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Old 05-19-09, 02:09 PM   #1
plodderslusk
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Cyclocross bikes are great.

After work today I had agreat ride through the forest. I liked the CX bike as a commuter during winter and now it is great for gravel roads and wider paths. The Racing Ralph tires can take anything I am willing to try downhill and the bike (Focus Mares Cross) handles bumps and rocks amazingly well.
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Old 05-19-09, 02:18 PM   #2
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I agree. Perfect for city streets or gravel path alike.

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Old 05-19-09, 02:56 PM   #3
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I agree. Perfect for city streets or gravel path alike.

And for larger riders as cyclocross bikes are built to tolerate rougher riding conditions. That translates to a stronger bike for regular riding...
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Old 05-19-09, 03:00 PM   #4
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And for larger riders as cyclocross bikes are built to tolerate rougher riding conditions. That translates to a stronger bike for regular riding...
Who are you calling a larger rider!
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Old 05-19-09, 03:00 PM   #5
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When we go on vacation, my Trek Portland likes to kick off its full fenders, put on its CX tires and go get dirty.

Last year, we found the perfect spot.

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Old 05-19-09, 03:24 PM   #6
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I need to N+1 a Cyclo-Cross bike! With seven bikes, you'd think I'd have a Cyclo-Cross . . . but no.

First, though, I have N-1 to make room for it. Thanks for the encouragement though!

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Old 05-19-09, 03:36 PM   #7
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I was thinking about getting a Giant TCX this year but a better deal came up.

One thing I miss is the ability to get away from the traffic and feel free up on the hills. The MTB will do that but It is not good getting to the hills. But taking a chance I have taken the OCR on rough trails- although they are a bit flat- Had to take it easy and it was when the trails were dry And may set it up with stronger wheels and suitable tyres to see if a Cyclocross will fill my needs.

If not it will be back to sorting the MTB.
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Old 05-19-09, 05:50 PM   #8
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I built my road bike on a ti cyclocross framset. I'm planning on a second set of wheels for wider tires for the rougher stuff.

Al
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Old 05-19-09, 07:09 PM   #9
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Who are you calling a larger rider!
Well, if the Fu S++ts, wear it...

No, actually I was thinking about a friend of mine who is a big guy. He asked me about what sort of bike he should get and I think a cyclocross bike is what I would reccommend.
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Old 05-19-09, 07:21 PM   #10
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Oh no! Not again!

Every time that a consensus starts to form saying this or that type of bike is wonderful, I have to get one just to see what the big deal is.

OK, so tell me what the features are that make a cyclecross bike a cyclecross bike. Maybe I can cobble something together that will give me the experience. That'd be a lot more fun than just buying one anyway.
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Old 05-19-09, 07:47 PM   #11
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I built my road bike on a ti cyclocross framset. I'm planning on a second set of wheels for wider tires for the rougher stuff.

Al
What frame did you use for the build?
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Old 05-19-09, 08:03 PM   #12
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Oh no! Not again!

Every time that a consensus starts to form saying this or that type of bike is wonderful, I have to get one just to see what the big deal is.

OK, so tell me what the features are that make a cyclecross bike a cyclecross bike. Maybe I can cobble something together that will give me the experience. That'd be a lot more fun than just buying one anyway.
Cyclocross bikes are drop bar road bikes built for racing across grass, mud and trails. They feature larger tires than a road bike, many can accept 700x38 or more. They have several special features; generally they are tough, fast bikes.

This makes them popular as winter bikes and commuters.

I use mine to do just about everything.
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Old 05-20-09, 12:27 AM   #13
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Cyclocross bikes are drop bar road bikes built for racing across grass, mud and trails. They feature larger tires than a road bike, many can accept 700x38 or more. They have several special features; generally they are tough, fast bikes.

This makes them popular as winter bikes and commuters.

