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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 02-18-12, 04:15 AM   #1
surfperch
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Salsa Casseroll vs Cross Check for the big guy.

I currently weigh in at 245 pounds; up nearly 40 pounds from when stopped riding four years ago (bad idea to keep the same eating habits and cut out your primary means of burning those calories).

I'm looking at getting either the Salsa Casseroll or the Surly Cross Check and wondering if any Clydes or Athenas have insights or experiences with one versus this other?

I really like the way the Caseroll looks and what is offered on the complete model, but I have read on a couple of occasions the bike being a smooth or soft ride for riders who weigh a lot less than me and I am concerned about being a too soft or noodley at my weight. Is there any validity to this?

Are their any concerns or points of weakness about the Cross Check and heavier riders?

Commuting. I live in a foothill area which means lots and lots of hills...level ground only exists inside stores and homes. Some of the hills are kind of ridiculous and two days out of the week I'll be pulling my daughter in a trailer.

Long general rides, comfort in the saddle. Aside from my commute I used to do 'day longs' once or twice a week where I would just take off in a general direction in the morning with no specific destination and make my way back home between nightfall and 1am. There are a lot of hard packed dirt trails (horse trails or well-groomed hiking trails?) where I live now and it would be a lot of fun to explore them via bicycle. A mountain bike would be overkill for most of these from what I can see.
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Old 02-18-12, 05:56 AM   #2
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I’d get the Salsa: my local “Yoda” carries them, ( he picked Salsa over Surly) for his shop, they all ride nice, it has a “triple”, (saves butt on hills), the tall head tube would make it more comfortable especially on long rides, and I’ve always been impressed by the Salsas more than Surlys. I’m heavy too and I wouldn’t worry about it for either bike, ( now 230 was 258 raced at 162), check my profile for credibility. Lastly, I’ve been wanting a Vaya Ti ‘cause it could climb trees and would be super tough.
"Steel is Real" - good job by you !
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Old 02-18-12, 10:57 AM   #3
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Either bike will be fine - pick the bike thats the most comfortable to ride. Try out the Surly long haul trucker while you're riding the crosscheck, you may like it. Two others I'd suggest riding (while you're at the Salsa dealer) is the Vaya (very comfy and fun to ride) and the Fargo. Just some options as all of them will work for you. All of them have tons of braze ons for fenders and such.
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Old 02-19-12, 07:52 PM   #4
RichardGlover
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The Casseroll was #1 on my frames to build up for my last bike. Had I not found a really good deal on another frame, with a paint job I absolutely love, I'd be riding a Casseroll right now.

Well, not right now. It's cold, snowing, dark, and I don't have anywhere I'd rather be than home.
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Old 02-19-12, 08:58 PM   #5
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I weigh about the same as you and have a Cross Check. That bike is so solid you shouldn't be concerned at all about it "handling" your weight. I also live in a hilly area, for reference my normal 40 mile ride has 3500 ft of climbing, and believe it or not my fastest time on that loop was done on the Surly. It's heavier than my other road bikes by at least 6 pounds but it's so stable and handles so well that I find myself taking corners and downhills faster than on my other bikes, and coming into the hills carrying more speed. I even took it to the blueridge mountains for a trip and had no problems whatsoever with the weight or it climbing up to the blueridge parkway.

The only negative thing I can say about the Cross Check is that it has a terribly small headtube. I have a 58cm and the headtube is only 14 cm long. On the positive side, the fork is a steel steerer so the short headtube can be compensated for with lots of spacers with no ill effect.
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