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  1. #1
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    2015 Raleigh Roper -My next bike?

    I've convinced myself I'm ready for a new bike. My commute is 12 miles each way, primarily on decently paved roads. I don’t carry much stuff.

    My main bike for commuting has been my 2005 Marin Lucas Valley that I bought new. It has an aluminum frame with carbon fork and seat stays, running a 30-42-52 triple and a 12-24 8 speed cassette on 700x28 Gatorskins. Light and speedy, it serves me well.

    But it’s now 10 years old and I sometimes worry about carbon and / or aluminum failure. I’d feel much more at ease on a steel frame/fork. That’s my excuse to get a new bike, anyways!

    My must haves:

    Steel frame and fork.
    Flat bars.
    Disc brakes.
    Cassette/derailleur with close ratio gears. (No IGH)
    Fender and rack mounts.
    700 wheels.
    $1000 or so.

    I like pretty much everything about this:

    Raleigh Bicycles - Roper

    Raleigh calls it “Half 'cross bike, half urban commuter…”

    All the local Raleigh dealers claim it would not be popular enough for them to stock it, so no way to test ride first.

    It lists for $950. One shop offered to get it for me for 850. Another said if I didn’t like it I could “keep the money in the shop” and pick another bike. I likely could get both deals at either shop, I would imagine.

    Your thoughts? Thanks!
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  2. #2
    Senior Member no motor?'s Avatar
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    It sounds like a great bike except for the eccentric bottom bracket. I don't know enough about them to know if they're a good idea or not, but a couple of members mentioned having problems with them.

  3. #3
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no motor? View Post
    It sounds like a great bike except for the eccentric bottom bracket. I don't know enough about them to know if they're a good idea or not, but a couple of members mentioned having problems with them.
    Yeah, I wondered about that too. But these MTB'ers rocked the single speed Furly with the same frame (some for 2 years) with no reports of EBB issues, so that seems a good sign.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  4. #4
    Aspiring curmudgeon icepick_trotsky's Avatar
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    Why would you have an eccentric BB on a bike with a derailleur? Isn't the whole point to allow chain tension adjustments? But the derailleur does that for you.
    "Party on comrades" -- Lenin, probably

  5. #5
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    I think that's the same frame as the Tripper,which had a 3spd hub.

    BTW,where is the EBB coming from? I don't see anything on Raleigh's site about it,and Googling the BB shows it's a standard one.

    C'dale BBU('05 and '09)/Super Six/Hooligan8and 3,Kona Dew Deluxe,Novara Buzz/Safari,Surly Big Dummy,Marin Pt Reyes,Giant Defy 1,Schwinn DBX SuperSport/Qualifier,Dahon Speed Pro TT,Brompton S6L

  6. #6
    Senior Member no motor?'s Avatar
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    Their website says it has one, "(W)ith an eccentric bottom bracket, the Roper is easily turned singlespeed, and rack and fender mounts mean the weather will be no barrier", but I can't tell if it does or not by looking at the pictures on their site.

  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    may be other variants , following the link it says PF30..

    Raleigh Bicycles - Roper

    but it also says a 1X 9 and then specs a 105 FD so what comes out of the Box, will be what you Get.

  8. #8
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no motor? View Post
    Their website says it has one, "(W)ith an eccentric bottom bracket, the Roper is easily turned singlespeed, and rack and fender mounts mean the weather will be no barrier", but I can't tell if it does or not by looking at the pictures on their site.
    Right, but looking closer the specs don't list it as EBB. (while they do for the two single speed models) so who knows? Even the shop might not know until the bike shows up.

    It wouldn't bother me either way. Even if I'm unlikely to go SS, an EBB could come in handy for bike fit. And I'm not too worried about tearing it up on my commute.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  9. #9
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    may be other variants , following the link it says PF30..

    Raleigh Bicycles - Roper

    but it also says a 1X 9 and then specs a 105 FD so what comes out of the Box, will be what you Get.
    Last years Roper was a 2x9, (and was $1300-1400) Obviously someone got sloppy with the web spec list.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    I looked at one, seemed heavy. Looked at the Surly Straggler? Might be more $ though.

  11. #11
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
    I looked at one, seemed heavy. Looked at the Surly Straggler? Might be more $ though.
    Reviews claimed 27-28 pounds for the Roper. I did check out the Straggler. (nice bike!) One review said it was 26.5 pounds.

    The complete (drop bar) Straggler is $1775. The frame and fork set alone is $600. So yeah, lots more compared to the Roper.

    The extra weight of the Roper (over my present Marin) is actually my only concern right now. About a 5 pound difference. But I'll have disc brakes and much less worry of frame/fork breakage.

