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Old 07-29-08, 02:06 PM   #1
zeppinger
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Ordering my LHT in 6 Hours, Suggestions?

Hi all, I recently, as in a few hours ago, fell into some money that someone owed me that I had forgotten about and am pulling the trigger on my new LHT that i have been fantasizing about for months now! I am going to get it in a 52 i believe. I am going straight to the LBS after work to order it! I will probably order one pretty close to the complete package that surly sells but i had a few questions for last minute suggestions?

First, and most importantly, I think I am going to order a brooks saddle with the bike, either a b17 or a flyer. I do mostly commuting but I plan to do some serious touring eventually. Also, the bike frames that are left are all the pea green color. Should I get a black saddle or tan I know but these thing matter!

I was thinking about lowering the gearing... I do not like to ride REALLY fast down hills or anything crazy so i want to make sure i have a really nice granny gear. Then again i am a light person at 155 pounds so i am not sure....

The guy at the LBS said that the standard drop bars are a little narrow and cheap. He suggested i upgrade to a wider set. Thoughts? I probably wont ride very low because i have a bad shoulder and dont like TOO much weight on it for long periods... I am new to drop bars so i am not sure.

Peddals- I have some shimano spd shoes but do not have clipless pedals yet. might as well order them with the bike right? I was going to get the double sided ones so i can ride with normal shoes now and then around town. I am also planning to go car free in the very near future so this will help with that too.

Anyother suggestions? If you were going to order a LHT in today what would you change, if anything, and why?

What kind of fenders? Aluminum or platsic? Got a favorite brand?

Thanks a lot guys, you have all been such a huge inspiration to me over the last few months that I have been surfing this site and i hold your opinions over almost all else!
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Old 07-29-08, 02:11 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by zeppinger View Post
The guy at the LBS said that the standard drop bars are a little narrow and cheap. He suggested i upgrade to a wider set. Thoughts? I probably wont ride very low because i have a bad shoulder and dont like TOO much weight on it for long periods... I am new to drop bars so i am not sure.
I have wide shoulders and thought wider bars would be great. Tried them and had a bunch of wrist pain I didn't on some narrow drops I ended up with. All this to say you'd need to actually try them to know if they were a good fit or not. I don't think price really matters so I wouldn't use that as a basis for getting rid of the stock bars.
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Old 07-29-08, 02:43 PM   #3
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I am really excited for you. These bikes looks awesome.

Addressing your concern about the handlebars:
Measure your shoulder width from the very outside of your collar bones (this is the part that forms sort of a lump before it dives down and disappears into your should muscle). Most people are comfortable with bars around this width. It's just a 'rule of thumb,' though, so you don't have to swear by it. Unless your shoulders are way off of the 41cm that the 52cm bike come with, I'd try them out. Most drop bars come in multiples of 2 sizes (40, 42, 44, etc), unlike the stock LHT bars, just to give you a heads up.

If I were you, though, I'd be changing them out anyways for some ergo bars, with a portion of the drops being flat. These feel much better in my hands than the classic round drops, but one drawback is that you are sort of forced to put your hand in that specific slot. I really like the Salsa Pro Road bars.

The gearing:
You could definitely go to a slightly lower gearing and still be able to bomb down any hills, which it sounds like you don't want to do anyways. Just keep it above a 44 tooth count.

Fenders:
I am a really big fan of the SKS P-series of fenders. I think the P50 set would work for you. They are mostly plastic but have nice aluminum hardware.

Pedal systems:
SPDs are the most popular because they have been around forever, but check out some other company's versions. I really like the Crank Brothers pedals.

