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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 11-16-12, 05:35 PM   #1
FrenchFit 
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New Steel TriCross Triple

Anyone notice the new disc braked steel Tricross triple? Other than the drivetrain, that's a nice package. I have an older Tricross with the FACT carbon fork, DA & Ultegra, and I like it a good deal more than my Roubaix Comp. Man, I'm tempted.

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bik...teeldisctriple
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Old 11-16-12, 05:49 PM   #2
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WHUT? Why a steel CX with disks? Steel frame is cheaper? Keeps overall bike price down when installed with disk brakes?
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Old 11-17-12, 09:33 AM   #3
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Nice build. More of a commuter and light touring bike than a pure long distance bike. The 440mm chainstays are touring bike long. It would be a very good wet weather bike.
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Old 11-17-12, 10:46 AM   #4
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Exactly, I use mine as a century, fast tourer, all arounder, with a minimalist Tubus rack on the back. The front carbon forks had lowrider eyelets, and I've used full front panniers a few times like a fully dressed tourer. I think Specialized was pretty clever to drop the carbon fork and offer an all steel version, an new competitor for LHT, Soma, Trek 520 buyers.
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Old 11-18-12, 04:58 PM   #5
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Thankfully, the TriCross was never a true CX race bike. Since the introduction of the Crux series a few years ago (which is a pure CX race bike), Specialized can now really keep the TriCross line as more of the adventure / touring bike, which it looks like they are definitely doing with this steel model. I have a 2009 Alu TriCross with carbon stays, which I've since upgraded with a carbon disc fork - it is the bike that I use 80% of the time for commuting, touring, trail riding, social rides, etc. The full-on race bike and the full-on mountain bike get ridden less and less all the time, because the TriCross can do almost everything.
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Old 11-28-12, 05:07 PM   #6
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Thankfully, the TriCross was never a true CX race bike. Since the introduction of the Crux series a few years ago (which is a pure CX race bike), Specialized can now really keep the TriCross line as more of the adventure / touring bike, which it looks like they are definitely doing with this steel model. I have a 2009 Alu TriCross with carbon stays, which I've since upgraded with a carbon disc fork - it is the bike that I use 80% of the time for commuting, touring, trail riding, social rides, etc. The full-on race bike and the full-on mountain bike get ridden less and less all the time, because the TriCross can do almost everything.
Yeah, my Strava stats are pitiful:

Tricross 2,942.1km
Yukon FX3 39.6km

I'm training for two endurance events next year: the 200km Alpine Classic (nearly 4000m vertical ascent, all sealed roads); and the Wombat 100 (50km dirt road/fire trail, 50km singletrack). I'll be doing them both on the Tricross. That's versatility

Personally I don't really get the steel thing. I'd be tempted to say "the aluminium frame flexes under heavy touring loads" but I haven't experienced that. I've never put front panniers on it though - just rear panniers, rack bag, frame bag, handlebar bag, and usually a tent hanging from handlebars. (My girlfriend has the same bike, and replaced the front fork with a carbon/disk setup after it got smashed. I'm tempted still but don't want to close the door on front panniers...)
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Old 11-29-12, 12:38 AM   #7
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(My girlfriend has the same bike, and replaced the front fork with a carbon/disk setup after it got smashed. I'm tempted still but don't want to close the door on front panniers...)
I also replaced the fork on my 2009 TriCross with a carbon disc-brake model (without smashing the old one). You have to be careful because the tricross fork has a slightly non-standard length and offset. I got one that is as close as possible, and I did notice a small change in the handling, but if anything it was for the better (making it slightly more responsive). You can easily keep the old fork in storage in case you ever want to do a heavily-laden tour, but I've not toured with 4 panniers for a VERY long time (I learned how to take less stuff after doing one or two tours like that).

The front disc adds even more versatility because it makes it an even better foul-weather bike (which is when rim brakes start to struggle). I'm not sold on the idea of needing a rear disc actually - it's a good place to save weight by using just a V-brake, and often rear discs get in the way of rack mounting. One disc brake is enough for me. So by switching the fork on a V-brake equipped bike you end up with the perfect combination that is normally not available in an off-the-shelf model (but again, be careful with fork geometries).

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Old 11-29-12, 12:41 PM   #8
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Exactly, I use mine as a century, fast tourer, all arounder, with a minimalist Tubus rack on the back. The front carbon forks had lowrider eyelets, and I've used full front panniers a few times like a fully dressed tourer. I think Specialized was pretty clever to drop the carbon fork and offer an all steel version, an new competitor for LHT, Soma, Trek 520 buyers.
While the Specialized Steel Tricross has quite a few merits, it can't really compete with the LHT...

