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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 10-27-05, 01:09 PM   #1
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S and S coupler on CX

Anyone ever done / seen a CX bike with S and S couplers? Any problems racing such a beast?

(If I could combine a travel bike with CX, I could rationalize getting a better bike.)
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Old 10-27-05, 01:24 PM   #2
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Ritchey builds a 'cross frame in both steel AND TITANIUM. (I know you OCP'ers would love that) Its called the Break Away

Link for:

Steel Break Away

For some reason their is not a picture if the Ti version only a picture of the included Carry Case
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Old 10-27-05, 02:13 PM   #3
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I saw a guy racing a Ritchey breakaway at the Mill City Classic cyclocross last Sunday here in Minneapolis.

I heard Sheldon Brown kinda dislikes the Breakaway.[I just searched the harriscyclery.com site and found no such article. More gossip?]

Maybe just regular bike with the S&S treatment.
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Old 10-27-05, 02:39 PM   #4
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I rode the road version of the break-away and their couplers just don't feel as tight and strong comapred to my S&S coupled Surly CrossCheck. The break-away coupling near the bottom bracket doesn't look particularly strong. I think the Ritchey bike would be great for tooling around and gentle rides around town, but I personally wouldn't buy one for serious loaded touring and/or racing. For that you should get a S&S equipped bike. My bike is totally seamless with no give. Check out the S&S Machine website (www.sandsmachine.com) for lots of pics and testimonials - they're the guys that actually make the couplers. Of course you can get a titanium, steel, or even carbon frame (Calfee does it very well, although it's $$$) equipped with couplers...
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Old 10-27-05, 03:32 PM   #5
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I'm not familiar with the breakaway, but I can vouch for the S&S couplers in titanium . Good stuff.
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Old 10-27-05, 06:44 PM   #6
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almost any boutique fram builder will put s&s couplers on for you if you want to go custom. check out independent fabrications.

also, its not exactly s & s, but you could check out the wacky slingshot bikes. they make a cross frame.
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Old 10-29-05, 12:15 PM   #7
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Spectrum Cycles just posted a custom CX bike with S and S couplers on their website - very cool.



www.spectrum-cycles.com
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Old 10-29-05, 08:36 PM   #8
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I recently read a review on the Ritchie Breakaway (can't remember where, if I do I'll post). The review was quite favorable, only negative suggested was getting the coupler halves ligned correctly to avoid crossthread.
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Old 10-30-05, 02:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greybeard87
I recently read a review on the Ritchie Breakaway (can't remember where, if I do I'll post). The review was quite favorable, only negative suggested was getting the coupler halves ligned correctly to avoid crossthread.
That's curious. I've had mine apart and reassembled 5 or 6 times and that's not an issue. Actually I don't see how you could crossthread the clamp. The tapped hole for the screw has a regular fit and if you have to force it, you've really done something wrong. If it feels tight, back up and start again. To me the problem is not in the screw. It's holding the front and back together to get the clamp in place. It's easier if you put the seatpost in first and tighten a little bit to stabilize the assembly. Actually, in reading it again the quoted statement seems to apply more to the S&S units as I think they use a fine thread on the coupler.

While I'm not a racer or pedal real hard, I have been riding on some rough streets. The Taiwanese do a pretty decent job of paving, but not patching. Consequently many of the streets are quite lumpy. I tend to ride relatively fast, so I hit some bumps at 20 to 30 kph. As far as I can tell, my BreakAway doesn't feel that much different from the aluminum Giant TCR-2 that I had previously. As far as I can see, the only real drawback to the Ritchey system is that it is proprietary. Therefore you are limited to the Ritchey offerings or the Dahon Allegro which uses the Ritchey frame. If you go the S&S route, you have the choice of a bunch of frame builders and the possibility of retrofitting steel and titanium bikes.
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