As with job change, my commute is stretched now to 25km, I decided to slightly upgrade my commuter. At first, tired Continentals been replaced with heavier but bulletproof Schwalbe Marathon 28Cx622. (I had actually a dilemma to choose between Conti Gatorskin and Schwalbe Marathon both 28mm) Done app. 300km, and must say I’m really pleased how they rolling, plus zero punctures so far. Also I needed a compromise. Something suitable for gravel and still rolling nicely on tarmac (so that’s why Conti’s lost to Schwalbe). Marathons doing the job nicely. 5/5 stars, big thumbs up.


Next change was old Avenir pannier, which caught spokes couple of times and had holes all over the place. This time went for Ortlieb. Ortlieb got very good reviews on Internet and set up a standard in terms of “waterproofness”.


The only problem people mentioning all over Internet is lack of internal pockets. So heavier stuff is slowly traveling to the bottom and at the end of a ride, you fishing out keys 5 minutes. I sorted it by sewing a pocket with edges stiffened by pieces of plastic from milk bottle. and then forcing screws (which  keep hooks) through the fabric/plastic to keep it in place inside. Job done in 40 minutes including “scratching head phase”. Quick and maybe not glamorous solution, but as is not visible I don’t care. Very pleased with pannier as well. Pictures below will help to understand what I’m talking about.

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The biggest suprise was actually pump from Lidl. Costs £3.99 (!). Got flexible hose hidden inside pump when not used, alloy body, both ends sealed by rubber cups. Overall, similar design to Topeak and Lezyne but for the 1/5 of the money. Bloody amazing thing, easily can pump 120psi! Very pleased, but hopefully won’t be used too much with Marathons 😉

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And now quiz. What is characteristic to all three things I mentioned?


All of the made in Germany. 😉

Keep them rolling. Adam