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Audaxing current bike?

essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
Hoping to do a few longer rides this year, and currently looking at some of the Audax events.

I would be using my Supersix for these, and just thinking about what additional eqp't and spares, as well as additional food supplies need to carry, and how best to do this.

I currently always carry;
2x tubes. One in saddle bag. One in jersey pocket.
Repair kit
Tyre boot
1/2 dozen small ty wraps
Small roll of Insulation tape
Pump
Multi-tool with chain tool
Spare links
Nitrile gloves
Front & rear lights
2 x bidons in carriers
Mobile phone
Debit, credit card & £20 cash
Energy bar, jelly babies, bananas dependant on length of ride.

Is it worth carrying a folding tyre on a longer event? Anything else I should think about? Have seen various bags that can be fitted to the top tube etc, or a bar bag. Are these worth considering?
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  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    Thanks Arthur 8)

    Having read that, felt compelled to buy this http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Long-Distance-Cyclists-Handbook-Simon-Doughty/9781592289486 :)

    Now off to http://www.aukweb.net/ to check out some possible events :)
  • I joined Audax UK with my daughter a few weeks ago, just received the Arrivee magazine and it makes great reading, the articles by riders on various events really makes me want to get out there and do some. Think my first will be the Worthing Winter Warmer, early Feb. May order that book too!
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    Good set links :) thanks too; have entered 120 Snowdrop Express Feb and then 300 k Elenydd April---returning to give Audaxes another go after 20 + yr (used to do quite a few 200, 300k Snow Roads, 400k CTC ride) having been diverted by MTB and then Sportives !
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,928
    edited January 2013
    I think it mainly comes down to a personal risk assessment. I do quite a few 200k rides in the summer and my list of equipment looks very similar to yours, albeit my multi-tool and chain tool are separate. Also, a small pack of sticky patches for punctures is very handy in case that 2 tubes are not enough (after all, if you ride through thorns then it is likely both tubes will get the hit, leaving you none spare for the rest of the ride). A small first aid kit is also a good idea, just a few antiseptic wipes, a big plaster or two and a couple of painkillers, etc.

    I haven't seen anyone else carry a spare tyre but some folks carry a spare spoke or two taped to the frame. However, we are all diferent and what you take is usually what caught you out last time, or saw someone else suffer, etc.

    If you are audaxing old stylee (like me) then a routecard holder is invaluable as it makes missing important turns much less likely and can then be removed after the event for normal riding (I often use mine when doing made up routes, etc., too):
    http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/polaris-mapt ... prod18910/

    Bear in mind that a maptrap can mean a very cluttered bar setup, particularly if you need a decent front light for late finishes so many use bar extenders or ensure that lights are fitted to the front fork, etc. Also, a late finish in winter means that a head mounted light is needed to read the routecard (I avoid this requirement by limiting 200k rides to days with a min of 9 hours of daylight, 7-8 hours for the rides, 1 hour spare in case of emergency).

    I can thoroughly recommend the Snowdrop rides, I have done them a few times now and am down for this year's too (note that the start control has changed in the last few weeks). If you fancy a challenge, the Kidderminster Killer is as tough as any sportive I have done, in fact tougher than many of them and generally endured in a sense of personal competition and comaraderie rather than anyone going for 'winner's medals', etc.

    EDIT: Oh, have a ferret around this website which is audax focussed:
    http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?board=17.0
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    Thanks Bobbinogs :)
    I do carry a puncture repair kit also. Small first aid kit is an excellent idea, which I'll add to my list. Don't see the point of spare spokes, as I am getting some hand built wheels that will be more than up to the job of long distance work and carrying my weight!
    Thanks for link to forum. Some good info on there 8)
    Have been looking at options to carry a bit more stuff, and thinking of giving this a go;http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=22920.0

    Looks big enough to carry all the essentials I'll want to take, and small enough to not be a PIA :wink: Don't like anything other than a small (micro) saddlebag behind me.
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,928
    I just added some text in above while you posting :)
    essjaydee wrote:
    Thanks Bobbinogs :)
    Don't see the point of spare spokes, as I am getting some hand built wheels that will be more than up to the job of long distance work and carrying my weight!

