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Touring Bikes with Cantilever Brakes

Old 10-17-22, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
Is there a reason why you don't want discs? Just curious.
I can't speak for others, but for me it's because disc brakes don't cope well with travel. We use S&S frames which are packed as below. It is a hassle to have to remove the discs all the time.

More importantly, disc brake parts are hard to find in developing countries. This will change in the future but for now disc brakes are still a no-go for international touring. If you only touring rich countries this won't be a factor.

Disc brakes work better than rim brakes, but the negative factors outweigh the advantages. Bike tourists will always be in the stone age compared to everyone else.

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Old 10-17-22, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
...
Earlier this summer I bought a Co-motion Nor'wester Tour frame on eBay for $900. This is a very high end S&S coupled frame that cost over $3500 new for the frame alone. It's a 2008 frame in near perfect condition, and of course it takes rim brakes. Deal of a lifetime frankly. I couldn't believe it.
...
Wow, congratulations.
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Old 10-17-22, 04:50 PM
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did Bikes Direct Windsor Tourist switch to disc? I have a 2009 version with cantis. It's been a great tourer and errand bike.
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Old 10-17-22, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by RB1-luvr
did Bikes Direct Windsor Tourist switch to disc? I have a 2009 version with cantis. It's been a great tourer and errand bike.
Yes they changed to disc. They cater to a western customer base. In 2022 it's pretty much impossible to sell a bike in America without disc brakes. It would be marketing suicide.

In order to maintain a $600 price point while including disc brakes, they spec it with a 7 speed drivetrain. This marketing trend really got carried away to a stupid level. With a 7 speed hub you can't even upgrade the drivetrain to higher speeds without buying a whole new rear wheel. 8 speeds should really be the minimum for any bike sold today. It's just another version of ten years ago when every cheap department store bike had to have "full suspension". You ticked the marketing checkmark, but all you got was a piece of crap.

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Old 10-17-22, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
Yes they changed to disc. They cater to a western customer base. In 2022 it's pretty much impossible to sell a bike in America without disc brakes. It would be marketing suicide.

In order to maintain a $600 price point while including disc brakes, they spec it with a 7 speed drivetrain. This marketing trend really got carried away to a stupid level. It's just another version of ten years ago when every cheap department store bike had to have "full suspension". You ticked the marketing checkmark, but all you got was a piece of crap.
That's sad. To me, what they did should be marketing suicide. The old version was a very good bike for the money.
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Old 10-17-22, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
Yes they changed to disc. They cater to a western customer base. In 2022 it's pretty much impossible to sell a bike in America without disc brakes. It would be marketing suicide.

In order to maintain a $600 price point while including disc brakes, they spec it with a 7 speed drivetrain. This marketing trend really got carried away to a stupid level. With a 7 speed hub you can't even upgrade the drivetrain to higher speeds without buying a whole new rear wheel. 8 speeds should really be the minimum for any bike sold today. It's just another version of ten years ago when every cheap department store bike had to have "full suspension". You ticked the marketing checkmark, but all you got was a piece of crap.
They did? I posted this link up thread - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ng-bikes-v.htm so I think you can still get the Tourist with cantis. I see that they offer a disc version with an aluminum frame. Is this really the same bike?

Here is the link for the aluminum frame Tourist with disc brakes - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ke-tourist.htm included is a free kickstand....and the bash guard almost looks like it is from a mountain bike.
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Old 10-17-22, 09:02 PM
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They used to be a really good starter tour bike. Now it's a POS Walmart teaser. WTF. Will barely go down the highway empty now.
Da hell are they thinking??
Surly's are getting over 3 grand now here. May as well go full custom Rohloff14 then.
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Old 10-17-22, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
They did? I posted this link up thread - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ng-bikes-v.htm so I think you can still get the Tourist with cantis. I see that they offer a disc version with an aluminum frame. Is this really the same bike?

Here is the link for the aluminum frame Tourist with disc brakes - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ke-tourist.htm included is a free kickstand....and the bash guard almost looks like it is from a mountain bike.
It seems they have limited sizes of the steel ones left…54cm and 64cm.

The aluminum ones appear to be a 7 speed cassette but I suspect the hub used is probably an 8/9/10 speed hub using spacers to make the 7 speed cassette fit.
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Old 10-18-22, 12:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
They did? I posted this link up thread - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ng-bikes-v.htm so I think you can still get the Tourist with cantis. I see that they offer a disc version with an aluminum frame. Is this really the same bike?