The LHT has few actual competitors. You get more tire options with the LHT, due to a much wider clearance, and your build options are virtually limitless...

When it comes to Touring, Long Distance versatility, and value, the LHT is practically peerless!

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Old 11-29-12, 05:10 PM   #9
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When it comes to Touring, Long Distance versatility, and value, the LHT is practically peerless!
The LHT is hardly peerless, you need to get out more. It's a very solid touring bike that is affordable. If more money is available than the LHT, you can do better. Have you ridden a LHT?
Touring is one thing, but this isn't the touring forum so I think there is an underlying assumption that performance is important. Some people use an LHT for randonneuring, but everyone I know that has done that has either replaced it or is shopping. It's just not the kind of bike you really want to be riding for long distances at a relatively rapid pace. The LHT is ideal for riding 60 miles a day with a touring load, or commuting. If you were going to do some touring but had an emphasis on randonneuring or other long distance riding where performance is a factor, I'm sure there are probably better choices than the LHT.
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Old 11-29-12, 05:25 PM   #10
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The LHT is hardly peerless, you need to get out more. It's a very solid touring bike that is affordable. If more money is available than the LHT, you can do better. Have you ridden a LHT?
Touring is one thing, but this isn't the touring forum so I think there is an underlying assumption that performance is important. Some people use an LHT for randonneuring, but everyone I know that has done that has either replaced it or is shopping. It's just not the kind of bike you really want to be riding for long distances at a relatively rapid pace. The LHT is ideal for riding 60 miles a day with a touring load, or commuting. If you were going to do some touring but had an emphasis on randonneuring or other long distance riding where performance is a factor, I'm sure there are probably better choices than the LHT.

Peerless in terms of both Long Distance Versatility and Value (cost)...


People Randonneur on just about anything with two wheels. You have to be very particular in order to select the proper touring bicycle. You must consider ascents when carrying gear. You must also consider balance and the best tire width, given the terrain. In that case, the LHT is best suited for Touring, but can also double as a Randonneur bicycle. Considering that it costs a fraction of many other types of Touring and Randonneuring candidates, I can easily say that it has no peers. It's truly, "peerless"...

* I really do love the LHT, I just can't help it!

PS.

It's most certainly more versatile than the Specialized Steel Tricross...

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Old 11-29-12, 07:20 PM   #11
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Slim have you ridden an LHT? If not, please do not comment on experiences you have not had because that would be giving info on inexperience. And it doing so intentionally would be considered....... trolling..... HINT
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Old 11-29-12, 07:48 PM   #12
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Slim have you ridden an LHT? If not, please do not comment on experiences you have not had because that would be giving info on inexperience. And it doing so intentionally would be considered....... trolling..... HINT
Why are you doing this?

I have ridden the LHT as I have friends who I used to tour with who've ridden them.

If you don't like me, just say so and let that be that!

I haven't disrespected anyone and I've been most tolerant of being disrespected...You're assuming something that's not so!

Besides, what difference would it make if I just liked the LHT without even riding it one time. I would just be voicing an opinion, which is a lot less obtrusive than what I've seen this week...Including obnoxious racist remarks which went without incident!

I don't need any of your hints!

If you want to ban me, then just go ahead...I'll live!

PS.

I would never be disrepectful to anyone, nor would I be a bigot!

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Old 11-29-12, 08:17 PM   #13
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Why are you doing this?

I have ridden the LHT as I have friends who I used to tour with who've ridden them?

If you don't like me, just say so and let that be that!

I haven't disrespected anyone and I've been most tolerant of being disrespected...You're assuming something that's not so!

Besides, what difference would it make if I just liked the LHT without even riding it one time. I would just be voicing an opinion, which is a lot less obtrusive than what I've seen this week...Including obnoxious racist remarks which went without incident!

I don't need any of your hints!

If you want to ban me, then just go ahead...I'll live!

PS.

I would never be disrepectful to anyone, nor would I be a bigot!
If you want to leave, please feel free to. And thank you for answering a question that was asked twice. Please note the "IF NOT..." Please keep in mind that whether or not I like you has no bearing on how I (or others who complain) take your posts. Perhaps I should not have been so nice as to hint.
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Old 11-29-12, 08:18 PM   #14
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the bigoted remark was definitely taken care of. We can't control what people post, but we can fix it up afterwards.
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Old 11-29-12, 08:40 PM   #15
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Since we're "there", the thing that strikes me about the LHT is the amount of trail -- 65mm or so by the online calculators I've seen -- which I would presume is what gives it the "truck-like" handling some people don't like for LD riding. (Full disclosure: I've never ridden one.)

