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  #46  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by tmotten View Post
The average trip would be about 25k km? New bearings should last that, surely.
Usually, but not always.

In 2008 I carried spare front wheel bearings on my ride across Russia ...... only have to a rear wheel bearing fail in Kazakhstan.

Last October I rode up to Birdsville (Central Australia) and destroyed front and rear wheel bearings - lots of (very) muddy roads and river/creek/flood plain crossings.

It is water/dirt ingress that destroys bearings and you can't always predict how wet/deep the roads are going to be.

In all 3 instances I had TOTAL failure - balls pulverised to a pulp and inner race / outer race all but destroyed before I reached somewhere where they could be replaced.
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  #47  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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as dust seals are a hell of a lot lighter and smaller than bearings wouldn't it be sensible just to carry them as a compromise?

When I get a new bike I normally get the wheels off to check the bearings/cush drive etc and popping a new seal in always seems sensible.
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  #48  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by mattcbf600 View Post
Well that explains why you have such a bad time with them - they're all out of date if they're the batch of PDFs that were ripped off the servers last year.
Alas, they aren't the ones Im talking about. I did actually use the PDF ones for Mozambique and ZAR from 2009. The prices were REALLY out of date (i think they just used the ones from the 2007 and didn't bother updating them )

I've bought lonely Planets for quite a few places and like someone posted above, you just end up in the same place as the other 100 people who have the same book. It's like its the ONLY place in town and always chocker full of tourists.. There HAS to be to palm greasing going on to get in the lonely planet as it really generates HUGE revenue to the ones at the top of the list. Although, sometimes it's nice to hang out with other travellers.

The LP's are VERY POORLY researched. They are shocking and not exactly cheap either.

How many times have you rolled past some amazing hostels, resorts, beaches etc etc and think "how the hell is this NOT in the LP"
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  #49  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Ted.

First of all you're pointing out that LP guides are not accurate after you have nicked the off the site or elsewhere and you have questionable data. We know for a fact there's a whole load of PDFs out there that have nothing to do with LP - but more precisely we know the vast majority of PDFs that are out in the wild are from old guides - for the most part scanned in south east asia from the old books - simple really - nick your LP PDF, get questionable data. Download the latest one from Lonely Planet for £2 and get the most up to date.

The guide books are researched on the ground by real people who lose their job if they reveal who they are (unlike Rough Guides who openly tell people who they are). For popular destinations (like London or Paris) the guides are constantly updated on 12 month publishing cycles. So you could end up with data 12 months out of date. However. The apps and website are kept up-to-the minute up to date - especially on things like prices.

For less popular destinations they're researched once every 12 months, with an 18 month publishing schedule. Which means you could have data that is 18 months out of date. This is hardly ideal but most travellers are clever enough to take a look inside the front cover where it tells you when it was researched - giving you an idea of how 'off' the prices or telephone numbers may be. So whilst the 'best hotel in town' - according to that particular author - wont move, it's prices may go up. Engage your brain Ted and use it as it's name suggests... a guide, not a bible. If you ONLY rely on the LP guide to tell you how much a hotel is going to be when it was written 12 months ago - you need to think again about traveling and perhaps hide yourself away.

Finally, on your point of - everyone ends up where LP recommends - that's actually a very fair call. LP offers a 'view' and only one particular 'view' of a location. It's supposed to be selective rather than exhaustive which is why the location chapters include sub-headings for 'areas of interest' as well as specific suggestions. In other words, read the book and you'll discover interesting out of the way places to go and find a hotel on your own - or - just skip to the listings information and go where everyone else goes. The point is you can use it either way. Your point about ending up in the same place as everyone else is as valid as me saying LP doesn't recommend a hotel because I've ignored the listings and only read the area summaries.

I can't believe I have to explain this to as intrepid a traveller as you Ted - Lonely Planet are one particular point of view. Use the bits that make sense and throw the rest away - it's why it's printed on such thin paper - so you can rip out pages and just take the bits you want. Use it as a GUIDE, not as a bible - and most importantly don't complain that the data is out of date if you're nicking it in the first place.

I worked my butt off making sure data was accurate in LP guides - we never got it to 100% but we also appreciated the majority of our users had enough sense to understand when stuff has been updated. Being an LP author is damn hard work, we do our best to make sure that we provide something of use - at least we get out there and research stuff on the ground - which is more than can be said about all the other guide books in the European market.

Rant over.

Summary:

* Don't nick guides and then complain it's out of date
* Get the latest content from the book for £2
* Get the latest prices and phone numbers from the website before you leave or when you're on the road
* Buy the apps for £4.99 and make sure you ALWAYS have the latest data ALWAYS updated free of charge with mapping and GPS that works without a data connection so you don't end up with massive data charges.
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  #50  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by mattcbf600 View Post
Ted.