Here is the link for the aluminum frame Tourist with disc brakes - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ke-tourist.htm included is a free kickstand....and the bash guard almost looks like it is from a mountain bike.
I went to their home page and tried to navigate to the rim brake bike, but only found the disc brake version. Did you get to that page via their site or via a Google search? I think that might be an archived page that is not actually accessible from the site.
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Old 10-18-22, 03:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Yan
I went to their home page and tried to navigate to the rim brake bike, but only found the disc brake version. Did you get to that page via their site or via a Google search? I think that might be an archived page that is not actually accessible from the site.
Either way, i think it is as cyccommute says, they only have very limited sizes left for the steel version at this point. They probably have those limited sizes, but are steering people toward the new version. Pity.

Anyone have comments on touring on aluminum vs steel? I have a 2012 Tourist using it as a commuter these days. I must say it is very comfortable.
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Old 10-18-22, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Yan
I went to their home page and tried to navigate to the rim brake bike, but only found the disc brake version. Did you get to that page via their site or via a Google search? I think that might be an archived page that is not actually accessible from the site.
It could be archived. Bikes Direct has an annoying habit of doing that. If you try to put one of the bikes into a cart, it won’t process.
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Old 10-18-22, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
Either way, i think it is as cyccommute says, they only have very limited sizes left for the steel version at this point. They probably have those limited sizes, but are steering people toward the new version. Pity.

Anyone have comments on touring on aluminum vs steel? I have a 2012 Tourist using it as a commuter these days. I must say it is very comfortable.
I’ve toured extensively over the last 20 years on a Cannondale touring bike. It’s far better than other touring bikes I’ve had in the past. It’s stiff when unloaded but once it has a load on it, the ride mellows out and becomes very comfortable. It’s not a whippy or noodly as steel bikes I’ve owned. My steel bikes have developed death wobbles that the Cannondale never has. I can’t say that Bikes Direct’s aluminum bike has the same characteristics however.

The frame on the Bike Direct bicycle could be good or could be bad. But it does have a bunch of other warts that need fixing that would drive the price up to far more than the $600 they charge for it. It would need higher spoke count wheels or wheels rebuilt with DT Alpine III spokes, a far better front and rear derailer (Tourney is the worst of the worst), better brakes and larger rotors, more gears (that means new shifters and new cassette), a better crank that allows for lower gears, etc. All that would probably triple the price of the bike. Not worth the price to see if the frame would be a good touring frame.

And, let’s not forget that elmo449 doesn’t want disc brakes.
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Old 10-18-22, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
They did? I posted this link up thread - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ng-bikes-v.htm so I think you can still get the Tourist with cantis. I see that they offer a disc version with an aluminum frame. Is this really the same bike?

Here is the link for the aluminum frame Tourist with disc brakes - https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ke-tourist.htm included is a free kickstand....and the bash guard almost looks like it is from a mountain bike.
Good call. And the OP wanted a large size, they show 64cm size in two colors.

And it is a nine speed cassette.

The only downside I see is a 130mm spaced rear hub, but if you keep your weight down that should not be a problem. A steel frame tfor that large of a size might be a bit soft, but great price and if the weight is kept to a minimum it could be great.
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Old 10-18-22, 05:12 PM
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[Tourist in MSN;22683522]Good call. And the OP wanted a large size, they show 64cm size in two colors.

And it is a nine speed cassette

The only downside I see is a 130mm spaced rear hub, but if you keep your weight down that should not be a problem. A steel frame tfor that large of a size might be a bit soft, but great price and if the weight is kept to a minimum it could be great.
My wife and I have touring bikes with 130 mm rear dropouts. We also have touring bikes with 135 mm rear dropouts. My wife's Co-Motion has carried the same load as her Cannonadale, and there is no noticeable difference.

What is the downside of 130 v.s 135 mm rear dropouts.

They both have 36 spoke wheels, Dyad rims, and good hubs (Ultegra and Shimano LX) Reasonable weights should not make any difference. I run Shimano 105, Shimano XT, and LX hubs on my touring bikes. I carry the same weight all the bikes.

Bianchi Volpe with 130 mm rear dropouts and a typical load.

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Old 10-18-22, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
My wife and I have touring bikes with 130 mm rear dropouts. We also have touring bikes with 135 mm rear dropouts. My wife's Co-Motion has carried the same load as her Cannonadale, and there is no noticeable difference.

What is the downside of 130 v.s 135 mm rear dropouts.

They both have 36 spoke wheels, Dyad rims, and good hubs (Ultegra and Shimano LX) Reasonable weights should not make any difference. I run Shimano 105, Shimano XT, and LX hubs on my touring bikes. I carry the same weight all the bikes.

Bianchi Volpe with 130 mm rear dropouts and a typical load.
A narrower hub will result in more dish for the same gear cluster. More dish means a larger tension differential between the drive and nondrive side spokes which could result in a weaker wheel. This would be more of an issue for a heavier rider with a heavy load and could result in more broken spokes. A relatively light rider with a heavy load isn't going to have that much of a problem with a 130 over a 135mm hub.
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Old 10-18-22, 06:21 PM
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So is this the end of rim brakes in general for new bikes other than cheaper big box store bicycles? 2022... a marker? i suppose even some big box store bikes have discs now.

