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Cyclo-Cross Frame for inclement weather road bike?

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Cyclo-Cross Frame for inclement weather road bike?

Old 06-03-17, 11:29 AM
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FordTrax
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Cyclo-Cross Frame for inclement weather road bike?

I am thinking about building a Cyclo-cross bike with mechanical disc brakes for wet/winter road riding. I am not a fast rider at 13-15mph average. I have a good steel road frame and a light touring bike - also steel. Thought a Cyclo cross bike with 32-35mm tires and discs would be a good inclement weather bike and also give me an option for to use on like the gap from washington DC to Pittsburg and the like if I wanted to.

Anyone see any drawback to using a Cyclo-cross frame as a inclement weather bike for road? I know the bottom bracket is slightly higher and the chain stays slightly longer - but I am not that fast or hard of a rider anyway. An if the frame is slightly heavier because it is a CX bike - the fork will also be heavier for the disc. So I am not building a super lightweight build anyway.

Any experiences would also be appreciated.
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Old 06-03-17, 12:37 PM
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redfooj
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make sure it has mounts for fenders
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Old 06-03-17, 12:53 PM
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Now that there are bikes that satisfy the wider tires need and will fit disc brakes and mudguards,
you could call it a cyclocross bike if you wish..

It is possible to overshoot your application and not have mudguard /rack mounts,

because of course an actual cyclo cross race you doesn't need those, or a bottle mount,
because the races are only an hour long, and they are a lap race.. so the extras are pointless.





....
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Old 06-03-17, 01:05 PM
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No drawback that I can think of. You're going with disc brakes, so that's a good option for all-weather commuting. My steel cross bike is fully outfitted as a commuter with racks, fenders, panniers. Light weight is not really important when you're carrying all this stuff on it already. The long chainstay might actually be a good thing if you mount panniers you won't strike it with your heel.
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Old 06-03-17, 05:04 PM
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there's no telling where this will lead to. first it's "wine from a teaspoon, then beer from a bottle".

you could end up like me, too old and too many bikes.
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Old 06-03-17, 07:12 PM
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For a number of years I did a 30 mile R/T trip commute (every day, rain or shine) on a cyclocross bike with a front disc brake, full fenders, and a rack. At the time 'gravel' and 'endurance' bikes didn't really exist so a cross bike was my only option for something lightweight but with fender clearance and rack mounts (though I had to do quite a bit of research to find one that met all of my specs). If you don't care so much about weight there ought to be plenty of touring frame options that will no doubt work for you.
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Old 06-03-17, 07:17 PM
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thanks for the input on the fenders/mudguards and rack mounts. The bike frame I am looking at has mounts for both. I think while they call it a cyclo-cross bike it is not really a serious cyclo-cross race bike which probably would not have those. But more of a multi-purpose type of frame that will take up to a 42mm tire.


Hueyhoolihan - I am starting to get a bit of a "collection" My wife has commented on that to me.
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Old 06-03-17, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by FordTrax View Post
I am thinking about building a Cyclo-cross bike with mechanical disc brakes for wet/winter road riding.
I'm way ahead of you... i did that last year.

Sram 1x with a 32-11 cassette
Hydro disc
32mm tubeless all weather tires

It's awesome in the rain, cold and snow.

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Old 06-03-17, 09:32 PM
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My Gravel Grinder is my rain-winter bike. I was surprised at how comfy the fat tires make it.
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Old 06-03-17, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by FordTrax View Post
thanks for the input on the fenders/mudguards and rack mounts. The bike frame I am looking at has mounts for both. I think while they call it a cyclo-cross bike it is not really a serious cyclo-cross race bike which probably would not have those. But more of a multi-purpose type of frame that will take up to a 42mm tire.


Hueyhoolihan - I am starting to get a bit of a "collection" My wife has commented on that to me.
I bought a 2016 Raleigh Tamland 1 when they posted the Raleigh Corporate discount on this site. New last year was $1799 my local Raleigh dealer wanted $1300 and I bought it direct from Raleigh for $799 + $48 sales tax. That was a steal of deal. When you mention that you wanted to do some possible C & O Canal type riding in the future I think you want to look more into the gravel grinding bike more than cyclo-cross. This is kind of all new to me but from my end my understanding that the cyclo-cross bike is more aggressive than you want for the towpath riding. Most of the gravel grinders also have bosses on the bike for rear racks to be mounted. I have no idea what size bike you ride but there is a new 2016 Jamis Renegade Expert on Ebay right now for $1200 which is half of what retail price was for that bike. Go over to the gravel grinding website and there is lots of discussion there on gravel grinding bikes. My bike has 40mm tires on it.

Good luck
Zman
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Old 06-04-17, 11:08 AM
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specialized tricross!


has fender mounts, disc or rim brake, does not have a stupid high BB like most cx bikes
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Old 06-04-17, 11:22 AM
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True cyclocross frames tend to have very high bottom brackets (to minimized pedal, crank and chainring strike). This often means less than ideal geometry for commuting. The high seat means a long reach down with your foot waiting for lights. Less secure handling on corners. Those bikes also tend to have short chainstays and wheelbases both to again help keep the pedals out of the dirt and because they are single focus race bikes.

