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  1. #1
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    Need help with the whole "set-up"

    Hey guys, so I am planning to do a bicycle trip across the United States next year after I graduate high school. I need a good bike to be capable of doing this. I have already gotten a Surly Long Haul Trucker 58cm 700c frame. I want to use a drop bar handlebar but I don't know much about touring bikes. I don't have really any experience in building a bicycle but I would like to build my own because then I know how it all works and I would become much more knowledgeable in repairs and such. I have my father to help me, he has ridden across the country before when he was a lot younger haha. I feel like the most challenging part will be figuring out what shifters and gear stuff and derailleurs and stuff like that to use. I have NO knowledge with that stuff. I just need help on deciding what shifters and all that stuff I should get if I would be doing heavy touring on a Surly LHT. Thank you and sorry for this wall of text haha

  2. #2
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Sounds like a great plan, and a lot of fun.

    This is a 58 cm LHT that I built up in 2010.


    Easton seat post, FSA headset, Cane Creek SCX 5 cantilever brakes, Shimano Tiagra 4503 front derailleur, Shmano LX rear derailleur, Blackburn water bottle cages, 175 mm Sugino DX 500 mountain crankset (44/32/22), IRC square bottom bracket (68 x 103 mm to maintain 46 mm chainline with mtn cranks), Tiagra 4503 STI shifters (9 spd), Shimano XT 11-34 cassette, Sram 921 chain, Shimano XT hubs, Velocity Dyad 36 spoke rims, Wheelsmith DB spokes, Schwalbe Marathon 32 mm tires, Ritchey bars and stem, and SKS P45 fenders.

    Frame was treated prior to starting build with Weigles Frame Saver, a rust inhibitor.

    This is just the way I approached the build. There are dozens of other options that will work as good or better. This may give you some ideas, and might help you tailor the bike to your needs. Just go slowly and think things through. I have set up 3 bikes almost exactly the same way, and they have all been good performers.

    The Sugino cranks are no longer available, but I believe a Shimano 442 square taper crankset with the 103 mm BB will work. I think they are still available at Chainline Cycles. If you go with a "trekking" crank, 48,36,28(26), the bottom bracket length will not be much of an issue. You just can't get as low of gearing as you can with a mtn. crank. Most new trekking cranks are 10 speed. However, if the trekking cranks have a 64/104 mm, 4 arm bolt pattern, it might be easy changing to mtn chainings.

    It might also be good to get your bottom bracket faced and the threads chased at your local LBS. However, you it may or my not need it. You might also want to consider getting the headset parts pressed on at the LBS. Having the right tools makes it much easier.

    A year later on a 3 month ride in Europe. Tubus "Cargo" rear rack, Tubus "Tarus" front rack, and Ortlieb bags all around.


    PS. Park Tool's "Big Blue Book" is a good reference if you do not have much experience. Their website is also a good resource. There are a couple of places where left hand threads are found.
    Last edited by Doug64; 02-27-14 at 11:17 AM.

  3. #3
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    Thank you for your very thorough response; it's very helpful! But how do I decide which shifters/derailleurs/crankset and all that stuff to get? Like why do you use two different types of derailleurs (The tiagra and LX) for front and back? And how do you decide what size to get for the crankset (such as the 175mm) I just basically need a whole guide on what shifters/derailleurs/cranksets are best for what haha

  4. #4
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Here's my build for my 54cm LHT. Note that my build is 8-speed which I prefer because the heavier duty drive-train in addition to lower build & replacement cost. Other than the 26" rims, tires, & fenders on mine, the other components should be fine for your 58.

