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Old 08-02-08, 04:35 PM   #1
kokomo61
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Anyone miss their cross-levers?

I don't use my cross-levers much (Actually, since I got hit I haven't used them at all), but when I'm looking at replacement bikes, I've thought about the Jamis Aurora Elite -

Upsides
- Steel frame/Carbon fork- supposedly best of both worlds
- I can fit everything on my handlebars (the cross levers get in the way of some accessories)

Downside
- no cross levers (which I sometimes use)
- triple crankset (which I don't need)
- heavier than other options

The other options are either the 2008 Jake the Snake (even though I like the color less than the 2006/2007 colors), the Fuji Cross Pro (Great components, lightest bike), the BD Fantom Cross Pro (almost identical to the Fuji, but $150 less than the Fuji sale price).

If I could find a 2007 Jamis Nova, that might settle everything - it's got the rear rack and front fender bosses, which are requirements for me....but for a 20+ mile commute, is steel 'real'? Or, will I notice much of a difference on a fast road/MUP commute?
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Old 08-02-08, 04:53 PM   #2
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The Auora Elite is a Jamis Nova with a triple and nicer paint job.

I use my cross levers every time I'm slowing down to stop at an intersection and get on my tops.
I didn't realize how much I used them until one of them broke(! which my very good LBS fixed for me). But, I guess you could get used to not having them.

Steel is not real, and I'm saying that as someone riding a Jamis Aurora (the non-1337 version). Ride what feels good to you.
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Old 08-02-08, 06:27 PM   #3
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I had no idea how much I used them until I commuted for a month or so on a fixie with a front brake on the tops...then, I got on my road bike every weekend and for the 1st 10 minutes, had that spit second where my brakes were gone because I was on the tops, not the hoods! I think I ride the hoods because I don't have brakes on the tops. I never would have thought that until I started riding the fixie without hoods.
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Old 08-02-08, 09:25 PM   #4
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Jamis Nova (2007) owner here, and I love it. I don't think the steel is going to hold you back... Also, if you miss your cross levers, you can add those later. I rode a Jake the Snake when I was trying out a bunch of different bikes. To me, the Jamis was just a lot more fun to ride, but YMMV.

As has been pointed out, the Aurora Elite and the old Nova are the same bike with a few different component choices. The Aurora Elite is sold as a touring bike (triple, rack mounts on front fork), whereas the Nova was marketed more as a cross bike.

Edit: Here are a couple of other bikes I tried out, in case you're looking to compare:
- Steelwool Truffle Pig
- Bianchi Volpe
- Urbanite Touring
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Old 08-02-08, 09:30 PM   #5
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Steel is not real
BLASPHEMY!
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Old 08-02-08, 09:47 PM   #6
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i only use cross levers on all my bikes, so i would miss them.
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Old 08-02-08, 11:23 PM   #7
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You can get cross levers for 20 bucks. Don't let that be the deciding factor when buying the bike.


I sold a bike with cross levers and find I never miss them on the bike that replaced it, which does not have cross levers, even though I used them on the old bike quite a bit. YMMV, as always.
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Old 08-03-08, 07:11 AM   #8
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You can also arrange aftermarket cross levers so they don't conflict w/ whatever topbar stuff you have.

I have been riding my 1st no-crosslever dropbar bike (if you can call these things cross levers) for ~5k miles now and I don't miss'em. Incentive to learn to squeeze the brakes from the hoods...
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Old 08-03-08, 07:29 AM   #9
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I find that when you absolutely, positively need to grab a heaping handful of brake, the top bar levers are the best (eaisest and fastest). Especially if that's where your hands were when you needed it. However, the "need" has arisen when my hands were on the hoods, and that seems to work. I like having the choice.
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Old 08-03-08, 07:32 AM   #10
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I don't have cross levers on my Nova, but a recent offroad ride with somewhat technical descents (lots of mud, pretty steep, some stairs) made me think seriously about getting them. My hands were getting cramped up by the time I got to the bottom of the hill, which was frankly a little scary — I've never had that happen on non drop-bars. It could just be that I'm doing it wrong, though
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Old 08-03-08, 07:36 AM   #11
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BLASPHEMY!
The sound of a bubble popping?
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Old 08-03-08, 08:11 AM   #12
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Hmmmm, I like the look of those, (eyes start glazing over as he dreams of rediscovering the Capt. Dashboard inside himself).

How much do they cost? How effective are they? How do they work?, (you know how do they attach themselves to the other established brakes/cables on drop bars?), Any good with disc brakes? Are they easy to install, (I am a moronic mechanic)?

Sell them to me!
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Old 08-03-08, 08:30 AM   #13
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The weight "issue" is a non-issue. I REALLY like light bikes - but just in the same way that I REALLY like Italian sportscars. They're nice to have, nice to show off, nice to fuss over. But they don't get you to where you're going in town any faster than an '86 Hyundai Excel!

According to Jamis that bike weighs 26 lbs. Do the math with your own numbers, but for example if you weigh 180lbs and all your gear - your fenders, rack, bag(s), lights, change of clothes, lunch, water bottles etc. etc. - weighs 25lbs (a conservative estimate - mine weighs a LOT more than that I'm certain) that bike will add a whopping 2.6% more to the overall package versus a bike that started out at 19 lbs. You'll notice ZERO difference. If you're putting a stopwatch on your ride every day and getting long-term averages you might be able to pick out the fact that you're a few seconds - perhaps an entire minute - slower.

