Rucksacks and riding

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by StuartB, 22 Apr 2010.

  1. StuartB

    StuartB New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    Just joined so thought it only polite to say hello and ask a few questions.

    I have been forced by my wife to get on my bike because she resents giving me a lift to the station at 5.30 am every morning. That in itself isn't a problem. I got my next door neighboor (a real bike nut) to help me fix my Merida mountain bike. Alls well on that front now.

    However because my daily public transport commute is over 160 miles a day, I need to take not only my T60p laptop, my breakfast, lunch, snacks, and gym stuff it means I will have to get a larger rucksack or leave a lot of the stuff at home (which I can't really do)

    Would I be safe with a day sack ? I can't really use those bike bag things because at the other end of the public transport there is a 2.5 mile walk.

    I was thinking something along the lines of http://www.millets.co.uk/rucksacks/daysacks/product/094307.html as a medium sack. If I need to get a netbook instead of a full 15" laptop I suppose I could do that as well.

    Also once I get a bit more adventurous (ie used to it) I was thinking of biking the first leg which is 7.5 miles to get my first train. Would this be doable in under 30 mins ?

    Regards

    Stuart
     
  2. nigelb

    nigelb New Member

    You can cycle with a day sack, but you'd be far more comfortable using panniers.

    Some come with hidden straps, so can go on your shoulders too, may well cost more but would be a much better solution.

    And don't forget space for the waterproofs either!

    7.5 miles in under 30 minutes is possible, depending on you, the bike, and the roads, but to start with I'd expect it to take more like 45 mins!
    (My record for 7 miles is 29 mins, but I'm old and fat)

    Nige

    (ps, that's one hell of a daily commute!!!)
     
  3. BrumJim

    BrumJim Poster

    7.5 miles in 30 minutes is doable, but fair shifting. Particularly if it is an urban commute. I'm achieving an average rolling speed (ignoring traffic stops) of 15 mile/h over 6 miles, but a lot is stop start - did a 17 mile/h rolling average last week doing roads only.

    Would take a bit of fitness and a more speedy bike, though - lighter, no suspension, thin lightly-treaded tyres and all that.
     
  4. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Man or Moose!

    Location:
    Manchester
    You should be fine with the backpack on, as long as it sits on you properly. If it doesnt fit right (i.e. its putting all the weight on your shoulders and not your hips) it will be very unfomfortable. I cycle about 6 miles with an ill fitting backpack on with 30 litres of cat litter and a 3kg bag of ferret food in it about twice a month. It its is highly uncomfortable and the bike handling suffers greatly. Hence I slow down a lot. I dont know if the stuff you will be carrying weight this much, but be careful if carrying heavy stuff on your back.

    Also regarding your target pace, 7.5 miles in 30 mins is doable with some practice. I do ~8 miles in about 28 mins with a backpack carrying the usual, lunch, bike tools, electronic gadgets etc on my back through manchester city centre and out to the suburbs and I'm a newby (3 months on the bike), so far from a strong cyclist. Get some practice in, 1stly give yourself say 45 mins and just keep going faster and faster, maybe get a cheap HRM and strap it on while you ride and try not to go so fast you blow up after 4 miles or so ;)
     
  5. Guvnor

    Guvnor Active Member

    Location:
    Essex
    I use a Crumpler messenger bag for my commute and find it very comfortable and some also come with notepad case's inside. They have plenty of room for all the stuff that you've mentioned. If you've got a TK max store near you then have a look there. They always have them and for a quarter of the price you'll find them anywhere else.

    http://www.crumpler.co.uk/?categroy=Messenger_and_Glamma_Bags&page=products&category=1

    P.s Hello and welcome to the forums:smile:
     
  6. davidg

    davidg Well-Known Member

    Location:
    London
    pannier for me. it really depends on your preference. I hate the feeling of a ruck sack on me, particularly when it is hot...others dont like the extra weight on the bike
     
  7. Funk-Meister

    Funk-Meister New Member

    Location:
    whitstable, kent
    Man or mouse????

