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Old 10-27-06, 06:19 PM   #1
SoonerLater
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Surly LHT: Does it have a rival?

I've about concluded that Surly Long Haul Trucker is a good fit for me, my budget and my intended use.

Does the LHT have a rival? In the same price range? If so, what is it?
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Old 10-27-06, 07:09 PM   #2
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It depends upon what you're gonna hang on it, and what wheels you plan to put under it. But that's the beauty of it--you can equip it the way you want. The Trek 520 or one of the C'dale T bikes might compare, again depending upon how you plan to build up an LHT. I decided to build up an LHT and like it the way it is, thumb shifters, silly treking bar and all...
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Old 10-27-06, 07:58 PM   #3
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REI Randonee is a great deal with decent parts. I have a LHT and a Randonee in the house. The Randonee frame is just as nice as the LHT and as a bonus it has a higher BB so you don't get as much pedal strike. In the spring the Randonee was $999 - 20% off with one off those coupons they put out 3 times a year it was $799.

If you want to pimp out your bike with high end parts go with a LHT frame or maybe a Kogswell frame. I had quality issues with two LHT frames I rec'd so I would not go back for another, but other people seem to have been luckier and are very happy with theirs.
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Old 10-27-06, 10:12 PM   #4
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WILL the LHT have a rival in 2007?

No.

LHT, complete bike, 1,000 bucks and change in 2007 from your local QBP bike shop.
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Old 10-27-06, 10:34 PM   #5
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Beko:

Do you guys sell those down there at Greg's?
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Old 10-27-06, 11:34 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcm
Beko:

Do you guys sell those down there at Greg's?
Unfortunately, atleast for MTB (only "Beko" will get that), we don't JCM. Although we may be able to special order one for you! Come down and talk to us! It gets lonely in the winter!
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Old 10-28-06, 02:57 AM   #7
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See, it's starting already, the LHT threads are getting poluted with OEM bike package stuff.

For now it's just a frame and at 350+ I can't think of any frame I would prefer. I really like my Urbanite, up here in Canada, and I want to try the Nashbar frame which is around 160 with the right sale (though I think they tucked them out of sight a few weeks back when they had their 20% off sale). The Kogswell Porteur is right for the kind of person (it fits) and who wants to make a quirky statement, but the wheels alone should take it off the page. The LHT is a very basic frame though, and some percentage of pepoel don't fit it well and should spring for a basic tailored frame.
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Old 10-28-06, 06:47 AM   #8
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the only problem with the kogswell porteur is it is made for 650B wheels.....idiotic.


if the porteur was built to either 26" or 700c standards, it would be a different story.


like the 'blade said,

Gregg's can order one for you.
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Old 10-28-06, 07:19 AM   #9
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Fuji makes a steel-frame touring bike as well.

http://www.fujibikes.com/2007/bikes.asp?id=290&subcat=2
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Old 10-28-06, 09:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bekologist
the only problem with the kogswell porteur is it is made for 650B wheels.....idiotic.


if the porteur was built to either 26" or 700c standards, it would be a different story.


like the 'blade said,

Gregg's can order one for you.

Two years ago, I would have agreed with you. Today, having first ridden on 650Bs and then having designed the P/R around them, my experience is that they're PERFECT for just about everything.

700C is a good size if you want to use 25-28mm tubulars. And 559s are OK kids and small women. But if you're carrying a load (or if you are a load), 36mm+ 650B tires offer a very smooth ride.

It isn't 1970 any more. Alloy rims and clincher tires are now the run of the mill and we can make them any way we want. And modern 650B rims and tires offer outstanding performance.

If anyone is interested, let me know. We have a growing network of dealers who have bikes that you can go and test ride. Five minutes on 650Bs will make you a believer.

Call this an ad if you like. But it's a public service announcement from where I am.


