I rode what's essentially a stock Brompton folding bike. It's a 14 year old Brompton M6R folding bicycle that I'd bought second-hand a couple of years ago as an M3L. I'd modernised the brake levers and calipers, converted it to 6 speed (the range being 33.1" to 100" with the 50T chainring) and fitted a pannier rack. I used a Brooks saddle which I’ve cycled over 30,000 miles on. I use Ergon GP1 grips to prevent ulnar nerve problems. I ride with Schwalbe AV4 innertubes and Marathon Plus tyres. I have Son dynamo, Edelux II front and rear lights and have the ability to charge batteries from the dynamo during daylight hours using a Sinewave Revolution converter.
With luggage the bike weighed over 27kg. With water and food over 30kg.
- Kask Helmet - With reflective stickers and tape
- Adjustable reflective & hi-vis strap - Lightweight way to add visibility to all cycling tops
- 3x Nike compression 'under' shorts - I prefer these runner's shorts to cyclist's bib shorts
- 1x Endura padded shorts - Brought in case the saddle got painful, but didn't need to use
- 2x Icebreaker merino t-shirts - These are brilliant, I wear them all year round for cycling. Look expensive, but still haven't worn out over 5 years wearing at least once per week..
- 2x long-sleeve North Face tops - Again, great for cycling in all year round over the t-shirt
- 1x pair Teva sandals - These have a nice firm sole
- 1x pair PHD thin wool socks - Wore these going to breakfast in b&bs
- 1x Gore AS jacket - Have been using Gore AS jackets for years, as they really are breathable and waterproof
- 1x Uniqlo bodywarmer - Decided to bring this last-minute instead of a sleeping bag
- 1x Rapha hi-vis insulated gilet
- 1x pair Castelli mitts - Love these, again been using this brand and model for years
- 1x pair Castelli mitt inserts - For super long rides I cut out the padded section from an old pair of mitts to put inside my mitts, giving twice the cushioning. Pro tip. You heard it hear first ;)
- 1x full length Gore gloves - Didn't use
- 1x pair Prendas Meraklon arm warmers - happy with these
- 1x pair Castelli nanoflex leg warmers - These were ok the first time I wore them, but annoying repeatedly kept falling down whilst cycling on later uses, so would look for another solution for next time
- 1x merino buff
- 1x pair divers socks - Brought in case feet got cold, but didn't use
- 2x running caps - I prefer these to cycling caps as they keep more sun out of my eyes / rain off of my glasses
- Belt - Slim belt for my cycling shorts
- 1x pair Endura Hummvee shorts - I love these, but Endura have replaced them with a newer version which I don't like :(
- 1x pair Gore waterproof shorts - Didn't use
- Bikebox - B&W Foldon - Has four wheels, so is VERY easy to cart around the airport, and folds when not in use for easier storage at home. Great purchase.
- Lock - TiGr mini - I really like this mid-level security lock. It
wouldn't satisfy my insurance company as it does not have a 'sold secure' rating, but it is light, and gave me
peace of mind when disappearing into a petrol station for 10 minutes.
- Water bottles - 2x 1 litre, 1x Camelbak 710ml - I really like the camelbak drinking 'spout'. The two one litre bottles were just used to store water, which I would decant into the camelbak to drink out of whilst on the go. I'd often have a spare bottle of energy drink or coke in my bag in case of running low
- 5x innertubes - Shwalbe AV4 - I like these as they have a metal ring which prevents the inner tube being pushed into the tyre when you are attaching the pump, and the valve caps are see-through so you can turn them into lights for your glow-in-the-dark wheels. Didn't use.
- 1x Schwalbe Kojak folding tyre - Didn't use
- 2x Park Tool TB-2 tyre boots - Didn't use. Have used since, and found that in the hot weather the sticky glue melted, seeped away from the patch and caused the inner tube to burst. So would not use these, and instead use something without adhesive
- 2x Park tool tyre levers - Didn't use
- 1x Park tool GP-2 patches - Didn't use
- 1x Mini floor pump - Used every few days to keep the tyres between 100 and 110psi
- Gloves - the black nitrile ones are way more robust than the white ones
- Park Tool Allen Keys (plus adaptor for pedal bolt)
- Dumbell Spanner
- Small screwdriver
- Spoke key - The DT Swiss nipple wrench is better than the rest!
- Chain tool
- Small adjustable spanner
- Thin 15mm spanner
- Zip ties
- Electrical insulation tape - Used to fix front light bracket
- Plastic bags
- Chainring spanner
Other bike spares
- 44T chainring
- Chainring bolts
- Spare spokes and nipples
- Foil blanket
- First aid kit
- Tape, kitchen paper
- Baby wipes
- Water purifier tablets
- Hand sanitizer
- Pro plus
- Antihistamine tablets in
- Anadin Extra (aspirin, paracetamol, caffeine)
- Ibuprofen - Super useful!
- Chamois cream - Applied once daily!
- Midge repellent - Used when sleeping out
- Factor 50 sun cream
- Casio watch - For alarm clock when sleeping out
- Head torch
- Spare front light
- 2 battery packs
- 2x garmin 810
- 2 sets of charging cables
- Glasses lens cloth
- Flight details
- Race insurance - I used DogTag
- Paper map of TAW - I donated this to one of the B&Bs I stayed at
What I was missing
If doing it again, it would be useful to have a wider gear range; so a non-Brompton customisation to allow easier climbing of steep hills with the loaded bike, and not to spin out on the flats and downhills.
I'd take a spare dynamo light mounting bracket. These things aren't really fit for purpose and break every so often.