Some trivia on the bikes and gear of Long Riders!

February 12, 2017

Apparently the manga version of Long Riders! is much more explicit about what real-world bikes all of the protagonists rode than the anime was (as usual, the anime altered most brand names). This report on the manga volume 5 release names everyone's bikes, and this Reddit comment has more specific model numbers (and see also this Reddit comment on Ami's road bike).

The first surprise here is that Makino, the brand name of Saki's bike, is a real Japanese bike maker and is used un-altered in the anime. In fact, Makino has put together a web page on Saki's bike, with full specifications if you can read Japanese, and seems to be quite happy to be associated with the manga and the anime.

Ami, Aoi, and Hinako all ride unsurprising bikes. Ami and Aoi have basically normal aluminum frame road bikes, with Aoi's being more expensive (and having some carbon fiber parts); Hinako rides a more expensive, higher end carbon fiber bike that's nominally more of a race bike. The twin surprises to me are Yayoi and Saki. Yayoi is riding a custom-built steel frame bike, which is well out of the ordinary for road bikes. Saki is riding a carbon fiber road bike, which is perfectly normal as a bike but is unusual for her because stereotypically the type of randonneuer who wants to go to Paris-Brest-Paris will ride a steel framed touring bike (although apparently an increasing number of people are doing PBP and similar long brevets on carbon fiber bikes).

(You can get into a lot of arguments about whether steel frame road bikes are any heavier than aluminum road bikes, as actually kitted out in the field. Let's just say that if Yayoi wants a relatively light steel frame bike, she can get it. It won't be as light as Hinako's carbon fiber bike, though.)

As I discovered, the bike headlights Ami, Hinako, and Yayoi are using (especially in episode 11) appear to be the Cateye Volt 1200. This is a relatively high end bike light, but we already knew that Hinako and Yayoi liked to buy good but expensive gear. And it will put out 150 lumens for 15 hours and has swappable batteries, making the seven hour or so night ride in episode 11 reasonably sensible.

(It does raise the question of why Ami freaked out when her helmet light went out, since she could switch her headlight up to a much brighter mode. But, well, it's Ami.)

Ami, Aoi, Hinako, and Yayoi all use older style magnet based speed sensors for their bike computers. Ami has hers on her front wheel, which is the easy place to mount it; everyone else has theirs on their rear wheel, which is where more advanced people put it for various reasons. Saki has no sensor visible, which probably means that she has a modern accelerometer-based wireless speed sensor. Hinako is definitely using a GPS-based Garmin unit; I suspect that Yayoi and Saki are using a GPS based bike computer as well, and perhaps Aoi too.

(Theoretically GPS-based units don't need a speed sensor. But having one makes their speed readings more accurate, and we already know that Hinako and Yayoi buy good gear.)

One of the interesting questions is whether Ami is using clipless pedals or not. The anime never had any sequence of Ami trying to use these (and it's certainly a learning experience that's good for a certain amount of comedy), but her road bike's pedals are definitely dual-sided, where you can use regular shoes or clip in with special shoes, and in later episodes she's clearly using the clipless side and seems to be wearing special biking shoes that you use with clipless pedals. I suspect that the anime skipped this part of Ami's learning experiences in the interests of time, as it omitted other things from the manga.

(Everyone else is definitely using clipless pedals and shoes.)

This Reddit story links to several YouTube videos that match up various Long Riders! locations with their real world counterparts. Unsurprisingly, a lot of places in the anime are real places.

(I'm writing this entry down before everything Long Riders! related falls out of my head over time.)

Written on 12 February 2017.
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Last modified: Sun Feb 12 19:30:26 2017
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