Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 17 of 17
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    New Bike Help! Giant CRX2 for touring?

    G'day all,

    I'm a longtime reader of these forums and have learnt heaps over the years... although I'm still somewhat of a novice compared to most.

    Unfortunately my bike was stolen a few months back (Trek MTB) and I'm now in the market for a shiny new machine but I'm still confused about a few things.

    I want a bike that is good for city trips but I'm also very keen to do some touring which I couldn't do on my previous bike. I'd also like my bike to be sporty enough to ride for fitness when cross-training from my usual running training.

    I initially considered a Surly LHT but have decided it's probably a bit bulky for my regular usage. I'm now trying to decide between a Surly Crosscheck and a Giant CRX2 (http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-AU/...ad/2173/31848/), which I intend to make a few changes too. I'm in Aus and I can buy a Giant CRX2 off the shelf for $1259 whereas the Surly Crosscheck with a different crankset (smaller ring) would be about $2200. Both bikes have the same chainstay length at 42.5cm which is relatively short but hopefully OK and with a few modifications I think the CRX2 will be quite versatile.

    My main questions are about the gearing:

    - The CRX2 comes with a Sora 30-39-50 crank and 12-25 Tiagra RD but I'm hoping I'll be able to swap the rear with a 11-34 cassette and Deore RD. Do you think that will be enough for touring? I'm quite light and probably won't be touring fully loaded for a while. I've noticed that should give me a similar bottom range to a stock Fuji touring but not as low as the LHT that as a 26 front ring. Does the front ring make more of a difference or should my idea of the CRX2 set-up be enough? I'm thinking about buying the Giant and just riding around for a few weeks before I make any plans to change the gearing.

    The other main changes I'm planning to make are:
    - rear rack
    - bar ends
    - combo pedals (flat and shimano SPD)
    - possibly fatter tyres if they fit. Comes with 700*28c vittoria randonneaurs might change for a 32c.

    Sorry to be posing so many questions. If any has any comments or suggestions it would be greatly appreciated.

    Hopefully I can be contributing with my own stories and experiences before too long. I'll definitely post a pic of my machine if I get up to some touring.

    Thanks heaps!!

    RABBITS :-)

  2. #2
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Whidbey Island WA
    My Bikes
    Specialized.... schwinn..... enough to fill my needs..
    Posts
    4,106
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Swap crank before cassette......... throw a mountain crank on it. Swap cassette when you wear it out.

    I tour with 28mm and like them just fine.

    Throw some bar ends on it for more hand positions.

    It fits your budget and you can tour on anything. Should work great for all that time your not touring as well.
    Last edited by kayakdiver; 06-01-09 at 07:17 AM.
    Save 15% on your first order at Hammer Nutrition!!

    2010 Giant TCR SL 3
    2010 Novara Randonee

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by kyakdiver View Post
    Swap crank before cassette......... throw a mountain crank on it. Swap cassette when you wear it out.

    I tour with 28mm and like them just fine.

    Throw some bar ends on it for more hand positions.

    It fits your budget and you can tour on anything. Should work great for all that time your not touring as well.
    Thanks Kyakdiver, much appreciated. Why do you think the crank is more important than the cassette? Does it have more effect on how low I can go gearing wise? I thought if I swapped the cassette to an 11-32 or 11-34 then that would give me a similar set-up to the Fuji touring with the small 30 ring on the front.

    Also, what is 28mm? I thought the numbers referred to the number of teeth on the cog but obviously not!

    Will definitely chuck some bar ends on.

    Cheers!

    Rabbits

  4. #4
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,565
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    IMO- You get more gearing bang for the buck changing to the 11-34 even with the front 30/42/52. A 30 chainring on a 34 tooth rear cog will give you a 24. A 26 tooth chainring with a 26 rear cog (about the biggest most road cassettes use) will give you a 25. Ideally it would also be good to change the cranks. Depending on what cassette you buy and RD, the cost of a relatively good sugino crankset will be about the same ( however, you might have to change the bottom bracket to maintain a decent chainline). I have one of my road bikes set up with a 48/36/26 crankset and an 11-34 rear cassette. I also use the Deore RD. It is a great bike for hills, and I'm not a strong enough rider that I need a much higher gearing on the flats. Sometimes if we are just doing hills (there are a lot of major hills here), I put a 24 small chainring on the front. I'm going to set up my wife's road bike the same way (52/42/30/ with an 11-34) for an especially hilly century this weekend. It only takes a 30-40 minutes to change the cassettes and RD. Sometime next week I'll put it back in "racing shape" for a triathlon she is doing in a couple of weeks.

