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Kit! Touring on a Roadie.

iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
edited February 2010 in Tour & expedition
Hey guys,

Some of you may have seen my previous London to Rome thread.

Going to be tent touring not credit card but using roadies to cover upto or over 100 miles a day on probably 2x Allez & 1 Trek 2.3

Want to keep weight down to 10kg per bike on the rears but on a moderate budget, need a miracle?

Looking for recommendations and advice (aside from buy a touring bike :wink: ).

TorTec Ultralite Rear Rack, 400g, cheap and hopefully fits, can't find anything better for the job? ... 360018945/

Pannier Bags:
Some what clueless here. After something waterproof and sub 100 for a pair whilst not to heavy, asking for miracles?

Decathlon Quechua T3 has caught my eye, just not sure if it will pack small enough to fit on the top of a pannier?

Comes in at under 3kg at a good price. ... o-3243187/

Sleeping Bags:
Assuming France is fairly warm in late May June & Italy even warmer, (ok so maybe not in the Alps), anyone traveled with just a sleeping bag liner? ... seid=10364

Roll Matt:
Wlil sleep on clothes if needed but found this, cheap and sub 400g. ... tress.html

Pump, I assume a shock pump is the way to go to get upto 120psi. ... 360019044/

Gas Stove, cooking:
Thinking of something basic to heat water/pasta that can go on top of a gas canister.
This comes in at 200g, then approx. 250g for a C 206 cartridge. ... e-3241749/

Currently got an insurance approved D-lock, its not light! Thinking maybe the one lock and a few cables to run through all three bikes?

Be going minimal on the clothes front, 2 x shorts, a few jerseys a waterproof and flip flops for off the bike then some basic tools, a spare tyre, plates, cups and so on. Sure adds up!


  • Neil
    Help I'm Being Oppressed
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    I have the Coleman Avior X3, its a great design and comfy for two, would do 3, not sure how it compares for space with the decathlon. It is a similar price (or less) and 3.1kg. It is a dream to pitch, takes 5 minutes.

    I wouldn't use just a sleeping bag liner, summer nights can still get cold. I have the Snugpak Softie's Woolferkins links to, probably the most compact bag worth having.

    I think the sleeping mat is important, I would take a self-inflating one, they are more robust and comfortable. I have Thermarest but Alpkit are good and cheaper - the Slim Airic is currently on offer at 2 for £50 (normally £30 each). They are 700g so heavier, but vastly superior to a simple inflatable.

    I have the Tortec rack, which is great for price/weight/quality, but the panniers will make up 2kg of your load - the obvious choice is Ortlieb Back Roller Classics from Spa Cycles, simply the best.

    Woolferkins solution may be lighter and cheaper if the gear can all fit.

    I have a Jetboil cooker which is great for a minimalist cooker, boils water in 1 minute, great for drinks, quick meals etc. Because its quick and efficient, one gas cylinder lasted us for a 10 day tour, making drinks twice daily, and cooking on about 5 days.

    The Cyclaire pump is good - I have one, it is one of the few pumps that can achieve "track Pump" pressures (the other being a Topeak road/turbo morph). The cyclaire plus is I think a newer and more powerful model. I slightly prefer the Topeak Turbo Morph.

    ps: my g/f has a Trek 1.2 and it makes a surprisingly good tourer with the Tortec rack and Ortlieb panniers, and she takes her share of the above gear.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    If you're going to Decathlon for the tent you might as well check out their sleeping bags and self-inflating mats (although Alpkit are good too). The S10 ultralight is very good and very good value.

    If you do go for the Big Agnes ones check how you inflate them - eg can you do it with a bike pump?

    Panniers - Ortlieb or if you're on a tight budget dhb own-brand from Wiggle (though nothing wrong with Altura of Creek2Peak).

    The shock pump might pump to a high pressure, but shocks usually don't have much air in them. Better to get a pump that pumps a decent volume. I'd also recommend the Topeak Morph - it's heavy but there are three of you and you only need to carry one (plus a rebuild kit).

    As Alfablue says, it's the efficiency of the heating system that counts in terms of overall weight. The Jetboil is good (although personally I prefer the Primus EtaPower system) - but if there's a group of you, you might want to look at the Jetboil group system - or the EtaPower equivalent. If you go with a non-Camping Gaz stove then take enough cartridges (or an adapter).