Look at bottom bracket drop, ie the lower the BB is relative to the wheel axles. CX bikes have low numbers, gravel bike high numbers. You will find it informative to measure a bike you have and like first so you get a feel for it.

Ben
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Old 06-04-17, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
True cyclocross frames tend to have very high bottom brackets (to minimized pedal, crank and chainring strike).

Ben
I measured the crank center to ground on my road and CX bike.

10.75" Trek Emonda SLR
11.00" Cannondale SuperX
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Old 06-04-17, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by FordTrax View Post
thanks for the input on the fenders/mudguards and rack mounts. The bike frame I am looking at has mounts for both. I think while they call it a cyclo-cross bike it is not really a serious cyclo-cross race bike which probably would not have those. But more of a multi-purpose type of frame that will take up to a 42mm tire.


Hueyhoolihan - I am starting to get a bit of a "collection" My wife has commented on that to me.
It is recommended that for frame/fork clearance, add 10mm to your desired tire size. So for example a 42mm clearance frameset can safely handle 32mm IRL tires and fenders. You can push it tighter, but the tighter you go the more likely gravel gets wedge and caught between tire and fender.
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Old 06-04-17, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by oldnslow2 View Post
I measured the crank center to ground on my road and CX bike.

10.75" Trek Emonda SLR
11.00" Cannondale SuperX
I think along those lines, inch distances up from the road. 10.75 is high road race, very good for long crank road fix gears. 11.00 is high, My Fuji Pro was 11". I could pedal through almost any turn with 175 cranks. When I did hit, I was over so far it was scary. I have no desire to go that high again.

10.625 is classic road race and a great all around height for general use. 10.50 is low and you have to bve pedal conscious. 10.375 is a slinky. Hitting pedals becomes a common occurrence. Not a big deal (as long as the pedals are up to it) because you aren't banked much at all. I've ridden all these bottom bracket heights. Frr me and my 175 cranks, 10.625 is OK, 10.75 is really nice and it goes downhill from there.

Ben
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Old 06-04-17, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
It is recommended that for frame/fork clearance, add 10mm to your desired tire size. So for example a 42mm clearance frameset can safely handle 32mm IRL tires and fenders. You can push it tighter, but the tighter you go the more likely gravel gets wedge and caught between tire and fender.
10mm is still pretty tight if you're running a full-length fender between the tire and everything else. That's roughly how my vintage sport tourer is set up (28mm tires with about a centimeter of clearance to the brake bridge), and it's kind of freaky how much scraping sounds happen on gravel; I don't feel like I have much safety margin.

Of course, it's easy for me to say, as my gravel bike has 53mm tires and 16mm of clearance between tire and fender.

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Old 06-04-17, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by FordTrax View Post
I am thinking about building a Cyclo-cross bike with mechanical disc brakes for wet/winter road riding. I am not a fast rider at 13-15mph average. I have a good steel road frame and a light touring bike - also steel. Thought a Cyclo cross bike with 32-35mm tires and discs would be a good inclement weather bike and also give me an option for to use on like the gap from washington DC to Pittsburg and the like if I wanted to.

Anyone see any drawback to using a Cyclo-cross frame as a inclement weather bike for road? I know the bottom bracket is slightly higher and the chain stays slightly longer - but I am not that fast or hard of a rider anyway. An if the frame is slightly heavier because it is a CX bike - the fork will also be heavier for the disc. So I am not building a super lightweight build anyway.

Any experiences would also be appreciated.
There are all sorts of "hybrid" modern road bike alternatives. "Endurance", "Gravel", Cyclo-cross being a classic already.

Your taste might differ:
For commuting (and transport) I prefer having mounds for mudguards.
For most other kinds of riding, including the afore mentioned, I like having a rear rack, so my back doesn't carry anything - less sweating, more comfort.

Some frames have those attachments, some don't. You should choose per your taste.

As for BB height - it's a matter of taste IMO and as long as the frame is built well, it shouldn't really matter (unless you really need to reach the ground while in the saddle for whatever reason).

The "longer" chainstays are usually longer than the minimal possible used on most modern road bikes. So that's still rather short IMO, unless they make them 45+cm, which I rarely see. That's a good thing IMO - more comfort, more stability.
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Old 06-04-17, 04:06 PM
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I bought an old Cannondale with a (working) Headshock for $450 a couple years ago, works great as a cross bike and a winter crud bike. My rule is once the first Salt hits the street I ride the Cannondale until the first heavy spring rain washes all the salt away.
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Old 06-04-17, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
This often means less than ideal geometry for commuting. The high seat means a long reach down with your foot waiting for lights.
Or just get off the saddle while stopped like the majority of cyclists who run their saddles at the proper height.
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Old 06-04-17, 09:51 PM
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Cinelli Zydeco?
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Old 06-04-17, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by joejack951 View Post
Or just get off the saddle while stopped like the majority of cyclists who run their saddles at the proper height.
On some occasions, for some people, it is a lot more practical if they are able to put afoot down while seated. I'm not in that group, but I know a few. Though most of them wouldn't be served well with a road bike.
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