    Check out the gear chart below and play with the nubers. It may help yopu make the decision.

    http://promechanics.com/files/2008/01/gearchart1.pdf

  5. #5
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Whidbey Island WA
    My Bikes
    Specialized.... schwinn..... enough to fill my needs..
    Posts
    4,106
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    28mm tire width. That is what the bike is spec'd with Rabbits.

    I don't agree with the above advice at all. You should be able to find an Shimano LX or XT mountain crank used for a reasonable amount. Get the newer outboard bearing version in something like a 24 small ring. It will give you more options. Find a used one with low miles if possible or purchase one off eBay.

    You should be able to find one for between $100-$150 USD.

    That is what I would do. I would ride the cassette it comes with until it's worn out or use it when not touring.

    This will give you a much nicer crank set and lower your gears to a very reasonable low.
    Save 15% on your first order at Hammer Nutrition!!

    2010 Giant TCR SL 3
    2010 Novara Randonee

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    N. California
    Posts
    1,410
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Changing the cassette to 11-34 would improve your low gear by a factor of 1.26. To get the same improvement by changing the front ring you would need to go from a 30 to a 24 ring.

    Note that your high gear will have gone up by x1.1 since Shimano mtb cassettes only come with a top tooth count of 11 unless you buy the uber-expensive XTR's which have titanium bits in them and come in 12-32 and 12-34. So, ultimately you might find it desirable to change the front rings also to something like 46/36/26 for touring.

    I think you are on the right track. Happy tail winds.
    Last edited by The Smokester; 06-03-09 at 09:38 AM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member craigdurkee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    melbourne
    My Bikes
    gaint crx 2 2007
    Posts
    522
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Doesn't the CRX 2 have carbon forks though. My 06 model certainly did, thus I would class it unsuitable for touring
    500postcards.net - GET INVOLVED
    follow me on twitter
    Surly LHT 09 "truckerchino"
    Focus Cayo Campy

  8. #8
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Whidbey Island WA
    My Bikes
    Specialized.... schwinn..... enough to fill my needs..
    Posts
    4,106
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by craigdurkee View Post
    Doesn't the CRX 2 have carbon forks though. My 06 model certainly did, thus I would class it unsuitable for touring
    Looking at the spec's.. it's showing alloy and it does have eyelets.
    Save 15% on your first order at Hammer Nutrition!!

    2010 Giant TCR SL 3
    2010 Novara Randonee

  9. #9
    Senior Member craigdurkee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    melbourne
    My Bikes
    gaint crx 2 2007
    Posts
    522
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yeah just spotted that also. It seems that the specs have gone down since I purchased mine. They really are an awesome bike. I commuted through around 20,000km on mine before I went for a drop bar model.

    Its a good hauler as well, panniers on the rear went on with no issues and the frame is strong.

    The shimano r500 wheels that came with mine were a bit poor but hey. Thats always something that could be changed as well
    500postcards.net - GET INVOLVED
    follow me on twitter
    Surly LHT 09 "truckerchino"
    Focus Cayo Campy

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks for you comments and suggestions. I couldn't wait any longer and bought the CRX2 over the weekend. I got it for $1259 and got $100 free accessories so chucked on a rack and a few other things.

    After just a little bit of riding I think I'll definitely be changing the gearing at some stage so I can make it a little lower. I'll probably switch the cassette from the 12-25 Tiagra it came with to a 11-34 Deore.

    The fork is a carbon fibre composite which is something I really hadn't considered so I hope it's alright. I only read people's comments on here after I'd bought it. I don't plan on doing heavy touring wth front panniers for quite sometime so it should be fine and it definitely suits my needs around town. I'm <60kg myself so that will also take some strain off the frame!

    If I enjoy the light touring I'm planning then perhaps I'll need to invest in another bike (LHT perhaps?) in a couple of years but hopefully the CRX2 will be a good servant until then!

    Thanks again and I'll call back here and post a pic or two once I get it set-up for some touring if anyone's interested.

    Cheers,

    Rabbits

  11. #11
    Senior Member craigdurkee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    melbourne
    My Bikes
    gaint crx 2 2007
    Posts
    522
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Congrats on the new ride, awesome choice.

    I was a bit worried about the carbon forks, they are great at absorbing the bumps but i cant help but be concerned about it for touring.