Last edited by Kogswell; 10-28-06 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 10-28-06, 10:24 AM   #11
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I was just about to order a LHT when a 1989 Specialized CrossRoads hybrid if fair shape appeared at the local thrift store for $5. Someone had tried to use it as a mountain bike and had beaten the wheels off it. The only missing accessories when compared to the LHT were the third water bottle mount and the spare spoke hanger. It came with a Shimano BioPace crank with 48,38, and 28, chain rings and 175mm crank arms which is perfect for a loaded touring bike and is something I would have had a hard time finding even if I were looking for something like that. New wheels, 35mm tires, front rack, rear rack, and tune up got it on the road and it's a great loaded touring bike for not very much money.
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Old 10-28-06, 10:30 AM   #12
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Nice bike Mr Kogswell. The problem with 650 tires is finding them!
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Old 10-28-06, 11:37 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erick L
Nice bike Mr Kogswell. The problem with 650 tires is finding them!

Truthiness.

People are snapping up 650B tires and rims so fast, no one can keep them in stock.
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Old 10-28-06, 12:05 PM   #14
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The Kogswell is a great bike and would make a great commuter.
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Old 10-28-06, 12:31 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kogswell
Truthiness.

People are snapping up 650B tires and rims so fast, no one can keep them in stock.
Honestly, while working in the parts department at Gregg's I have never sold ANY 650 tire or tube, let alone wheel.
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Old 10-28-06, 12:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warblade
Honestly, while working in the parts department at Gregg's I have never sold ANY 650 tire or tube, let alone wheel.

No one sold any mountain bike tires or wheels in 1980.

Five years later mountain bikes accounted for 80% of a dealer's business.

Be a leader.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people
can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."
- Margaret Mead



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Old 10-28-06, 01:03 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kogswell
I can easily get 650B tyres here. What I can't get here is such a beautiful bike!

Just as a question: is the (massive) front rack necessary or is it just there to keep the spirit?
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Old 10-28-06, 03:12 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clayface
I can easily get 650B tyres here. What I can't get here is such a beautiful bike!

Just as a question: is the (massive) front rack necessary or is it just there to keep the spirit?

Good question, and the answer is 'sort of'.

The frame is supplied with different forks that allow the user to tune the geometry for the load, the postion (front/rear) of the load and type of tires being used. That's a prototype rack for carrying a big front load. And we're designing a rack for lighter loads as well, a 'randoneering' rack designed to hold a handlebar bag.

Everyone has a different use for the bike and so the builds cover a wide range.

For touring, the forks have low-rider mounts and the rear has rack mounts as well. And we supply matching steel fenders that are painted to match and which attach to threaded bossed on the bridges and under the fork crown.

There are more photos of what folks are doing on the Kogswell group at Flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/groups/kogswell/

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Old 10-28-06, 03:22 PM   #19
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no offense, Kog, because that's a beautiful bike,

the difference between the mountain bike and your porteur is mountain bikes were building on existing 26" rim bike ideas and using an already readily available rim and tire size.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kogswell
700C is a good size if you want to use 25-28mm tubulars. And 559s are OK kids and small women. But if you're carrying a load (or if you are a load), 36mm+ 650B tires offer a very smooth ride.
now, that's VERY subjective! JUST 25-28 tubulars?

the '29'er and fat, 700c tires have got a good thing going for smooth and fast ride. not to mention higher absolute gear inches for when its all downhill....who decided 559 tires aren't good for rough stuff touring?


i see there are a lot of rim choices in the 650B size.

why don't you just design around the S-6 or S-7 hoops and make a lot of old bike collectors happy? instead of pimping yet another rim size to go obsolete on consumers?

559 and 584, thats a diff of 2.5cm, right? 12MM difference in the radius of the hoops from mountain bike hoops? 12.5 MM diff?


I ask, truly, whats' the diff? how many wheel sizes do consumers need? I think French Standard- styled bikes are what americans need MORE of, tha's for sure, but using readily available rim and wheel sizes.


you don't have to reinvent the wheel (diameter) IMO.

