VAEGABOND - New equipment & a breakdown after 2,5 years of the world tour

After 2,5 of traveling around the world, new equipment & a breakdown Hello from Georgia! Again?! Oh yes, but let me tell everything from the start. We were back home for a short while. It was very nice seeing family and friends again. We were also able to take care of our damaged eqiupment there. Our bike world trip already has been going for over 2,5 years, more than 17.500km and 18 countries. We already went through extreme temperatures between -15°C and over 45°C as well as all kinds of weather conditions like snow, hail, floodings, rain, fog and even sandstorms in the Sahara. But our equipment also had to hold against different street conditions or high bike loads. Not to forget that we would use it all the time and every day. Some equipment objects were able to serve us well, others couldn't withstand the sometimes extreme conditions of our tour. After more than 2,5 years we were totally overdue to optimize our setup, replace many things or to switch to other products.

For that reason, here is the packing list. Here you get to our equipment for 5 years of traveling the world: There we also give a quick look into why we use certain stuff or why we switched to that equipment object. With our Rohloff on the other hand, we had no problems the past 2,5 years. We love this hub and are very happy with it!

During our time in Germany we maintained our bikes and of course we worked a lot to pepare many new blog articles. We will now publish these bit by bit. For example we were often asked how we work on the way. We even wrote two articles about this. Firstly about the topic „Digital Nomads – cutting films on the way “ and „Outdoor Podcast“, how we record our podcasts and what we use for that. Besides that there's also Tipps from 2,5 years outdoor cooking and what you can use for the „outdoor kitchen“.

Then we publishes a trailer about the past 2,5 years of our world tour and and summarized all of our articles so far. Because the most often asked question we got was: what does a world tour on a bike even cost? We documented all that including acquisition costs in our blog article.

Now we're back on the road, again in Georgia and again there was adventure and action from the first minute on. Unfortunately we realized after our arrival, that there was something wrong with Dani's Rohloff. We assume, that something sharp got under the sealing lip and the Rohloff got leaky because of that, but like, really leaky. Freshly refilled oil completely leaked in just a few minutes. Of course we had the oil to refill every 5.000km with us. Though we used up our reserves and the problem wasn't solved either. Of course the Rohloff is tough and we could've gone a little further even without oil. The problem was, that in the next 5.000 to 10.000km, there was neither a Rohloff merchant, nor any service options. In addition to that, there was no place like Georgia to recieve packages. Therefore „just going on“ would've just made the problem worse. Luckily Rohloff has an excellent service. After a short research, where we could actually recieve a package, they instantly sent a package to Georgia. Again, many thanks to our contact man at Rohloff!

The only thing we still needed was a chain whip to loosen the pinion to clean the spots. This was not really easy to find, so we had to get creative. So we opened our bike chain and fixiated it with spikes on a piece of wood. The principle was genius, but our construction was unfortunatly not strong enough. So we tried something new bit by bit. Dani had another idea. We built in the rear wheel and the pinion puller, fixiated everything and pedaled backwards. That worked very well, but unfortunately, there was not enough thread protrusion on the sprocket side when installed to screw the nut on. Because of that, the bike only went forwards. So we needed a new solution.

After a lot of back and forth, we went back to the idea with a self-made chain whip. Dani fixiated a few spikes, small vice and wood as the chain protection on the handle of an old axe. And voilà, the DIY chain whip was done. We were actually successful with this new construction and so we could loosen the pinion and finally repair everything. The method worked out really well and nothing was damaged or scratched. In case you also get into an emergency like this, and don't have a chain wip with you, you should really make sure, that the spikes or screws don't damage the chain. If possible, you should always pad. 

Now we can finally go on, in fact straight to Jerewan, the capital of Armenia. Yes exactly, we've been there before ;) That's why we want to get back to the point where we last stopped as soon as possible - just before the border to Iran. And then a new chapter of our world tour begins!

Best wishes from on the way
Melli & Dani

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