Let us know what you decide!
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Old 07-29-08, 02:46 PM   #4
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zeppinger very best of luck with the new baby ,my self i have wide bars 44cm also i have fizik bar gel and bartape very comfy the wider bar gives you more hand room and bit more room if you have a barbag,certainly get the spd pedals there great as is the spd shimano sandles,my saddle is b17 special copper rails green in colour very nice,,fenders plastic sorry cant think of the name and yes go for grannie gears this aint no race,make sure you get a good computer and cover for saddle little things you could forget.oh good set lights and frame pump ,when you get all this stick up a photo so as we all can have a goo.
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Old 07-29-08, 02:50 PM   #5
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Excellent! If you are juggling the complete, I would swap the granny ring for a 24 (I did, in fact, after a year or so).
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Old 07-29-08, 02:52 PM   #6
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LHT is a very nice bike. i just test rode one this past weekend.

i would definitely get everything all at once as far as accessories go. don't forget panniers for your commuting stuff. if you don't get it all at once, you will find yourself back at the LBS to get one item, and walk out with 2 or 3 things, at quadruple what you were expecting to pay for the one item.

fenders, pedals, racks, panniers are all great ideas up front, but id wait on the gearing, as the bike does already have a triple, you will most likely be fine with the gearing that it comes with. you can always change out the gearing when you bring it in for that first tune up.
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Old 07-29-08, 03:00 PM   #7
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Any suggestions for racks? The Surly Nice racks look great but some people do not seem to be big fans... I want both front a rear. Steel seems like the way to go because if they break you can weld them, though i am not a welder i may be in the 3rd world at some point... I also like the front racks that you can stack stuff on top of. Any ideas? Steal is not the most important thing, the front stackability is!
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Old 07-29-08, 03:28 PM   #8
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tubus racks,ortlieb bikepacker plus panniers,well why not get the best while you can,sks fenders marathon plus tyres .
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Old 07-29-08, 03:29 PM   #9
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I bought a 52cm a few weeks ago and changed the bars for a Nitto Noodle 46cm. I think 44cm might have been enough (and cheaper). Narrow bars were a big problem with my other bike. I really like the flat part behind the hood on the Noodles. I also added Paul Thumbies. They're great but interfere with handlebar bag brackets. I won't use a bar bag anyway since I added a Surly front rack. The front rack is really nice, very ajustable. Jandd makes an alu model that is lighter and cheaper. I think the rear rack is too heavy for no reason. I already had a tubus Logo. A Tubus Cargo would be my choice for a new rack. I also changed the saddle for a Brooks B17. Pedals are SPD 545 and fenders are SKS P50. I though of changing the small ring for a 24T but I'll live with the 26T for now. I also added one Topeak cage for standard 1.5L water bottles. I just changed the tires for Marathons XR because I'll have a short part of my next trip on a rough road but I went overboard with the 2.0". Boy are they slow!

I *really* like the bike. It has surpassed my expectations.
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Old 07-29-08, 03:57 PM   #10
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I bought my 52cm LHT frameset several years ago and built it up with XT parts from a mountain bike which I was not using. I also installed noodle bars, bar end shifters, and a Brooks B17. It's a very nice ride.
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Old 07-29-08, 04:09 PM   #11
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You need a rack.

You will prob want to change some things around, but you won't know what til
you get it. Typically the saddle has to go. SKS fenders are good.
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Old 07-29-08, 04:22 PM   #12
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Here's my 52cm LHT Complete that I bought last October:

I would keep the original gearing until you try them out -- you can always swap chain rings later.

I recommend the PlanetBike Cascadia "hybrid" fenders. They look great and will work with tires up to about 1.75" wide.