I use mine to do just about everything.
This is my problem- If I want to go out in muddy wet conditions up hills- Why not use a bike built for the purpose? A mountain bike. Makes more sense to me as I live in a hilly area and even the wide open trails go up slopes occasionally. Well about 30% of the time
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Old 05-20-09, 04:31 AM   #14
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As my background is more MTB than Road, my solution is a 23lb rigid fork MTB framed bike with 2.1" semislicks. The wide tires deal with the dirt better and I give up very little to cyclocross bikes on asphault. I do give up the top end gearing though as the best I have is 32/11. Here in CT though there are few enough flat places for that lack of gearing to matter.
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Old 05-20-09, 05:28 AM   #15
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What frame did you use for the build?
An Airborne Carpe Diem. Unfortunately, the company reorganized/went under and the frame set is no longer available. I chose it as it had fittings for fenders and a rear rack plus the later models had excellent reviews. The model saw use as a credit card tourer as well.

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Old 05-20-09, 05:36 AM   #16
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Oh no! Not again!

Every time that a consensus starts to form saying this or that type of bike is wonderful, I have to get one just to see what the big deal is.

OK, so tell me what the features are that make a cyclecross bike a cyclecross bike. Maybe I can cobble something together that will give me the experience. That'd be a lot more fun than just buying one anyway.
I like the V and disc brake options (both viable with STI), clearance for wider tires (now I'm using 23 mm), the more rugged carbon fork, fender and rack attachments (on some), and a more likely better ride than a pure road bike.

These features add weight, but I can easily make it up by eating less.

Al
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Old 05-20-09, 05:40 AM   #17
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As my background is more MTB than Road, my solution is a 23lb rigid fork MTB framed bike with 2.1" semislicks. The wide tires deal with the dirt better and I give up very little to cyclocross bikes on asphault. I do give up the top end gearing though as the best I have is 32/11. Here in CT though there are few enough flat places for that lack of gearing to matter.
I use an old design TA tripple road crank with 22/34/46 rings and a 12/27 ultegra cassette. I can switch to an 11/32 cassett by patching in a few links of chain with a quick-link for the mountains.

Al
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Old 05-20-09, 06:35 AM   #18
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I use an old design TA tripple road crank with 22/34/46 rings and a 12/27 ultegra cassette. I can switch to an 11/32 cassett by patching in a few links of chain with a quick-link for the mountains.

Al
That was similar to my former setup.....26/36/48 and a 12/26. That has been changed however to a 32 and an 11/34 with no front derailleur.... That's as close as I will get to SS...
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Old 05-20-09, 07:08 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Oh no! Not again!

Every time that a consensus starts to form saying this or that type of bike is wonderful, I have to get one just to see what the big deal is.

OK, so tell me what the features are that make a cyclecross bike a cyclecross bike. Maybe I can cobble something together that will give me the experience. That'd be a lot more fun than just buying one anyway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
Cyclocross bikes are drop bar road bikes built for racing across grass, mud and trails. They feature larger tires than a road bike, many can accept 700x38 or more. They have several special features; generally they are tough, fast bikes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alcanoe View Post
I like the V and disc brake options (both viable with STI), clearance for wider tires (now I'm using 23 mm), the more rugged carbon fork, fender and rack attachments (on some), and a more likely better ride than a pure road bike.
And to this should be added different front-end geometry.

Taller, "relaxed" head tube and slightly less fork rake seem to be the order of the day on almost every CX frame I've seen.

Mine also has chainstays longer than road bikes, but shorter than touring bikes.

Barrettscv's Soma (above photo) seems to share these features.

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Old 05-20-09, 07:17 AM   #20
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This is my problem- If I want to go out in muddy wet conditions up hills- Why not use a bike built for the purpose? A mountain bike. Makes more sense to me as I live in a hilly area and even the wide open trails go up slopes occasionally. Well about 30% of the time
A Cyclocross bike might be discribed as a "town & country" bike. It can take you across pavement with the same speed as a touring bike, but then can travel on trails. If you are a 100% off-road rider, stick with a mountain bike. If you are mostly on-road and sometimes on-trails, the Cyclocross bike is better. Gearing and tires allow you to travel on hills and in mud with a Cyclocross bike. A road triple is often standard on Cyclocross bikes but a compact double is most popular.
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Old 05-20-09, 07:32 AM   #21
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And for larger riders as cyclocross bikes are built to tolerate rougher riding conditions. That translates to a stronger bike for regular riding...
Exactly why I got mine (Jamis Nova Pro). I'm 6'2" and 215 (down from 240 when I got it) and my riding is mostly paved country roads with the occasional gravel road thrown in. Anybody who has spent time in Michigan realizes we are the pothole capital of the world and it's easy to beat up a bike. This is my second season on my Jamis and it's been great. I did my first metric century on it last year and plan my first full century this year. I'm also considering trying a sprint triathalon and will use it for that as well. I view CX bikes as sort of the Swiss Army knife of the bike catagory.
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Old 05-20-09, 07:55 AM   #22
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I have a Trek XO1 cross bike. I race cyclo cross on it and also put regular road tires on the bike for bad weather road riding. The bike is a little more upright than my regular road bikes and has more backbone due to the beating it takes while riding. One major difference between the bike and a road bike is the large front cahin ring is only 48 tooth. You don't reach higher speeds in cross races since the race is on grass, gravel, mud, up and over landscape mounds, then on any straight-a-way the race organizers will make life difficult by throwing logs or wooden barriers across the path just so you have to get off the bike and carry it over the obstacle. The bike also has a carbon fork that allows for V brakes and the cables are on the top of the top tube, so you can shoulder the bike while running up stairs or hurdling barriers.


