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Question about Surly LHT

Old 04-05-16, 08:15 PM
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Question about Surly LHT

I checked the local bike shop about Surly LHT. They quoted me 9spd bike for less than $1000. Is this a good deal? Does Surly still sell 9spd LHT?

Another question: which one would be better for bike tour? disk or non-disk? I would like to go with disk, but I never have a bike with disk brake. I am not sure how easy it can be serviced. For long distance tour, specially in remote area, I always think the simpler the better. Is it easy to break a disk brake?

Thanks a lot!
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Old 04-05-16, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
I checked the local bike shop about Surly LHT. They quoted me 9spd bike for less than $1000. Is this a good deal? Does Surly still sell 9spd LHT?

Another question: which one would be better for bike tour? disk or non-disk? I would like to go with disk, but I never have a bike with disk brake. I am not sure how easy it can be serviced. For long distance tour, specially in remote area, I always think the simpler the better. Is it easy to break a disk brake?

Thanks a lot!
That is a fine deal and Surly does still sell 9 speed but my guess is they are not going to be around a whole ton longer.

I own the Disc Trucker and haven't had any issues. If you plan on going abroad or to a place that doesn't have a shop you can always carry an extra set of pads but generally I wouldn't worry about it. There are some places on the planet that might not even have canti pads or something that will work so you would have to ship them somewhere anyway and I would still rather just have discs. I find they stop better especially in the wet and muddy, they don't wear out my rim and if I were to break a spoke or my wheel were out of true I could still brake safely. I personally wouldn't go hydraulic disc for touring but aside from that I think disc brakes are just fine.

Replacing pads isn't that hard especially if you have done it before. I don't know that it takes any more or less time than installing some rim brake pads. If it is more it won't be by much and again the benefits outweigh the time replacing pads. It is not like you are going to replace them that often unless you ride your brakes a lot.

Surly makes a solid bike and people can hem and haw about them and hate on them but no real need. Surly is a bunch of folks who love touring and having a good time, they make a decently spec'd bike for a reasonable price and are pretty easy to access. Sure their bikes are heavy and blah blah blah but their goals aren't focused on weight but durability and usability for a variety of situations. They realize most people are practical riders who are not just going to be ultralight roadies or MTB racers and some of us will want rack mounts or will want to make it a single speed or fixed gear or run wide tires or switch it all up at some point. I think they saw a lot of what people had been doing to modify old "ten speeds" and "mountain bikes" for touring and commuting and weekend fun and built a company making more versatile bikes from the get go.
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Old 04-05-16, 10:02 PM
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A 9-speed (3x9, I assume) would be an older model, probably on clearance. Is this bike being sold as new (ie. with manufacturer's warranty) or on consignment? $1000 new is a good price, and about as cheap as you'll typically see for a new warrantied LHT. A quick check of ebay shows them going for about $600-900 used (no warranty, and you'd need to reassemble it when you got it in the mail).

A new LHT is $1200+ for a rim brake model or $1400+ for discs. Disc bikes are desirable right now and you'll generally pay a bit more for them. There's no reliability problem with any name brand disc brake out there. I feel discs are the superior brake style, but mostly for stopping down big hills, and for muddy/wet weather, so if you don't see much crazy riding like that, the difference between rim and disc brakes isn't going to matter much.

Also, don't sweat 9 speed vs the newer 10 speed model. It makes almost no difference at all on a touring bike. Neither would I sweat the difference between the 26" or 700c wheel models of that bike.

What do you have in mind for this bike, realistically?

Last edited by Raiden; 04-05-16 at 10:07 PM.
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Old 04-06-16, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
Another question: which one would be better for bike tour? disk or non-disk? I would like to go with disk, but I never have a bike with disk brake. I am not sure how easy it can be serviced. For long distance tour, specially in remote area, I always think the simpler the better. Is it easy to break a disk brake?
I've custom built 3 bikes for our little family, in anticipation of long tours. Two on Troll frames and one on LHT.

I've agonized on the question of disk vs rim brakes. I would tend to think that braking effectiveness is insignificant (good v-brakes will lock your wheels). The more relevant issue would be rim wear - rim brakes will 'eventually' grind thru your rim. And this could reportedly happen quite fast if you ride in wet and sandy trails (which is why disk brakes are popular on MTB). On the other hand, I read plenty of anecdotes on the difficulty of finding spares and on the difficulty of properly adjusting the spacing of the caliper.

In the end we are sticking to v-brakes. I expect to build wheels using Ryde Grizzly CSS rims - several testimonials claiming no discernible wear after tens of thousands of kilometres.

The LHT is an either / or proposition. Buy a disk trucker if you prefer disk brakes. The Troll can be fitted with either, system.

---

Under 1000 for a new LHT is excellent. You can change components to suit your style/budget.
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Old 04-06-16, 09:47 AM
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Keep in mind that if they are selling an existing model, you probably don't have a choice of brakes. The price is likely for whatever model they have.

I went from rim brakes on my LHT to Disc brakes on my Troll, and my preference is for disc brakes.

I don't really worry about it being serviced in remote areas. In the US, I expect most bike shops will be able to handle either. And if you're so remote that there's no bike shop, then I guess no one will be able to service your brakes, no matter what kind they are. I don't know how common disc brakes are in other countries.
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Old 04-06-16, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
I checked the local bike shop about Surly LHT. They quoted me 9spd bike for less than $1000. Is this a good deal? Does Surly still sell 9spd LHT?

Another question: which one would be better for bike tour? disk or non-disk? I would like to go with disk, but I never have a bike with disk brake. I am not sure how easy it can be serviced. For long distance tour, specially in remote area, I always think the simpler the better. Is it easy to break a disk brake?

