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Campeur or Straggler...

Old 08-25-14, 09:39 PM
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Campeur or Straggler...

This is a followup to my previous neurotic fit/posting of choosing the next frame to replace my crashed bike. I just sent this email to the lbs I'd be working with:

"So here's where my head is at. Last week I tested the Surly Straggler as a lark and found it surprisingly comfortable, nimble and fun. This was not on my list of bikes to test as I didn't enjoy riding the Cross Check back in 2007, period.
On one hand, this would be a great bad weather performer, what do you think?
On the other hand, disc brakes can get crazy noisy, trickier to maintain than rim brakes. But they won't fail like rim brakes can in the wet.
And I'm tryyyyying to warm up to the purple color or would just go black.
One thing is for sure, the Cowbell handlebars were awesome, no question, and the big tires were fun.
But it is $1700 +/- shop deal, or frame/fork build up which would hit close to the complete bike price I imagine. So back to Option 1: the Campeur...

I just ran across this person's blog and his described campeur build:
Velo Orange Campeur - Pedal Room
This link I'm sending is an appealing build, very close to what I was picturing.

The handlebars are Grand Randonneur (vs the Randonneur) I think. They look similar-ish to the Cowbells I'd tested, the outward flare would give a nice feel. The Nitto front rack isn't identified, I'm not sure if they're M12 or another model.

This guy's riding Suginos, I don't have experience with those, my lbs guy likes the VO compact double, I'm open to it having ridden only triple forever.

I have: Wheels, tires, pedals, seat post and saddle;
& need to buy: cranks, vo quill stem, front rack, 52mm fenders, & maybe a new rear rack like on this build;
Dont need but want: either the handlebars pictured or those Cowbells I tested;
Undecided: the brake/shifter vs bar ends vs downtube options. Brakes?? I suffered a lot last winter with my cantis (even w/ Kool Stops). Other than the aforementioned discs, what are the best bad weather/big tire+fender brakes in your opinion?
Aspiration: I do want to get a dyno hub front wheel + light to mount to the front rack, but that is stage two.

That's my opening salvo. I will try to provide more specific ideas about the components but I'd appreciate your thoughts overall."

I'm new to this process so if my email/thought process seems scattered...yeah well thats exactly my reality. I need two bikes and I can afford only one for right now. Oh, & one more thing, I haven't tested the Campeur so this will be exciting.
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Old 08-25-14, 09:46 PM
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The sugino triple, the xd600, is pretty sweet.
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Old 08-26-14, 02:52 AM
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I like the idea of the straggler. However the execution, specifically the geometry, and even more specifically the head tube is absolutely idiotic. The design is probably drawn from ye olde quill stemmed road frames but funnily enough the simpletons at surly have made the bike for modern components. Old nostagic design / modern component requirements =/= a bad bike.

The head tube on the straggler is too short. The straggler is more agressive than the specialized venge on a massive scale. And the venge is the most agressive bike on spesh lineup. I could ride the venge but could not ride the straggler with a normal spacer stack. I would have six or seven inches of drop!

But that is of course the idea surly had in mind. You're supposed to ride with a four inch spacer stack (this also makes the very long bike geometry manageably shorter) and a stem pointing towards the sky. But what does this mean in praxis? Flex flex flexyflex. I would not be surprised if the straggler in its ridiculous intended riding spec had massive speed wobble issues.

In modern frame building, if you use modern components (aheadset) you quantify the proper frame height with the proper length head tube! So what if the frame isn't as pretty? The finished bike is going to look ridiculous with a spacer stack the size of the pisa friggin tower.

I really wanted the straggler. But they ruined it. Those bastardos
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Old 08-26-14, 12:19 PM
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I have a Straggler, in purple , and love it. It is my all purpose bike. It seems stable and is a comfortable ride. I also have a Trek Damone that I use for my more serious road riding. For around town, crushed rock trail, slower casual rides it is great. The color was a little out there but then that is what the bike is about.

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Old 08-26-14, 12:51 PM
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AFAIK, VO Doesn't sell built bikes you get frame fork and do the rest .. retail ..

I suspect the link is a particular bike shop's build for a customer ..
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Old 08-26-14, 09:05 PM
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elcruxio - you are speaking waaaaay above my head, I'm gonna need to reread your comments with a little help from wikipedia before I can respond.

Fietsbob - I am familiar with the VO frame/fork build-it-up-as-you-like business model. What I liked was how this particular rider built his/hers! That link I sent to the guy at the lbs was as a starting point for discussion about how we would build the campeur (or even the Straggler for that matter). This is my first from the ground up build ever so I needed an example to work toward or away.

Thanks for the comments!
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