Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Anything specific to off-road riding.

Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby SatNavSaysStraightOn » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:17 am

TwoPlusTen wrote:I actually asked this question in a different thread (but for a different bike). Having just seen this I will probably convert my Specialized and leave the Kona as a MTB.

Thank you very much for the information, you've been an absolute goldmine.

Just one question - what grips did you change the originals on the Specialized for?


Glad to have helped :D and apologies on the delay in getting back to you.

We switched the grips on both bikes to "Ergon GP1 Handlebar Grips" (they come in 2 sizes depending on the size of your hands) which have helped me considerably - I have a bad left arm so need to be careful. They a better suited to touring and commuting than off-roading on dedicated mountain bike trails etc - but I had no issues with them and use them off road as well. That and a decent set of padded gloves, but I am still working on that because I fall between sizes.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby Smudge » Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:25 pm

aramok wrote:we just used Old Man Mountain rear bike racks (http://www.oldmanmountain.com/Pages/RackPages/RearRacks.html) which have given us absolutley no issues during the 13 days we were touring and fit just about any mountain bike you can think of - the only issue is that those racks don't take rear lights, but we just became creative there.


Thats very useful info as well, i've just bought a Cannondale F5 which at some point i'l be doing some touring on when my Ridgeback Panorama is'nt suitable

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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby Smudge » Mon Oct 04, 2010 10:17 pm

Just seen a picture of someone elses Cannondale F5 loaded and ready to roll .. online bike shops next stop :wink:

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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby blackbike » Fri Oct 08, 2010 12:35 am

Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby horizon » Fri Oct 08, 2010 11:54 am

blackbike wrote:Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.


Indeed. But there are few bikes available in a reasonable price range for heavy off road touring. An old MTB fits the bill so well (mine is a low geared, 531 Deore XT fully lugged MTB now with Brooks saddle, front and rear racks etc etc) that it is hard to justify the price of say a Thorn at £1600. In fact, far from being not as good as a tourer, an old MTB is a tourer and possibly the right kind of tourer depending on what you want to do with it.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby hamster » Fri Oct 08, 2010 4:46 pm

blackbike wrote:Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.


That's an incredibly sweeping generalisation.
My Marin-based tourer has a steel frame, takes any tyre size from 25mm to 55mm and weighs 24.5lbs with racks and Magura drop hydraulics. That makes it cheaper than a Super Galaxy and more versatile. Nothing is perfect for everyone, but as a 'go anywhere - do anything' machine it takes some beating. With 4 panniers and a barbag it's rock steady at 40 mph, and frankly it's as good as the Super Gal unladen (and 3lbs-ish lighter).
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby Smudge » Sat Oct 09, 2010 8:25 pm

blackbike wrote:Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.


My tourer is a Ridgeback Panorama which is a great bike for paved roads and canal towpaths but i would'nt want to ride it fully loaded on some of the roads outside of Europe ... MTB's make great touring bikes because they are so versatile and can be adapted to most touring situations easily and cheaply ... have a look on www.crazyguyonabike.com and then come back and tell me that those people did'nt really cycle around the world on converted MTB's :wink:

Hamster ... your Marin is 5lbs lighter than my "dedicated" Panorama touring bike, my Cannondale F5 MTB is also a lot lighter than the tourer

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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby hamster » Thu Oct 14, 2010 2:34 pm

I agree.
My Marin started off as an £350 Palisades (1990 Vintage). The weight saving was from lighter bars, bottom bracket, stem, chainset and some marginal savings on nicer mechs etc. The big weight increases were rack, mudguards and Magura hydraulics.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby barrygregory » Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:01 pm

horizon wrote:
blackbike wrote:Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.


Indeed. But there are few bikes available in a reasonable price range for heavy off road touring. An old MTB fits the bill so well (mine is a low geared, 531 Deore XT fully lugged MTB now with Brooks saddle, front and rear racks etc etc) that it is hard to justify the price of say a Thorn at £1600. In fact, far from being not as good as a tourer, an old MTB is a tourer and possibly the right kind of tourer depending on what you want to do with it.