    I have some very good handbuilt wheels but even they can ping a spoke and I don't weigh a load. The good thing with a high spoke count is that at least I have been able to open the brake release, ziptie the spoke and limp on (I have seen others stop and remove the broken spoke first, which probably makes more sense). However, I wouldn't want to do the rest of a PBP type event like that and some wheels deflect so much that they are unrideable, even after tinkering with a spoke tool (I have seen this on a club run and it resulted in the dreaded call home for a pick up). As said though, it is all a case of risk assessment and what you are prepared to live with.
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    Very true Mr B :)

    I have always carried 2 multi-tools. A bike specific one and a combination Gerber tool which has a knife, pliers, side cutters etc. Never needed to use the Gerber, so do I need to carry it? Yet, I would not be comfortable going on a longer ride without it!

    As you say, it is down to each individuals assessment on the must have's and the 'just in case' stuff. This decision will be affected by their own experiences of dealing with problems and issues out on events & rides. I've had one broken spoke before. It didn't stop me from getting home and it was on an older set of lesser quality wheels to what I now use, so I don't see the need to carry spare spokes or a spoke tool. But that's based on my experience and assessment of the risks of this preventing me from continuing.
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    Totally agree with Bobbinogs statement about the level of personal risk you want to take. This can depend on the ride (I might carry different spares on a 200 in south east England than those I carry on a 300+ in the wilds of the Welsh mountain).

    In my saddlebag for all events are the following:

    2 spare tubes
    Repair kit
    Park tyre boot
    Nitrile gloves
    Chain powerlink
    Collection of cable ties
    Gear cable
    Brake cable
    2 tyre levers
    Multi-tool
    2 spare spade connectors (for dynamo hub)
    Pump (on bike)
    Few plasters and an anti-septic wipe

    On multi-day events, I carry a small bottle of oil as well.

    I do not carry a spare tyre - I have on occasion. One day it will bite me. But that is a risk I am prepared to take.

    I've never needed the chain links, or gear or brake cables - however, fellow riders have benefited from these!

    No spare spokes - I have broken exactly one spoke in my life. My wheels are hand-builts with 36 spokes - so popping one spoke isn't going to be a big deal.

    In addition to these spares, the extra clothing I carry etc. will depend on the event and the season (so I won't go into that), but the other things I carry are:

    Head torch - essential for so many things, reading route sheets at night, repairing things, spare front light etc. (obviously not required on summer 200s!)
    Pencil - essential - lots of audax will use an info control (where you need to answer a question about something on a particular junction to show that you have ridden past it)
    Phone/wallet
    Backup route sheet (I navigate on GPS - but always have a spare route sheet just in case)
    Nuun tablets
    Range of snacks
    Emergency gel(s) - hate the things, but they've got me out of holes if I've screwed up my eating and get the knock
    Spare batteries for rear lights
    Small cable lock for cafes

    Think that's about it. I ride with a Carradice Barley saddlebag (which can carry everything I need for a 400km (or longer if there are bag drops to pick up clean clothes)) and a small handlebar bag to carry the things I want to be able to take with me into a cafe (wallet, phone etc.).
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    the extra clothing I carry etc. will depend on the event and the season (so I won't go into that),

    could you though ? eg a ride like Elenydd, start 6 am out into wilds Wales what would you take? temps could change so much across such a route and last year it was snowing around here (east Radnorshire) on the day :(
    But it could also becoem quite warm at that time of year too !!
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    JamesB wrote:
    the extra clothing I carry etc. will depend on the event and the season (so I won't go into that),

    could you though ? eg a ride like Elenydd, start 6 am out into wilds Wales what would you take? temps could change so much across such a route and last year it was snowing around here (east Radnorshire) on the day :(
    But it could also becoem quite warm at that time of year too !!

    Elenydd - one of my favourite rides ever (along with it's predecessor the Elenith). Fabulous ride.

    I have been very lucky on the Elenydd - 2011 was blazing sunshine and low 20s! 2012 started very miserable (hard rain for the first 60 or so km) but was okay going over the mountains.

    Clearly, anything that goes somewhere as remote as the Elenydd (and it really is the middle of nowhere - but you'll know that anyway!) you need to be certain you are going to be able to cope with whatever it might throw at you. It's easy to be blase about kit on a 200 in south-east England where a train station is usually within 10km of you. But if things turn nasty on the mountains, you could get yourself in trouble pretty quickly.

    Clearly though, the forecast the night before will dictate what you are wearing/carrying to a degree.

    I always have a rain jacket strapped to the top of my saddlebag.

    For a 300 in Wales in April - I'd normally be wearing something like bib shorts, longs, base layer, long sleeve jersey and a softshell.