First of all you're pointing out that LP guides are not accurate after you have nicked the off the site or elsewhere and you have questionable data. We know for a fact there's a whole load of PDFs out there that have nothing to do with LP - but more precisely we know the vast majority of PDFs that are out in the wild are from old guides - for the most part scanned in south east asia from the old books - simple really - nick your LP PDF, get questionable data. Download the latest one from Lonely Planet for £2 and get the most up to date.

The guide books are researched on the ground by real people who lose their job if they reveal who they are (unlike Rough Guides who openly tell people who they are). For popular destinations (like London or Paris) the guides are constantly updated on 12 month publishing cycles. So you could end up with data 12 months out of date. However. The apps and website are kept up-to-the minute up to date - especially on things like prices.

For less popular destinations they're researched once every 12 months, with an 18 month publishing schedule. Which means you could have data that is 18 months out of date. This is hardly ideal but most travellers are clever enough to take a look inside the front cover where it tells you when it was researched - giving you an idea of how 'off' the prices or telephone numbers may be. So whilst the 'best hotel in town' - according to that particular author - wont move, it's prices may go up. Engage your brain Ted and use it as it's name suggests... a guide, not a bible. If you ONLY rely on the LP guide to tell you how much a hotel is going to be when it was written 12 months ago - you need to think again about traveling and perhaps hide yourself away.

Finally, on your point of - everyone ends up where LP recommends - that's actually a very fair call. LP offers a 'view' and only one particular 'view' of a location. It's supposed to be selective rather than exhaustive which is why the location chapters include sub-headings for 'areas of interest' as well as specific suggestions. In other words, read the book and you'll discover interesting out of the way places to go and find a hotel on your own - or - just skip to the listings information and go where everyone else goes. The point is you can use it either way. Your point about ending up in the same place as everyone else is as valid as me saying LP doesn't recommend a hotel because I've ignored the listings and only read the area summaries.

I can't believe I have to explain this to as intrepid a traveller as you Ted - Lonely Planet are one particular point of view. Use the bits that make sense and throw the rest away - it's why it's printed on such thin paper - so you can rip out pages and just take the bits you want. Use it as a GUIDE, not as a bible - and most importantly don't complain that the data is out of date if you're nicking it in the first place.

I worked my butt off making sure data was accurate in LP guides - we never got it to 100% but we also appreciated the majority of our users had enough sense to understand when stuff has been updated. Being an LP author is damn hard work, we do our best to make sure that we provide something of use - at least we get out there and research stuff on the ground - which is more than can be said about all the other guide books in the European market.

Rant over.

Summary:

* Don't nick guides and then complain it's out of date
* Get the latest content from the book for £2
* Get the latest prices and phone numbers from the website before you leave or when you're on the road
* Buy the apps for £4.99 and make sure you ALWAYS have the latest data ALWAYS updated free of charge with mapping and GPS that works without a data connection so you don't end up with massive data charges.
I really don't want to take this thread anymore off topic so i'll keep my post short and it will be my last on LP...

I didn't know you were a contributor. You're no doubt one of the better ones.

I've got a shelf FULL of paid for LP's.. I've always been disappointed.
My PDF's are the same. I've checked them to mine and others in hostels etc. I didn't nick them off the net. They were given to me from someone who bought them.

If you buy a book for £20.. Should you then have to buy an Ap ?

Maybe they're researched. But not thoroughly and not every edition. The prices are WAY OFF and their information WAY OUT... Especially in Africa. If my book says "******** 2011, I don't expect the prices to be from 2005.. That's even if the place you've ridden too hasn't closed down two years before you get there...

And yes of course, all information is subjective but there is a very good reason why so many are dumped in hostels...

I think we should start a LP & guide book thread... It's an interesting topic ! Too big for a thread Hijack ! (yes, im guilty)


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  #51  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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I appreciate very well the difficulty in keeping a guide book up to date. I also appreciate the hard work and conscientious efforts made by some of the authors.

But when vast tracts are repeated (and I don't just mean the history sections) from one issue to the next, where information in the first was out of date or inaccurate and this is compounded as the years and issues pass, that an updated version has less information than before, has maps worse than before and seems to move away from it's original core market of budget and middle budget travellers - then I began to have my doubts as to the worth of having one at all.

Both of you are right in that one defends that it should be a guide and not a bible, which is how they should be treated, but the other has a line of acceptability of the information more in keeping with my own thoughts.

I spent many years leading overland expeditions to, through and around Africa and Asia and invariably on every trip I'd have more than one argument with a group member over the information about something that I knew about from a personal visit not many weeks before and they believing the info in a brand new guide book they'd bought specially for the trip.
If I said a place is crap and some author said it was good, it may have been when they visited anything up to years before, it isn't now but because the info was so far out of date - and the prices often no where near what they are now - I'd end up with more hassle than a little.

