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Looking to buy a Surly LHT

Old 01-11-16, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes1
This ^^^. I am also in the market for a touring bike and am jumping back and forth between the Surly LHT and the Randonee, but really leaning towards the Randonee. The Randonne compares well to the Surly and is hard to beat for the price, especially with when the REI 20% discount comes up and for those who are, as I am an REI member, the annual dividends really makes it a real bargain.
I love my LHT, but the Randonee looks very similar. As you said, the discount helps a lot. I got my LHT at just about cost so I went with it. I'm not sure how good the rear rack is, it looks nice, and it is included. On the LHT it isn't. I went with a Tubus Cargo on mine. IT is what I wanted so the rear rack on the Randonee wouldn't have interested me as much, but, it is included and you won't HAVE to buy one as long as it works for your bags.
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Old 01-11-16, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz
You can pay for it with your 2015 dividend but you won't earn anything for the purchase if you take advantage of the 20% discount.
Yes that is correct, but I am ok with that for the 20% savings I will realize up front and because I regularly buy from REI so I typically get a decent dividend return anyway.

Originally Posted by phughes
I love my LHT, but the Randonee looks very similar. As you said, the discount helps a lot. I got my LHT at just about cost so I went with it. I'm not sure how good the rear rack is, it looks nice, and it is included. On the LHT it isn't. I went with a Tubus Cargo on mine. IT is what I wanted so the rear rack on the Randonee wouldn't have interested me as much, but, it is included and you won't HAVE to buy one as long as it works for your bags.
Yes I would agree, I am not sure about the rear rack either and if I end up with the Randonee I'll give it a try as right now it would be utilized for my commuting and may suffice for that, if not I can replace it later. For someone doing a lot of touring, I would suspect an immediate replacement would be needed. I suspect Surly chooses not to include a rack is to save cost and in the end allow the user to choose their own rack and choose not to add a rack.

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Old 01-11-16, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes1
Yes that is correct, but I am ok with that for the 20% savings I will realize up front and because I regularly buy from REI so I typically get a decent dividend return anyway.
You might want to look into their credit card. 1% dividend on non-REI purchases. Sometimes they have specials, like 2% on groceries during a certain time span. I didn't buy much non-sale stuff from REI in 2015, but I still have about a $230 dividend thanks to credit card usage. When the member sale rolls around I will probably buy a Showers Pass rain jacket for touring.
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Old 01-11-16, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes1
Yes that is correct, but I am ok with that for the 20% savings I will realize up front and because I regularly buy from REI so I typically get a decent dividend return anyway.



Yes I would agree, I am not sure about the rear rack either and if I end up with the Randonee I'll give it a try as right now it would be utilized for my commuting and may suffice for that, if not I can replace it later. For someone doing a lot of touring, I would suspect an immediate replacement would be needed. I suspect Surly chooses not to include a rack is to save cost and in the end allow the user to choose their own rack and choose not to add a rack.
I'll bet the rack that comes stock on the randonnee is fine. I have been seriously tempted to pick one up and checked it out at the local REI. The rack looks pretty beefy.
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Old 01-11-16, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz
You might want to look into their credit card. 1% dividend on non-REI purchases. Sometimes they have specials, like 2% on groceries during a certain time span. I didn't buy much non-sale stuff from REI in 2015, but I still have about a $230 dividend thanks to credit card usage. When the member sale rolls around I will probably buy a Showers Pass rain jacket for touring.
I have often thought about getting one, but have not since I have a couple credit cards of which I only use 1, but it sounds from what your are saying it boosts the dividend in addition to non sale purchases, so that might be a game changer. By the way, I just got a Showers Pass jacket and like it so far.



Originally Posted by bikemig
I'll bet the rack that comes stock on the randonnee is fine. I have been seriously tempted to pick one up and checked it out at the local REI. The rack looks pretty beefy.
Good to know the rack might be pretty beefy, sounds encouraging at least for my commuting.
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Old 01-11-16, 12:04 PM
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Sometimes we cyclists get way too caught up in things like bike choices. It winds up being something like someone saying they want to drive across the country and someone saying, "you need a better car than a Corolla you need a Lotus (or a big truck with dualies)". If it makes you happy to have the big truck or the Lotus that is great, but a 1989 Geo Metro would get you there, so drive/ride what makes you happy. Telling someone else they need the big truck or the Lotus is kind of unhelpful.