    In France this summer I think I only saw one supermarket that stocked the CV270s - so if you are going to get a Camping gaz stove, get one that works with the puncturable canisters.
  • andrew_sandrew_s Posts: 2,511
    I've had ice all over the tent and a solid waterbottle (left on bike) in France in early June, admittedly fairly high up crossing an alp. Even so, you'd have to allow for the chance of valley temperatures down to 5 or 6°. Call it a decent 300-500g down bag eg Alpkit PD400
    Warm enough for just a liner is unlikely as it's got to be getting up to 25-30° during the day if you aren't to chill off too much by morning. It could remain cool until after the Alps (depending how you pass them).

    A small neoair (260g) is the best you'll do for a mat. It will be reasonably warm, unlike a plain air bed

    Gas canister adapters here (2/3 down the page), one for puncture, one for CV270.
    I've found CV270 to be quite common in supermarkets, but that was admittedly in popular areas (Alps/Ardeche/Tarn Gorges).
    You'll have to carry at least one spare canister as well as the one on the stove.
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Thanks guys, very very very useful info, getting a really good idea of what we'll need. Also very re-assuring to hear that people do tour on similar range bikes.

    Am thinking the TorTec Ultralight pannier & splashing a little more on the Ortlieb Back Roller Plus bags is going to be a great start, especially at 1.9kg combined.

    Deffo going to go with proper sleeping bags now and a half decent roll mat, will look closely at everything suggested, lots of choice now.

    Hopefully I'll have enough money left to buy some stronger wheels. :D

    Thanks again!
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    On the compact / lightweight theme I have tried to be minimalist, so for plates I use Orikaso folding plates, they fold completely flat (which also makes them easy to clean) and they are very light, and they take up virtually no room in the pannier.

    For cutlery I use Light My Fire "Sporks".

    If the budget is tight, for stronger wheels you may find your bikes supplied wheels are fine if you get them re-tensioned by a wheelbuilder / lbs. My g/f's Trek wheels were fettled by the lbs and they have remained true despite a lot of use/abuse and medium touring loads.
  • APIIIAPIII Posts: 2,010
    I'd recommend the Alpkit bags too, very good kit and we got a deal on a pair of them from the Alpkit stand at the outdoor show last year. You can't really put a value on a good night's sleep!
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    A cautionary note on the racks (beyond the fact that the rack is definitely the place where the priority should be strong rather light). You may be better off with a rack like this:


    The cross bars mean you can put the panniers lower down and keep the centre of gravity low. They also mean you can position the panniers slightly further back - which may be a benefit if your bike has a short chainstay length. ... k-main.jpg

    Yes I know it weighs 500g more... If it really has to be 400g I'd suggest considering the Tubus Fly - which is twice as expensive but would be stronger and more reliable - the weld on the lower legs of the Ultralite is an obvious weak spot.

    If you do decide to get the Ultralite - check how well it works with the panniers before it's too late to return to Wiggle.

    Oh and when it comes to plates - I use a frisbee. It doesn't fold as flat as an Orikasu but the lip of the frisbee helps to avoid spilling stuff from the plate. and of course you can use it as a frisbee.
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    I have toured on an ultralight this year and previously weaker type without probs. The ultralight was stiff enough, better than my other one. I do not know how well your racing bikes will carry the weight or how you will fix the pannier. I found a tent etc on my scr 2 was too much, but used it for light touring this year. ... LE0022.jpg

    I use a car windscreen shield for a mat. Not luxurious but remarkably effective for the weight. ... dZViewItem

    Or a foam roll, preferably silvered, from decathlon.You can cut it into recangles and duck tape them together so it can be folded and put on the rack.

    The throw over pannier is my favourite, from lidl and argos do one.

    down bag ... m-400.html
    I hate to be cold and restless
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • priorypriory Posts: 743 ... Offer.html

    cheaper and light. I like to be warm, though
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    I would normally go for the Tortec Expedition for the reasons andymillar suggests (indeed my rack of choice is a Tubus Cosmo stainless steel jobbie, has the same extra/lower pannier mount, but it costs about £90). It also has the advantage of making access to the rack top easier so items can be strapped on with less interference with the panniers.

    I have, however used the Tortec Ultralight on my Audax bike, and my g/f has toured with it on her trek (carrying maybe 14kg) and it has been impressive. The tubes are 10mm and are nicely welded (thicker than on a Topeak rack I once had, that did break), and I have a good degree of trust in it. If I was doing more adventurous touring I would go for heavier duty but you may be fine with it.

    Heel clearance can be an issue, and the other models can allow a more rearward position for the panniers, but the Ortlieb can be fully adjusted so they sit as far back as possible so heel strike is unlikely, however it is good advice to buy from somewhere with "no quibble" returns (so Wiggle maybe) just in case the combination doesn't work.