    Since it comes set up pretty much how I want, I put a deposit on the Roper today. Trying to hold off until January to pick it up though. I'd prefer to have the balance on February's CC statement.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  12. #12
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Oh my! I stopped by the shop today to check out and test ride my new bike. It is 20mm shorter than my Marin and the fit feels great. I only rode about 5 miles/20 minutes as it was getting dark, but really enjoyed the feel. A bit quicker handling than my Marin, and very smooth.

    There is no EBB on it, but the shop says it could take one if someone wanted it.

    My concern of extra weight turned out to be unfounded. The shop weighed it while I watched, 25.1 pounds. (with no extra's other than the reflector set and water bottle and cage) This is less than 2 pounds more than my aluminum/carbon Marin when it was "bare"... and the Roper has disc brakes!

    The frame has a Reynold's 525 decal on it... very sweet "ping" when tapped with a finger nail.

    I'll make final payment and take it home Friday, January 2.
    Last edited by AlmostTrick; 12-27-14 at 09:15 PM.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  13. #13
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    WOW! good find!

    that near 30lb weight and the site stating "4130 Double Butted Chromoly" turned me off.

    but if it is around 25lbs with 525 reynolds, that would make a much more useful bike. Need pictures of your new ride!

  14. #14
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Hi, fellow commuters!

    The shop swapped out the original 46 tooth chain ring for a more sensible 42. Much nicer, especially since I'll likely be switching out the 32-11 cassette for a close ratio unit with a 26 tooth low gear. They also swapped out the 110 stem for a 100 for better fit... both changes free of charge.



    I installed Ergon grips, Planet Bike cyclometer, and Xpedo SPD pedals. Bontrager ION 700 head light and PBSF tail light. Also have PB fenders (being painted orange!) and a Nashbar frame bag, not pictured.





    I'm really diggin' the ride but I haven't used it too much because the roads have been messy and I can't bring myself to muck it up yet! I have a winter bike with studded tires for that. I'll follow up with pics once the fenders are on.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  15. #15
    Senior Member no motor?'s Avatar
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    Nice!

  16. #16
    Senior Member bmthom.gis's Avatar
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    purty!
    "All of the true things that I am about to tell you are shameless lies."

  17. #17
    Urban rider
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    Hey AlmostTrick, the new whip looks great! I am very close to picking up a Roper of my own... I test rode one, really liked it for my purposes, riding urban streets. And frankly this thread makes me all the more convinced it'd be a solid choice, so thank you. Great to see this thread about your process in selecting it. A couple questions, if you would, as I'm newer to riding:
    1. How do you think the Roper would do with slicker tires that are 28s?
    2. How well do you think bar ends would work with the Roper original flat bar?
    3. Why would the 42 chain be preferred to the the 46 original equipment?
    4. Also what's your outlook on the cassette and why you'd change it to 26 low gear? I am completely in the dark about cassettes so I'm curious. You run paved roads, similar to my use, so I'm wondering about the gearing I should be looking for. In other words, I'm more concerned about not having a good top gear/being left behind in group rides, more so than worrying about churning through mud with a low gear.

  18. #18
    Yabba-Dabba-Doo! AlmostTrick's Avatar
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    Hi nm, bm, and Mm, and thank you!

    Mn: The stock Clement X'Plor USH tires get good reviews, but after riding them a bit I've decided they are designed for more serious off roading than I intend to do. That's why I ordered a set of These. They promise to offer a more comfortable, yet quicker ride, and still handle mild dirt and gravel roads. I will update once they're mounted and I spin 'em up a bit.

    Bar ends would work fine on here if that's what you like.

    Gearing is personal choice. I carefully monitored the gears I was using on my Marin and did all the calculations over and over. Gear inches, speed at different RPM's and so on, so I knew pretty much what would work best for me.

    The stock cassette on the Roper is 11-32. (not 11-28 like the web specs say) Wonderful range, but bigger jumps between shifts. I prefer close ratios.

    Changing to the new 12-26 I found at a swap meet for $20(!) would give me nice, close ratio's, but I might miss the range on steep hills. We'll see.

    The 42/12 combo can still easily be spun over 30 MPH... plenty enough for me.

    Being a newer rider, just ride it as is and see how it goes. You'll know after a while if you need a change. Thing is, if you do a swap up front like I did,the shop may do it for free.

    Be sure to post no matter what bike you get.
    Have Bike, Will Travel

  19. #19
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    I like! Thanks for sharing!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlmostTrick View Post

    Being a newer rider, just ride it as is and see how it goes. You'll know after a while if you need a change. Thing is, if you do a swap up front like I did,the shop may do it for free.

    Be sure to post no matter what bike you get.
    Thanks for the answers; those are helpful. I've been researching a new bike for a long time and I'm most excited about the Roper. I think with some changes, foremost switching the 35 off road tires to something narrower and streetwise, I'll be rocking and rolling.

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