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  1. #1
    Senior Member albanian's Avatar
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    Would an old Schwinn touring bike make a good CX bike?

    I just bought a 1984 Schwinn Voyageur. It is a touring bike but looking it made me think that is probably the closest thing to a CX bike that you can get without buying a CX bike.

    I am ignorant about CX bikes so let me know what I am missing.

    The Voyageur has canti brakes like a CX bike.

    It has a nice lightweight lugged steel frame so it should be both durable and provide some spring when the course gets rough.

    It has a more relaxed geometry like a CX bike because it was built for touring.

    So what about it other than the drop tube shifters which can be upgraded would prevent it from being used as a CX bike?

    I am not going to turn my gorgeous Voyageur into a CX bike but the idea remains, why couldn't it be done with good results? I am thinking if I wanted to build a CX bike, I would use a touring bike as a base. Is that sound thinking or am I missing something?

  2. #2
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by albanian View Post
    I am thinking if I wanted to build a CX bike, I would use a touring bike as a base. Is that sound thinking or am I missing something?
    Can be done. Frankly, it can be done with dual-pivots too, IMO - if you have the clearance:





    -Kurt

  3. #3
    Senior Member mzeffex's Avatar
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    Yes. Been raced on.

    Quote Originally Posted by rjones28 View Post
    Are they talking about spectators feeding the cyclists? You know, like don't feed the bears?

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    Senior Member albanian's Avatar
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    Would it be fair to say that touring bike tend to make the best loaner bikes for cheap CX builds?

    I am assuming most touring bikes will have drop bars, canti brakes, cro-mo frame, triple cranks, more relaxed geometry, good strength because they are built to withstand many miles on unknown terrain and weather. You don't want your tour to be ruined by weak components or frame so they tend to be a little stouter than racing bikes.

  5. #5
    Fat Guy on a Little Bike KonAaron Snake's Avatar
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    It can definitely be done, but a modern CX bike is going to be a lot lighter (especially with the predominance of CF forks) and the frame is a bit more agressive than a traditional touring bike. A lot of the older touring bikes are also designed with 27's in mind while most CX I've seen is 700c.

    My old Kona JTS weighed in at 21 pounds with no weight manipulation. My dad's Voyager weighed around 26-27 with weight manipulation.

    I'm actually going the exact opposite route...I'm looking to pick up a used new'ish donor CX bike to move it's parts over for a touring build.

    I think the cheapest way to do what you're talking about would actually be one of the older rigid MTBs. You'd end up with 26 inch wheels, but that would be the cheapest platform. Just switch out the front to a compact, add some drops and STIs...you're in business.

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    Quote Originally Posted by albanian View Post
    Would it be fair to say that touring bike tend to make the best loaner bikes for cheap CX builds?
    I think it's fairer to say that whatever you can get your hands on makes the best cheap CX build, with singlespeed conversion ftw.

  7. #7
    Just keep pedalling! big_heineken's Avatar
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    Here is my example of a SS cross bike:




    The old center-pull brakes have plenty of stopping power.
    Hook 'em Horns!

  8. #8
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    Really about the only change you'd need to make to turn an old tourer into a capable crosser is from slick to knobby tires.
    1988 Miele Azsora

  9. #9
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    I've used a $20 Shogun and an Austro Daimler, each for a full season of cross. Canti's are a plus, as I used dual pivots, and they got a little clogged up. The biggest thing for older road/touring bikes is the amount of tire clearance they have in the back near the chainstays. Touring bikes will have more space, but you'll want to make sure there is at least room for a 30mm, if not a 32 or 35mm tire. The relaxed geometry makes them fairly stable, but you won't be able to turn on a dime like is sometimes needed to get by some other riders in a race. It sure is fun though to beat others that have spent more money on their frame then you spent on your whole bike

  10. #10
    cs1
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    Senior Member cs1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mzeffex View Post
    Yes. Been raced on.

    I really like the looks of that bike.
    1999 Waterford RSE-11, 1995 Waterford 1200, 1989 Specialized Rockhopper Comp
    1989 Raleigh Technium, 1989 Schwinn Traveler, 1986 Specialized Rockhopper
    1984 Specialized Stumpjumper, 1986 Specialized Stumpjumper and just way too many projects to list.

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