As far as the cross levers go - as previously mentioned, add them. Do you really ride bikes that are precisely as they came from the factory? I've never had a bike that I didn't modify in some way before it left the store and every one of them has become more and more of a "frankenstien" as time went on.

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Old 08-03-08, 08:35 AM   #14
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I have those on my old Peugeot. I took a buddies Giant for a ride and got that "scare" when I was on the tops and went for the brakes and didn't have any.

I think these may be a better option then those long levers.
http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...s%20%2D%20Road

With some creativity I think you can make them work and still have your dashboard set up to your liking.
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Old 08-03-08, 09:40 AM   #15
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Hmmmm, I like the look of those, (eyes start glazing over as he dreams of rediscovering the Capt. Dashboard inside himself).

How much do they cost? How effective are they? How do they work?, (you know how do they attach themselves to the other established brakes/cables on drop bars?), Any good with disc brakes? Are they easy to install, (I am a moronic mechanic)?

Sell them to me!
They have nothing to do with the suicide levers of old. The are completely independant levers but use the same cables are the drop levers. They are as strong as any flatbar lever.
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Old 08-03-08, 09:44 AM   #16
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I pulled the trigger on the Fuji Cross Pro today - Performance was doing a sale price of $1299 - 15% - so, with tax, a Team Performance membership (which nets me $118 in points for accessories), I was out the door including tax for $1185. If you take the accessories off of that, it takes the total price under $1100. Not bad for a cross bike with Ultegra shifters and FD, with a Dura-Ace RD and a carbon fork. As a cross bike, it's pretty light (20.5 lbs).....so, even with the full fenders and rack it'll be about 3 lbs lighter than my previous rig.

....now if I can get the guy's insurance company to pay up, it'll take care of the purchase completely.
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Old 08-03-08, 09:51 AM   #17
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How much do they cost? How effective are they? How do they work?, (you know how do they attach themselves to the other established brakes/cables on drop bars?), Any good with disc brakes? Are they easy to install, (I am a moronic mechanic)?
Cost?: Cheap

Effective?: Very

How do they work?: You squeeze them and your bike stops

Disc brakes?: I don't know

Install: You have to re-run your brake cables. They go through your normal levers first, then through the cross levers (or interrupter levers) then down to your brake calipers.
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Old 08-03-08, 10:14 AM   #18
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There's also no rule against having one cross lever. I've thought of that. I just can't decide whether to put it on the front or rear brake.

The big downside with cross levers for me is that I like to ride with my hands really close to the stem when I use the tops - which isn't very much.
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Old 08-03-08, 10:44 AM   #19
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Oh that's easy - if you're running just one you want it on the front! That's where the majority of your stopping power is - and that balance moves farther forward the harder you stop. Up to 100% front when you have enough traction to lift the rear tire off the ground.

C
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Old 08-03-08, 01:31 PM   #20
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I use my cross levers every time I'm slowing down to stop at an intersection and get on my tops.
+1
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Old 08-03-08, 02:26 PM   #21
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Oh that's easy - if you're running just one you want it on the front! That's where the majority of your stopping power is - and that balance moves farther forward the harder you stop. Up to 100% front when you have enough traction to lift the rear tire off the ground.

C
+1 just be sure you keep weight over your back wheel so you don't endo.
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Old 08-03-08, 02:35 PM   #22
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Inline handles are great with discs. I love my inlines having come from a mostly mountain biking. they do eat up handlebar real estate, though. So I'm going to have to get a Minoura swing bar or Topeak bar Xtender for my lights. Which I was planning on doiing anyway since I've got a huge handlebar bag.
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Old 08-03-08, 03:36 PM   #23
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I miss my cross levers alot for tooling around town. I've considered installing some on my road bike but everyone would make fun of me. I don't really tool around town on that bike much anyway.
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Old 08-03-08, 04:07 PM   #24
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I pulled the trigger on the Fuji Cross Pro today - Performance was doing a sale price of $1299 - 15% - so, with tax, a Team Performance membership (which nets me $118 in points for accessories), I was out the door including tax for $1185. If you take the accessories off of that, it takes the total price under $1100. Not bad for a cross bike with Ultegra shifters and FD, with a Dura-Ace RD and a carbon fork. As a cross bike, it's pretty light (20.5 lbs).....so, even with the full fenders and rack it'll be about 3 lbs lighter than my previous rig.

....now if I can get the guy's insurance company to pay up, it'll take care of the purchase completely.
That sounds like a great deal! I looked online, but can't find that bike. Not on the Fuji site or the Performance one. Do you have a link somewhere?
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Old 08-03-08, 04:31 PM   #25
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It's not on the web site, but a lot of the Performance Stores have Fuji bikes in them. The Fuji site has been acting up all day, so you may not be able to get the full specs....but if you go here, you can see the specs for the 2007 bike. The 2008 has a different paint scheme - instead of silver/black, it's white with black and red.

Here's a pic:




Here's the specs for the Cross Comp:

And a pic:




The BikesDirect counterparts are similar (same frame/geometry), but these have upgraded drivetrains (Ultegra with a DA rear for the Cross Pro, 105 with an Ultegra Rear for the Cross Comp), vs. Ultegra front/rear for the BD Fantom Cross Pro, and Tiagra for the Fantom Cross. With today's sale, the prices were within $100 for a bike with slightly better specs, so I went the LBS route. I'll be able to get it fitted properly and set up for me, and I also scored $118 in accessories with the PBS club points...so, I really couldn't pass it up.
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