A bike for a long tour does need to meet some minimum suitability requirements, but they fall way short of need to spend $4k. You can buy a lot of bike for around $1k these days. I know that I found my $599 (new and delivered) bike pretty adequate for my Transamerica and some subsequent tours. I actually have gone to cheaper older used bikes for my more recent tours. All this by choice as I could afford a CoMotion or whatever if I really wanted one. My old 1990 Cannondale Crit bike that I used on the ST was suitable for the packing style I used on that trip and is like an old friend. It is probably worth maybe $300.
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Old 01-11-16, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Hermes1
Yes that is correct, but I am ok with that for the 20% savings I will realize up front and because I regularly buy from REI so I typically get a decent dividend return anyway.



Yes I would agree, I am not sure about the rear rack either and if I end up with the Randonee I'll give it a try as right now it would be utilized for my commuting and may suffice for that, if not I can replace it later. For someone doing a lot of touring, I would suspect an immediate replacement would be needed. I suspect Surly chooses not to include a rack is to save cost and in the end allow the user to choose their own rack and choose not to add a rack.
Yeah, I would simply use the rack until something happened to it, as long as your bags fit on it fine, and it can hold the load. It looks fine.
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Old 01-11-16, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
I know that I found my $599 (new and delivered) bike pretty adequate for my Transamerica and some subsequent tours. I actually have gone to cheaper older used bikes for my more recent tours.
May I ask which brand?

I am back into cycling after a long hiatus. Used the Internet to learn about developments and came to the conclusion that the sweet spot (where it becomes difficult to justify a higher price) was 1500-2000. I like your car analogy. A transAmerica can indeed be done with most standard cars. A transAustralia, however, is probably better on a Landcruiser/Patrol/Defender. Back to bikes, I guess that I am a bit worried that low-end models are the equivalent of a Geo Metro whereas I was looking for the 2-wheel equivalent of a Landcruiser. But yes, I may have been bitten by the bike bug
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Old 01-11-16, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Squeezebox
I wonder who makes REI Novora bicycles? Does anybody know?
The Randonee is made by Waterford. Then shipped to China for painting and decals.
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Old 01-11-16, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by gauvins
May I ask which brand?
It was a Windsor Touring from Bikesdirect.com. My two Transamerica companions and I all were happy with them. We did all use lower gearing than it came with and two of used heavier duty racks (Blackburn EX-1) because we already had them.
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Old 01-11-16, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by tyrion
The Randonee is made by Waterford. Then shipped to China for painting and decals.
heh heh
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Old 01-11-16, 04:33 PM
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Really ?. Is this true ?.

I find it remarkable that the least expensive part of the bike manufacture, paint and decals, is sourced out to China ?. With all the attending shipping back and forth ?.

Am I the only one wondering if SOMEBODY in the US can't do this cheaper.

Puzzled.
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Old 01-11-16, 04:34 PM
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Okay everybody, i bought a 60cm LHT frame and forks off craigslist (thanks you [MENTION=104720]alan s[/MENTION]).

However, now i am faced with the challange of locating and
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Old 01-11-16, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Ethan294
Okay everybody, i bought a 60cm LHT frame and forks off craigslist (thanks you [MENTION=104720]alan s[/MENTION]).

However, now i am faced with the challange of locating and
Glad it worked out for you. What did you end up paying for it?
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Old 01-11-16, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by tyrion
The Randonee is made by Waterford. Then shipped to China for painting and decals.
That's exactly what I heard as well.

