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Old 09-05-05, 04:36 PM   #1
trubenal
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Frame chosen, some help on the fork?

After reading countless threads on this Board, I have decided to buy a Soma Double Cross as my all everything bike. I want to build this bike up to be as fast as it can be, but still reliable, as I am 6' 200lbs.

I live in Florida, no dealers nearby, so I will be going the internet route. I have found that the frame only for a best price of $309 and frame with matching steel lugged fork for $420

So first, has anyone seen a better price? Second, should I go with the matching fork? $110 seems steep to me for a fork that doesnt have its weight listed (I will guess ~2lbs). I ask because I am not familiar with the comfort changes between steel and aluminum forks on steel frames, but I can easily see the weight change (about a half pound usually). So is the extra comfort worth the weight AND cost penalty? Nicer steel forks seem to cost much more than this as well. Aluminum Cross forks go for much less on ebay.

Most of you probably wonder why I care, mainly its my budget as I am a grad student, and also because I used to race heavily and still will casually in the future, and I want this bike to enable me to cash out my race bike yet still be able to ride to school everyday. Also, this will be my first steel frame and I have a dream of taking a bike to Europe (hopefully this one!) for a couple months when I graduate. I wanted to ask this in touring forum, because I figured you guys would really know the feel of your bikes. Thanks!
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Old 09-05-05, 05:26 PM   #2
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It ain't light, but I'm using a Surly Crosscheck fork on my fixed gear. It's totally bulletproof chromoly, good looking crown, decals are maybe a little cheesy, but at around $60, it's some value.

Also, I don't see aluminum giving you any more comfort than steel, in fact I'd bet on the opposite being true. The only thing you'd save with aluminum is weight.
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Old 09-05-05, 06:29 PM   #3
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If you already bought the Soma, I am sure it will work fine. However, I almost bought it but first contacted American Cyclery in SF, since they were the ones that designed it, and they said it is not intended as a loaded tour (even thought the SOMA webpage says it is). It is a great do all bike but if you are going to load it go the distance, you might be better off w/ something a little more stout especially since you are 200lbs.
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Old 09-05-05, 06:51 PM   #4
trubenal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aroundoz
If you already bought the Soma, I am sure it will work fine. However, I almost bought it but first contacted American Cyclery in SF, since they were the ones that designed it, and they said it is not intended as a loaded tour (even thought the SOMA webpage says it is). It is a great do all bike but if you are going to load it go the distance, you might be better off w/ something a little more stout especially since you are 200lbs.
I should qualify that, its more credit card touring so I think (I dont have the experience to back this up) that the Soma will be alright. I am also a backpacker and always tend to go the ultralight route, so I wont be loading it like some of you guys do, well except for the whole body weight thing. This assumption seem valid, but someone please tell me before I make a mistake. I figure its got to be a better choice than my cannondale R2000.

Also, I havent purchased the frame yet so I am open to other suggestions as well. I over analyze purchases like this so other ideas will be appreciated. I also looked at:

Surly Crosscheck (Soma is less recognizable, same price, all same features, and I have been told better steel and butted tubes.)
Surly LHT and ebay touring frames (I need the bike to function as other things as well, I cant afford more specialty bikes, I already have an old SS road, MTB and race bike. I wanna reduce and simplify)
Surly Pacer & Soma Sport (I like the double eyelets and rear spacing of the DC)
Gunnar everything (A little pricey, I think I am getting better value)
Salsa La Raza (no reason to choose this over the others)
Various other cross bikes new and used (double eylets and rear spacing thing again)
I will probly go the 'buy a nicer used bike for parts and sell extra stuff' route to spec the bike out.

Thanks folks

Last edited by trubenal; 09-05-05 at 07:10 PM.
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Old 09-05-05, 08:09 PM   #5
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If it can withstand cyclocross, it will be fine.
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Old 09-06-05, 04:58 AM   #6
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I'm happy with the Double Cross I built up for all-rounder / commuting duty. I'm sure it would work well for cc touring too, but if heavy loaded touring was something I planned on doing, I'd have gone with the Surly LHT instead.

BTW, the Soma fork is fine, I see no reason to consider a different fork.
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