Accessories currently installed in the picture:
Cross brake levers
PlanetBike Cascadia "hybrid" fenders
Trek Back Rack
Two water bottle cages
Topeak Road Morph G pump
Dinotte 600L headlight
Dinotte 140L taillight
Brooks B17 saddle (honey color)
Velo-Orange elkhide handlebar covers
Velo-Orange brass bell
Jandd saddle bag
Lone Peak H-100 "Alta" handlebar bag on 2nd stem
Campy Centaur Ergo shifters
Specialized Fat Boy 26x1.25 slicks
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Old 07-29-08, 05:00 PM   #13
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Sorry to thread hijack, but to Skyler: Did you have to drill out a channel or hole on the second stem for the front brake cable? Also, how do you like the VO handlebar covers?
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Old 07-29-08, 05:30 PM   #14
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Good luck with the LHT! Personally, I just got the complete bike, and was very happy with everything that came with it, including the handlebars. (Mine is a 58 cm, though, so it already included wider bars) Swap out the saddle, which totally sucks; you'll need to replace that horrible thing before you ride it anywhere. Almost everyone on Earth who owns an LHT has a Brooks B17 saddle, but there's probably a good reason for that. Get a black one, it will match the handlebar tape that comes with the bike.

I have a Jandd rack, and I really like it. I have Planet Bike fenders, and I don't like them so much; I'm thinking about switching to SKS.

I hope you don't have to wait long to have your LHT delivered; judging by the way those things have disappeared from local bike shops this summer, they're really popular bikes.
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Old 07-29-08, 05:50 PM   #15
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+1 on the Cascadia fenders. Planet Bike makes good stuff, and donates a lot of cash to bike advocacy.
Super jealous about your LHT. Its been on my radar for a while.
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Old 07-29-08, 07:59 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeppinger View Post
The guy at the LBS said that the standard drop bars are a little narrow and cheap. He suggested i upgrade to a wider set. Thoughts? I probably wont ride very low because i have a bad shoulder and dont like TOO much weight on it for long periods... I am new to drop bars so i am not sure.
I've been muttering to myself about this recently, they seem much narrower than those on my jamis quest. Doing the standard measurement (center-to-center in the drops), they are both 46 cm, which is wider than normal. However, the LHT handlebars flare out to this width, and are narrower on top. The jamis handlebars are wider on top and go straight down to the drops. Even though this is probably a 1" difference, total, it makes a bit difference in the feel of the bike to me. If I wasn't about to go on a tour (and have many other things to fiddle with), I'd definitely get a new set of handlebars.
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Old 07-30-08, 11:03 AM   #17
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I bought an LHT frame last August and built it up myself. I put a Sugino crankset on it that was 26/36/46. I replaced the 26 with a 24 and I'm glad I did. I put a Cyclotouriste cassette on the back (from Harris Cyclery.) The combination gives me a nice low gear and plenty of choices between low and high. The high isn't very high, but who cares for touring? I think the lowest low possible is the way to go for loaded touring. Especially if you carry more weight than you should (like I tend to do.)

I put a Tubus Cargo rack on the back and a Jandd Extreme in front. I'm very happy with both. They are both very stable, and I like having the platform in front.
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Old 07-30-08, 01:13 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.C. Koto View Post
Skyler: Did you have to drill out a channel or hole on the second stem for the front brake cable? Also, how do you like the VO handlebar covers?
My LHT Complete came with a 45 degree metal elbow/tube/noodle between the front brake cable and the front brake hanger so that the cable will have a nice easy curve as it goes outboard to the right and then bends down and inboard to the brake hanger. This cause the brake cable to curve over and then under the 2nd stem without any modifications needed.

The Velo-Orange elkhide handlebar covers look really nice and complement the appearance of my Brooks saddle. Functionally, for me personally they aren't much different than regular tape wrap because I have come to realize that my hands spend 90% of the time on the rubber hoods, so my hands don't really care what the bars are covered with. Installation took me four hours, partly due to the creative cutting and stitching I had to do to work around my Campy shifters because I didn't want to remove all my brake and shifter cables.

Bottom Line: Now that the pain of installing the elkhide barcovers is behind me, I really like how they look on my bike and I'll keep them as long as I can; however, when the day comes that I have to remove them for some reason (probably my next cable replacement), I probably won't spend the time to reinstall a new set for what is essentially a cosmetic upgrade without any functional benefits.
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