Oct 9, 2010 at 3:38 am #1264176
I have a really good Cannondale flat bar tourer which is quite light for a tourer but I was looking for something lighter still for the daily commuter races. But it had to be able to take mudguards and a rack and be comfortable over long distances. Unfortunately there is very little choice in Australia – it's all mountain bikes and balls-out racers, and I just couldn't find something here that could take mudguards and a rack and was still light. There are hundreds of such bikes available in the UK (especially the winter trainer style) but just nothing in Australia. I looked at getting a bike built but it was stupidly expensive, like most things in Australia. In the end I was put onto a Jamis Xenith Endura 1 and the shop selling it even had it for $400 off, so I bought it. They also fitted it with SKS mudguards and I put a cheap pair of pedals on it – I have bung knees so I don't use cleats. After a fair bit of research I fitted it with a Racktime rack with a Racktime Doubleit pannier set. Both are excellent. The front light will eventually be something like an Edelux run off a SON hub generator. I'm saving up for that combo.
A month or so ago I did a 120k day trip on it from Horsham to Ararat and next Sunday I'm doing the Around the Bay in a Day which is 210k. I put 28mm Schwalbe Marathon Racer tyres on it for the day tour along with my Brooks saddle (and will keep that combo for ATBIAD) and a Carradice Super C Saddlepack. For commuting I actually prefer the earlier set up with the 25mm Vittoria tyres and Fizik Aliante saddle.
The photos below are from the day tour. It was foggy and 0/+1 when I left at 8.00 am and was sunny but not particularly warm for the rest of the day. And the country was the greenest I'd seen it for 15 years so I was pleased I'd made the effort to get up there. The last time I'd been up there the Wimmera River had been almost completely dry – as you can see from one of the photos, it's usually possible to drive across the river bed.
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