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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 02-22-05, 02:16 AM   #1
Ziemas
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Cross Check and heel strike

In my endless quest to find a steel commuter I'm turning my attention towards the Cross Check. I really like the ride of a steel CX bike, having ridden one for over 10 years (A Torelli, not a Surly). One of the big questions I have reguarding the Cross Check is heel strike. I have big feet 12US (46EUR), and use panniers every day. The panniers that I use are The Bug from Arkel and an old Bushwacker. Does anyone ride a Cross Check with panniers and have big feet? What has been your experience reguarding heel strike? BTW my cranks are 175mm.

Any other suggestions for steel frames would be appreciated, especially ones available in Europe. Thanks.
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Old 02-22-05, 04:50 AM   #2
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I can't help with the heel strike question but you might want to check out the Kaffenback at www.panet-x-bikes.com. 225 for frame and forks looks like a good deal.

I have run the fixed version as a commuter and love it.
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Old 02-22-05, 05:21 AM   #3
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I have 175 mm cranks on my Cross Check. I have size 10 clipless shoes and Jandd Hurricane saddlebags. I avoid heel strike only by pushing the saddlebags all the way to the back of the rack.
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Old 02-22-05, 08:20 AM   #4
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check out the long haul trucker. i believe it is a longer version of the crosscheck designed to solve these problems!
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Old 02-22-05, 08:21 AM   #5
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I run 42 clipless shoes, 175 cranks (soon to be 165 - toe strike on the fenders!) on my Cross Check, and I have to adjust the rack and panniers to avoid heel strike. Frame size is 54, though I note that chainstay length is the same on all frame sizes. I would be hesitant, in your case.
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Old 02-22-05, 08:25 AM   #6
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check out the long haul trucker. i believe it is a longer version of the crosscheck designed to solve these problems!
That's very cool!
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Old 02-24-05, 10:28 AM   #7
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I have a 56cm Cross Check with a Jandd Expedition rack and some cheap REI panniers, and I wear size 13 (US) shoes (I think that's a 48 in European sizing?).

I had to adjust the bags to sit as far back on the rack as possible, and the lower front sides of the bags are angled to allow for heel clearance, so I just barely get by without any heel strike.

I wasn't very well educated about these issues when I bought my bike, so I didn't think about it. If I was buying a new bike for loaded commuting, I would definitely look at the Long Haul Trucker. On the other hand, I bought my Cross Check in the Surly "complete bike" configuration, so buying an LHT would mean specing out the components, etc., which would definitely be fun but would probably also cost a little more. But then again, in that case I wouldn't be thinking about spending $$ to replace the stock cranks, etc. that I've already paid for...

Definitely look at the Arkel panniers -- they have a much slicker attachment system for allowing you to mount the bags further back on the rack without compromising the stability of the attachment points.
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Old 02-24-05, 12:13 PM   #8
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FYI- The surly is made out of cheap no-name 4130 straight guage taiwanese cro-mo tubing, where your older cross bike was probably made out of a better tubing set, possibily reynolds or similar.
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Old 02-24-05, 12:17 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by BostonFixed
FYI- The surly is made out of cheap no-name 4130 straight guage taiwanese cro-mo tubing, where your older cross bike was probably made out of a better tubing set, possibily reynolds or similar.
Yah, I know. The Torelli has oria tubing. It's a sweet ride.
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Old 02-24-05, 12:42 PM   #10
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You could check out Seven cycles, as they have steel versions of their bikes (at least the cyclocross and touring versions they do).

Here's the link for the cyclocross models. Just a thought; of course, they aren't cheap.

http://www.sevencycles.com/bikes/cyclocross.html
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Old 02-24-05, 12:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KleinRider
You could check out Seven cycles, as they have steel versions of their bikes (at least the cyclocross and touring versions they do).

Here's the link for the cyclocross models. Just a thought; of course, they aren't cheap.

http://www.sevencycles.com/bikes/cyclocross.html
Some of the Seven frames while nice, cost more than I make in a year.
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Old 02-24-05, 02:03 PM   #12
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if your even gonna look at ***** like seven you might as well just have some smaller builder custom make you a frame....

i never understood why someone would spend that much cash when you could get a really nice custom made frame for much less....

this guy makes all kinds of nice (yet still semi-affordable) bikes that he could build with whatever reqiuirements you'd give.

http://www.waltworks.com/dev/index.php

there are about ten bizzillion others too! if you find somebody local all the better! then you can go see them; tlak about your bike and get measured to make sure you get EXACTLY what you need!

and finally my surly feels pretty nice for being 4130 chromoly. it may not be bling, but it gets me around daily with a good ride and i bet i ain't gonna break anything; EVER!
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Old 02-24-05, 04:29 PM   #13
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As you are running an Arkel pannier you should be able to set it back enough. I am running the Utility Baskets on my Poprad pushed back 2/3 of the way and I wear an 11.5 shoe. The only time I clip them is when I am riding out of the clips. Also using a 172.5 crank length.
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Old 02-25-05, 03:56 AM   #14
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If the heel strike is this big an issue have you considered front-mounted (low rider?) panniers as a alternative soluntion?

Warning: as a "travel light and sling everything in a courier bag" type of commuter my experience of panniers is close to zero.
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Old 02-25-05, 09:02 AM   #15
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Whats wrong with your Torelli? At 10 years old you should have it just broken in. If the issue is with your Panniers get a different rack. Cheaper than a new bike. If you must have a new bike Id look into the Voodoo http://www.voodoocycles.net/home.html . Has rack mounts, fender mounts and should be available in Europe.
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Old 02-25-05, 12:30 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo
Whats wrong with your Torelli? At 10 years old you should have it just broken in. If the issue is with your Panniers get a different rack. Cheaper than a new bike. If you must have a new bike Id look into the Voodoo http://www.voodoocycles.net/home.html . Has rack mounts, fender mounts and should be available in Europe.
The Torelli has no rack and fender mounts. It's also about 2cm too large for me to ride comfortably in the city. It's quite difficult to do a one foot curb jump with it.
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