG! Help needed

mr blonde 31mr blonde 31 Posts: 17
edited July 2008 in Road beginners
Earlier this year I picked up a bike for the first time in about 8 years with the plan of training to cycle Lands End to John O'Groats. I thought about buying a mountain bike and putting slicks on it so that I only had to have one bike, but eventually plumped for a separate road and mountain bikes.

Having never ridden drops I ended up going for a Genesis Day 01 with flat bars. Having suffered with aching arms and wrists, and tried altering saddle angle and position, adding bar ends and other little tweaks I have decided that the bike I have is too small. 56cm frame and I am 6ft 1 and 16 stone.

I did 81 miles on the weekend with a double chainset and think that for the trip a triple may help. Obviously I also need rack mounting points. To cope with fluid requirements I will be carrying a 3litre Camelbak.

Any advice on whether I should look at another flat bar bike or should I look at one with drops? Any bike suggestions? I'm on a tight timetable now as the LEJOG is less than 6 weeks away so any advice would be gratefully received.

Posts

  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    It depends on how much stuff you'll be carrying with you
    - if you are totally unsupported and camping, you'll need a dedicated tourer or MTB frame/wheels I think to cope with the weight
    - if you are travelling lighter, a light tourer or "Audax" frame would be ideal, probably with 25 or 28mm tyres

    Things to bear in mind:
    - drop bars give you more hand positions than flat bars - even if you go with an MTB frame, you can still fit drop bars and use either bar-end shifters or STI levers
    - fit mudguards unless you like getting a wet bum - it's almost certain to rain during an E2E ride - a rear pannier will give you some protection from rear wheel spray, but not as good as guards I think
    - def go with a triple - riding a heavily laden bike up even a slight incline will mash your knees unless you have some low gearing to cope with it

    You can read my LEJOG diary here:
    http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/bronzie/endtoend.htm

    Good luck!
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    You can read my LEJOG diary here:
    http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/bronzie/endtoend.htm

    Good luck![/quote]

    Good account of your trip there Bronzie, you did it about 3 weeks before me on a mostly similiar route as well. Your web account reminds me to get the finger out and get mine on line as well before it becomes a distant memory.

    cheers
    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
  • moray_gubmoray_gub Posts: 3,328
    Bronzie wrote:
    It depends on how much stuff you'll be carrying with you
    - if you are totally unsupported and camping, you'll need a dedicated tourer or MTB frame/wheels I think to cope with the weight
    - if you are travelling lighter, a light tourer or "Audax" frame would be ideal, probably with 25 or 28mm tyres

    Things to bear in mind:
    - drop bars give you more hand positions than flat bars - even if you go with an MTB frame, you can still fit drop bars and use either bar-end shifters or STI levers
    - fit mudguards unless you like getting a wet bum - it's almost certain to rain during an E2E ride - a rear pannier will give you some protection from rear wheel spray, but not as good as guards I think
    - def go with a triple - riding a heavily laden bike up even a slight incline will mash your knees unless you have some low gearing to cope with it

    You can read my LEJOG diary here:
    http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/bronzie/endtoend.htm

    Good luck!

    Definately take a triple some of those hills in Cornwall and Devon are painful with a heavy laden bike, i used a flat bar Scott Roadster which is more of a race frame with flat bars. Fitted a rack and two panniers and handlebar bag and never had any problems .Good luck.

    cheers
    MG
    Gasping - but somehow still alive !
  • Thanks for the responses so far guys. Bronzie, your diary to the LEJOG made a good read, although I fear ours will not be so glamorous. We are doing ours for charity and staying, as you did, mainly in YHA except when one could not be found.

    We have no support travelling with us, but will be meeting people every three days or so to do laundry and stock up on supplies. We will be travelling with a rear pannier each for basic clothing, food and tools.

    Still not sure whether I will go with drops or not. The bike shop that I bought the bike at seem like they may be willing to come to an arrangement, assuming they can find a suitable bike for me.

    The Pearson was a bit more than I am looking to spend, but I know that I may have to bite the bullet and step up to a more expensive bike.

    I am not familiar with road bike gearing but my sister mentioned that below a certain level you have to go back to the hoods to change down onto the smaller cogs. I think she said Tiagra, but I'm not sure what order they sit in, or how it works with other brands.

    We have a website setup to raise money and so people can monitor our training and the final event which I will be blogging as we go. You can find it at www.crosweller.org
  • Ashley_RAshley_R Posts: 408
    Was in a similar position to you a couple of years ago, plumped for Hewitt Cheviott, best decision I ever made I reckon, ride it every day to work, comfortable beyond any other bike I have, handles luggage no problem
    You can lead an elephant to water but a pencil must be lead
  • Steve_FSteve_F Posts: 682
    I'd go for a motorbike :lol::lol:
    Current steed is a '07 Carrera Banshee X
    + cheap road/commuting bike
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