Forum home Road cycling forum Tours, routes, audaxes & organised rides Tour & expedition

Opinions please

bigjimbigjim Posts: 780
edited August 2011 in Tour & expedition
Your expert opinion required. I’m about to go on another week long tour. I’m camping this time but taking an ordinary sports road bike, not a tourer. I can get all I need apart from the tent and bulky cheap sleeping bag in a Carradice C using a Karrimor uplight [no rear rack]. This looks very high, top heavy and I wonder about the pressure put on the Brooks and seatpost.
My other option is use a rack and two panniers which will take everything with ease apart from the tent which will strap to the rack. However the rack weight is right over the rear wheel. I don’t know if this will affect anything. I have fitted a 28c rear tyre on the rear and a 25c on the front and will also use a large barbag. Total weight on the rear will be about 8kg tops. I have done another B&B tour using just the rear rack and a large rack-bag, but no tent or sleeping bag with a 25c tyre on the back and 23c up front and no problems.
I personally find the panniers more convenient and look better. But the weight on the rear wheel bothers me. The pannier option adds about 500g to overall weight. Pics attached.



  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    Which Revolution bike is that? Is it the newer version of my Edinburgh Country tourer?

    I'd say the second pic by a long way. Your rack is where it should all go, it'll take a lot more weight than that no problem.

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  • Redhog14Redhog14 Posts: 1,377
    Option 2 - the lower your centre of gravity the more stable the bike will be. carrying a bit extra weight is little sacrifice for saftey in crosswinds or backwash from trucks/lorries etc. the extra 8kg is not that much really unless your a big hefty lad already...

  • bigjimbigjim Posts: 780
    The bike is the Revolution Continental Sport from 2003. 7 speed double but I've changed the gearing by fitting a megarange at the back and installing a compact double at the front. I find it comfy for touring. I think that curved front carbon fork helps to soak up the vibes rather than a straight fork on sportier bikes. I should have said that I weigh 14 stone so there will be a bit of weight on the saddle already. I tore the rear guard off in Austria on tour as it was getting on my nerves rubbing. Bike was originaly supplied with 23c tyres. With a 28c tyre it will not take a rear guard. 28c is probably the biggest the bike will take.

  • random manrandom man Posts: 1,518
    I've toured a few times on a bike older than yours using rear panniers and carrying a tent with a 28 rear and 23 front tyre with no problems so I'd say you'll be fine but use the panniers.
  • andymillerandymiller Posts: 2,856
    Another vote for Option 2. The wheels look reasonably sturdy at a quick glace although youight want to check (or get a bike shop to check) that the spokes are nice and tight.
  • squeelersqueeler Posts: 144
    The top option looks crazy, the panniers look far better. I think your bike will take either load.
  • mercsportmercsport Posts: 664
    Not sure if this might be of any encouragement to you, but a couple of months ago - in desperation - I had to put a rack and my old panniers on my best bike and got away with it (my other bikes were all unusable in one way or another - broken mostly). It's a 16 and a half pound bike normally, carrying a 16 and a half stone body (fat!). All my gear was in those two panniers and I tented it all the way. 23c Gator-Skin tyres. It was very comfortable, and I knocked up 900 odd miles in 15 days in a loose figure of eight loop around Scotland and back to Kendal.

    "Lick My Decals Off, Baby"
  • bigjimbigjim Posts: 780
    Thanks for info. Bike shop says wheels being double walled are pretty tough. So looks like panniers for me. It is the Karrimor uplift that keeps everything so high. It is good as a quick release though. I'll probably sell it on and maybe the Super C as it is brand new. I can't see the benefit of the Super C if you have to fit a rack to support it.

  • MichaelWMichaelW Posts: 2,164
    With big tents, you can separate the poles and lash them longitudinally, then pack the fabric smaller like a sleeping bag shape for easier carriage.
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