Bikes & Panniers.

loaded bike inge

I am a wee bit ashamed to admit that the mechanical side of bike touring doesn’t really excite me that much. Don’t get me wrong, I love my 2013 Vivente World Randonneur bike and I am always humbled that a piece of steel can carry me and  all the equipment I need to survive. Sure I can change a flat and de-grease and oil my chain, but anything more than that just doesn’t do it for me. But anyway, for those that are into bike specs, here are mine:

Frame 100% Cr-Mo tubing, double butted main tubes, 3 bidon mounts, spare spoke mounts, centre stand attachment plate, 700x35C (XS is 26×1.4″). Tange fully sealed cartridge headset.
Fork 1-1/8″, 100% cr-mo steel, threadless, rack mounts, pivots, disc brake mounts, light cable mounts. Extended (cutable) steerer.
Attachments Full set of metric 5mm stainless steel allen head screws with washers. Rear electric wiring.
Handlebars Humpert Horn trekking bar, 580mm, 25.4
Handlebar stem Vivente 7 degree, 60/80/100/120/130mm, 25.4
Handlebar grip Velo hi-density foam 400x20x5mm black and Ergon BioKork grips.
Saddle Brooks flyer “S”.
Seatpost Kalloy 27.2 micro adjustable alloy. 300mm.
Pedals Shimano, PD-A530 SPD, w/cleat.
Rims Front-Alex ACE 19, 36H, CNC. Rear-Alex DH19, 36H, CNC.
Tyres Schwalbe Marathon700x35C (26×1.4 on XS).
Front hub Shimano Deore XT dynamo, 6V-3W, 36H, w/centre lock, QR.
Rear hub Shimano freehub, Deore LX, 36H, QR, 9 speed.
Spokes Rear-DT Alpine III 13/15/14G, Front DT Champion 14G, cross 3.
Tubes 700x35C, 0.9mm, Schrader. (26×1.4″on XS).
Shift levers Shimano Deore LX, SL-T670 psp/3sp.
Crankset Sugino Alpina 600T 46/36/24T, 165/170/175 mm cranks.
Bottom bracket Shimano UN-55 square taper -113mm.
Fr Derailleur Shimano Deore LX, T-671.
Rr Derailleur Shimano Deore LX 9 sp., T-661
Chain Shimano CN-HG73 narrow for 9sp.
Cassette Shimano Deore 9sp, NI plated, 11-12-14-16-18-21-24-28-32T.
Fr Brake Avid BB7 cable disc, sintered pads, 160mm rotor w/lockring.
Rr Brake Shimano V-Brake Deore LX.
Brake levers Shimano M590 Deore 1.5 finger.
Brake cables  Shimano.
Fr Light Busch & Muller Lumotec IQ Fly RT w/standlight and sensor.
Rr Light Busch & Muller Toplight line plus for day night running.
Fr Carrier Tubus Duo.
Rr Carrier Tubus Logo, cr-mo steel.
Mudguards Vivente, black, w/stainless steel adjustable mounts.
Bell  A cute brass one 🙂 that sounds devine!
Bidon cages Black, 6mm alloy x 2, BBB FuelTank XL x1
Centre Stand Massload two legged, black, w/shoes, attached to frame plate.
Spare Spokes DT, 2 pce for each side of each wheel supplied.
Pump Road Morph.

Now onto the Panniers (bags you strap to your bike):

I am convinced that our Ortlieb Classic panniers are the Apple equivalent of the pannier world. Those that have them, swear by them and scoff at any one else who doesn’t. During our Tasmania trip when we met “The Peloton” group on the road, I overheard 2 girls saying as I passed them “We should have gotten Ortlieb’s. EVERYONE has them!”. The only adjustment we’ve had to make is add an extra set of clips to the 2 clothing panniers as the bar was starting to bend out a bit and we didn’t want to pop the rivets out.

We both have two front and two back panniers, a handlebar bag, and a rack pack that sits across the back. Now here’s a funny thing, these panniers are like black holes! Anything you put inside seems to just disappear before your eyes. Sometimes I need to empty the whole thing out, just to find what I’m looking for. So the best way to keep some sort of organisation is to employ the help of little stuff sacks. I have found mesh ones to be the best, because you can see straight away what’s inside and any small bits like sand or crumbs will fall out and not congregate at the bottom. It is rather time consuming having to stuff and un-stuff everything twice a day, but it’s a small price to pay for the sheer pleasure of sticking your hand into a bag and pulling out exactly what you are after.

So how do you keep track where everything is? Well, each panniers has a theme; there’s the Cooking pannier (Inge), Utilities pannier (Inge), Pantry pannier (Andrew), Wet weather pannier (Inge), Clothing pannier x2 (Andrew), Lunch food pannier (Inge) and Crockery/thermos pannier (Andrew). We also have a handle bar bag each that carries valuables and day snacks for easy access. Inge’s rack pack has the sleeping stuff in it and Andrews rack pack has the tent, footprint, picnic rug, tent awning, stools and spare shoes in it.

When everything is packed up ready to go it is quite amazing that all our worldly possessions are  contained in these 12 bags! It’s a bit like the Harry Potter book, where Hermione Granger’s beaded magical hand bag holds an enormous tent.


2 thoughts on “Bikes & Panniers.

    • Hi Amanda, our rack packs are the 49 ones. Andrew’s is pretty full, because he has the tent etc, but mine has plenty more room left in it. I don’t think we could’ve coped with the 31 size….

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