Has anyone experimented with forks that have more rake to lighten the steering? I'm not in the market for one, but there are a lot of the features of the LHT I like, at least on paper.
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Old 11-29-12, 09:10 PM   #16
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If you want to leave, please feel free to. And thank you for answering a question that was asked twice. Please note the "IF NOT..." Please keep in mind that whether or not I like you has no bearing on how I (or others who complain) take your posts. Perhaps I should not have been so nice as to hint.
But what have I done?...What's my offense other than voicing my opinion about what I think of the LHT?

How could anyone take offense about that? Even if they did, that would be quite petty and insignificant.

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Old 11-29-12, 09:39 PM   #17
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If you were speaking truth from your experiences then there was no offense! That's why I asked if you rode it and "IF NOT..." But if you were NOT, then info from inexperience might be misleading, which could be construed as trolling.

That is why I HINTED at you. So you can answer if you rode it or not.
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Old 11-29-12, 09:41 PM   #18
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I am also curious. Can anyone point out what inherent features would make, say a 26"-wheeled LHT, a bad rando bike for an event like the PBP?
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Old 11-29-12, 11:10 PM   #19
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I am also curious. Can anyone point out what inherent features would make, say a 26"-wheeled LHT, a bad rando bike for an event like the PBP?
I don't know if "bad" is the right word. It's more like, if you like the way a bus handles it'll probably be just fine. You can do long distance riding on all sorts of different bikes. Whether it's the optimal bike for an individuals needs and requirements is a different question.
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Old 11-30-12, 09:41 AM   #20
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A touring bike needs to be quite rigid to allow for heavy loads. So any touring bike is going to be heavy and harsh riding, making it sub-optimal for rando riding.

Certainly people do it. I wouldn't. Touring is not rando/LD/ultra.
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Old 11-30-12, 09:55 AM   #21
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A touring bike needs to be quite rigid to allow for heavy loads. So any touring bike is going to be heavy and harsh riding, making it sub-optimal for rando riding.
The frame itself may add a pound over a light road bike; anything else can be changed. A pound isn't much, when you consider frame plus components plus equipment plus rider weight.
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Old 11-30-12, 10:03 AM   #22
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The frame itself may add a pound over a light road bike; anything else can be changed. A pound isn't much, when you consider frame plus components plus equipment plus rider weight.
Rather more than a pound I would think, over a light road bike. The fork itself would add more than that. Regardless, the weight is only one part of the problem. You still have the geo and rigidity. What does it have in its favour?

I'm not saying you can't do it. If it's your only bike, then it's the one you should ride. If you're buying a bike for rando, I would recommend others.
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Old 11-30-12, 10:03 AM   #23
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I don't know why we're even talking about this bike in this forum.
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Old 11-30-12, 10:12 AM   #24
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The frame itself may add a pound over a light road bike; anything else can be changed. A pound isn't much, when you consider frame plus components plus equipment plus rider weight.
My two cents: That extra pound means relatively little in terms of the extra burden of dragging it up each hill, but it will change the feel of the bike noticably. That stiffer / more dead feeling combined with the high trail front end and longer wheelbase makes the experience of riding the bike psychologically more difficult, if not significantly more difficult in objective reality. A lot of folks just prefer a different ride, feel, and handling of different types of bikes. How the bike just simply feels underneath you does count for something. In rando, you're perched on the damn thing all day long, so one needs to be content with one's chosen machine. So, that is to say, if one is happy with a LHT, then it works.
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Old 11-30-12, 12:08 PM   #25
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I agree with Steamer. Comfort on long distance rides is most likely the #1 priority. Physical and mental conditioning/preparation, geometry, fitting, tires, saddle, handlebar type & tape, shoes, clothing, gloves will most likely make the biggest difference on a rando event. I don't own a Surly LHT, but people rave about how comfortable it is. Let's not forget that people touring on this bike also spend long days on the saddle day after day. They do go slower and only complete 60-75 miles per day, but this is given to how much weight they carry fully loaded. The ability to install a front or rear rack for essential gear and spares (we know this is so important in a brevet where self-sufficiency is key) without the feeling of becoming too squirrely/nervous (or compromising a carbon fork or frame) is another big plus on the LHT. IMHO, all these things combined make the LHT an excellent candidate for long distance riding in the form of randonneuring. If one is looking into a bike more specific for rando purposes, yes, there are better bikes out there. Randonneuring is a very small niche, though. This is reflected in the number of off-the-peg bikes available out there. People, therefore, seem to gravitate toward the LHT if they can only afford/choose one bike. It offers a wider versatility (commuting and touring additionally) without having to recur to having several bikes that perform very similar tasks. To me randonneuring and touring are so awfully similar to the point that it is very hard to justify having two different bikes.

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