Set of photos from Cycling in Korea over the past year 2010-2011
5:23 AM (6 hours ago)
No worries. Just remember that durability is more important than sophistication especially if you are in the wilds. Any advice, apart from this, is useless as you will develop your own methods, equipage, and philosophy as you proceed. You will however find that eating, FOOD, will become an insistent preoccupation. Seat, tyres, food, in that order, are probably the pressing concerns of any long-distance cyclist and if you read accounts written by those who have done long trips these are abiding issues.
If you prepare some good documentation, I have a pal who still keeps his hand in the bicycle world, a former racer, shop owner, friends with most of the early bicycle pioneers, now living in Montreal who might be a good person to send footage. When the time comes, I will be glad to provide introductions.
You must remember that in this place, and in the sort of job we are doing, most people are really not 'here,' it is just an adventure, and the usual social mechanisms are not operating. People who race bicycles are a different breed from those who like to go long distances, much like comparing sprinters with marathoners: the subject is the same, the philosophies differ.
Good luck. Don't expect things to go as you plan. Enjoy the people as much as the act of riding. Be prepared for serendipity. There is something about long distance bicycle travel that brings out the best in most people.
Let me be perfectly candid about riding bicycles long distances, which I have for quite some time: it is not a question of technology. Fancy equipment, electronic gear, all of it is useless if you have a flat tyre or bust casing, no food, a bum seat, busted spokes, bent rims, no brake pads, and so on. It is doubtful that you will be able to find much in the way of spares in Tibet, or even in many places in rural China that will fit or may be adapted to your relatively modern equipment. If I had to take any electronic equipment on a long trip by bicycle it would be a smart phone and that helmet camera, and nothing else.
The practical concerns are tubes, tyres, spokes, reliable stove that burns anything (fuel oil, kerosene, yak piss, etc.), a supply of quick energy food (dried meat, etc.), good containers for water, clothing that is durable but warm, a proper sleeping bag, etc. You can pick up things as you will along the way. My guess is that you will find yourself figuring out what you need or don't need and jetissoning the dross, to mix a metaphor.
Don't worry about the 'cycling community'; that is a lot of bollocks. If you do decent touring you will find the 'real' riders. People who ride with sag-wagons and hotels are not in the same category. Living off the land, or riding rough, this is true bicycle touring if such a thing exists. The closer you are to being 'with' the bicycle rather than 'on' the bicycle, the nearer you draw towards what is important. Riding in this fashion is a bit like being the original wanderers we were before plants and animals were domesticated in Mesopotamia. The tendency you will have with trailer is to accumulate rather than discard, but weight will tell you the importance of what you carry.
Good luck, again, and take it easy.