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Old 05-20-09, 08:21 AM   #23
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One can build a cyclocross bike pretty cheaply from a vintage road touring frame with generous tire and mudguard clearances. My commuter and general transporter is my Peugeot UO-8, which can easily accommodate 27 x 1-3/8" (700C x 35) tires. With barcons, drop bars, and 12-speed midrange half-step gearing (45-42 / 13-26, i.e. 93.5 gear-inches down to 43.6), it serves me extremely well in traffic and on dirt roads.
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Old 05-20-09, 08:37 AM   #24
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One can build a cyclocross bike pretty cheaply from a vintage road touring frame with generous tire and mudguard clearances. My commuter and general transporter is my Peugeot UO-8, which can easily accommodate 27 x 1-3/8" (700C x 35) tires. With barcons, drop bars, and 12-speed midrange half-step gearing (45-42 / 13-26, i.e. 93.5 gear-inches down to 43.6), it serves me extremely well in traffic and on dirt roads.
That is a great way to start. When the need for more versitility comes about you can always upgrade the different componets and parts.
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Old 05-20-09, 09:49 AM   #25
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Here is the story behind my Soma Double Cross bike:

The Soma Double Cross in either a 58 or 60 frames size could be made to fit, but the 60 was closer to ideal. The seatpost selected would have a zero offset to put the hips in the right place over the BB. The handlebars would be positioned by a 110mm stem positioned at a normal height above the tall Soma headtube.

Sourcing;

Since I would not be buying a complete bike, sourcing components would make or break the project. Finding a frame is easy enough, but as a newbie, every other component required detective work and the advice of this forum and multiple other on-line resources.

Fork: I wanted the weight savings and damp feel of a carbon fiber fork. I soon discovered that most economy priced carbon forks are not lighter than the standard steel Soma Double Cross fork. I found a new Ridley 4ZA Zornyc fork that was uncut, a recent take-off from a new bike. Ridley builds some outstanding carbon bikes, so I expect the fork is well made. It is approved for off-road work, including CX racing, and it saves significant weight over most steel forks.

Components: I struck gold, finding a new 2007 Felt F1X Cyclocross bike on eBay to be used as a parts donor. The seller is a bike shop purging NOS. The price was right at $820.00 plus shipping. I sold the frameset on eBay and recovered 2/3 of the initial cost.

Build;

I decided that Get a grip should build the bike. They disassembled the Felt, applied Framesaver the Soma, installed the BB & headset, finished the assembly and installed a computer for $150.

The result;



Below: Ridley 4ZA Zornyc carbon CX fork, Cane Creek headset, Felt 1.3 6061 Butted Alloy Bar, Felt 1.1cm 3D-Forged Stem, Shimano 105 brifters, Tektro Oryx brakes with Tektro RX bar-top levers, Mavic CXP-22 Double-Wall Rims and DT Doubled Butted Champion Spokes, Felt Precision Sealed-Bearing Hubs & 700x28 Continental Gatorback tires



Below: 175mm Sram S300 GXP CX compact double crank with a 46 X 38t ring pair, Shimano CX SPD pedals, Ultegra derailleur



Below: Ultegra derailleur, 105 12-25 cassette



Below: FSA seatpost, Felt 1.1 saddle



A view of the cockpit

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