An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Cycling around the world: Here's the two bike components you must have

Actually, a Land Rover Defender would be
a fabulous component to have, but that would
be cheating.
Generally speaking, any expedition that involves a machine means you want gear that is pretty much bombproof. But bombproof is not quite enough. When even a bombproof item breaks, you want to be able to fix it with a minimum of fuss, hopefully with tools and materials that immediately come to hand even if you are in the middle of the Sahara, in the Himalaya, or on some Vietnamese beach. 
One of the reasons Land Rovers became a global phenomenon during the late colonial period is not because they were the most reliable 4WD truck on the planet -- not by a long shot. It was because they were almost universally repairable; you could wire most parts together with a hanger, and you could find parts for the differential practically behind every bush. (British colonialism also meant that where one Land Rover went, there was a pretty good chance another had already been, dropping a few parts along the way.)

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In heaven,  the food is Italian,
the women are French, and the hubs are German
Anyway, in this fascinating story over at CNN, experienced cricum-navigating cyclists spill the beans on the two components any serious globe-pedaler will want on his or her ride: Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires and a Rohloff internal-geared hub. The latter will set you back a cool $1200 at least, but you'll still have hair on your head when you get back from 8 months of sand, snow and ice.

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