Lay me out in a guide book a history of the place, give me some decent maps and a few (but not many) photos for flavour, point me in the direction of what there might be to see and places of note in the city/area (Embassies, Bus station, railway station, government buildings etc ) - but keep your opinions and editors picks to yourself thankyouverymuch.
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  #52  
Old 11 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by mattcbf600 View Post
Use the bits that make sense and throw the rest away - it's why it's printed on such thin paper - so you can rip out pages and just take the bits you want.

You reckon you can get them to put that in the how to use the guide section? I used to do this when I was backpacking and every time without fail I was looked at like I was ripping pages out of the bible by mostly noob travellers. Really shat me. Most of them treated it like a souvenir carrying massive books around when only a small portion was used.
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  #53  
Old 12 Apr 2011
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as dust seals are a hell of a lot lighter and smaller than bearings wouldn't it be sensible just to carry them as a compromise?
Sadly Henry, by the time you check and find a dust seal has gone south and needs replacing it is usually too late to save the bearing.
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  #54  
Old 13 Apr 2011
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Sorry, off topic alert, but I'm curious.

Matt Cartney - the Belizean rules on turning left off a road where there is traffic in both directions, which are different from anywhere else I've been.

Errrrr..... can you explain?
Yes, lets see if I can explain!

Essentially, imagine you are driving down an ordinary road, on the right, as they do in Belize. You have a cars behind you and cars coming towards you on the other side of the road. You come to a left turn you want to take. - You can't simply indicate left, come to a stop and wait until there is a gap in the traffic coming towards you. You have to pull over to your right to let the cars behind you pass. Only when you are not blocking traffic behind you and there is a gap in the traffic coming towards you can you take the left turn.

Believe me, it took a while for the guy in the rental shop to explain this to us!

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  #55  
Old 13 Apr 2011
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Originally Posted by Matt Cartney View Post
Yes, lets see if I can explain!

Essentially, imagine you are driving down an ordinary road, on the right, as they do in Belize. You have a cars behind you and cars coming towards you on the other side of the road. You come to a left turn you want to take. - You can't simply indicate left, come to a stop and wait until there is a gap in the traffic coming towards you. You have to pull over to your right to let the cars behind you pass. Only when you are not blocking traffic behind you and there is a gap in the traffic coming towards you can you take the left turn.

Matt
Sounds just like a Melbourne hook turn Matt. We have around 20 intersections in the centre of town where you have to do that - the objective being to prevent turning vehicles from blocking trams trying to proceed through the intersection.
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  #56  
Old 13 Apr 2011
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Sounds just like a Melbourne hook turn Matt. We have around 20 intersections in the centre of town where you have to do that - the objective being to prevent turning vehicles from blocking trams trying to proceed through the intersection.
Yes, it probably is. I'd never come across it before and didn't really get it from the rental guys description - it was only when I saw someone do it that I understood!

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  #57  
Old 13 Apr 2011
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Sounds just like a Melbourne hook turn Matt. We have around 20 intersections in the centre of town where you have to do that - the objective being to prevent turning vehicles from blocking trams trying to proceed through the intersection.
+1

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  #58  
Old 16 Apr 2011
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Have just finished packing for my next trip and there was a huge difference in the amount of luggage compared to last time, but essentially I need to do the same things: ride, stay warm, stay dry, brush my teeth, eat sleep and fix the bike as required.

First trip I took some H&B Gobi panniers, and an ortlieb roll bag and picked up a camel bag (as in a bag made to go over a camel, not the water carrier thingy)
This time it all fitted in a single top box and took an hour to pack, get in!

Admittedly I was going a lot further last time but have just found a bag full of clutch plates, cable etc that I never used (plus I took enough tools to do a full strip and rebuild, E&C style! This time I'm taking a spare chain and sprockets, an air filter, an oil filter and spare cables. Job done.
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  #59  
Old 16 Apr 2011
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This time I'm taking a spare chain and sprockets, an air filter, an oil filter and spare cables. Job done.
Fit a scottoiler, get a DID X-ring and steel JT sprockets and your chain & sprockets should last 15,000 miles !!

Mine lasted UK-Capetown on a bike with no cush drive and only 520 pitch.

I only carry a split link now just in case...


Where you off to ???
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the chain and sprockets on the bike haven't got that much left but should get me to Romania or so. In Greece I'm giving the bike to Adastra whos going into the Middle East so am not sure how much benefit a scottoiler would have been - I was cursing mine in the desert before it caught fire! Plus it ain't my bike so am keeping it to the basics

I got a heavy duty O-ring chain and steel sprockets, as long as she and I keep it lubed it should last ok......

Plus I'm off in an hour and still need to fix a screen and change the oil.

Last edited by henryuk; 16 Apr 2011 at 11:58. Reason: missing info
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