The Adventure Cycling Association, a nonprofit supported by its 40,000 members (as of 2011), develops bicycle touring routes and organizes tours in the USA, and provides a wealth of useful information for bicycle tourists. From 1999 through 2007, Sheldon wrote the column "Mechanical Advantage" for Adventure Cyclist, the Adventure Cycling Association's magazine. The articles are available online, and they are linked here.
-- John Allen
Sheldon wrote the lead article for this guide. The information on specific bicycles is dated; the general information is timeless.
Spend a little time now and avoid trouble later.
For any bicyclist who rides in wet weather or even only on wet roads, fenders make the difference between misery and relative comfort, and spare the bicycle a lot of wear. Types, compatibility, installation.
Sheldon proposes a new way to describe bicycle gearing.
Install yours like a pro.
The advent of threadless headsets.
Hand and handlebar position for tourists.
It's a science and an art to wrap the bars.
The argument for saddles of the traditional kind.
Types of seatposts; choosing a seatpost.
How to adjust a seatpost and saddle.
How to adjust a derailer and perform on-road repairs.
Toe clips? clip-in pedals? Adjustment? Where to position the foot?
How to choose, modify and use cranks and chainrings, with special attention to the needs of touring cyclists riding long days and carrying baggage.
Front derailleur setup and choice for touring bikes.
Keeping all 465 parts of your chain in working order.
Why settle for stock gearing, when you can easily have exactly what you want?
Steel is real, but good design is more important than frame material.
Is an internal-gear hub suitable for touring? A single-speed?
Internal-gear hub? Derailer gears? Why not both?
Tourists need reliable wheels, not racing wheels and not boutique wheels!
How to get on and get off.
Should touring bikes have disc brakes?.
Straight bars, flat bars or, believe it or not, both?
A classic touring-wheel size sees a resurgence.
Tires for touring -- the good, the bad and the knobby.
Sidepull, centerpull, cantilever, direct-pull and disk brakes: advantages and disadvantages, compatibility with frames, fenders, racks.
An appreciation by John Schubert.
Last Updated: by Harriet Fell