    Put the gear in your rucksack, put the rucksack on your back.....and ride like the wind. Its not difficult
     
  8. OP
    OP
    StuartB

    StuartB New Member

    I have to admit, it is a long day and long commute, but I enjoy the job.

    I will go and buy one when I get paid and see how I go. As for the riding, I will start with the local station, only 10-12 minutes away. Problem is that I hate the waiting round at the station. I have like 1 1/4 hour of waiting per day and if I rode to the next station, it would cut out a 25 minute wait. Just looking at all the options.

    I just wasn't sure if a day sack would be a danger as I already have gross motor disability (shoot co ordination)

    I cant wait to start :evil:
     
  9. lukesdad

    lukesdad Guest

    On monday morning and thurs evening I use a 60litre rucksack for bulk stuff for the week rest of the time use asmall backpack 42 miles one way. Not easy but you get used to it.
     
  10. Jmetz

    Jmetz Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Preston/Manchester
    yeah good question, im planning on cycling a trip over a few days, max jhourney being 50 miles one day.... plan on camping so will have to carry the lot between two of us..... is this do-able in the rucksack form?

    p.s sorry for butting in :biggrin:
     
  11. BrumJim

    BrumJim Poster

    Camping and touring is definitely a panniers job.
    Morning commute is OK with a rucksack.

    StuartB - go for it. Has your work place got a cycle-to-work scheme?
     
  12. Yes you'll be very lucky to go camping without a rack and panniers I would think. There are extreme tents that'll pack down but the very good ones are extremely expensive. Then of course you need sleeping bags, groundsheets and cooking gear. It's not going to go into a rucksack easily unless you buy one of those huge sacks from say, Berghous. And riding distances with one of them, heavily laden, is going to be no joke.
    Back to the OP, I have a 4.5 mile crostown commute which I do easily with a rucksack. It's a day sack that carries my netbook, literature and other odd n' ends, but has plenty of room left for gym kit if I need it. I can highly recommend the cheap rucksacks from Blacks (mine was £29.99 last year) and has taken a fair bashing in that time but still looks as good as new apart from a few scuffs. It is fairly leak-free (I hesitate to say waterproof) but my HUMP raincover sorts that. I would also reckon on 45 minutes for your
    7-mile ride, providing there are not too many climbs or busy junctions etc.

    Bill
     
  13. OP
    OP
    StuartB

    StuartB New Member

    My place of work definately DO have a cycle to work scheme. My place of work is an environmental education and protection department within the government so they couldn't not have it. :biggrin: Unfortunatly, I bought my bike before I knew of such a thing, so I ended up paying full whack for a middle of the road bike :tongue:

    On the positive side they do have showers and the like.

    Regarding the commute, In future I should be able to leave here at around the same time in the morning and get to the big station about 7 miles away. It won't save me any time or money (no difference in fairs as it is only one stop) but it will keep me a bit fitter as I sit on my ass pressing buttons all day!

    Ill get one of those rucksacks and give it a go!

    Regards

    Stuart
     
  14. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Man or Moose!

    Location:
    Manchester
    Go for it, you wont regret it, especially if you have showers, means you can just enjoy it and not worrying about stinking all day :tongue:
     
  15. McWobble

    McWobble Euthermic

    Location:
    Minkowski Space
    Panniers are the best option for carrying luggage on a bike - but not if you've got a 2.5 mile walk afterwards! A smallish rucksack shouldn't be a problem - I do a similar journey with one whenever I choose to cycle into work the long way on the road bike. Make sure it fits well and is comfortable when loaded. It's best to use a rucksack with a mesh back to allow air to circulate between your back and the sack so that means you don't end up with a horrible sweaty back - it makes things much more pleasant!

    Doing 7.5 miles in 30 minutes is certainly possible - if you're fit enough. It will probably take longer at first though. If your bike has knobbly mtb tyres, it's worth changing them for slick tyres as that'll give you an extra 1-2 mph. And if you're going to be leaving your bike at a train station, get at least one good lock (preferably two!) because stations are often targetted by bike thieves.
     
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