(now where is the Johnny Mac, "You can not be serious" emoticon?)
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Old 01-11-16, 07:52 PM
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I payed $350. I am now faced with the challange of identifying the right parts i need and then purchasing them for a fair price. If anyone out the has parts laying around they want to sell, or just some advice on where to look, please dont be shy.
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Old 01-12-16, 09:49 AM
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Check out your local bike co-op, if you have one. (Long Island, NY? you probably have a few!) I usually equate bike coops with lower quality parts, but sometimes you find what you need, and for pennies.
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Old 01-12-16, 10:15 AM
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So i have the bike and im going to start the build. But, i dont know how to share my pictures on this forum? What do i click to share my progress? Im lost!
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Old 01-12-16, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Ethan294
So i have the bike and im going to start the build. But, i dont know how to share my pictures on this forum? What do i click to share my progress? Im lost!
Where are your pictures? What do you use for a camera?
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Old 01-12-16, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Ethan294
So i have the bike and im going to start the build. But, i dont know how to share my pictures on this forum? What do i click to share my progress? Im lost!
in the posting box, there are buttons along the top. You can either insert an image or link to another site that may host the image. Click here ->
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Old 01-12-16, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Ethan294
Okay everybody, i bought a 60cm LHT frame and forks off craigslist (thanks you @alan s)...
I hope the steerer tube is long enough. People often underestimate the steerer length required to achieve comfort in a touring scenario. This is a frequent problem in buying a used LHT, where the previous owner may have hacked off 50mm of tube, which is why I recommended to buy new in post #10 . Prices on used LHT framesets are often ridiculously high, since you can normally buy one new for ~425 plus tax from thousands of LBSs. Also there are occasionally minor frame defects which you may not notice upon initial inspection - buying new from LBS gives the option of returning if dissatisfied.
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Old 01-12-16, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by seeker333
I hope the steerer tube is long enough. People often underestimate the steerer length required to achieve comfort in a touring scenario.
While he's already bought, I wanted to give this a +1 for others who may be reading this for information. As mentioned above, I am 6'2" like the OP but have more torso and less leg than it sounds like he has. Despite that, I have never cut the steerer tube on my 60cm LHT.
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Old 01-12-16, 01:43 PM
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Also, if you are between 54 and 56cm in fit, a good reason to go with the 56 is it gives you 50-100mm of extra steerer length, depending upon selection of 559 or 622 version of the LHT/DT:

26˝ (4254cm frames) = 300mm
26˝ (5662cm frames) = 400mm
700c (5664cm frames) = 350mm

https://surlybikes.com/parts/forks/lo...l_trucker_fork

Finally, if you are buying a Complete LHT (bicycle, not frameset), advise LBS to not cut steerer upon assembly, which is a normal part of bike prep in most shops. You can cut this tube yourself later with a hacksaw, or better yet a tubing cutter, plus file to smooth sharp edges.
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Old 01-12-16, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
Sometimes we cyclists get way too caught up in things like bike choices. It winds up being something like someone saying they want to drive across the country and someone saying, "you need a better car than a Corolla you need a Lotus (or a big truck with dualies)". If it makes you happy to have the big truck or the Lotus that is great, but a 1989 Geo Metro would get you there, so drive/ride what makes you happy. Telling someone else they need the big truck or the Lotus is kind of unhelpful.

A bike for a long tour does need to meet some minimum suitability requirements, but they fall way short of need to spend $4k. You can buy a lot of bike for around $1k these days. I know that I found my $599 (new and delivered) bike pretty adequate for my Transamerica and some subsequent tours. I actually have gone to cheaper older used bikes for my more recent tours. All this by choice as I could afford a CoMotion or whatever if I really wanted one. My old 1990 Cannondale Crit bike that I used on the ST was suitable for the packing style I used on that trip and is like an old friend. It is probably worth maybe $300.
Yeah, I agree pretty much entirely with what you say. A LHT or an REI Randonee or a Fuji Touring will all do the job. They have the minimum suitability requirements.

I was looking for a touring bike last fall, and considered all of these, but I am a lifelong cyclist and am accustomed to handbuilt fancy racing frames. The bikes mentioned above don't really do if for me aesthetically. They have TIG welded frames and weigh ~ 28.5 lbs. Heavy duty seems to be the current fashion, but I simply don't need tires that fat. For me it was worth it to go up a couple notches. I wanted something that was both art and bike. Not everyone needs this. For me, part of the joy of cycling are the actual machines, and I want a cool one, but if you just want to go on a tour, the bikes mentioned will work fine.

BTW, anyone noticed this years REI Randonee is much better looking that last years. Needs a B17 saddle though, of course.

(After looking at Rivendells and a few custom builders, I eventually decided on a Mercian)
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Old 01-12-16, 02:21 PM
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So this is it! The frame and forks! I took this picture a few hours ago and finally figured out how to upload it to the forum. (was having trouble with the iPhone version of this web sight).
Right now i'm using the information you kind folks have provided to research wheels. does anyone have an opinion on the Dynamo Hubs?
I was going to use a solar cell to charge my phone and then use batteries for my head light and rear blinky lights.
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