Caelum cycles Australia...

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Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Caelum » Sun Jun 14, 2009 9:36 pm

Hi all.

As some of you know, i've been planning to cycle around Australia now since about june last year....


Today was my first day of the journey, so i figured i should make a topic to keep all my posts about it in one place.


Direct link to todays ride summary is here: http://chig.net.au/home/57-day1


Now tossing up the idea of doing a century tomorrow to make a day-long trip down to Bunbury,


Let me know what you think :)
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by BNA » Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:37 am

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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby rustguard » Mon Jun 15, 2009 3:37 am

thats great have fun and travel safe, let us know what gear you get rid of if you get the time.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Aushiker » Mon Jun 15, 2009 12:34 pm

G'day

All the best Caelum ... take care and enjoy the ride.

Andrew
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby toofat » Mon Jun 15, 2009 1:33 pm

Wow, quit the lease ,chucked in the job and hit the road, Im envious, have fun and keep in touch
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Tale » Mon Jun 15, 2009 2:29 pm

I wish you good and safe riding. I like your attitude in the FAQs on your website, so I'll be reading!
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Kalgrm » Mon Jun 15, 2009 5:43 pm

Good luck Caelum. I'm jealous.

Cheers,
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby hartleymartin » Mon Jun 15, 2009 11:14 pm

So envious right now.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby crazycanuck » Tue Jun 16, 2009 5:57 pm

Cool! Take care & be careful out there. You know how what the rogue kangaroos are like :roll:

Have fun!
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby John Lewis » Tue Jun 16, 2009 11:26 pm

Good for you.I'm jealous.

If you coming through Albany give us a call 98421406.

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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Caelum » Tue Jun 16, 2009 11:58 pm

John Lewis wrote:Good for you.I'm jealous.

If you coming through Albany give us a call 98421406.

John Lewis



Should be heading that way in a while... not totally sure when yet.. .going to have a 3 day or so break this weekend, catching up with some mates before i get too far out of WA.

Check out my progress on my GPS tracking page: - it'll give you a rough idea on when i should be in town.

Mod edit: Fixed the link. TinyURL is a nogo
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Aushiker » Wed Jun 17, 2009 1:11 pm

Caelum wrote:Check out my progress on my GPS tracking page: - it'll give you a rough idea on when i should be in town.


Cool, you are using a Spot. How do you find it? Expensive?

Regards
Andrew
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby John Lewis » Wed Jun 17, 2009 1:31 pm

OK will watch the tracker. If you give us a day or so notice we can give you a feed, a bed and net access if you don't want to camp.

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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby AUbicycles » Sun Jun 21, 2009 5:50 am

Hi, Hope you have a fantastic trip - maybe you need a checklist until it becomes automatic checking your wallet, keys, mobile, laptop, camera, gps, etc

Here a goody that will interest you - though only if you have a hub generater. Zzing.
No I don't have a vested interest, though have just been fascinated by it. A friend has one for his tour and I am keen to see how it performs.

Cheers
Christopher
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Tale » Sun Jun 21, 2009 6:28 am

AUbicycles wrote:Hi, Hope you have a fantastic trip - maybe you need a checklist until it becomes automatic checking your wallet, keys, mobile, laptop, camera, gps, etc


IMHO the longer you tour, the shorter the checklist becomes. After four months, I remember mine getting to "wallet, bike, shortwave radio" (overseas - BBC World Service was my link with the English-speaking world). People could have wandered off with my other possessions and I wouldn't have minded. Fortunately they didn't.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby John Lewis » Sun Jul 05, 2009 10:01 pm

What's happening here? Anybody know?
A week or so back Caelum was near Augusta as he started his lap. Spot tracker disappeared and now he shows up out on the Tanami track. :?:

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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Earthy Ochre Man » Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:25 pm

On his website, he commented the following on 28 June:

"I paid a visit to the physio on friday, with a follow-on appointment
on this coming monday...