Last edited by Bekologist; 10-28-06 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 10-28-06, 04:01 PM   #20
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No, there is no frame readily available at the price, specifically designed to be a tourer. I think Surly were geniuses doing the LHT. I think it is a very good product with great market placement. My criticisms? Well, I'll guess that many people get overly enthusiastic and end up spending much more money than they first thought they would (hey, a quality tourer for $400!!!). Secondly, I do believe it's alot of money for a Taiwanese produced frame that is not exceptional (sorry, but it's not, granted it's very good, but it's not exceptional). I think Surly are selling it on the reputation and marketing niche mystique -which I really can't blame them for, and indeed have admiration.

If some other manufacturer started to contract out to a half decent Chinese production with a decent touring design, I'd bet the LHT would have more than a bit of competition. Sadly, it seems the US market has been skipped over with only a cursory selection of touring bikes; hats off to Surly again for seeing the opportunity.

Hopefully I don't come across as being negative about the LHT -I'd certainly have one. However, I think it would be more based on market sector, price, the fact I build my own bikes, etc AND the fact there's not much out there that is its competitor (e.g. touring frame for <$400). I think this market sector is possibly very open to competition, and I don't think the LHT position is unassailable given the product. Once the LHTs are sold built up for $1000, it will be interesting to see how people like them compared to the Trek 520 -is the LHT frame that much better than the Trek 520? And what sort of componentry compared to the Treks? It will be very interesting.
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Old 10-28-06, 06:06 PM   #21
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Thread Mission Creep....

Orig. Poster here...

My question was intended to elicit comments on whether there is a FRAMESET available for ABOUT $400 which is as good or better than the Surly LHT. Not that all the comments about production bikes aren't interesting or valid, but...

FWIW, my feet are so big/long, that even on an old '83 Trek 630 with chainstays about as long as the LHT, my right heel can hit the derailer. People talk about needing long c'stays to keep out of the panniers; I need 'em just to stay out of the drive train. And when I pull my kids' bike trailer, which is often, I have to pedal with my left arch over the pedal else I whack the trailer hitch/mount. I yearn to go touring, but I have to have a touring-length bike just for everyday riding.

I've decided that I want to build up a bike from a frameset because I have access to a treasure trove of used componetry and what I can't scavenge that way, I can likely pickup on ebay. I just don't have a lot to spend and after watching ebay for a month or so, I'm not seeing long wheelbase bikes in my size (60/61cm) being offered there. Meanwhile, the ready made touring market has all but died in the US. I think I can build a bike for under a $grand which is better than the Trek 520 (MSRP $1239).

No, if the chainstays were longer on the Soma Doublecross or Smoothie ES, I'd rather buy a frame from those guys. Better steel (arguably). Lighter frame. Cooler look.

But the only one I know of that will work for me is the Surly LHT. I'd just like to see if there're others before I commit.

Thanks again to all who have posted.
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Old 10-28-06, 06:20 PM   #22
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Sooner, sounds like you really need to go custom due to clearance.
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Old 10-28-06, 06:25 PM   #23
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Hi,
just got one of these for the wife. Check the chainstay length. It is really sweet and the paint job has to be seen, it is gorgeous.

http://parts.spicercycles.com/page.c...=T&startRow=41

Ooops, here you can find a link to the pdf that has the specs
http://parts.spicercycles.com/page.c...=T&startRow=41
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Old 10-28-06, 06:42 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrocket
Sooner, sounds like you really need to go custom due to clearance.
Yep, and just soon as these three kids (6, 5 and 2) are out of college, I'll order up a tailor made frame, but 'til then, my budget is limited. Ain't nobody gonna weld me up a custom frame, bare, for less'n a $Grand at least, and easily more. Yes, I can see the value in a custom frame, but I just can't afford it. Better to be bikin a bike that don't fit than ridin a couch which does.
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Old 10-28-06, 08:39 PM   #25
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If it's really an issue. There's one way to get some space behind your heels:
http://www.xtracycle.com/freeradical...-bike-p-2.html

Just an idea. Never used one myself though.
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