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Surly Straggler build suggestions

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Surly Straggler build suggestions

Old 10-20-14, 06:12 PM
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b3nm
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Surly Straggler build suggestions

G'day all

I am looking to build up a bit of an 'everything' bike which will be used for commuting/town riding as well as all day and overnight road and mixed terrain rides (mixed would include mostly pavement and gravel roads along with a bit of singletrack).

I really like the look of the Surly straggler and can get a good deal on the purple sparkly frame (yay) so this seems a good place to start. The main questions I have are around the drivetrain and wheels:

Drivetrain - I was thinking of the following:
Front: Shimano 105 CX crankset 36/46 double w/105 mech
Rear: Deore 11-36 cassette w/XT mech
Shifters: Retroshift CV-2 levers (haven't tried these but I like the low-techness of them and I can use my BB7 mtb calipers with these)

So my lowest gear would be 36/36 and highest would be 46/11. Given my intended use, does this sound about right? I wonder if a 1:1 gearing is low enough for bikepacking or singletrack applications? If not, I'd need to go to a triple crank - any suggestions on this?

As far as wheels - given the broad range of riding I plan to do I think a lightweight 29er wheelset would be the way to go. I'm not likely to ever have more than overnight bikepacking gear on this bike and if I did it would be for a purely road tour so I don't think I'd have issues with an XC-type set? I know very little about wheels in general but I believe the straggler can take 130 or 135mm hubs. I'd like the option to run big tyres (~40mm).

Any suggestions/opinions are appreciated!

Ben
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Old 10-20-14, 06:23 PM
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eastbay71
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Oh you should not build it and send me the frame! I've been lusting for a Straggler for a while. I have a similar setup on one of my bikes. I originally used a 11-25 cassette which did not give me a low enough gear but switched to a 12-36 and its fine now. You may be able to go down to a 34 in the front. Isn't that the smallest size for a compact double? I'm not sure what the chainline and bottom bracket width are on the Straggler but if it's similar to a road bike (68mm BB and fairly narrow chainstays) you might consider using something like the Sora groupset. Its fairly economical at about $300 new and the STIs are the best thing ever when paired with a bar like the On One Midge bar or Origin8 Gary 2. Both are flared drop bars intended for trail use. The Sora rear mech can handle a whopping 41 tooth difference giving you a bunch of options for front and rear chain rings. The front mech is bottom pull so that would work with the cable routing on the Straggler. Lets see her when shes done!
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Old 10-20-14, 06:39 PM
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hairnet
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I like it all except for the Retroshifters and the brake lever/hood itself, but that's just my taste. The gearing depends on your terrain, riding style and strength. While I can do fine with 1:1 on an unloaded Straggler or my MTB with lots of climbing, it may not be so fun when I'm geared up. I prefer to sit and spin easy if I have to carry a bunch of gear so I put a triple crank on mine.
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Old 10-20-14, 07:00 PM
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Dedicated CX FD would be a better choice than 105 for a 46t big ring... although the 105 will still work.
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Old 10-20-14, 07:19 PM
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Welcome to Bikeforums!

It will take a combination of fitness, ultra-lite packing and routes that avoid some of the steeper roads to tour with a 1:1 gearing. I use a 26t small ring on my Cyclocross bike. You could go as small as a 22t on a touring bike.

What duration tours are you considering and what do you expect to pack?
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Old 10-20-14, 08:12 PM
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I don't intend to set the bike up primarily as a tourer. At most I'd be doing a week or so of lightweight (maybe 2 panniers and a small tent) touring.

It sounds like I'd get more out of a triple crank and a narrower cassette (12-28 or similar?)

The issue I have with the STI's is that I'd have to buy new brakes (bb7 roads or similar) to match the lever throw. I already own the MTB version.

What are people's opinions on the Sora group for this kind of bike?
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Old 10-21-14, 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by b3nm View Post
I don't intend to set the bike up primarily as a tourer. At most I'd be doing a week or so of lightweight (maybe 2 panniers and a small tent) touring.

It sounds like I'd get more out of a triple crank and a narrower cassette (12-28 or similar?)

The issue I have with the STI's is that I'd have to buy new brakes (bb7 roads or similar) to match the lever throw. I already own the MTB version.

What are people's opinions on the Sora group for this kind of bike?
I would consider bar-end shifters. They will allow you to keep your brake levers and will shift either a double or a triple crankset. SHIMANO HAS 8,9 and 10 speed models.

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/u...s/rp-prod34322

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/u...A&gclsrc=aw.ds

If you source a 130 & 74 BCD triple crankset, you can change the 30t small chainring for a 26. A 50, 39 & 26 chainring set with a 12-30 ten speed cassette will give you a better range than a 46 & 36 double and any cassette.

Triple divetrains are the most versatile. I use 50, 39 & 26 chainrings with a 12-30 ten speed cassette with a 12, 13, 14, 15, 17, 19, 21, 24, 27, 30 cogset. The middle chainring does it all on flatter routes unless I'm enjoying a tailwind or I'm in a paceline. The large chainring is perfect for fast conditions, above 22 mph. The granny gear helps with steeper climbs. A triple with a 12-30 provides both a wider range and tighter cog spacing than a Compact with any available 10 speed road cassette if a 26t small chainring is installed on the triple.

I installed an Ultegra 50 -34 compact with an 11-32 (11,12,13,15,17,19,21,24,28,32) Sram road cassette with an Ultegra long arm rear derailleur more than 4 years ago, it was only useful on very hilly routes and a total pain on faster rides on flat roads. It didn't matter if I was mashing on the big chainring or spinning at 100 rpm on the 34 chaining, the gaps between the 13 and 15 cog were always apparent to me on flatter routes.
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Last edited by Barrettscv; 10-21-14 at 09:04 AM.
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