    I presume you have considered how the panniers will fit, and I guess the Trek 2.3 doesn't have mounts (the 1,2 does). Probably not the Allez's (?) either.

    Your options are p-clips ( do good quality stainless steel rubber lined ones, or Tubus make posher ones.

    For the top mount you could also consider an M-Part seat post clamp mount.mpart%20spt102.jpg.

    For the bottom mount you could use p-clips or the Tubus QR adapter set (pricy but rock solid).
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076

    alfablue, much appreciate the mounting help! I've attached a quick picture below, are these the bolts used to mount panniers? or are they for very different brake options..?


    Liking the idea of being able to mount lower and further back, heel clearance is something I'm worried about.

    Tempted by the Torbus Fly as it mounts just below the seat post, many many options but the bigger racks sounds like a much safer choice at the same time. Maybe I'll order them all from wiggle and keep one :lol:
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    Yes, those are rack mounts, so you probably have lower ones too!

    I think the Tubus Fly, as it has only one strut, mounts on the brake bridge, assuming this is vacant (because you have V Brakes), your brake bridge is fully occupied so I don't think it works.

    The one that has a lower, more rearward pannier rail is the Logo (steel) or Cosmo (stainless steel), they are probably the best you can get, but are 3-4 times the cost of the Tortec ones.

    Tubus Cosmo:

    Of course, the Tubus Airy is the ultimate lightweight rack, made of titanium, weighing only 230g but costs £125+

  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    The Tubus Fly will also mount onto the boss on the rear triangle (the one in your see first picture). The rod is bendable (a vice helps). But equally, nothing to stop you using the M:Part seatpost clamp.
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Thanks guys, you've been immensely helpful!

    Since I have the correct mounts at the top I'll be looking at the TorTec Expedition, Tubus Logo or the Cosmo to go with the Ortlieb Back Roller Plus bags. Will have to weigh up budget etc and pick between them. If I come across some money, maybe the Airy :shock:

    It would also appear that I have the correct bottom mounts?


    Again, big thanks, invaluable advice, have a great New Year!
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    iPete wrote:

    It would also appear that I have the correct bottom mounts?

    I guess so. I haven't seen that type of mount before, but It can only be for a mudguard/rack (I'm assuming they're not for bolt-on stabilisers :wink: ).
  • andrew_sandrew_s Posts: 2,511
    If the budget is tight, the sleeping bag and mat are probably the most important items (IMO).
    The original Tortec Ultralight rack will be fine for a single trip on decent roads
    Cheap panniers will hold your kit, and you can keep stuff dry with plastic bags or drybags
    Cheap tents are fine if the weather is normal. They may not like high winds (>30mph), so look for somewhere sheltered.

    The kit above (Tubus, Ortlieb) is "the best", and if you start cycle camping regularly you'll end up buying it anyway. However cheaper stuff also work fine, and is mostly better than what was available when I started.

    Gas adapter addendum:
    There are no adapters you can use with 270 stoves like in your original link. Both the two in my previous post are for screw-on stoves only.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    I agree with Andrew - the Tortec Ultralight should do you fine (if there is heel clearance, most probably will be).
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    iPete wrote:

    Gas Stove, cooking:
    Thinking of something basic to heat water/pasta that can go on top of a gas canister.
    This comes in at 200g, then approx. 250g for a C 206 cartridge. ... e-3241749/

    As an addendum to Andrew's addendum. Here's a screenshot showing the two main types of gampingaz cylinder.


    The stove you are looking at won't work with the 206 cartridges - which unfortunately are the most common in France.

    If there's three of you you might as well take both types of gampinggaz stove, or a meths stove as back up - although remember that meths is generally sold in 1 litre bottles so you need to consider how to carry it. Alternatively you might consider a BushCooker from Not as quick or convenient as gas, but wood is universally available.
  • priorypriory Posts: 743
    ''If the budget is tight, the sleeping bag and mat are probably the most important items (IMO).
    The original Tortec Ultralight rack will be fine for a single trip on decent roads
    Cheap panniers will hold your kit, and you can keep stuff dry with plastic bags or drybags
    Cheap tents are fine if the weather is normal. They may not like high winds (>30mph), so look for somewhere sheltered. ''

    This is how I always go, usually for 4 to 500 miles .
    I have never had a problem with £20 tents , although they tend to lie flat on your face in a high wind in the hills which can be disconcerting. I made one once out of a plastic sheet knotted at the corners. proper tents all around me got shredded in a storm and I ended up with their owners crammed into mine.