    Frame: Surly Trucker Deluxe, midnight blue, 2011
    Size: 54cm, 26" wheels
    Fork: Surly uncut steer tube, lugged and brazed
    Headset: Ritchey Logic Comp, 1-1/8" threadless, black
    Front Derailleur: Shimano Tiagra FD-4403 triple
    Rear Derailleur: Shimano Deore LX, RD-M581, SGS, long cage
    Shifters: Shimano SL-BS64 Bar-end, 8-speed
    Crankset: Sugino XD600, 46-36-24t, 170mm arms
    Bottom Bracket: Shimano UN54, 68x113mm
    Seatpost: Kalloy Uno, 27.2, 350mm, black
    Seatpost Clamp: Salsa, black
    Handlebars: Nitto North Road, CroMoly, 25.4mm clamp, 550mm width, 1.5" cut from each side,
    Stem: Kalloy, 100mm, black
    Brake Levers: Tektro RL520 Ergo, black
    Brakes: Shimano Deore XT, BR-M770, V-brakes
    Brake Pads: Kool Stop
    Saddle: Brooks B67, honey
    Hubs: Shimano XT, HU-M770, 36h, silver
    Spokes: DT Swiss, stainless, silver
    Rims: 26", Mavic XM719 , 36h, black
    Cassette SRAM PG850 8-speed, 11-32t
    Chain: SRAM PC-870, 8-speed
    Cables: Jagwire
    Cable Separators: Easy-Split In-Line
    Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Extreme, 26x2.0
    Fenders: SKS, P65mm, Chromoplastic, black

    Last edited by BigAura; 02-27-14 at 08:07 AM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    I am a little late since you already have the frame, but I think the complete bike has a good set of component choices at a cheaper price than you are likely to get buying parts individually. I would have recommended buying the complete bike and if you really wanted to learn more about it you could always take it apart and put it back together, but I really don't see that much benefit to that. I guess if you really must do that you could always tear down and reassemble an old beater bike.

    Bike maintenance that you will need to do on the road is mostly pretty simple and the process of buying and assembling parts really does not do that much to prepare you for that, in my opinion. I think it makes more sense to take a bike maintenance class or read up on bike repair, rather than build up a bike.

    Sorry if that isn't helpful in your current situation, but maybe it will help someone else save a few bucks.

  6. #6
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noun View Post
    Thank you for your very thorough response; it's very helpful! But how do I decide which shifters/derailleurs/crankset and all that stuff to get? Like why do you use two different types of derailleurs (The tiagra and LX) for front and back? And how do you decide what size to get for the crankset (such as the 175mm) I just basically need a whole guide on what shifters/derailleurs/cranksets are best for what haha
    Component selection is mostly up to personal tastes. Doug64's choices are okay but I would differ on some of his component selections but no many.

    First, the derailers. A Tiagra front derailer is about the best derailer that Shimano makes for wide range road bike applications. Its more expensive brothers are narrower so they are harder to set up to keep from having the chain rub in certain combinations. The derailer also plays nice with the Tiagra STI shifters. An LX mountain bike front derailer has a different cable pull than a road front derailer so it's harder to get it to shift properly with STI.

    The rear derailers used to all have the same cable pull so mountain derailers worked with STI or Rapidfire shifters. The mountain bike derailer has a wider range than road derailers so you can get lower gears. A long cage Tiagra rear derailer is limited to around 30 teeth on the low gear while an LX is limited to 34. You can actually push those limits some and make a Tiagra work with a 32...34 may be too far...while an LX can go to a 36 or 38. The key is that you have to "push" the Tiagra's limits while you are well within the operational limits of the LX (or any mountain bike rear derailer). The only caveat is that when Shimano went to 10 speed mountain bike components, they changed their mountain bike line to Dynasys which doesn't work with anything but the Dynasys shifters. A 9 speed mountain rear derailer will work just fine with 10 speed road components but it's only a one-way street. You can still find some 9 speed mountain bike components around and they are worth the search.

    Cranksets: Here's where I differ from Doug64 (and others). I'd not go for a square taper crankset. They aren't worth the trouble. I'd go with an external bottom bracket like the Deore FC-M610 They are dead simple to install and dead simple to remove if you have to. The one I linked to comes in a 48/36/26 but you can easily change out the inner ring for a 24, 22 or even a 20 tooth inner. Trust me, you'll want that lower gear when you get to Appalachia. The rings are 10 speed but you should be able to use them on anything.

    As for the shifters, there's two (warring) camps on shifters. There's the bar end shifter camp...may they rot in Perdition...and the STI camp...We of the Holy Shifters, blessed be the Shifter. Either one works and neither is as bad as the other side says it is. STI isn't delicate and prone to failure nor are bar end shifters perfect and never have problems. I prefer the STI because my hands are right at the shifters almost all the time. STI doesn't have the ability to switch to friction mode but if you keep your drivetrain adjusted, you don't need to have that function. I'd suggest trying to find bikes with both and doing a side-by-side comparison.

    The only other quibble I have with Doug64's choices are the spokes. I build wheels with DT Alpine III spokes to get the maximum strength I can. I doubt, as a newbie, that you will be building your own wheels but if you have them built, they are a good consideration for about the strongest wheel you can get. Don't be fooled into thinking that the rim where the strength of the wheel is located. The spokes do all the work and you should choose good spokes over the "strongest" rim.
    Stuart Black
    Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
    Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member LuckySailor's Avatar
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    WAR has been declared! cyccomute IS very knowledgeable and a great contributor to the forum Thank you very much. BUT, here is where we will differ. I'm from the Bar ends camp, or even the down tube shifter camp. I like the idea of having the capability of fine tuning a front derailleur with a friction grip. I can't stand chain noise while I ride which is all I have had when I rent bikes travelling, and they are STI's. Convenient, yes. My suggestion is that if you were a more experienced with bike maintenance STI would be great. But, to keep things simple and very manageable for you I'd go bar ends.

    I wish you the best of luck and safety on your tour.

  8. #8
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuckySailor View Post
    I like the idea of having the capability of fine tuning a front derailleur with a friction grip. I can't stand chain noise while I ride which is all I have had when I rent bikes travelling, and they are STI's. Convenient, yes. My suggestion is that if you were a more experienced with bike maintenance STI would be great.
    A couple points on that... It is usually pretty easy to set up STI shifters to avoid any chain rubbing. You may need to trim the front shifter with the little "half click" but it is pretty easy to manage IMO.

    Bar end shifters are much beloved by many, but some of us find that they get bumped out of gear when the bike is parked. Some of us also find that we bang our knees on them. If and when I want to go super simple I use down tube shifters, which BTW could be carried as a repair item if you are paranoid about STI breakage. I have a couple bikes that still use down tube shifters and I find them to be my second choice to STI, but still OK. Bar ends I won't use.

  9. #9
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    Thank you guys SO much for all your helpful knowledge! And thank you cyccommute for your good information explaining the derailleurs

  10. #10
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
    I have a couple bikes that still use down tube shifters and I find them to be my second choice to STI, but still OK. Bar ends I won't use.
    +1

    My rationale is that I can do a double shift with down tube shifters, both front and back derailleurs, while moving only one hand. To do that with bar-end shifters both hands have to move. I start every hill where I think I'm going to use a smaller chainring by shifting to the smaller ring early and at the same time shift to 2 gears higher on the back. This leaves me at about the about same gear ratio that I started at, but allows me to shift to lower gears while going uphill using just my rear derailleur. Much easier on the drive train.


    I just picked up a pair of Tiagra shifters to replace the bar-ends on my daughter's LHT. After noticing her shifting patterns last summer, especially on hills, I though it was the least a dad could do
    Last edited by Doug64; 02-27-14 at 01:05 PM.

  11. #11
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuckySailor View Post
    WAR has been declared! cyccomute IS very knowledgeable and a great contributor to the forum Thank you very much. BUT, here is where we will differ. I'm from the Bar ends camp, or even the down tube shifter camp. I like the idea of having the capability of fine tuning a front derailleur with a friction grip. I can't stand chain noise while I ride which is all I have had when I rent bikes travelling, and they are STI's. Convenient, yes. My suggestion is that if you were a more experienced with bike maintenance STI would be great. But, to keep things simple and very manageable for you I'd go bar ends.

    I wish you the best of luck and safety on your tour.
    Be gone foul Barconist! May you only ride Huffys, may your roads be paved with Tribulus terrestris and may you be followed by swarms of hungry mosquitos!

    Last edited by cyccommute; 02-27-14 at 01:35 PM.
    Stuart Black
    Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
    Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
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  12. #12
    Senior Member LuckySailor's Avatar
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    Bar end shifters are much beloved by many, but some of us find that they get bumped out of gear when the bike is parked. Some of us also find that we bang our knees on them. If and when I want to go super simple I use down tube shifters, which BTW could be carried as a repair item if you are paranoid about STI breakage.

    I found the knee bumping issue too-then switched out to wider handlebars, issue solved. Don't remember ever getting bumped outta gear when parked, but I can easily see your point. I'll call it a case of tunnel vision, but when I had the chance to put downtube shifters on my new 520, it never entered my mind until yesterday actually. Bikes done now, so no turning back Barcons in!

    Back at you cycco!

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    So I guess I have to decide between STI and bar end shifters... Whichever one you choose does it change what derailleurs you are able to have or anything of the sorts?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noun View Post
    So I guess I have to decide between STI and bar end shifters... Whichever one you choose does it change what derailleurs you are able to have or anything of the sorts?
    Don't get overwhelmed by all of our bantering.

    Either type of shifter will work with the same derailleurs-- up to a point. The bar-ends will handle mountain and road front derailleurs, but the STI will not handle a mtn. FD. However, if you can find a Shimano 4503 FD, there is no need to go with a mtn FD regardless of the type of shifter or crankset used.

    My daughter's LHT presently has bar-end shifters, Tiagra 4503 FD and a Shimano XT RD. They work OK, and are about a third of the cost of STI levers. It is not an irrevocable decision. If you put bar-ends on initially and find that you do not like them, they can be changed.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Tapeworm21's Avatar
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    I'm building a LHT within a month. I went the bar-end route mostly because I've never owned a bike with them. And I'm putting these on because they look badass: http://www.excelsports.com/image/TRP...e%20Levers.jpg

    Set up will be Dura-Ace 10-speed bar end, KMC chain, Tiagra derailleurs, and 11-32t cassette. Velo-Orange just about everything else. I'm setting it up for a nice commuter bike more than a touring set-up.

    Bar-end shifters are much less expensive btw.

  16. #16
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noun View Post
    So I guess I have to decide between STI and bar end shifters... Whichever one you choose does it change what derailleurs you are able to have or anything of the sorts?
    Sorry. I was just poking fun at people and I got you confused. Doug64 has covered the issue well...even if he is a foul Barconist!

    ...Wait a minute! That LHT of his has STI. So what is it Doug64? STI for you and you stick your poor child with bar end shifters? Someone call Child Protection Services!
    Last edited by cyccommute; 02-28-14 at 07:07 AM.
    Stuart Black
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    Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
    Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  17. #17
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    I've never built a bike up (like an earlier poster, my first reaction was "Just buy an already-built LHT, you'll be good to go") so I don't have anything of value to offer the O.P., but I have to say that I'm enjoying the Great Bar End vs. STI War.

    (You can have my bar ends when you pry them from my dead, cold (too-tiny-to-shift-STIs-easily ) hands!!)
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  18. #18
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    I've got two sets of these and they work great. Friction only (no indexed shifting) but almost never need adjusted once set up, which is so easy I did it successfully on the first try and I'm probably the least mechanically inclined person posting on these boards. Plus, they are REALLY, REALLY inexpensive compared to the other two choices discussed in this thread.

    http://www.rivbike.com/product-p/sh3.htm

    I was intrigued with bar-end shifters for the longest time but now that I've ridden a couple of bikes equipped with them, I'd ride a single-speed before I'd spend time on a bike with bar-ends. From an ergonomic standpoint, STI cannot be beat. If you are mechanically inclined and willing to learn to adjust them, they would be my first choice.
    Last edited by corwin1968; 02-28-14 at 08:31 AM.
    Currently riding a 2013 Handsome Devil custom build and an 80's Takara Highlander (MTB built in the style of an 82-84 Stumpjumper).

