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converting my mountain to touring bike(10 posts)

converting my mountain to touring bikeSpiderman
Jun 20, 2001 4:16 PM
Right now i have a bianchi and an old crappy mtn bike. I am biking cross country and am probably going to turn the mtn bike into my touring bike. I want to put a road drivetrain on it, but have v-brakes as well. Fork, i havent really decided yet, but handlebars will be road handlebars. Do you think this setup is okay? ANY input will be much appreciated. Thanks!!
check heel clearanceZignzag
Jun 20, 2001 5:20 PM
If you have large feet or large panniers your heels might hit the rear panniers if you use a bike that is not designed for loaded touring.
check heel clearanceRich Clark
Jun 21, 2001 8:06 AM
Jandd makes a rear rack that extends rearward so you can move the panniers back, creating more heel clearance on bikes with short chainstays.

should be okcyclopathic
Jun 21, 2001 5:26 AM
and you don't need to put road stuff on it.
quite a few randonneurs run mnt bike gear on their steeds: mnt cass, dual side pedals, road triple cranks.

Keep you mnt crank. 52x12 is great for road riding but almost useless for touring, and 52x13 gives you the same ratio as 44x11.

Get 1.5 slicks they can be occationaly taken to dirt roads, put and/or aero bars... Have you decided on shifters? STI is not compatible with Vs but tandems run them, should have any prob. Magura makes road levers for raceline if you wanna go fancy on brakes.
thanks all, but...Spiderman
Jun 21, 2001 7:04 AM
THanks everyone for your input. The fact that the STI isn't compatible with v-brakes sort of throws a wrench in the gears (no pun intended). Should i load up my road bike as a tourer rather than my mountain bike? Should i just propose all of this to my LBS and then see what they say? thanks
Don't give up on the Mountain Bike yet...Greg Taylor
Jun 21, 2001 7:11 AM
You can either

(1) use one of those "Travel Agent" gizmos (Colorado Cyclist carries them) that is supposed to allow you to mix road bike brake levers and V-brakes. I seem to remember that they cost about $20 a wheel. Never tried them.

(2) invest in a decent set of canti brakes. I'm using Avid "Shorty" 6 brakes on my touring/cross bike with STI shifting. Works like a dream. Good stopping. I'd make sure that they will fit 26 inch wheel. Either that or just use the old set of canti brakes that almost any shop will have lying around in their used parts bin.
Racks, gearing, sport bikesRich Clark
Jun 21, 2001 8:29 AM
Like Greg said, you can use Travel Agents to adapt your V-brakes to STI brifters, or you could try cantilever brakes, which work with STI. But for loaded touring with significant grades I'd strongly consider keeping the MTB cranks. Most people who buy stock touring bikes (Trek 520s, C'dale T2000, etc.) complain that the 52-42-30 road triples are too high, even with an 11-32 or 11-34 on the back. Bruce Gordon, touring bike maven ( uses mountain groups even on his 700c touring bikes.

Besides the Jandd read rack that extends heel clearance, check out for racks designed specifically for mountain bikes.

Whether your road bike would make a better tourer depends a lot on the bike. Does it have rack mounts on the seat stays? Does it have clearance for bigger tires (say 700x32c)? Are the wheels up to the job? If the bike is a racing bike, you may be asking too much of it. But a lot of sport-type road bikes can make decent touring bikes.

MTB is goodmuncher
Jun 21, 2001 8:12 AM
I toured half of England on my Grisley - stock nil suspension set-up save for v brakes (cost next to nowt and well worth it for the better braking) and 2 racks (put the front on with hose clips x4 at the bottom of the forks as had no braze-ons, and a larger top chain ring - but make sure that you have enough length in the chain stays to allow for this - if you have the foot clearance, then you should have. I had the larger ring for city slick commuting, it wasn't needed for the tour - where I went was really hilly and, believe me, I didn't want to be peddling down hill as well as up. MTB drive was ideal, even on the flat, due to the weight on board - lots (most?) tourers have MTB drive anyway - Dawes Galaxy, etc etc.

If you have frount suspension, try to get it as hard as you can. If it still has a lot of spring in it, I would either get a hard fork, or use the roadie, as the bounce is a real problem with weight on when going uphill.

Other than that, I would go with the MTB I found that mine was an excellent tourer.

Oh yeah, andmuncher
Jun 21, 2001 8:15 AM
The one thing I really valued was hand postion options - ends are a must; I really would have liked a pair of those aero "horns" that just stick out from the front of the bars near the head tubs enough to hold with your wrists on the bar tops, as I found myself holding the bar top centre a lot, especially on long gentle climbs/into headwinds.

I toured the Western Coast Of Ireland on my MTB...Greg Taylor
Jun 21, 2001 11:21 AM
...that was set up as a tourer. It was based around a Trek 930 frame, which has rack eyelets. I kept the straight bar (with bar ends) and mountain gearing. Used Panaracer Pasala tires (26 x 1.25 -- great tires!), and threw a Blackburn rack on back. It was slow, but climbed hills well.