Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    3
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    LHT buildup for cross-country tour

    Hello,
    This fall I plan on riding across the U.S. with a friend. I'm starting with an LHT frame and going from there. But before I even commit that much, I have some doubts:

    I want to build the bike up myself for perhaps obvious issues, and mostly because I just love building and getting to know the things I use. However, if someone gave me a compelling argument to buy the bike stock, I could be convinced at this point. I also need to be a bit conscious of monetary resources, so if I build it up from the frame I'd like to buy higher-end for the really important stuff, and mid-end for the less integral things. So let's get down to it.

    I'm not really sure I know where to start. I'd really just love some recommendations for every part of the bike, such as headset, cranks, derailleurs, pedals, rims, hubs, tires, brakes... everything!

    I figure I'll go with a brooks saddle, and perhaps the Sugino XD triple crank up front, but that's as far as I've gotten.

    Any help is greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

    -Jack

  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)
    Go stock(complete). Upgrade saddle if needed. Save a ton over building it up. Ride.
    Save 15% on your first order at Hammer Nutrition!!

    2010 Giant TCR SL 3
    2010 Novara Randonee

  3. #3
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Seattle, Washington, USA
    My Bikes
    2014 Pivot Mach 5.7 MTB, 2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
    Posts
    6,935
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jackfox View Post
    if someone gave me a compelling argument to buy the bike stock, I could be convinced at this point... I also need to be a bit conscious of monetary resources...
    I'm not really sure I know where to start.
    I think you answered your own question:

    - You said: "I need to be conscious of money." The Surly LHT complete is a really good value; a complete build will cost you several hundred dollars more unless you're really resourceful about buying lightly used parts somewhere.

    - You said: "I'm not really sure I know where to start." If you don't know what's wrong with the Surly stock, why do you need/want to spend the extra money on a custom build?

    Just buy the bike stock, and replace/upgrade anything that fails or that you don't like.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    141
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    If you need to be concious of money, go stock. Just, seriously, go stock. I agonized over this because I HATE the color scheme of the new ones (Pea Green and Light Tan? Seriously) and could get a great deal on a Utility Blue '08 Frame. After much searching, Ebaying, and even going to Tucson's bike swap, I simply couldn't build it up myself for less than 1400 bucks with comparable components.

    I hate mindless shilling as much as anyone, but Surly seriously made some good choices with the stock. They went top-shelf where it makes sense (Rear derailleur, hubs), got the gearing correct, and went cheap where it makes sense (worthless stock seat since everyone will just get a Brooks anyway, Tiagra front derailleur with friction shifting to hide the warts, mediocre rims that can easily be switched out while keeping the great hubs).

    Just trust me, as someone who tried hard to build up myself, go stock.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    4,306
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by jackfox View Post

    I'm not really sure I know where to start. I'd really just love some recommendations for every part of the bike, such as headset, cranks, derailleurs, pedals, rims, hubs, tires, brakes... everything!

    I figure I'll go with a brooks saddle, and perhaps the Sugino XD triple crank up front, but that's as far as I've gotten.

    Any help is greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

    -Jack

    I recommend everything on the stock bike. With the extra $400-$1000 you could buy some nice Hawiian print shirts, burritos and margaritas along the way.

    Seriously,,,why buy components retail when you'll get them less than wholesale on a stock bike?

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    N. California
    Posts
    1,410
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I built up my LHT from the frame and it cost me US$1800. I have a Brooks saddle, "better" handlebars, wheels and fenders. The important functional items, like the XT hubs, are the same as the complete.

    I agree with the others, unless you have other motivations like wanting to learn how to build up a bike or really need to tailor everything just so, then buy the complete and change out the saddle and maybe customize the stem for a precise fit.

    Then buy a pitcher of margaritas for your friends and admire your new bike.

  7. #7
    Commuter & cyclotourist brianogilvie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Hadley, MA, USA
    My Bikes
    Boulder All Road, Surly Long Haul Trucker, Bike Friday New World Tourist, Breezer Uptown 8, Bike Friday Express Tikit, Trek MultiTrack 730 (Problem? No, I don't have a problem)
    Posts
    493
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Agentbolt View Post
    ...Surly seriously made some good choices with the stock. They...got the gearing correct....

    Just trust me, as someone who tried hard to build up myself, go stock.
    I agree 100% with Agentbolt's advice: go stock and change what you need. That said, I don't think they got the gearing correct for a touring bike--but it's not their fault. With the 700Cx37 tires, the top 48x11 gear is a whopping 119 gear inches or so, depending on the pressure you run. That's way too big for a loaded touring bike, and it means bigger jumps between gears, since you definitely want the 34-tooth cog for slogging up long steep hills.

