The Schlumpf Mountain Drive ist a planetary gear within the bottom bracket. Normally it is used in combination with one chain ring only. The direct gear (1:1) corresponds to the physical chain ring. The mountain drive (2.5:1) reduces the physical chain ring into a virtual one. Arithmetically the number of teeth of the real chain ring is divided by 2.5, or in other words, the gears are reduced by the factor 2.5. Thus a 70-teeth chain ring turns into 28-teeth.
Schlumpf with torque support, bottom bracket housing from Intercitybike.nl and 70-t. chain ring
Short version – my experience after 8,000 km
Rider: born 1962, 77 kg weight, annual riding 12,000 k and 100,000 meters up. For the time being I have used 2 different chain rings in my velomobil DF XL in combination with the MD.
This year we were able to test two pairs of trousers made by Maier. These long trousers are made of stretch fabrics. Being used to bike shorts we first thought, these trousers were not ideal for us, especially as you cannot zip-off the legs.
The sales staff at farhrrad24.de convinced us, that the zip-off-option is not always the best one. If you have pants like these, you can roll up the legs and fix them with a button. You will never miss the pant’s leg as it is always with you. We had the pants with us during our tour through the Caucasus. Ideal for early morning or late evening hours when it is a bit chilly. We often stayed on over 2,000 m altidude. But we also used the trousers to protect us against the burning sun. Dark colours are good on a tour as you hardly see any dirt on the fabric.
Whenever we entered a church or monastary, we just slipped the long trousers over our cycle shorts. Propper dress code in clerical buildings is a must, especially travelling as a guest in a country. Although some locals were more relaxed about this. The stretch allows an easy handling and it is very comfortable to wear even over the cycle shorts.
Since March 2017 we also ride velomobiles, fully enclosed recumbent bikes. The light summer trousers by Maier render their service even in cold temperatures as the velomobile give you a good shelter against the wind. It is much warmer in a velomobile than on a normal bike. And you do not need padded pants in the seats. Even with low temperatures we wear these trousers.
The Maier pants are part of our favourite clothes (not only) for cycling. They are comfortable and dry in the shortest time. Ideal for a lot of activities.
After a few trips with the Exped Mira III we searched for some improvements. Especially more protection against driving rain and bigger apses. And if the tent would even be lighter, we could be very happy. So we agsin looked for a suitable candidate and bought the tunnel tent Fjellheimen Superlight Camp 3 by Helsport.
Characteristics: bought 2015 for 900 €. It is a tunnel tent with one spacious apses and only one entrance. The Mira III has 2 entrances and 2 small apses. Weight and pac size of the Helsport: 1.850 g, 18 x 35 cm.
Which tent is the best? It should be light-weight, spacious, low pice, rain-proof, well ventilated, able to stand without pegs and quick drying. Nice to have. You obiously need to compromize. Our first mutual tent was the Mira III by Exped.
Camping? How horrible. It is cold an wet, isn’t it? With a proper tent, good mattresses and the right sleeping-bag you will find that camping is pretty cosy. Even so cosy that we normally prefer it to any guesthouse on the way. Referring to the mattress we have almost gone through the entire development during the years. The first one was a so-called termal mat, 1 kg heavy and large pack size. After that we had a Therm-a-rest mat.
Our present gear (left to right):
Sleeping bag Deuter Exosphere -8° (Brigitte), sleeping bag Deuter Exosphere -4° (Fritz), Therm-a-rest, Sea to Summit air mattress, Sea to Summit pillow
Wild camping? Not very hygenic, we often hear. You can follow a lot of strange discussions about body-hygene on various platforms. Like no washing just cleaning yourselve with wet wipes and airing the laundry would do. We prefer the classic method using water. The Ortlieb 10-liter-water-bagwith shower-adapter is a useful tool for the daily shower, laundry and washing up. Enough for all of it.
Normally we cook ourselves, unless we already had a warm meal during the day. The cooker including dishes and food fills at least one front wheel bag. Being independant from restaurants gives you the chance to camp outside of towns. Only question is: Which is the best system? As we have a Trangia storm-proof stove since 1985 there was no need to buy something new. The Trangia is indestructible but we looked for a more powerful fuel or gas burner.
(sorry for the video being in German only, but it is probably pretty good understandable)
In may 2017 Bergzeit.de supplied us with the Primus Onmifuel II for a test. In combination with new hard anodized pots by Trangia and a foldable windshieldthe cooking gear is 500 g lighter than the prevoius one (Trangia, Edelrid Hexon Multifuel). In our little test at home (see video) the Primus cooker showed a better performance than the Edelrid. The manufacturing quality seems better, the pots stand secure on the three-pod and the fine tuning of the flame ist absolutly fabolous. But see by yourself.
The test on a daily basis will follow during the trip through the Caucasus 2017.
Who on earth needs a chair for camping? But I (Brigitte) need some comfort. Maybe this is a concession to my age? I think I am too old to crouch on my packing bag or on the ground. During each journey we enjoy some particularly nice places to camp. Free view into the landscape, peace, animals and sunsets to watch or even friendly open hosts who let us stay on their ground. If you then sit on a comfy chair, enjoy the meal and a cool beer, it is double fun. That is why I want a good chair.