----------------------

Agree totally. I rode LEJoG on a singlespeed On-One Inbred last year (http://one-cog-lejog-blog.blogspot.com/). Frame is long, twangy and comfortable - could not wish for a better tourer. Also plentiful and cheap-as-chips - certainly compared to the Thorn/Koga Miyata route...

This guy came to the same conclusion, and rode to China on his: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/?o=RpmwT&page_id=80290&v=1Z
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby Rusty Spanner » Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:02 am

I have a 1993 steel Specialized Rockhopper which I've owned from new and currently use as a tourer.
I've fitted a Blackburn MTN rack, Kona P2 rigid forks, Ortlieb panniers and bar bag, SPD pedals and a Brooks B17 narrow saddle.

It's very comfy and seems to cope with anything I can throw at it.

The back wheel will be replaced by something a bit stronger when I get round to it, but apart from that it's superb.

Don't use mudguards myself, but a crudguard keeps the spray down and a seatpack keeps my bum dry.

I still use it as a rigid MTB sometimes, it's a great allrounder.

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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby gregoryoftours » Sun May 22, 2011 9:04 pm

I toured with a mountain bike and found it fine, and more versatile than my galaxy. The only thing I'd change with my setup would be to fit a suspension fork or a rigid fork with a rake, rather than the straight - bladed Kona P2s which gave me numb hands.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby geez63 » Tue Jan 31, 2012 3:56 pm

I went on my first cycle tour last year in the Alps. We covered 400 miles in a week. I had an old Trek 930 steel mountain bike which I decided to use. It had mounts for rear mudguard and carrier. The front mudguard I attached to the rockshox with ty-wraps, seemed to work.

I changed the tyres to Michelin Sport Contacts which were brilliant in the wet and dry. Being a 26" wheel MTB it took less room on the plane and trains. It was a little heavier than my mate's Dawes Galaxy but kept up with him fine all week. Going back this year with the same set up.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby andymiller » Sat Oct 06, 2012 4:57 pm

If the bike is comfortable then go for it.

I have a pair of 26" schwalbe Duremes which have been excellent - and seem to cope well with pretty much any surface.

The only potential issue with MTBs is the suspension fork - modern forks run with mainly compressed air and very little oil and have ridiculously short service intervals. One option is to get hold of and refurbish some old Marzocchi bombers (which worked with springs and oil) or get some rigid forks.

blackbike wrote:Mountain bikes are OK for touring.

But not as good as a tourer.

Cycling touring is like all other hobbies.

If you take it seriously you try to buy the best gear you can afford.


Isn't it more a question of choosing the right tool for the job? If you are planning on mainly travelling on dirt to roads then an expensive road-orientated tourer is not going to be a good choice.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby andy753 » Sat Jul 13, 2013 1:55 pm

I would suggest upgrading to a Cannondale with a headshok - I ride a Cannondale F4 with a headshok and it is much lighter than a conventional fork. Here's an example: http://www.westbrookcycles.co.uk/bikes-c5/mountain-bikes-c17/cannondale-flash-al-3-hardtail-mountain-bike-2012-p210905?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=cannondale-flash-al-3-hardtail-mountain-bike-2012-size-xl-size-xl&utm_campaign=product+listing+ads#280742

Cannondale has stopped making bikes with Fatty forks now which is a real shame. They are light and very good for XC. OK, they are not great for downhill - 80mm of travel and not that strong - but for XC they Excel. AND because they are air forks you can get them set up very easily. They also come with stem mounted lock out for climbing and road use.
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Re: Mountain Bike For Touring ?

Postby bikehog164 » Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:49 pm

I've started touring and I use my mountain bike. I have no trouble. Don't see why yours won't work.
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