Turns out my injury is due to an imbalance of muscles
in my right leg, which should hopefully be easily fixed by some creative
strapping.

I'm not going to be heading off after the weekend - I'm going to be
working in an Aboriginal community in the north of WA for about 3 weeks, which
should give time for the knee to heal, with any luck.

After that, i'll be
getting into some more training, just to make sure that the knee is OK, and
after that i'll make my second attempted departure i think :)"
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Tale » Mon Jul 06, 2009 3:27 pm

I guess I can say this now he's not cycling - the load balance on the bike looks wrong, like it would create more work for the rider. It's a touring bike with braze-ons for front lowrider panniers to distribute the load weight, and he hasn't used them. Instead, he's gone for a trailer and a giant handlebar bag. Generally a trailer is a last resort after filling front and rear panniers. And a handlebar bag should be small because you don't want weight up high at the front, you want it down low at wheel level to add stability.

I didn't mention it earlier because when you set off on a tour, setup problems are something you eventually figure out for yourself and you have an adventure along the way. I think Il Padrone mentioned it to him in his bike buying thread, but Chig stuck to his awkward setup and seemed determined to use a trailer. I think it would have been easier on the knees if he followed proven load distribution.

To illustrate what I'm talking about, here's his bike:
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Here's how I carry a similar amount of luggage (please excuse my shiny new Brooks).
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Aushiker » Mon Jul 06, 2009 4:39 pm

Tale wrote:Instead, he's gone for a trailer and a giant handlebar bag. Generally a trailer is a last resort after filling front and rear panniers. And a handlebar bag should be small because you don't want weight up high at the front, you want it down low at wheel level to add stability.


G'day

You know there are hundreds who I suspect would find this statement a bit over the top given all the reading I have done. It seems that both approaches, pannier and trailer have their positives and their negatives as any wide reading will show you. neither seems drastically better than the other approach from what I have seen. You clearly like panniers and that is great for you, but to describe the alternative. a trailer, as a "last resort" seems way over the top to me.

Oh, BTW I am heading off this week, with my "oh my god" trailer (BOB) and yes I could have taken my panniers on my "not a touring bike" Surly LHT but I prefer the trailer for this ride. But hey that is my choice :)

I also will have an Ortlieb handle bag (probably a large one, can't remember the size at the moment) which is another bad thing apparently and I will even take a rear pannier with me (for local shopping duties only). I guess all the wrong things :roll:

Oh BTW I don't full up the handlebar bag and I wouldn't assume Ian has done that either.

Regards
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Tale » Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:36 pm

Look at the photos, and think descending.

Well, now you know my opinion, but each to their own. I hope your travels go very well and you enjoy the ride! Ortlieb bags are never a bad thing - the red ones in my photo have been touring and shopping since 1996.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby John Lewis » Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:49 pm

Thanks for the update Ochre Man. I did look on his Blog but saw nothing at the time. Was wondering what happened as I expected to catch up when he came through here.

On the subject of trailers I think it is mainly personal preference. Some swear by and others at. I think a BOB would be handy for carrying water on some legs of round Aus tour. If I need more than two panniers I'm stuck with a trailer. Nowhere for extras on the bent trike . There is a couple in this town who tour. They use rear panniers, handlenar bags and huge trailer loads. I think 80 or so kg in trailer alone as they have a huge 4WD style tent so they can keep bikes inside. Plus chair and probably the kitchen sink. It works for them but it wouldn't suit me. I believe this guy even rode Melbourne to Moscow some many years back. Some huge halfway round the world effort anyway.

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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Aushiker » Mon Jul 06, 2009 7:29 pm

Tale wrote:Look at the photos, and think descending.


G'day

Well I didn't have any panniers on the bike, but did a fair bit of ascending and descending on gravel tracks (read pea gravel) and single track (some with ruts over a foot deep taking up most of the "track") on the Mundi Biddi on my XTC 2 pulling a BOB without dramas. Cavebear2 was also on the ride, also on a XTC 2 but with panniers. He now has a BOB trailer too.

