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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 05-19-08, 07:20 AM   #1
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Touring-type Bike Recommendations

I am looking for a touring type of bike that allows for a more upright riding position. I will likely not do any "touring", just a century or charity ride type of events. I am 40 years old, overweight, and not very flexible and I find a geometry that allows me to ride more upright more comfortable. A specialized sequoia might work, but I am probably leaning towards something along the lines of Jamis Aurora, Surly LHT, or Fuji Touring. I would probably leave the Trek 520 out of the running b/c I want to keep it below $1,000 plus I will not do any real touring.

I have considered used bikes, but I have not found anything to my liking on eBay or Craigslist.

So, I am seeking opinions between Jamis Aurora, Surly LHT, and Fuji Touring.
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Old 05-19-08, 11:21 PM   #2
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if you're looking at the surly LHT, but not doing touring, what about the surly pacer? it's got fender clearance, and probably a more upright position, and is lighter than the LHT, at least by a little. but out of those three i'd go with the surly.

also check out the Salsa Casseroll, it's kind of similar to the ones listed, although more of a light-touring bike.

btw i think any bicycle can have the (upright) position you want, it's just about finding the right seat height & handlebar height. so if you see a bike you like, ask the shop if you can raise the bars, which in the case of an unthreaded stem might require a new fork altogether.
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Old 05-20-08, 06:47 AM   #3
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I don't think any of those bikes will give you a more upright position. A more upright position might be with a hybrid bike which can easily do centuries.
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Old 05-20-08, 07:30 AM   #4
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More upright position can be gained on most any bike by getting a slightly larger frame size. The seat will be slightly lower relative to the top tube, and the bars relatively higher to the seat - making for more upright.

I have put about 125 miles on my LHT. I plan on participating in some randonneuring events next year, so I wanted a bicycle that was legitimately built for touring so that I'd have the greatest flexibility possible. Since you are only looking to do centuries, sacrificing the longer chain stays and some of the extra braze-ons on the LHT shouldn't be a big deal. A Pacer or Cross Check would seem good alternatives.

p.s. - I really like my LHT. I micro-managed the build (did a lot of it myself actually), so I came in a bit over $1,000. I don't think I'd trade the wheelset I have (105 hubs with 36 hole A719 rims) for what comes stock on the LHT, so I'm not upset.
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Old 05-20-08, 10:30 AM   #5
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Synapse series. Look into it.
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Old 05-20-08, 10:34 AM   #6
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You are looking at what used to be called sport bikes. They are halfway between
touring bikes and racers.

The Surly Pacer is one, check the reviews at You mentioned
some of the others, the Sequoia is a good choice with a different tire (and maybe a different saddle)
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Old 05-23-08, 08:26 PM   #7
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I would suggest a REI Novara Safari. Built tough. Under *$850.00. Nice components. Great warranty.
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Old 05-24-08, 03:32 AM   #8
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I'm going to get a Salsa Casseroll frameset myself, in a month or two, and build on that with Open Pros and Shimano 105. That should make a decent long distance / light touring bike that won't break the bank.
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Old 05-24-08, 04:32 PM   #9
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I love my Rivendell A. Homer Hilsen. Most comfy bike I have ever ridden.
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Old 05-25-08, 04:05 AM   #10
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And built up, the A. Homer Hilson is only about 3 times what the OP said his budget is.

Another that's along the lines of Surly LHT or Salsa Casseroll is the SOMA Extra Smoothie. Any of these would do the job that you want it to do, as long as you can buy it with the steering tube uncut and then ignore the bike shop if they snicker at the bar height that you want. There's a good chance that you can build them up to a complete bike for less than $1000 with some judicious parts choices.

I'm surprised that you haven't found anything on EBay, though. During most of the 80's, Trek made a model 400 that is basically a sport-touring geometry. During the last month, I've seen them in sizes ranging from 19" frame to a 25" frame, maybe bigger. The '86 and '87 models come with Reynolds 531 main frame tubes, which are really nice to ride on. Complete bikes usually go for between $200 and $400 depending on condition. I have an 84 Trek 400 that I ride to work every day. With a Nitto Technomic stem, you can get the handlebars up way high.

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