I'm thinking of building a bike for the dual purpose of riding in Winter and Rain. This won't be for utilitarian purposes (at least not initially), just recreational riding for exercise and fun.
So I've read that the perfect Winter bike has the following characteristics:
* Belt Drive
That being said, I am wondering if I can get away with avoiding those three features, specifically, I've fallen in love with a 2013 Salsa Vaya frame (white/blue), which as we all know is steel. Also, the rear triangle doesn't have a gap so a belt drive is out too. And finally; the rear dropouts are for derailleurs, so an IGH isn't a possibility without some sort of chain tensioning device. That being said the available IGH's out there either have too few gears for me (moderately hilly area) or are too expensive for the ones that do have enough gears.
So my initial build would look something like this:
* Salsa Vaya Frame
* Shimano 105 Triple Crank
* Shimano 105 shifters
* Avid BB7 Disc brakes
* Shimano 12-30 Cassette (may consider 11-34 for big hills)
* Shimano 105 level derailliers (or Deore if I end up going with 11-34 cassette)
* Some sort of full-coverage fenders (I tried SKS Longboards before, I wasn't very impressed. They had nice coverage but they wobbled like crazy no matter how much I adjusted them.)
* Schwalbe Marathon Winter tires for Winter
* Undecided on the tire for rainy days. Perhaps a cross tire or touring tire.
So given that this bike would be ridden for recreation, and not out of necessity, I don't anticipate that I'll regularly ride it during heavy snow/rain; light rains and snows will probably be the worst I'll go out in. In that case, will this work, or am I likely to have issues with the steel/derailleur setup?