Image

Worked for me, just as panniers do too. I just choose what I consider to be the best option for the ride coming up.

Regards
Andrew
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby il padrone » Mon Jul 06, 2009 10:34 pm

Tale wrote:I guess I can say this now he's not cycling - the load balance on the bike looks wrong, like it would create more work for the rider. It's a touring bike with braze-ons for front lowrider panniers to distribute the load weight, and he hasn't used them. Instead, he's gone for a trailer and a giant handlebar bag. Generally a trailer is a last resort after filling front and rear panniers. And a handlebar bag should be small because you don't want weight up high at the front, you want it down low at wheel level to add stability.

+1

Far too many people when beginning cycle touring are totally unaware of the balance and control advantages of well-mounted front panniers. Preferably fairly low and balanced fore & aft on the steering axis as much as possible. Use of rear panniers and a heavy handlebar bag is very destabilising by contrast. I've seen several people take falls, at least two of them with serious injuries, that can be attributed to this sort of load arrangement.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby il padrone » Mon Jul 06, 2009 10:37 pm

Aushiker wrote:It seems that both approaches, pannier and trailer have their positives and their negatives as any wide reading will show you. neither seems drastically better than the other approach from what I have seen.

Agreed, but if you want to use a trailer, run it with front panniers, rather than rear panniers, and keep any handlebar bag lightly loaded. Perhaps use a rackbag as well. For real expedition touring four panniers plus a trailer for additional gear/water is quite OK. You still have the front bags to load the steering and ensure stability.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby Aushiker » Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:19 am

G'day

I agree that if one uses panniers with a trailer, then they would be better on the front, but I am not convinced that the issue of a handle bag is as big as it is made out to be or that panniers on the front is a must; nice for sure and would I have liked some weight on the front at times of the XTC 2, but a must, no. The XTC 2 rode okay without anything on the front 95% of the time.

Regards
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Re: Caelum cycles Australia...

Postby il padrone » Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:09 am

I'm not attempting to get into any sort of prolonged debate, however I have to point out that in the past 15 years I have closely observed 3 crashes of loaded touring cyclists on descents, two on gravel and one on tarmac. All of these involved bikes loaded with rear panniers and a handlebar bag and each crash involved speed and/or surface bumps. In each case there was a major loss of control that led to wheel shimmy, steering loss and OTB. Others riding the same roads with front panniers did not have these problems.

The crashes were:

1. Tarmac, 55 kmh speed shimmy - broken collarbone, broken scapula, 3 broken ribs, broken nose, forehead hematoma
2. Rocky gravel, 25-30 kmh, steering bumping, tyre skidded on the edge of wheel-track - 3 broken ribs, punctured lung
3. Gravel road, 40-45 kmh, minor bump in dip of the descent - the worst case of gravel rash I've ever seen, both arms and both legs, it was scrubbed out under general anasthetic

I love my handlebar bag but I keep it light, carrying digital camera, rain jacket, gloves, mp3 player and snack bars. Heavily loading the handlebar bag (>5kg)is a bad idea.

My handlebar bag is generally used when I'm also using the front and rear panniers for a camping tour. Like I did this weekend to Dunolly and Talbot in Victoria's Golden Triangle. One of the guys on the ride who has done a reasonable amount of cycle-touring and MTB commented about the load on his new tourer. He normally always uses front panniers. As this trip was staying in some accommodation (the rather wonderful Chesterfield House in Talbot) Rob packed all his gear in two rear panniers and commented on how disconcertingly whippy the bike felt. You can certainly tour very well with just rear panniers and maybe a handlebar bag, but be aware the bike will feel less stable on fast descents and gravel roads. With front and rear panniers the bike feels every bit as balanced, stable and controllable as an unloaded bike, just a bit heavier. Rob will be using his front panniers in future.

Sorry about getting so far OT :oops:
Last edited by il padrone on Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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