    Really looking forward to seeing the pics of the new ride

    Ps were in Aus are you

    here is a pic of my crx replaced the wheels and rear cassette and also 105 rear derailer
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by craigdurkee; 06-08-09 at 04:31 AM. Reason: adding pic
    500postcards.net - GET INVOLVED
    follow me on twitter
    Surly LHT 09 "truckerchino"
    Focus Cayo Campy

  12. #12
    Senior Member BigBlueToe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Central Coast, CA
    My Bikes
    Surly LHT, Specialized Rockhopper, Nashbar Touring (old), Specialized Stumpjumper (older), Nishiki Tourer (model unknown)
    Posts
    3,388
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Nice ride. As people have said, you can tour on just about anything. If you do and get the bug, you'll probably start thinking about buying a "real" tourer. It's a curse. I now have both a dedicated tourer and a non-touring road bike for local rides/centuries/etc. It's nice to have the right bike for the task. (I also have a mountain bike and an old mountain bike with a Bob trailer that's my "shopping bike". My wife doesn't want me to buy any more.)

  13. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by craigdurkee View Post
    Congrats on the new ride, awesome choice.

    I was a bit worried about the carbon forks, they are great at absorbing the bumps but i cant help but be concerned about it for touring.

    Really looking forward to seeing the pics of the new ride

    Ps were in Aus are you

    here is a pic of my crx replaced the wheels and rear cassette and also 105 rear derailer
    Thanks mate. Your machine looks great and your blog story is truly inspirational! 300km+ in a single day is insane!!

    I'm in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney which is actually quite hilly so I think the rear cassette will definitely be changed at some stage. Did you change your rear cassette to a new configuration or simply replace it because it was warn out? I'm still keen on putting an 11-34 on.

    I am a bit worried about the carbon fork but think it should be fine for the light touring I have planned at the moment. If I see a suitable replacement aluminium or steel fork I might switch it for peace of mind.

    I'll post up some pics soon. I've got some old panniers that my bro used on a short tour but I'll probably buy some better quality ones soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by BigBlueToe View Post
    Nice ride. As people have said, you can tour on just about anything. If you do and get the bug, you'll probably start thinking about buying a "real" tourer. It's a curse. I now have both a dedicated tourer and a non-touring road bike for local rides/centuries/etc. It's nice to have the right bike for the task. (I also have a mountain bike and an old mountain bike with a Bob trailer that's my "shopping bike". My wife doesn't want me to buy any more.)
    Haha, I can understand the misses getting a bit concerned about your expensive hobby, but what a great way to spend your money!! I'm happy with the bike. Although I love the idea of touring, 95% of my riding will still be around town so it makes sense to have a bike that is well set-up for that as well. A "real" tourer might be a good option in a couple of years or I could swap the fork if it's still worrying me. As you say, people seem to tour on just about anything and usually get away with it so I think it will be fine.

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    8,488
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
    Sometimes if we are just doing hills (there are a lot of major hills here), I put a 24 small chainring on the front. I'm going to set up my wife's road bike the same way (52/42/30/ with an 11-34) for an especially hilly century this weekend. It only takes a 30-40 minutes to change the cassettes and RD. Sometime next week I'll put it back in "racing shape" for a triathlon she is doing in a couple of weeks.
    Seems that all that swapping would be inconvenient and confusing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rabbits View Post
    I'm still keen on putting an 11-34 on.
    Note that, if you are buying the bike new from a shop, they might swap the cassette for minimal or no money and adjust the derailers as part of the normal set up.

    While stuff does wear out, you could be waiting a fairly long time for that to happen!
    Last edited by njkayaker; 06-11-09 at 10:17 AM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member craigdurkee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    melbourne
    My Bikes
    gaint crx 2 2007
    Posts
    522
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I personally wouldnt bother changing anything, the gearing is pretty good anyway. Besides your not gonna be able to carry that much weight anyway.


    As time gets on you will also grow stronger thus the difference will be minimal.

    Still waiting for thos pics bud.
    500postcards.net - GET INVOLVED
    follow me on twitter
    Surly LHT 09 "truckerchino"
    Focus Cayo Campy

  16. #16
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Sorry for the delay in getting photos up. They're not the most exciting pics either as it's a brand new machine!

    I'm really happy with it. My only concern is the composite forks but with the sort of touring I can see myself doing in the near future it shouldn't be a problem for a while. It will definitely be a great city bike. I'll probably upgrade the panniers when I get a chance.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  17. #17
    Senior Member craigdurkee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    melbourne
    My Bikes
    gaint crx 2 2007
    Posts
    522
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Looks nice bud.

    Just those dam forks

    Plus be carefull of those wheels there very weak
    500postcards.net - GET INVOLVED
    follow me on twitter
    Surly LHT 09 "truckerchino"
    Focus Cayo Campy

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •