I am new to bicycling and i don't have a clue as to what is necessary for a long distance bike trip. I am not sure that the Podium Three will fit my queen sized mattress. Most of the racks available will only hold up to thirty pounds and my TV weighs at least that much. Should i get a bike that is better suited for longer distances with more weight, or should i just try to modify my current bike to fit the purpose.

P.S. The Diamondback Podium Three is hydro-formed aluminum frame with 105 components(10 speed cassette). it weighs around 20 lbs and is classified as an endurance road bike. It has no mounting points for a rack.

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i am also kidding about the tv and mattress.

  • 2
    Your queen sized mattress and TV? Dec 20 '14 at 6:06
  • Unsuitable, I'm afraid, for anything other than lightweight "supported" touring. Due to the AL frame you risk damage if you put substantial weight on a clamp-on rack. I recommend looking at the REI Randonee -- a relatively moderately priced tourer but decent quality and can handle anything. Dec 20 '14 at 13:34

This bike is a poor choice for any touring where you have to carry things (if you're doing a supported tour, you may be able to pass with it). It doesn't have rack+fender mounts and doesn't have particularly tough wheels.

Depending on the type of touring you're doing, you should look at some touring bikes like the Surly Long Haul Trucker or Trek 520. Typically, these are made of steel (repairable), have lots of rack and fender mounts (so you can carry stuff and not get wet), bar end shifters (simpler and less prone to failure than brifters), a wide range of gearing (so you can tackle hills efficiently), tough wheels (36 spokes typically, so they don't break), good tire clearance (fat tires = more weight carrying ability and nicer ride) and a relaxed geometry (so you're not in pain after a long day of riding).

The bike you choose (and how you modify it) for touring will depend on the type of tour you plan to do. But generally, you need to pack light.

  • Fully agree. That this bike has no mounts speaks volumes in terms of what the manufacturers envisage it being used for.
    – PeteH
    Dec 20 '14 at 12:15
  • I really don't understand why the manufacturer wouldn't put rack mounts on every bike. It would only add a negligible amount of weight, and most people wouldn't even see them unless they were looking for them. Maybe the bike couldn't handle carrying 100+ lbs on the rack, but it would be convenient to be able to attach a rack with a couple small bags for carrying light cargo when needed.
    – Kibbee
    Dec 20 '14 at 12:26
  • 2
    @Kibbee - But added mounts don't look "lean and mean", and appearance is probably a big reason why he bought that bike in the first place. Dec 20 '14 at 13:31
  • @Kibbee To a lot of roadie weight weenies, there is no such thing as a "negligible amount of weight."
    – jimchristie
    Dec 22 '14 at 15:29
  • @jimrings until they get rid of the UCI minimum weight limit, there's no point in trying to remove useful features in order to save a few grams. At this point, most pros are adding things like power meters and even ballast weights just to say their bike weighs enough.
    – Kibbee
    Dec 22 '14 at 15:36

Yes, you can use that bike for touring. Probably not "proper loaded touring" which is the most traditional type, but light touring, i.e. sleeping in hotels and not carrying a lot of food or luxury items like a laptop.

You have a few options to outfit the bike with a modest amount of cargo capacity:

  • Tubus Fly Classic rear rack with the Tubus QR axle adaptor kit. Then buy some small "front" panniers. The bags need to be quite "narrow" from front to rear to avoid heel strike, i.e. to provide enough clearance for your shoes to go around on the pedals. If the bike is very small this will be tricky.
  • "Bikepacking," i.e. smaller bags which directly attach using velcro. Revelate Designs and Apidura are popular currently. You can get a large saddle bag which holds a surprising amount of clothing (enough for a warm-weather trip for sure), and/or a frame bag which mounts inside the main triangle.
  • A handlebar bag, which is useful on almost any touring bike. Since you have drop bars, you may want one with a QR stem mount that sets it away from the front of the bars a bit. This adds some weight, but lets you use the tops of the bars more effectively. Extra hand positions while touring are useful.
  • A backpack. Sort of a last resort as far as I'm concerned, but definitely an option for shorter tours, or if you're quite fit.
  • A trailer. Not aesthetically very compatible with your bike I suppose, but this gives you enough capacity to actually carry a television, and you can use it with almost any type of bike. Get this if you're a hoarder.

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