    The throw over pannier is a very convenient design . throw it on and use 3 bungees and you're away. divide your stuff into differently coloured plastic bags to make it easier to find items. take extra bags .
    Raleigh Eclipse, , Dahon Jetstream XP, Raleigh Banana, Dawes super galaxy, Raleigh Clubman ... =slideshow
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Happy new year to everyone, again thanks for all the advice thats been added, you've covered many aspects I hadn't thought of, much appreciated!

  • rouhagerouhage Posts: 35
    Just a quick tip for your trip
    Don't bother with flip flops which aren't the most practical or best looking footwear when strolling round in, get hold of some espadrilles which are cheap and comfy slip ons, which you can usually get from budget shoe shops/supermarkets. They are minimal in size and don't take up much room. (All the Frech S'markets sell them as well)
  • harpoharpo Posts: 173
    Cooking wise I've used this before:

    Bit bulky but ideal for two folk with two pans for two servings, you don't need to carry bowls or plates too. You can carry the fuel in the bottle you buy it in or get an aluminium waterbottle for it.
  • I have 3 of the older type camping gaz stoves, you're welcome to one if you want it. One has a canister fitted and I have a new canister as well. I'm in Hanworth, so not far from you.

  • Hello, i'm very jealous of your impending journey. I did a very similar tour in 2008 from Caen to Rome so I Just thought I'd post my two cents about gear......

    You mentioned you were considering a specialized allez as a bike to buy. One of our group had the same bike and he had no problems with weight of gear or broken spokes etc so I would definately recommend. But just in case I would always carry spare spokes as they can break and mess up your journey. If you have spares then any bike shop will be able to fix it for you within 30mins. Decathlon is usually your best bet as in france these are everywhere!

    Also decathlon camping stuff I couldn't recommend highly enough. Our tent was the quechua t3 and its perfect. Fitrs on top of a pannier rack no probs. Only thing I'd say is its definately for 2 people, 3 people is a little too cosy! If you're planning on going to decathlon take a letter from yoyur chosen charity explaining what you're doing and you may get some money off your purchases. Their roll mats and sleeping bags are cheap and very good in my opinion.

    Rack - Echoing peoples comments don't buy cheap as one member of our team did and it broke. He had to fashion a splint out of cable ties and cuttlery. This is the one I have and is still going strong after 3 tours ... 360022940/

    Stove - We took an MSR whisperlite stove as its light and also can be run on any fuel, even petrol which is very useful as you just fill it up at petrol station along the way.

    Panniers - You can't go wrong with Altura panniers.I have these ones which aren't waterproof but do have a cover to make them waterproof. ... r-ec008435

    I find the more pockets the better so you can access important things quickly.

    Also I assume you've got spd pedals or something similar as these are a necessity in getting the best efficieny out of your pedalling to Rome which trust is a long way!

    Apart from that good luck and enjoy! I'll post on your other thread about our route.
  • Said bike fully loaded, as Pezmaldo said great bike held the weight no problem. The double made it intresting on the hills but would still recommend it.

  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Thanks guys! Sorry for the slow response been off ill this week.

    Pezmaldo & Jonny_road, fantastic to hear, I already own a 2010 Allez (double as well!), so its great to know that its very much an option & that you used the T3 tent etc!

    Mark Grant, appreciate the generosity, once things start coming together I'll drop you a PM regarding the stoves!

    rouhage, great idea on the shoes, think I already have some from Primark, bargain at £2.50!

    Everyone else, again great tips!
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Bump, don't want to start a new thread but have 1 more question.

    I already own a Specialized Allez Sport Double 2010, which has pannier mounts etc on so all good for me BUT my partner in crime doesn't have his bike yet.

    Anyone recommend a fast tourer or preferably a road bike that can take to panniers and manage 1000+ miles, as after all is done he would like to end up with a fast road bike.

    Budget is £500-£800. Preferably somewhere in the middle.

    I'm thinking maybe a Trek 1.2 or 1.5 or Kona Honky Tonk? and get him to upgrade wheels as he weighs far more than me. Happy to go down the P-clip route to get more bike for the money if needed.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    Actually you should start a new thread - for the benefit of people coming after you who might have the same question.

    Oh and you could try searching this forum (you need to select this option otherwise it will search all of for 'condor'. This would yield a selection of threads about recommendations for touring bikes that might answer your question (sorry I can't link direct to the search results).
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Thanks Andy, thats a very good suggestion. Shall continue searching but have also started a thread for the benefit of others in the Buying Advice section.

    Here: ... p=15883572
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