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natheless
03-18-2006, 02:58 PM
Another possibility...

I was recommended today to have a look at Surly bikes. I would probably build mine out differently than the one I test rode today, but it felt pretty good to me. (It was a Cross Check frame.)

If anyone has any feedback about these frames, I'd love to hear it!

I'm not sure whether I should think about the Long-Haul Trucker frame or look more at the Cross Check.

Thanks!

SadieKate
03-18-2006, 05:40 PM
Do a search on the forums. A couple of people have them and have posted about them.

natheless
03-19-2006, 06:26 AM
Unfortunately, searching for Surly pops up every post by "Surlygirl" (Not that they aren't great posts, heheh!) and that's a lot to sift through.

If anyone could post a link to a previous thread discussing the Surly bikes, that would be great, too.

Trek420
03-19-2006, 06:33 AM
like this?

http://forums.teamestrogen.com/showthread.php?t=4652&highlight=long+haul+trucker

and

http://forums.teamestrogen.com/showthread.php?t=5008&highlight=karate+monkey

Surlygirl
03-19-2006, 08:35 AM
Hey Natheless
I have the Surly Cross-check. First if you want a good strong steel bike they rock. They are heavy though so if you are looking for speed you may want to try a lighter road bike. I bought mine cheap and have rebuilt just about everything on it. I recently put an XT rear derailleur on and a new touring cassette. I can put fenders on, a rack and you can run fat tires on it. I think if you can find a cross-check and a long haul trucker I would try both since they fit differently. You can also check out girlbike.com and Crystal has a picture of hers set up. She started with a cross-check also and went to the Long Haul Trucker.
Hope this helps.

MelC
03-23-2006, 09:32 AM
I guess the million dollar question is what you want it for? I love my Surly to pieces (also a crosscheck) almost literally but unless you are into actual cyclocross you have to remember that it is a bit of a compromise bike. Jack of all trades master of none which is why I love it. It is slower than a road bike but faster than a commuter/mountain/hybrid whatever. It is not as sturdy as a mountain bike but sturdier than a road bike by miles. It is not as comfortable as a cruiser/hybrid but much more forgiving geometry than your average road bike.

It is perfect for me, it handles long rides well as a result of its more relaxed geometry and is light enough and has tall enough tires that I'm not struggling to keep up with any but the most dedicated roadies on a casual ride. It is a terrific commuter bike because the absorbent steel frame and the fatty tires can cope with all the potholes/streetcar tracks/curbs and idiot drivers that get thrown at me but it is still fast enough to make great time. It can obviously manage some flat dirt trails as well. I even use it for the short triathlons I do because I know full well that I don't train enough to be competitive such that a time trial or advanced road bike would make a big enough difference in my time.

You would not, however, use this bike if you wanted to get into serious road racing or any real mountain biking. You would use it for commuting, casual road rides, light gravel/unpaved roads etc. Oh...and winter...it's a good all season kind of bike. If you get one make sure you get fenders (Surlys like to get wet - steel frames notwithstanding) and think about getting interceptor brakes if you are going to be doing a lot of commuting (lots of stops).

Happy bike shopping.

Mel

natheless
03-24-2006, 04:35 AM
Well, I'm looking to compromise, actually.

Typically, I ride 20-30 miles at a stretch, and on the weekends I can get up to 50-60. I'd like to do a century this year, and I'd also like to do some light touring.

I don't need to be super fast, but I don't want to be super slow, either. I don't need to be super light, I just want something sturdy, comfortable, and that won't pitch a fit if I want to go over a bit of gravel or a dirt road in the country.

I was basically thinking of going for a touring bike, and a LBS suggested I think about the crosscheck as well. The Long Haul Trucker from Surly is also interesting to me.

Thanks for the input!

eofelis
03-25-2006, 06:31 PM
I have a Surly Pacer and a Long Haul Trucker. Both are 42cm, the smallest size.

I love them both!

My bf has a Crosscheck, 54cm, that he really likes a lot and is planning to tour with, pulling a Bob trailer.

Anyway, I have been riding my Pacer for about 3+ yrs now. It's not a fast racy bike, but mine is very comfortable and stable. I've done many 50+ mile rides, and I did a century last year. I've done a lot of climbing and descending on it and it's always been an outstanding ride. I have the Surly steel fork on mine. I like that it's kind of a bombproof type of bike. Even the powdercoat on it is pretty tough. It goes where I point it. It goes pretty well on gravel roads too. This would be a great bike for supported tours or credit card tours. Mine is set up with Ultegra 9speed triple STI, with XT rear der, 12-34 cassette, Mavic Open Pro wheels (this bike takes 700c wheels). My lowest gear is 30-34 and I can climb just about anything. (We have a few hills here in Colorado). I have a lightweight pannier rack on mine, with a rack trunk, so I can take along those "essentials" on an all day ride. I just did a 46 mile ride today with about 15 miles of climbing. I consider this a sport-touring bike.

I got my LHT in Dec. I haven't toured on it yet, but plan to do a short tour this summer, and I am thinking about a coast to coast in 2007. The fit on this bike is very close to the Pacer (in the 42cm size anyway) This bike has 26" wheels and mine is built with an XT drive train (mtn bike gearing, high gear of 44-12, low gear of 22-34.) I tried this bike with road cranks at first. It seems to work better with the mtn bike gearing, even for riding on the road. It's a heavier frame than the Pacer. That said, it's certainly one of those proverbial brick *houses. It rides very nicely for a heavy bike. I did one half day ride over the winter where we got snowed on and had to ride on a road with 2" of snow on it, the bike didn't care at all. BFs Crosscheck went fine that day too. I've had it loaded with recyclables and other stuff riding around town. It doesn't care what you strap onto it. I plan on pulling a Bob trailer for touring.

I was looking at the Crosscheck too. (One can never have too many bikes) The sizing on them is different than the Pacer and LHT. They run large on some sizes and small on others. The standover on the 42cm CC is 73cm, versus 71cm on the 42cm Pacer and LHT. That putthe CC out for me, it's too tall. My bf usually rides a 56cm bike and he had to get a 54cm CC.

Anyway, if you have any specific questions about my Surly bikes, feel free to ask.

There is a googlegroup of LHT owners. http://saanichbc.net/surly/

eofelis
03-25-2006, 06:41 PM
Well, I'm looking to compromise, actually.

Typically, I ride 20-30 miles at a stretch, and on the weekends I can get up to 50-60. I'd like to do a century this year, and I'd also like to do some light touring.

I don't need to be super fast, but I don't want to be super slow, either. I don't need to be super light, I just want something sturdy, comfortable, and that won't pitch a fit if I want to go over a bit of gravel or a dirt road in the country.

I was basically thinking of going for a touring bike, and a LBS suggested I think about the crosscheck as well. The Long Haul Trucker from Surly is also interesting to me.

Thanks for the input!

Sounds like the Pacer would be perfect for you. I use mine for that type of riding, except for the touring. There is not a lot of heel clearance for panniers, but this bike probably wouldn't care if you loaded it up for a light tour. You could pull a trailer with it.

The CC would also be great.

They are just great bikes!