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Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

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Old 06-20-09, 12:12 PM   #1
jmio
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new bike for commuting/touring

I've been test riding bikes for a while now that will be capable of touring and serving as a commuter. The primary duty of the bike will be commuting/utility(i'm going car light for the next 2 years) and the secondary use willl be touring(weekend trips). So far I've test ridden a 520, sojourn and a touring 2, the sojourn might actually take out a suburban if a collision course would be set. it's a tank!!!! I've never been able to test ride a cross check, but heard great things about them(surly company) and read on here somewhere where people have toured with them. But I'm totally digggin this bike,

http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...9.aspx?sc=FRGL

is there any people out there that have time in the saddle on these things, I know the chainstays are a little shorter, what rear racks work with them while still being able to put panniers on w/o foot strike? thanks for the help.
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Old 06-20-09, 12:13 PM   #2
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I know in previous posts I was defending the sojourn, but it's 1300 at my bike shop(only shop that sells them around here, as far as I know) and for commuting i want something lighter for sure
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Old 06-20-09, 01:43 PM   #3
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Take a look at the Jamis Aurora as well. Shorter chain stays than the LHT but tons more fun when your commuting. STI shifters are much more fun when dealing with traffic and sprinting. Should get the LHT's crowds panties in a bunch with this comment.



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Old 06-20-09, 01:54 PM   #4
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I do enjoy the look of the aurora, and really, how often do STI shifters fail? I have the 9 speed ultegra's on my road bike for 10,000+ miles so far with no problems, and i'm not the original owner of my bike so no telling how many miles they have on them
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Old 06-20-09, 01:56 PM   #5
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The LHT can work for commuting, but that's not really what it's designed for. I have both a Trek 7.3 FX and an LHT, and I was gonna sell the Trek but it's just so good for my daily commute to work (~10 miles each way).

I would seriously look into that bike, or maybe the 7.2 if you're trying to keep the price down. It's an AWESOME commuter.
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Old 06-20-09, 02:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmio View Post
I do enjoy the look of the aurora, and really, how often do STI shifters fail? I have the 9 speed ultegra's on my road bike for 10,000+ miles so far with no problems, and i'm not the original owner of my bike so no telling how many miles they have on them
From the sounds of it..... many trips across the US.
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Old 06-20-09, 02:20 PM   #7
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i wish, that is my dream(to ride across the U.S.)! My wife limits my trips and being gone a whole summer is not her style. I just ride the occasional century( I try to get one a month, been slacking on that lately). I just usually set my riding goals to 200 miles/week, i've had my road bike for a while so the miles added up quick. i've lost 30 pounds the last 3 years and feel great! (previous gym rat= lift big, eat bigger=horrible BP/cholesterol tests)
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Old 06-20-09, 02:39 PM   #8
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First off I am not a shill for Bikes Direct and I ache for a LHT but I was looking at the BD website and saw a Windsor touring model called the tourist ( how appropriate huh?) for I think it was $599.00 it too had shorter chainstays than the LHT but was still classified as a touring bike. it has Chainstays listed at 420cm and LHT is listed with 460 cm. How much would that affect the ride? would the Windsor be a little quicker than the LHT? Would the Windsor also be less comfy because of that too?
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Old 06-20-09, 04:22 PM   #9
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I heard it's cheap, but I think there is a fellow that did a cross country tour on one.
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Old 06-21-09, 12:38 PM   #10
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The Tourist is allegedly the same thing as the Fuji Touring. It seems like a GREAT low cost touring bike, however it's usually sold out. It is now, as well. The site doesn't show it being sold out, but when you try to check out it's listed as none available.

I've never personally used one, but the geometry and componentry make it seem like one of the better low cost touring options.
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Old 06-21-09, 03:02 PM   #11
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I got my Windsor Tourist about a month ago and I'm really digging it. Granted it is my very first brand-new bike, and with that comes all kinds of new experiences (like toe-clips and integrated shifters) but it's been great so far. I'm working my way up in miles and it's been a champ so far.There have been some minor quibbles, but for me and for the money it promises to be just what I need for the Natchez Trace next year and to get me to and from work this year. I'm constantly surprised at how light the bike is by itself, but it feels strong.

I got the cheapy Nashbar panniers and with the rack that came with the Tourist I don't worry much about heel-strike. Granted, I haven't quite loaded them up with more than water, clothes once, and half-gallon bottles of fruit juice.

I do wish it had a chain-guard and I had to fool with my seat-clamp a bit today. I'm off to test it out right now, in fact!
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Old 06-21-09, 03:39 PM   #12
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As you've probably figured out, pretty much any touring bike will also cover your commuting needs as well.

I use the Cross Check, and it's working pretty well for me. It will feel a tad more responsive than a Trek 520 or Windsor / Fuji Tourist (yes, they're the same bike).

One good thing about the CC is that you can set up the gearing almost any way you want. The crank can be configured as a standard double, compact double or (with a different BB and FD) a triple, and no need to change the bar-end shifters (which work very well with a triple). Your LBS should be willing to swap out the parts at the time of purchase. It comes with the Tektro R200A brake levers, which are very comfortable.

Compared to STI levers: Bar-ends and brake levers are:
more robust
field serviceable
cheaper to repair (if an STI lever breaks, you have to replace the entire lever)
work a little better with triples
give you the option for friction shifting
a little easier to use with handlebar bags

On the plus side, as you already know STI's are a snap to use and are pretty robust. If you're touring in civilized areas, I'd view good-quality STI as fully usable for a touring/commuting bike.

Also, keep in mind that a touring bike that comes with STI levers will likely have Sora shifters. These are both lower-quality and work differently than the Ultegra shifters. Any LBS should be able to show you the difference.
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Old 06-21-09, 03:39 PM   #13
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I have an LHT and love it as a tourer. It would be a fine commuter, but it's best role is as tourer.

Take a look at the Rocky Mountain Sherpa. Cambria Bike had a couple. They looked sweet!
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Old 06-21-09, 04:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
• work a little better with triples
My Tiagra brifters (which I like) work fine for my triple. They have a "half step" for trimming. (The other points are valid.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
Also, keep in mind that a touring bike that comes with STI levers will likely have Sora shifters. These are both lower-quality and work differently than the Ultegra shifters. Any LBS should be able to show you the difference.
I think a lot of them come with Tiagra brifters. I can't attest to the longevity of the Tiagras but they function fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
On the plus side, as you already know STI's are a snap to use and are pretty robust. If you're touring in civilized areas, I'd view good-quality STI as fully usable for a touring/commuting bike.
I agree with this. A fair number of reputable touring bikes come with brifters. I think brifters shine when riding in faster groups.

Last edited by njkayaker; 06-21-09 at 04:10 PM.
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Old 06-21-09, 04:54 PM   #15
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the LHT is growing on me, love the cross check but i'm not sure how the rear rack with short chain stays would work, plus can you put front racks on a cross check???
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