    In the bag would probably be - knee warmers, an extra (slightly thicker) base layer, buff, long-fingered gloves or mitts (basically the opposite to what I have on - even if I wear mitts all day, once the sun goes, I'd probably be changing into long-fingered gloves). Probably have a cycling cap in there as well and maybe an ear band for if it gets really cold.

    Overshoes - probably - it's going to be pretty chilly whatever at 6am when you set off - and it's certainly going to get chilly at night on the return leg.

    As I said, there's no hard and fast rules as the forecast the night before will dictate what you wear/carry to a degree. but the Elenydd is not one to try and get around with a minimal amount of cloths - if things go wrong on the mountain sections, you could easily find yourself in real trouble.

    I am not planning ride it this year - but it keeps on nagging me. It really is one of the very best rides on the calendar. It's a hard ride for sure (5000m of climbing), but a large field and excellent controls make it very achievable. I love arriving at the Bowling club after the first battering you've just taken from the mountains - it's a control where talk is minimal and everyone has the 1000-yard stare!

    Enjoy it - it's a cracker (I am sure if the weather was really bad, it would be about as tough as anything can be though!)
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    Thanks for that list, really helpful. :)

    I`d be using a Barley saddlebag too and am reasonably OK with what goes on top, ie just layers and layers and layers very flexible (eg as you say baselayer, s/sleeve jesrsey, l/ sleeve jersey, and I`d add in a gilet too, spare baselayer) , but it`s the legs dept I`m a bit usure of. Was wondering about 3/4 with maybe leg warmers over if very cold but your version of shorts / leg warmers / knee warmers probably covesr most bases best--if worst can just wear whole lot ---might not be able to bend knees though :( Bit of pre-event trials needed here.

    As for
    and it really is the middle of nowhere
    very true indeed, few people know that it`s over 1 000 km 2 of basic emptiness of hills and a lot of sheep ! but it`s a fabulous area as well :)
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    Yes - I find bib shorts, longs (I have a couple of different weights) and then knee warmers will cover me for virtually anything. But try things out for sure. You know what you're doing - you've ridden the snow roads etc. (never done the event, but rode most of it on the Scottish 1000km last year).

    As I said, I haven't got it in my plans currently as I have some specific new areas I want to ride in etc. - but it does keep on drawing me towards it again - it is probably my favourite ride of any distance.
  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    Some of ya'lls travel heavy! I carry about the same as the OP for 200km audaxes. I can't really invision carrying more for a 400, but probably will for the 600 and LEL.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • marcusjb wrote:
    Totally agree with Bobbinogs statement about the level of personal risk you want to take. This can depend on the ride (I might carry different spares on a 200 in south east England than those I carry on a 300+ in the wilds of the Welsh mountain).

    In my saddlebag for all events are the following:

    What bag do you recommend? I was going to push the button on a Topeak super Tourist rack and a MTX DXP bag but it's nearly £100's worth and seems a bit style over substance? I would use it for commuting as well (to drop the rucksack I currently use) but then started looking at the Carradice website and really like some of their bags. I'd prefer a rack (bike is a Boardman CX) as I have the frame fittings plus some of the Carradice bags are saddle mount plus an additional support for the bigger ones to stop them hitting the rear mudguard which bumps up the price.
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    I had that rack and bag combo on my hybrid, and actually took them both off and prefer to use a rucksack! I still have the rack and bag if your interested? But the rack is for disc specific bikes!
    Loved the bag with the expanding panniers, but I found I was carrying loads more than I needed too, hence why I went to a small rucksack.
  • marcusjbmarcusjb Posts: 2,412
    The regulations of audax only allow riders to use Carradice.

    No, you see everything on audax.

    I primarily use a carradice barley. This will see me good for a 400km or further with bag drops. I have a camper longflap for 600+ without bag drops. Supported by a bagman.

    I do use a carradice rack bag on a rack on the fixed (mainly because there is a rack on it for panniers and commuting).

    Really whatever works for you. Don't go too big or you'll end up carrying more stuff than you need.

    Of course, you will see riders with a saddlebag the size of an apple. Even in the wild welsh mountains. Rather them than me - but each to their own.
  • Now I'm in a dilemma! I think my bike would take the standard rack as my disc brakes are chainstay mounted. Do like that bag though! What's it like, some comments are that the main compartment is a bit small? Most of the time I'm just transporting clothes back and forth to work so the panniers would be great! Why did you stop using it? Apologies for the third degree questioning!
  • marcusjb wrote:
    The regulations of audax only allow riders to use Carradice.

    :lol:
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    Barley is a nice bag; I used mine for LEJOG to carry day supplies, eg tools, waterproof, extra food spare clothing ---whilst rest was with support vehicle.

    With care you`d get works change clothes in OK, but shoes wouldn`t fit easily; I used to use a Nelson longflap for 15 mile commutes and it was good size. If Barley isn`t too full top drwacord pulled in tight keeps it shape OK, 2 small sidepockets for tools / small waterproof etc
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    Now I'm in a dilemma! I think my bike would take the standard rack as my disc brakes are chainstay mounted. Do like that bag though! What's it like, some comments are that the main compartment is a bit small? Most of the time I'm just transporting clothes back and forth to work so the panniers would be great! Why did you stop using it? Apologies for the third degree questioning!

    Happy to send you a photo of the main compartment packed with stuff, so you can gauge the size. I found it big enough for a change of clothes, spare tubes x2, lunch, cycling weekly, tools and pump, and that's without using the panniers!
    I stopped using it, because once I had taken the rack and bag off, I much preferred the handling of the bike. With me carrying the weight, it did not affect the bikes handling at all. Appreciate that this may also have been compounded by the bike, a hybrid, and I preferred my roadbike which I couldn't fit this too. Also found, like I said, that because I had a bag with panniers, I was carrying far too much for for a 22 mile daily commute! Also,appreciate that carrying any items ideally should be on the bike, especially over long distances, which I totally agree with.
  • Thanks, that's really kind. Is it the MTX QR version? How much are you looking for?
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    Let me take some photo's first. Will post on here tonight :)
  • Do check that your multi tool fits all the things on your bike (crank bolts in particular are larger then many multi tools can cope with). Preferably before you set off.
  • I've just ordered a Topeak bar bag, same as this one http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=22920.0 as 20% off deal is on at Halfords.
    It should be enough for what I need on the longer rides I have planned :)
  • IGHIGH Posts: 22
    I've gradually refined the list of what I carry. Nowadays a Carradice Barley does me on everything from a 100km to Paris-Brest-Paris.
    Going back to the question fo a spare folding tyre, I once (long ago) actually used it. It's long since I stopped carrying one. I do have a 'tyre boot' (a non-adhesive patch of material big and strong enough to fit inside your average sidewall gash).
    Regarding spare clothing, waterproof is also windproof and so invaluable if you're stuck somewhere really cold. Spaceblankets are cheap, very compact, and good for emergency protection.
  • Topeak bar bag received and fitted, and initial impression are very good quality, but it looks smaller than I envisaged, but having said that for a longer day ride I think it will do very nicely. Will be trying it this weekend and see how I get on with it. Will have to get a bar extender now for front lights though.

    Have just fitted some SKS raceblades too, as clearance is very limited on the supersix with 25mm tyres. Will see how i get on with these also, and although they look very minimilistic, they will be better than nothing on a damp or wet ride.
  • rodgers73rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    Does the bar bag get in the way of the lights?

    I have one that I'm yet to test fit and wondered if it might interrupt the light beam. This weekend I used a small bag that sits on the crossbar for food I want to access while riding, and a bumbag for spare baselayer and some random bits and bobs.
  • essjaydeeessjaydee Posts: 917
    There is no room for lights at all!
    Have just ordered a bar extender so I can fit some :|
    In the bag I carried a spare tube, phone, money, tyre boot, tape, ty-wraps, energy bars, jelly babies, nitrile gloves, pump, lip balm, camera and waterproof cover with some space to spare. First ride with it today and it was good and can't say I noticed any difference in handling. The mount for the Garmin needs to be a bit more secure though as it rattles a bit and the garmin did move a few times.

    DSCF2095_zpsb91d67c6.jpg
    DSCF2094_zpsffc1ec44.jpg
    DSCF2093_zps042f621c.jpg
    DSCF2092_zpsa796a851.jpg

    Not too sure about the raceguards yet, but they fit well and no rubbing issues or rattles. Will have to see on a wet day if they are worth having on, or not.
    DSCF2133_zps3e59527e.jpg
  • vorsprungvorsprung Posts: 1,953
    essjaydee wrote:
    There is no room for lights at all!
    Have just ordered a bar extender so I can fit some :|
    I have a similar bar bag to yours on my Specialized Roubaix. I have the front light on the fork crown, attached to the bolt that holds the brake on

    You don't say what sort of distances you will be attempting. "Audax" is a bit vague like that. It can mean anything from 100km to 1000km+
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