Old 05-11-14, 10:57 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: central Maine
Posts: 226

Bikes: Surly Disc Trucker, GT Grade alloy

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I have a disc LHT - Looking for "sport" or "light" tourer

I love my Surly and am riding it almost daily now that the weather has finally broken here in the northeast. Some of my goals for this year is to do some centuries and at least one 200K. In the spirit of (n + 1) I would like a lighter bike more conducive to unloaded or lightly loaded riding.

Wish parameters:
1. Steel Frame
2. Chainstays 425mm - 440mm
3. Rack braze-ons at least on the back, preferably also on front
4. Doesn't need to take tires bigger than 700x32
5. BB drop at least 70mm, preferably lower
6. Rides best unloaded to 25 lb. max loaded weight
7. Rim brakes

I've been looking at some of the cyclocross bikes and am concerned as to how the higher BB will affect fast downhill runs, cornering and handling in general. I've done quite a search on this and have only come up with some frame builders stating that it's mostly for cornering. It doesn't seem to me that the cyclocross bike really doesn't take the place of a light touring road bike. The Specialized Tricross prabably comes closest with its 70mm BB drop. But, aluminum frame. I'd rather stay away from aluminum.

The "new" Windsor Tourist on BD has a threadless 1.125" headset arrangement. The geometry seems about right, but I don't know and can't find out where this bike fits exactly. There is almost no info on the modern Fuji touring bikes (this is definately a Fuji touring frame) on the net. In the long run it won't be the most cost effective solution, but it will give me something to ride while I sell off components and rebuild to my liking. Anyone know if The Fuji frame is sport touring or fully loaded touring? Somewhere in between? Good option for me or too close to the Surly in weight and handling?

Then there is the vintage possibility. From the research I've done, it seems I would want something from the 80s with the now standard english threaded bottom bracket, 700c wheels and 130mm rear spacing. Actually, I could do with 126mm spacing. I have pretty decent wheels from a '92 Canondale R500 with 36H front and rear. HG-50 cassettes are still available in different, useful ranges that would fine for me with a triple up front. I did this setup for years out west with my canondale. The only problem with this scenario is that I don't have the knowledge base to know what to look for. Which frames had the good steel, etc. Plus, I don't live in an area that has very much in the way of used bikes. I've been scouring my local Craig's List for weeks and have come up with nothing more than over-priced vintage junk. I mean, nothing even questionable.

So I'm just looking for your thoughts and suggestions. I want the initial cost to be under $1000. I don't have the budget for the quality modern stuff like Gunnar or Rivendell, to name just two. This would probably put me in a used modern bike, Bikes Direct stuff or vintage that would top out at $300 or so before I start rebuilding.

Oh, and there's no rush. I realize to really get what I want might mean not have something to ride this summer. I've still got my Surly.

Thanks for any guidance.
JWK is offline