Europe Cycling: Equipment

This summer I plan to follow the North Sea from Edinburgh, Scotland to Cuxhaven, Germany, then follow the Elbe for the Vltava and Prague. Next, I’ll roll southeast on the Prague-Vienna (Praha-Wien) Greenway, follow the Danube though Budapest, Hungary (and Bucharest, Romania just off route) for the Black Sea. One mid-trip option is to navigate to Barth, Germany on the Baltic Sea to visit where my grandfather spent nearly 12 months as “a guest of the German Army” in a POW internment camp. See Route information here.

REVIEWS TO FOLLOW! I hope to provide gear updates on each item on tour to see what works and holds up.


Marin Muirwoods: Steel frame 29er with 20mm Alex rims (32 spoke count), Shimano Alevo 8-speed 11-34 Megarange rear cassette, Hollowtech triple chain ring crankset (with 42, 32, 22 Shimano SLX steel chainrings), Tek mechanical disc brakes (168mm rotors), Shimano Doere long arm rear derailleur, and shimano alivo front derailleur. Not shown; new Continental Top Contact II 700×47 touring tires with Conti-tube 180 gram 700×47 tubes with 40mm metal Schrader valve.
Modifications: rerouted front derailleur cable to replace bulkier bottom-pull derailleur with lower profile, like-grade top-pull derailleur to increase rear tire clearance. Also, old-school bull horn handlebars and smaller diameter stem.


Rerouted cable to pull front derailleur from top in order to clear 2″ tires on previous trip. But with running Continental 700×47 thing tours, which is equal to about 1.85 inches, no long required but why bother switching back? Not sure what this part is actually designed for but a shout out to bike mechanic Glen for the hack.
VersaRack with Continental Top Contact II 700×47 tire 🙂





Planet Bike Versarack for disc brakes. Not heavy duty but we’ll see how it holds up.
Tektro Novela mechanical disc brakes are about the cheapest mechanical disc brakes out there and rumored to be on par with BB5’s. They came with the bike and stop the bike. I ordered new pads for $5.99 each on Amazon to replace the first set with many miles on them. But hey, they pretty much work fine.
Not so much a problem on the rear, the Tektro Novela’s can slip on the front disc brake mounts so that the rotor rubs the discs. The 4 or 5mm hex bolt must be loosed, the brake mechanism aligned and retightened. I’ve had this problem most often after transporting bike with front tire off; the brake strikes things.
Promax brake lever that came with the bike and works.
Promax brake lever that came with the bike and works.






































Rack: Planet Bike Versarack ($20)

Panniers: Orlieb Back Roller (not classic)

Other Packs/Bike Bags: Walmart Bell fuel tank bag with clear plastic touch-able top to hold iPhone 5 or SE in view for navigating ($15), Bell underseat bag for holding space tube, tire levers and patch kit ($10), Jandd frame pack ($34) with spare spokes, Alien tool, Leatherman, other.

Tires: Continental Top Contact II 700×47 (about 1.85″ wide). So sexy and exciting, first time I’ve ever had proper new tires 🙂 Tubes: 180 gram Conti-tube 700×47 40mm schrader. Metal stem protects against rim rub.

Pedals: flats with old school toe cages (toe clips)

Saddle: Adamo spit saddle Road Gel


Shoes; Merrell Moab GorTex

Puff; Outdoor Research Cathode Hoody

Pant: Prana Convertible Zion Pant

Shirts: Icebreaker Oasis 200 Bodyfit Graphic Long sleeve T’s (2), one short sleeve.

Socks; icebreaker wool hiker light crew, conti-wool bike sock

Cycling Shorts(2): Craft Puncheur shorts with pad, Nishiki shorts with pad


Sleeping Bag: Mountain Hardware synthetic hyperlamina Flame +20

Mattress: Sea to Summit Ultra Light air

Tent: Big Anges Fly Creek UL 2

Ground tarp: Tyvek housewrap

Hammock tent and fly? See article here soon.







Spare Spokes

Cassette Tool

Chain whip?



Leave a Reply