Bicycle Touring

Whats in a wheel?

The Gypsy, its a 29" 700c, 27.5 and a bit. do everything dirt road, monstercross, tourer machine. But I hear people saying that its go OH SO Uncool 29"er wheels, well sorry for being uncool, but you know you can stick 27.5 MTB wheels on their if you want?

Penhale Gypsy tires

Penhale Gypsy tires

Anyhoo, thats kind of a copout statement. I designed the Gypsy around 700c/29"er wheels for a reason. There's just more of a tire choice. One one side of things, there's the 700c x 40 and up road or touring tire option, then on the same rim you can drop in a 29" x 2.2 trail tire to take you further. If you're in the middle of nowhere and need a tire, there's a lot better chance you'll find a Schwalbe Marathon in 700c/29" than you will that ultralight 650b Road Plus tire that you thought was so cool.

I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with Road Plus, in fact I kind of like it on one of my prototype frames, BUT on the Gypsy 700c/29" is just the right size of tire. 

Speaking of prototypes, I'm working on a few new designs, plus finally getting some of the Vagabonds and B'Stards into the hands of people. Yes I know they're showing as sold out, but Thats because our tiny frame factory can only make so many at a time - and we're filling back orders - So if you'd like one drop me a message and I'll get you one the list!

Name *

Tools for Adventure!

So a couple of weeks ago on the question was asked of five people in the bikepacking community, whats in your tool kit. Some of the items were standard, some a little eclectic. But all serve a purpose. 

Right after the story was published, a few others posted their kits on Instagram laying bare their keep them rolling down the road kits and I (of course) jumped in with mine.

Considering I'm a tool nerd, bordering on being a tool hoarder, I consider my personal adventure tool kit to be sufficient to get me back on the trail, without being too heavy. I can get myself back from almost anywhere and maybe survive an apocalypse. On a daily tour basis I use the chain lube, the pump and the Leatherman. The Opinel knife serves duty in the "kitchen" and also for occasional maintenance/repair. For the most part its a get me home kit, with a bias towards fixing tires, as usually thats the first thing to let you down or cause a problem. 

My tool kit for adventure!

My tool kit for adventure!

So I know what you're asking, whats in the bag?

Opinel #4 mostly for cheese, but sometimes repair
Leatherman Original small - proably the most used tool in the kit
Crank Brothers multi tool
Park Tool mini chain tool
Park Tool multi spoke wrench
Blackburn Mountain pump with Gorilla tape
Finish Line wet chain lube and rag
Spare tire sealant, currently latex but I'll go Finish Line when I replace my tires
Altoids tire repair kit, patches, glue, Superglue, needle/thread for big tire cuts, tire plugs.
Planet BIke Co2 Inflator and 2 16g cartridges
Spare nuts, bolts, chain links, chain connector, disc brake pads, valves.
Spare cable
Spare derailleur hanger

Lastly one of my favorite pieces of kit is my Fiber Fix spoke repair kit. If you've ever broken a spoke you know how much of a pain it can be, Sure you can carry a spare spoke or 2, but then what if you friend breaks spoke, will it fit? What if its behind the freewheel/cassette, do you carry the tools for that? The cool thing about the FIber Fix kit is that it doesn't require you to remove the cassette, or even the wheel. and it fits pretty much any size wheel. While its a repair that good enough to get you to the next town with a bike shop, I once rode over 350 miles with on installed! We carry them in the store and they're cheap (light) insurance.

Fiber Fix spoke repair kit

Fiber Fix spoke repair kit

So what do you carry on tour? What would you like to se in the Penhale store? Leave us a comment 


And we're off and rolling...


So it's been almost 2 years since I started working on Penhale, but now we're rolling. There have been challenges along the way that I won't bore you with, needless to say I'm happy to say that the first frames are on order and we hope to ship the first of the Gypsy models in early April. 

If you're interested in one of our frames, click on the "Pre-Order" button on the relevant frame model page in the shop and we'll get back to you on delivery ASAP.

In the mean time, keep up to date on our Facebook page, here on this blog and have a read of our adventures where our first story will be a 3 part story from a trip we took a little over a year ago.

Time for coffee, cheers