Thanks a lot!
Surly LHT/DT from 2015 up is using 10 Speed
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Old 04-06-16, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes
That is a fine deal and Surly does still sell 9 speed but my guess is they are not going to be around a whole ton longer.
Surly LHT and DT started to use the 10 Speed in 2015
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Old 04-06-16, 10:42 AM
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I love disc brakes. Good mechanical discs like the Avid BB7's are just as reliable as rim brakes and have more stopping power and better wet weather performance. Weight is either a wash (if you get disc-specific rims) or it's maybe slightly in favor of rim brakes, but the benefits aforementioned push the needle to Discs for me. All of my bikes (3) are Avid BB7 disc brake equipped.

If you're new to disc brakes, they can seem very intimidating, but 30 minutes with Youtube will tell you everything you need to know about truing rotors, replacing pads, setting caliper distance, and adjusting cables. I can now true my brake rotors by hand using telepathy because I've had a little practice, so I never, ever deal with pad rub. I simply don't tolerate it.

Less than $1000 is a better deal by value-per-mile than almost any other bike in the market since a 9-speed LHT will ride for ever without failing, if taken care of.
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Old 04-06-16, 12:42 PM
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9 is fine , there have been a zillion sold, so repair parts will be available thru wholesalers to bike shops,

long after the trend driven mail order retail sellers have began pushing the latest gizmos, and abandoned the past New thing.
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Old 04-06-16, 04:50 PM
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Just curious, how heavy is the normal LHT without accessories like racks?

Originally Posted by veganbikes
That is a fine deal and Surly does still sell 9 speed but my guess is they are not going to be around a whole ton longer.

Surly makes a solid bike and people can hem and haw about them and hate on them but no real need. Surly is a bunch of folks who love touring and having a good time, they make a decently spec'd bike for a reasonable price and are pretty easy to access. Sure their bikes are heavy and blah blah blah but their goals aren't focused on weight but durability and usability for a variety of situations. They realize most people are practical riders who are not just going to be ultralight roadies or MTB racers and some of us will want rack mounts or will want to make it a single speed or fixed gear or run wide tires or switch it all up at some point. I think they saw a lot of what people had been doing to modify old "ten speeds" and "mountain bikes" for touring and commuting and weekend fun and built a company making more versatile bikes from the get go.
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Old 04-06-16, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
Just curious, how heavy is the normal LHT without accessories like racks?
Review: Surly Disc Trucker | road.cc Not the exact model you're after, but this says 28 lbs, your model should be similar. TBH you should remove that question from your brain when it comes to a touring bike.
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Old 04-06-16, 06:17 PM
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Thanks. 28 lbs is not bad at all. Touring bikes are all like this. It is perfect for the purpose. I just cannot understand why there are so many blames towards the weight of LHT.

Originally Posted by Raiden
Review: Surly Disc Trucker | road.cc Not the exact model you're after, but this says 28 lbs, your model should be similar. TBH you should remove that question from your brain when it comes to a touring bike.
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Old 04-06-16, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
Thanks. 28 lbs is not bad at all. Touring bikes are all like this. It is perfect for the purpose. I just cannot understand why there are so many blames towards the weight of LHT.
I have a 58 cm LHT that weighs 32 lb. with rear rack, 3 water bottle cages, fenders. I'm not sure if the pump and seat bag were mounted when I weighed it, but I think they were.
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Old 04-06-16, 06:46 PM
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xybaby, There's a thread on this forum questioning touring bike weight where many bikes were weighed and the results published, search for that for more info. When I first built my touring bike I was amazed at how much heavier it was than my roadies. Heavy duty wheel sets and tires required for dependability are the major weight adders while the frame set itself only adds a couple of extra pounds. This is just my experience with MY Cannondales, YMMV.

A new LHT for a grand is a good deal, just make sure it fits.

Brad
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Old 04-06-16, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
Just curious, how heavy is the normal LHT without accessories like racks?
I wrote this a while back in another thread:

"35 Pounds. Mostly stock 2015 54CM LHT with Tubus Duo, Tubus Cargo, front and rear lighting, mirror, bell, cycle computer, 2 bottle cage without bottles, Brooks Cambium, repair kit in 48 Oz. Nalgene carried on rear rack (pump, tube, full set allen wrenches, screwdriver, tire tools, tire patch kit) Schwalbe Marathon Plus (4 pounds of tire soon to be replaced)."

Keep in mind that the tires above weigh 4 pounds just by themselves. I went to Marathon Supremes and lost two pounds. I did this on digital scales that match what the doctors office says pretty close. I'm sure it's not 100% accurate.
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Old 04-06-16, 07:07 PM
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They sell thousands of them a year . to decisive buyers

If you want light weight dont get a touring bike , tour on a road Bike .
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Old 04-06-16, 08:42 PM
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Surly stopped with the 9 in 2014. Nine is fine. Sub $1k is a screaming deal for this bike, new. If if fits, buy. There are many in the touring community who prefer 9 since they seem stronger. Big debate. Disks are much preferred for heavy loads down huge mountain passes. You won't regret having them. Go for it.
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Old 04-07-16, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by xybaby
Just curious, how heavy is the normal LHT without accessories like racks?
Just so you know with accessories and such what the weight is from a scale:
My 56 26" Disc Trucker with a front and rear Tubus racks, three PDW Bird Cages, A-530 Pedals, PB Cascadia fenders and a few upgrades was about 33-34 pounds (I cannot remember the exact figure between the two but it was closer to 34).

Since it would be odd to have any trucker without racks and cages and such, weight with those items makes more sense. Obviously you might choose a different set of parts than I had but it will probably be within that range.
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