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Messages - woollypigs

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The Bicycle / Re: A touring wheel that can carry heavy load
« on: December 27, 2011, 07:14:56 AM »
I went for a wheel built by " " , since his name kept popping up on UK forums and was talked about by cyclist/tourers from the UK as a bombproof touring wheel builder.

The new rear wheel is built up with a Shimano LX hub and a Rigida Sputnik rim. Only done a few hundred miles on them but it does look like the bees knees and that it will last a long time.

I will keep you posted on how to goes as we cycle from Ushuaia to New York next year.

Thanks for this post (and the Chile one), we are heading to South America sometime after Sept. this year.

Getting Ready / Re: How much weight to bring?
« on: July 01, 2011, 02:50:39 PM »
I got this advice years ago when I was just about to do the InterRail around Europe. Put everything you think you need on your bed and then remove half of that, then start packing.

We do like comfort, so our beds are heavier than others and we just got a bigger tent too.

On our tour of New Zealand we were much fitter on the very steep hills on Banks Peninsular at the end of our tour than when we climbed Porters Pass five weeks earlier. 

The Bicycle / A touring wheel that can carry heavy load
« on: July 01, 2011, 02:38:38 PM »
Well, I seem to be carrying rather a lot just above the belt and in my panniers. So my double eyeleted Mavic (A319) 36 hole rims are cracking (again).

So I need to build a new wheel that can carry me, and more.

I hear that tandem wheels with 48 spokes are the way to go. What do you recommend? It should be able to take a 9 speed cassette, 700c, 135mm axle spacing and take 35-40mm tyres.

Your Travel Journal / Re: things i learned on my first bikecamp trip:
« on: July 01, 2011, 02:34:31 PM »
Sounds like a good first trip. We packed too much the first time and eat too little. We now got our food intake bang on. Though some says that we are carrying too much when it comes to the bed and tent area. But we know our comfort zone so a good night sleep is more important than miles or weight. 

Camping Equipment / Re: Cooking set
« on: July 01, 2011, 02:12:32 PM »
We tried tried the Jetboil PCS with the cooking pot and it did well in New Zealand. Where we could find the screw top gas canisters. We just got the Trangia 27 brilliant little kit, though rattles when packed alone so use something to pad it out with. The 27 isn't big enough for a two persons evening meal, we like our food. I think we will upgrade the 25 since the pots and pans are bigger.

South Pacific / Re: Suggestions for bike touring in New Zealand
« on: November 27, 2010, 09:57:30 AM »
We just got back from 35 days in New Zealand and many thanks to you lot for some ride ideas, we managed to cycle 730 miles (1200Km) and took the bus for 910 miles (1465Km). Definitely the best time to ride there is the low season from what we heard the locals tell us and what we saw.

We had wild camping, empty roads, earthquake, helicopter ride, swimming with dolphins, rain, snow, blue skies at 27c, glaciers rumbling in the night, broken wheel, sandflies, water falls, fall off a horse (not me), fall off a bike (not me again), clear night skies and absolutely stunning gorgeous views.

While on the Road / Re: How many miles do you ride a day?
« on: September 20, 2010, 02:19:44 PM »
On our last little tour we got a bit stressed because we had to be a certain places at certain time. e.g meeting up with a friend. We also tried to beat the weather and cycled two days in one, which was very hard but we missed the bad weather.

We then figured out that the best way to tour for us is get up ride for 2-2.5 hours rest with a good lunch break for an hour or more and then ride 2-3 hours. Since we want to explore and see stuff we want to have time for that too. So if we only make 10 miles one day that is fine. On other days where it is downhill with a tail wind you can clock up 100miles or more, in the same riding time.

Yes this does mean that you need to have a more flexible schedule, like Stephane said it depends on your visa, flight etc.

The stress of "we have to be there at this time" is a bit annoying when you are as free as a cycle tourer is.

Bikes on Buses / Re: Bikes on Buses Down Under (Australia)
« on: September 20, 2010, 01:49:03 PM »
As we are about to hit Australia, a week to go, we opted out to rent a car to do the longer journeys. Because I read that buses in Oz will only take one bike a the time, not good when touring as a pair.

The rental company we used is . From what I understand this company is a relocation vehicle company so you are not stung with the relocation cost for when you are driving from A-B. That was nearly AUS300 on top of the also more expensive cost of the hire with Hertz.

Yes it is not the cheapest option but it is cheaper than other rental companies. And you can stop when you want on route not like on a bus and best of all you do not have to worry about the bus driver dumping heavy bag onto of your wheels.

I'm not sure, but I have always had a tent with a "west wing" and would not travel without.

- You got a dry space
- Place to store you panniers
- More space to move about in *)
- A changing room (from wet to dry) so that you don't soak your wet clothing, sleeping bag etc.
- A place to cook out of the wind
- A place to sit out of the wind or rain.
- You can dry things in that space.

Though this does mean, for most tents, that you have to carry a ground sheet **). Which will add weight and take space, but it all depends on what kinda touring you do.

We do like comfort, so we do carry more than most.

*) Since a three man tent is not big enough for the two of us, and no we are not that big. We will knee/elbow each others if we both try to move about in the tent alone.
**) Can also be used to picnic/sleep/eat on if the ground is wet when you are not using the tent.

I think most tourers use the Brooks B17 since that is what I see on their bicycles. I got one myself because of that and love it.

Clothing for Bicycle Touring / Re: Icebreaker for bicycle touring?
« on: May 25, 2010, 02:09:34 PM »
I got Ground Effects merino wool base layers and highly recommend it. It could be any brand as long it is merino wool, my partner has a simply top from Aldi (cheap supermaket here in Europe) which she loves.

Best part is that it is warm even when wet, dries pretty fast and it does not stink after a sweaty ride like other fabric does. I love to wear it under my cycling tops or fleeces etc as an extra layer. Keeps you nice and warm and wicks very well.

And it is great to wear while sleeping in your tent on a colder night, it will keep you nice and toasty. And will keep you warm if you need to do a call of nature in the middle of the night and it will warm you up fast when you call back into your sleeping bag.

Getting Ready / Re: "Bike Touring Basics" FREE guide / ebook
« on: May 19, 2010, 08:58:04 AM »
Thanks for the heads up, I just downloaded it and read it. It gets my thumbs up :)

I have only watched some of this but I can tell you that you need to stay further away from these cars than you are doing. Keep a door length away from the cars, it will hurt otherwise.

South Pacific / Re: Suggestions for bike touring in New Zealand
« on: May 03, 2010, 01:30:28 PM »
Thanks, I have looked at the route over the last few days and talked to others and have found 2-3 places where will be taking this bus for part of the route. That should cut the cycling down quite a bit.

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