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Updated: 1 hour 28 min ago

Re: A Sad Day for Google Maps

28 August 2015 - 7:21pm
Whilst searching for a different topic that I'd posted in, I came across this one and thought I would note for anyone suffering slow performance from Google Maps that there is now a switchable ""Lite" version - a little lightning bolt down near the controls at the bottom right of the screen - that may (or may not) help with slow loading, etc.

Rick.

Re: Rear lights are driving me mad

28 August 2015 - 5:53pm
Big fan of the Moon http://www.moon-sport.com/product-detail.php?id=72 lights, great mounts and steady or flashing states

Re: Rear lights are driving me mad

28 August 2015 - 3:30pm
Well, when I'm cycling into work on a dark morning at 4.30 am on a rural road ,I have 2 flashing rear lights - the Cateye LT 1100.1 on my helmet and 1 on my saddle bag..

I want cars/ trucks to see me from as far back as possible.. Do you honestly think this is wrong. ?

Re: Rear lights are driving me mad

28 August 2015 - 3:14pm
People with powerful and/or flashing rearlights are a plague for following cyclists. There was a silly fellow last week who had one on his bike and one on his idiot head, both of them flashing in a random pattern at variable intensity, the final blast being powerful enough to cut through steel. Dear Lord the misfortunes I wished upon him, if half of them came true he'd have been in three graves by now and shaping up for a fourth.

FWIW I use a stay-mounted B&M Secula on one side and one of these as a back-up on the opposite stay:

http://www.cateye.com/en/products/detail/TL-LD650/

Angled horizontally and in non-blinking mode, of course.

Rear lights are driving me mad

28 August 2015 - 1:34pm
It's that time of year again when a cyclist's mind turns to thoughts of lights. I want a rechargeable rear light with option to have it steady or flashing. Trouble is that buying on the internet it's hard to see what kind of bracket it comes with. Most just use a rubber ring to fit around the seatpost. Useless if you use a seat pack. I want to fit it to the seat stays but of course with a simple wrap around rubber thing it points mostly up in the air. I want to be able to adjust the direction of the beam to hit those motorists right in the eye. Tell me about your favourite and most powerful lights on your seat stays.

Re: New Route Planner

28 August 2015 - 11:22am
Let me know if not - really keen to get this nailed. (And to nail Garmin's programmers to something.)

Re: Netherlands Tour - Rig Statistics

28 August 2015 - 9:56am
For added geekiness, you could also split your body weight front and rear, in your normal riding position

Re: camp site recommendations for Derbyshire

27 August 2015 - 10:46pm
Waterloo Arms at Biggin. Close to the Tissington Trail and to Hartington. Good basic site, and nice friendly pub.
Callow Top just outside Ashbourne. On the Tissington Trail, walking distance to Ashbourne. Maybe a bit rule-driven and elaborate, but does have on on-site pub which brews its own beer.
And I think there's a basic farm site at Wetton, close to the Manifold trail and Thor's cave. The pub (Royal Oak) is good, but not as good as when it was more basic and had its own campsite.

Re: New Route Planner

27 August 2015 - 10:45pm
Richard Fairhurst wrote:I've done a bunch of work today on the GPS downloads:

[list]
[*]TCX should now work properly on Garmins - I've tested it on BaseCamp and Training Center and it works fine, though I don't have a new Garmin unit to test with;
...

Oh, amazing. I'll have to try it out. In the past I've done the route finding on your site then (I can't remember if the reasons are from bad experience or just stupidity on my part) I've had to manually recreate the route in Garmin Connect, since I've never had success with GPX or TCX files. Fingers crossed that TCX works nicely.

Re: Bought the bike!

27 August 2015 - 8:22pm
And the same for the Dalesman: fit the widest posible tyres for maximum effect. I have just come back from a tour through the Czech Republic and Germany, and while admiring the quality of the German cycle routes, pretty large chunks were forest trails and gravel. That was part of what I like about them, but my 42 mm tyres were on the narrow side: next time I will use something wider.

Re: Bought the bike!

27 August 2015 - 8:18pm
Enjoy the ride.

Re: Solar charger or dynamo

27 August 2015 - 8:17pm
I like simplicity. So I keep my phone switched off during most of the day, and only turn it on for a few minutes at the end of the ride to text my wife t5hat I have arrived safely at the next campsite. That way I only have to charge it, say, once a week. For that I have a litle charger. I also have a small and light battery pack that is good for one charge of the phone. That way, I recharge the phone, and can recharge the battery pack when and where it is convenient and safe without risk of the telephone getting stolen. As a gps I have a Garmin Etrex 30. It is the cheapest range, and also the lightest. The final and perhaps most important advantage is that is also lasts longest on a set of batteries. If you buy really good rechargeables like the Ansmann Eneloop type, one set is good for five days of cycling if you switch it off when you have a break, and only follow tracks. So on a 2-3 week tour I don't need a charger, but only a few sets of spare rechargeable batteries. For the record, I have a Schmidt hub generator on my bike for the lights, but I really do not want to have to deal with stuff like an Ewerk and all those cables. For a trip in outer Mongolia the choices will be diferent, of course.

