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Old 01-03-20, 11:10 AM
Mad bike riding scientist
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
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Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, an orange one and a few titanium ones

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Originally Posted by robow View Post
Though theoretically ideal, over the decades I have seen very few bike tourists, even those that are well seasoned, who adhere to this ratio. Why ? Because most rear panniers are significantly larger than front panniers and most of us like to throw all sorts of crap on top of the rear rack platform. Many don't have a front fork that can accept a front rack and even fewer have one with a platform on top in order to carry stuff. Is this ideal ? Heck no ! but don't let that get in the way of playing the game.

Btw, I've only built on one set of Rhino's for a heavy friend of mine and though they were more work to get trued initially, they held up well for him and that was with standard 14g spokes, as he didn't want to spend the money on butted spokes.
It's hard to tell from the outside. This bike looks like the load in the rear is heavier but

2015-05-03 11.38.54 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

but the rear panniers are loaded with clothes which are lighter but bulkier. The front panniers contain cooking gear and food which is smaller but denser. The tent and sleeping bag are very light but are bulky as well.

The load on my bike packing bike is close to the same ratio or perhaps a little higher.

Untitled by Stuart Black, on Flickr

The load tends to be rather front heavy which makes off-roading a bit more challenging than an unloaded bike. It really want's to endo on steep downhills. The higher load kind of negates the benefit that is found in low mounted panniers.

Back before bikepacking, I did off-road tours on this rig

me old by Stuart Black, on Flickr

Overall it was much heavier...tent and sleeping bag weighed 7 and 5 lbs compared to my 2lb tent and 2 lb sleeping bag. The load split was biased a little more towards an even split because of the height that the panniers were carried at. Even with the greater weight, it was a bit nicer ride than my current bikepacking set up. It didn't work all that well when things got tight, however, and the bags had a tendency to jump ship on rough patches.
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
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