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vintage Salsa La Cruz build

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vintage Salsa La Cruz build

Old 05-28-15, 01:54 PM
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digited
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vintage Salsa La Cruz build

Thought I'd share a funky vintage build I've been digging into lately: a fine old Salsa La Cruz frameset, SN: SM2220, circa mid 90's I'd imagine. The pumpkin orange paint's got patina (some chipping, fading, and minor surface corrosion in a few tiny spots) and I like it Plus, it's LIGHT. The fork too. Really looking forward to getting some miles in.

I think Ross' sizing calls her a 57; my tape says:

TT: 559mm (level)
ST: 521mm
HA: 71.5 deg
SA: 72.5 deg
BB ht: 285mm (w/ 38mm tires @ 40psi)
Chainstay: 421mm
Rake: 43mm

other dims:
bb shell: 68mm
rear spacing: 135mm
seat collar: 30mm
f.der: 28.6mm top pull only
HT: 100mm
Steerer: 152mm, 22.2mm, threaded

My parts stash had some classic period stuff already so I didn't need to buy much to round her out.

On hand I had:
Sugino XP crankset (both 170mm + 175mm) and an assortment of 110BCD rings
UN-71/2 122.5mm, 118mm, 108mm
XTR M950 rear der
XT M737 f. der top-pull (XC-Pro non-MD bottom-pull also)
XT 9spd clusters (12-34, 12-32)
Salsa stems: 90mm, 130mm 1" quills, 110mm 15 deg 28.6 threadless
SRP Mr. Grumpy brakeset f/r
Paul Neo/Touring brakeset f/r
American Classic Ti post
Avocet O2 ti saddle
Nitto Noodle 44
Nitto Moustache HT
Nitto G. Rando 45
WTB Classic f. hub

I picked up:
fresh Open Pros 32s
Phil FSC Hi-Lo (NOS, cheap)
14/15 DTs
Compass Barlow Pass 38-622
SKF 116 w/ a selection of driveside spacers
Wippermann Stainless 9spd chain
King 2-Nut gold
Paul Funky Monkeys
Paul Tall Cool post to run with a Brooks Pro S
Cane Creek SR-5 levers
Nitto quill adapter (22.2 > 28.6)

The frame and fork were straight, chased and faced already The build came together very easily with just a couple of hiccups.

I didn't realize how massive the tire clearance was and thus my chainline, crank tread, and gearing have proven to be a puzzle. Even with a 122.5 BB a 36T middle ring almost hits the stay yet still yields a very MTB-like 48mm CL @ middle ring + middle of cluster. I've got a 116mm SKF in route and with spacers I think can sneak the crank in 2-4mm with a 34T on there. Just in the ~20 miles so far I've spent tooling around for shake-down I can tell the crank width is too wide. My fave dirt pedal, the Speedplay Frog, are not the narrowest so I may have wander off the reservation here as well.

The upside to this is that Kenda 24Seven Race knobs (50mm) fit pretty well front + rear. 45mm Fire Crosses will be great and some nice Honjos will mount up beautifully over the 38mm Barlow Passes (with proper braze-ons to boot).

My initial spins are very positive. The fit rocks w/ the 110mm stem, Noodles, plastic saddle and Am. Classic post (15mm setback). The Brooks/Paul should be fine. With the Compass Barlows @ ~38psi, I'm feeling quite quick and easily in sync with the frame. I think this is making the wide crank tread more apparent as the bike encourages a higher cadence. The trail though in the high 50's feeling pretty neutral with the fat supple tire with easy line adjustment mid corner and stability out of the saddle, even with about 8 lbs in a Dill Pickle rack-less rando bag. With the 50mm Kendas, the trail gets high enough to understeer a bit on pavement, but should be killer on fast sweepers on gravel.

My goal of an 'all-road' slinky sled with vintage mojo that can replace my rusty old Voodoo Wazoo and my trusty '89 Merckx (about to go in for a top tube replacement and rear drop-out refresh) for casual 30-50 mile spins on county asphalt/fire roads and occasional centuries looks well within reach. Ala Cartes and the special order La Cruz were high on my list as a wrench in the late 80's early 90's and I'm glad to find out the hype was real

Any suggestions on sorting the chainline, Q, and gearing are very welcome. I may just need to go with a modern compact 2-ring but I sure loves the looks of a classic cold-forged crank!

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Last edited by digited; 05-28-15 at 02:37 PM. Reason: Tire name correction
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Old 05-28-15, 03:14 PM
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b dub 
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I'm a sucker for orange bikes. Nothing else to contribute. Awesome build!

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Old 05-28-15, 03:55 PM
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Loving it all (except the bar tape).
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Old 05-28-15, 04:03 PM
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I really like your La Cruz. They were great all purpose bikes.

My son had one that he soon outgrew.

[IMG]DSCN4731 by gomango1849, on Flickr[/IMG]
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