    Still, it's hard to see how you could do better without a custom cassette. Harris Cyclery's Cyclotouriste 13 (which gives a top gear of 101 inches) and Cyclotouriste 14 (top gear of 93.5 inches) make a lot more sense. But they cost four times as much as the stock cassette. So if you're sticking with off-the-shelf components, I can't think of a better choice. It's not Surly's fault but rather that of a market that doesn't generate enough demand for a really good touring cassette.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    4,306
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    yep,,48x11 is a waste, so I rode around for while with a 13-26 8spd. and the triple. I'm not going to need a gear lower than 1:1 Then I changed the triple to a 34/46 double and now ride around with a 12-32.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    N. California
    Posts
    1,410
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by brianogilvie View Post
    ...Still, it's hard to see how you could do better without a custom cassette. Harris Cyclery's Cyclotouriste 13 (which gives a top gear of 101 inches) and Cyclotouriste 14 (top gear of 93.5 inches) make a lot more sense. But they cost four times as much as the stock cassette. So if you're sticking with off-the-shelf components, I can't think of a better choice...
    Shimano makes the XTR CS-M970 9spd cassette which comes in 11-32, 12-34 and 12-34. Since it's XTR, the four largest cogs are titanium and it costs US$240.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    225
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I can tell you first hand that building from scratch is very expensive. I could have bought 3 completes + for what I put into my custom. If your priority is the trip than buy a complete.
    09' LHT
    06' Specialized Tarmac
    82' Eisentraut Custom
    76' AD Vent Noir

    I have Chuck Norris on speed dial

  11. #11
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    4
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Stock or Custom

    Buy stock complete bike, if poss new old stock complete bike with similar quality components, I have just done this in the UK with a Bob Jackson frame and an 07my Dawes Giro 500 (Shimano Tiagra triple flightdeck compatible etc) which I stripped and rebuilt on the new frame; all new components and if you choose donor wisely all parts will transfer with no probs, having said that be mindful of frame sizes as I bought a small frame and cables were too short also I suspect handelbars are slightly narrower but I couldn't have bought the components new for what I paid for the whole bike. Also...... now have the unused frame to sell and recoup some of the cost that way. Have fun!

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    152
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    As others have said, the stock bike is a very good value with good components where necessary and adequate otherwise.

    However, there could be several compelling reasons to build it up from scratch. For one, the stock bike weighs about 30 lbs. It also comes with heavy duty rims and fat tires. In other words, it's slow. If you're carrying 50-60 lbs of gear, that's what you need. But if you prefer traveling lighter, then you could build a significantly lighter and faster bike, while still having the stability of the LHT.
    Other reasons would be that you prefer STI shifting, you don't like the gearing, or that you already have a bunch of good components you'd like to put to use.

    But if you go buy all new components without really a good reason why you'd prefer something significantly different from the stock build, then you are most likely wasting your money.

  13. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    20
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    What about getting a slightly used frame with used parts? Would it make sense then? I'm thinking about doing the same is the reason I ask!

  14. #14
    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 sk8rdi16 View Post
    What about getting a slightly used frame with used parts? Would it make sense then? I'm thinking about doing the same is the reason I ask!
    Chances are you will end up pretty close unless you really worked hard and had tons of patients... plus you need to be able to build it yourself or pay someone approx $100 + or - to build it up. This eats into the saving. You don't have the warranty or the hand holding either. The real benefit of building it up yourself is like mentioned above... you get the parts you want from bow to stern.
    Save 15% on your first order at Hammer Nutrition!!

    2010 Giant TCR SL 3
    2010 Novara Randonee

  15. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    2,351
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    i with the help of my son, built up my thorn sherpa .i used shimano's xt m770 groopset hub's crankset/derailers/tiagra 9 speed sti shifters,paul canti brakes/brooks champion b17 saddle thorn seatpost/cinellie 44 bars ,fizek bartape,,the wheels are sun rhyno 559 ,on conti city contacts tyres 36 hole ... great set up all round,oh yeah tubus rear rack solid as a rock.i would certainly do it all again .my friend brought his new dawes ultra galaxy down to me yesrerday to show me his new pride and joy, aldough a great looking bike it hasen't a patch on mine honestly...if you can afford it ,build your own choose your own gear, the feel good factor building your own bike is worth the efford.oh one thing if you go for the build ,get the bottom bracket faced before you fit the crankset,bike shop will do this for you.best of luck. let us know how you get on...

  16. #16
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Seattle, Washington, USA
    My Bikes
    2014 Pivot Mach 5.7 MTB, 2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
    Posts
    6,935
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sk8rdi16 View Post
    What about getting a slightly used frame with used parts? Would it make sense then? I'm thinking about doing the same is the reason I ask!
    Used LHT frames seem to sell for nearly as much as a new ones.

    If you *really* want to save money on a build, look for a used touring bike, and sell the parts you don't like and install parts you do like. You can get an older, 80's-vintage touring bike for $100 to $300 and replace/restore the stuff that needs help before you go cross-country.You can get an old steel mountain bike and build that up into a touring bike (w/26 inch wheels).

    You can get a 3 to 5 year old "modern" touring bike for roughly 50% of current retail if you're patient.

    But if you want an LHT to tour on, and you're cost conscious, just get a new one, the complete model.

  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    225
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote= But if you prefer traveling lighter, then you could build a significantly lighter and faster bike, while still having the stability of the LHT.

    Significant is about 2~3 lbs. On my custom I have the lightest parts I'd be comfortable on a touring bike and it was 28 lbs minus the racks and bags. The LHT will never be a weight weenie's dream bike. Carbon is the only way you'll make this bike any lighter and if $ is an issue forget it. Besides, carbon IMHO has no place on a touring bike unless you plan on touring to the bike store and back. Touring bikes should be bomb proof to handle the rigors of carrying weight for long periods of time and should be about #27 on your top 10 things to worry about when building a bike.


    Jusr sayin......
    09' LHT
    06' Specialized Tarmac
    82' Eisentraut Custom
    76' AD Vent Noir

    I have Chuck Norris on speed dial

  18. #18
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    6
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    i got one of the first stock LHTs. fantastic ride. seriously. i just changed out the seat (got a brooks saddle), and got some fenders. it's been years and it still works great.

Posting Permissions

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