  19. #19
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    Noun, While I prefer bar end shifters, one of my touring bikes has bar ends and the other recently completed touring build has STI. Integrated shifters are perhaps a better choice for a new rider.

    My list of suggestions:
    -For the drivetrain I followed the 20-100 gear inch range preferred by those touring with 40 lb. or more baggage.
    -I built with lower tier components and reliability hasn't yet become questionable and I have no desire to upgrade, although that's been my practice on my road bikes.
    -Most importantly is to have a good fit for the three points of contact; hands, butt and feet.

    Your dad will be a good source of information as he has experience and knows you better than any on this forum.

    Brad

  20. #20
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    Sorry. I was just poking fun at people and I got you confused. Doug64 has covered the issue well...even if he is a foul Barconist!

    ...Wait a minute! That LHT of his has STI. So what is it Doug64? STI for you and you stick your poor child with bar end shifters? Someone call Child Protection Services!
    Don't call yet! I have a pair of STIs that are going on her bike this winter.

  21. #21
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    It has arrived! So excited!Surly Frame.jpg Edit; Yea I don't know how to make the picture bigger haha...
    Last edited by Noun; 02-28-14 at 05:41 PM. Reason: What does this box do?

  22. #22
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noun View Post
    how to make the picture bigger
    The picture needs to be previously loaded somewhere on the web then use the URL tab on "insert image". Uploading to the Forums thumbnails an image till you click on it.
    Last edited by BigAura; 02-28-14 at 07:01 PM.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noun View Post
    It has arrived! So excited!Surly Frame.jpg Edit; Yea I don't know how to make the picture bigger haha...
    Nice!

    Don't cut your steerer tube until you get everything dialed in, after you have it built up.

    I still have not cut mine and have 15-20 mm above the top of the stem. Now is also a good time to invest in a work stand. Oops! that could start a new thread.

  24. #24
    Senior Member Tapeworm21's Avatar
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    One thing I did, was went here: http://surlybikes.com/bikes/long_hau...ker/bike_specs and also http://surlybikes.com/bikes/long_hau...ame_highlights and figure it out part by part. All the sizes are there for you. You just need to plug in the part you want on there and make sure it's compatible with whatever other part it's connected to.
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  25. #25
    Shaven Sasquatch crashmo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigaura View Post
    here's my build for my 54cm lht. Note that my build is 8-speed which i prefer because the heavier duty drive-train in addition to lower build & replacement cost. Other than the 26" rims, tires, & fenders on mine, the other components should be fine for your 58.

    Frame: Surly trucker deluxe, midnight blue, 2011
    size: 54cm, 26" wheels
    fork: Surly uncut steer tube, lugged and brazed
    headset: Ritchey logic comp, 1-1/8" threadless, black
    front derailleur: Shimano tiagra fd-4403 triple
    rear derailleur: Shimano deore lx, rd-m581, sgs, long cage
    shifters: Shimano sl-bs64 bar-end, 8-speed
    crankset: Sugino xd600, 46-36-24t, 170mm arms
    bottom bracket: Shimano un54, 68x113mm
    seatpost: Kalloy uno, 27.2, 350mm, black
    seatpost clamp: Salsa, black
    handlebars: Nitto north road, cromoly, 25.4mm clamp, 550mm width, 1.5" cut from each side,
    stem: Kalloy, 100mm, black
    brake levers: Tektro rl520 ergo, black
    brakes: Shimano deore xt, br-m770, v-brakes
    brake pads: Kool stop
    saddle: Brooks b67, honey
    hubs: Shimano xt, hu-m770, 36h, silver
    spokes: Dt swiss, stainless, silver
    rims: 26", mavic xm719 , 36h, black
    cassette sram pg850 8-speed, 11-32t
    chain: Sram pc-870, 8-speed
    cables: Jagwire
    cable separators: Easy-split in-line
    tires: Schwalbe marathon extreme, 26x2.0
    fenders: Sks, p65mm, chromoplastic, black

    drool!

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