Re: Bought the bike!

27 August 2015 - 8:07pm
Thanks all. I am borrowing (um stealing) the bike we bought for my son as it will be fantastic as a heavy duty off main roads tourer. I'll do as Willem suggested and use the KoM with wider tyres, tour with both and see what works for me.

Thank you again!!!

Re: Bought the bike!

27 August 2015 - 8:02pm
I much prefer road bars, and I think the Mercian is a great bike. I would fit the widest tyres that you can squeeze in (but remember, the nice Panaracer Pasela's run pretty wide, i.e. more or less true to nominal size, unlike many other tyres). Wider tyres are much more comfortable, and greatly extend where you can still ride. My preferred tyre for a bike like this would be the Panaracer Pasela. Personally I would go for the version without puncture protection, as it rides just that bit nicer. If you are worried about punctures, use the puncture protected version at the rear (where most punctures occur), and the more flexible and more comfortable unprotected version at the front. I have been riding without puncture protection for a few years now, and only recently had my first puncture.
As for luggage weight, I would still maintain that a bike like this rides better with a lighter load. You should be fine with two rear panniers and the tent on top, totalling some 12 kg. With light camping gear, that is perfectly doable, and the ride will be that much more enjoyable. Of course, if you really need to take more (but do you, in the UK?), the trailer will be fine, as weight in the trailer does not affect the frame and handling as much as weight on the bike. But it will be a slog in the hills.
Once again, congratulations on a beautiful bike.

Re: Netherlands Tour - Rig Statistics

27 August 2015 - 7:46pm
Now I get it. As you know I have a rather similar bike from the same builder, and I am quite happy to use the 26x1.75 Paselas. In fact, I still found them on the small side on my tour this summer through the Czech Republic and Germany. German cycle routes are great, but partly because so much of them is forest trails and gravel (and in the Czech Republic the gravel was even coarser). So the next step will be the new Compass 26 inch tyres in 50+ mm, also made by Panaracer. My mudguards broke this summer, so it will also be a good excuse to invest in French style metal mudguards (Gilles Berthoud in my case, as I need them in 65 mm wide).

Re: New Route Planner

27 August 2015 - 7:40pm
Richard Fairhurst wrote:(TCX really is an accursed format - turns out that Training Center, at least, squawks if two trackpoints have exactly the same location, which rather kiboshes circular routes. I've worked around it...)
I've found (with an Edge 605) that in use the end point needs to be slightly farther away (just by a few metres/yards) from where you start than the beginning. Otherwise there is a tendency for the 605 to declare that you've finished your Course as you set off!

Rick.

Re: New Route Planner

27 August 2015 - 4:42pm
I've done a bunch of work today on the GPS downloads:

  • TCX should now work properly on Garmins - I've tested it on BaseCamp and Training Center and it works fine, though I don't have a new Garmin unit to test with;
  • GPX route option for those who prefer them to tracks;
  • KML option for Google Earth and the like;
  • Names come from the title of your saved route, rather than just 'cycle_travel.gpx' or 'ACTIVE LOG';
  • Safari now downloads the file automatically, though you still have to rename it manually from 'Unknown' to 'track.gpx' or whatever

(TCX really is an accursed format - turns out that Training Center, at least, squawks if two trackpoints have exactly the same location, which rather kiboshes circular routes. I've worked around it...)

Re: camp site recommendations for Derbyshire

27 August 2015 - 1:26pm
A further recommendation - Barn Farm Camping at Birchover. Convenient for the High Peak and Monsal Trails.

Re: Thinking of going on a long tour?

27 August 2015 - 12:03pm
Nice piece and all so familiar....

I've been slowly sucked back into the " normality" of the rat race but now look at it with a different point of view, and still dream of big and small new adventures.

My biggest challenge now that I know how easy it is to just go, is not to run away every time things in life don't quite go the way I want them to. Now, my default first reaction to a bad day at work is " bugger it I'm going to sell everything and hit the road again"

Re: Netherlands Tour - Rig Statistics

27 August 2015 - 11:52am
@Wim.

Indeed, converted it to a single speed this year for commuting , its a joy to ride even if the geometry looks a little strange with the skinny 26"x32 panracer tyres instead of 2" XR's

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