Last edited by Trueblood; 10-19-22 at 03:45 AM. Reason: sp
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Old 10-19-22, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
So is this the end of rim brakes in general for new bikes other than cheaper big box store bicycles? 2022... a marker? i suppose even some big box store bikes have discs now.
Just for fun I checked the offerings at walmart. It looked like close to a 50-50 split between disc /non-disc overall.
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Old 10-19-22, 06:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Nyah
Regarding the noise of disc brakes, if you choose a bicycle that features thru-axles, the noise will never happen. The noise happens because QR-skewers were not designed for disc brakes and are not strong enough to resist the force of them. After the rotor gets pulled out of alignment with the caliper, the noise starts. The thru-axle is designed hold against the force of the disc brake and works very well with it.

Sometimes QR-disc is the only kind of disc brake available, such as in the current scenario of mass-produced folding bicycles, mini-velos and internally-geared hubs. In those cases, I demand that frames/forks accommodate for V-brakes. I refuse to own/buy any QR-disc bicycles/frames/forks.
I respond to this more for the hope that mr elmo reads this--Nyah, what you are describing is rotor/pad rub, due to misalignment. I have a QR disc bike and if properly tightened and aligned , I do not have rotor rub.
As you say, TA eliminates the fudging around with aligning the wheel jjjjuuuuusssst right. I personally dont have a problem with getting a qr just right, but my wife and others I know just either don't have the patience or the eyesight to get it millimetre right.
Brake noise that Mr Ellmo is talking about is probably more about squeal , or maybe just the noise that disc brakes make with more metallic pads, kinda scratchy sounding---but I can't guess what either of you are meaning, so all I can say is that annoying disc brake noises due to contaminated rotors or pads are just that, common, and it doesn't make a jot of difference if its QR or TA.

I've had extremely annoying disc squeal before due to some sort of contamination, and finally got rid of it, and get how it can drive you nuts--but like any new mechanical ability to learn to deal with, it just takes time and experience, and especially to be more careful of not contaminating pads or rotors. Some people are just klutz's and aren't careful with spraying wd-40 or touching stuff with greasy fingers, but thats up to them to learn, or not.

in the end, disc brakes can be great for touring, I'm sold on them, but I readily admit that 1- I toured on rims for decades, still ride rim bikes regularly, 2- I had to gradually learn to deal with disc issues, with some frustrations at times over the last 6 years, but 3- boy do they make slowing down a touring bike easier and you don't have to keep rims and pads clean after riding in rain or on dirt roads.

good luck again TicklemeElmo finding a large frame---what size do you need btw?
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Old 10-19-22, 06:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
My wife and I have touring bikes with 130 mm rear dropouts. We also have touring bikes with 135 mm rear dropouts. My wife's Co-Motion has carried the same load as her Cannonadale, and there is no noticeable difference.

What is the downside of 130 v.s 135 mm rear dropouts.

They both have 36 spoke wheels, Dyad rims, and good hubs (Ultegra and Shimano LX) Reasonable weights should not make any difference. I run Shimano 105, Shimano XT, and LX hubs on my touring bikes. I carry the same weight all the bikes.
...
I do not always agree with Cycco, but in this case he was spot on.

For years, Rohloff claimed that their 32 spoke wheels were stronger than a derailleur 36 spoke rear wheel because a Rohloff wheel is undished. And that was why they did not make a hub with more than 32 spoke capability. But eventually they gave in and added a 36 spoke hub to their inventory.

The figure below is from this link:
https://www.rohloff.de/en/service/ha...heel-stability




Yes, the above is a 135mm deraileur hub, not a 130mm, but it makes the point quite well about spoke tension on a dished wheel.

I think that dish is why tandems went to 145mm hub spacing years ago, that way they could make an undished wheel for the heavier load on a tandem rear wheel. The Co-Motion Americano is the only solo touring bike I know of that uses a 145mm rear hub, for undished stronger rear wheel.
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Old 10-19-22, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Trueblood
So is this the end of rim brakes in general for new bikes other than cheaper big box store bicycles? 2022... a marker? i suppose even some big box store bikes have discs now.
A neighbor is a bike mechanic. Last spring he was admiring one of my bikes. I said it was the last version of that model (Velo Orange, Pass Hunter) that was available with rim brakes and was not through axle.

He responded that he wished he had stocked up on frames when such bike frames were still available. Being a bike mechanic, he sees what is out there every day.

I have a pretty complete fleet of bikes, and I have no interest in replacing any of them with new for that reason. I am avoiding using the word upgrading when I say that.

My last new bike was bought in 2018, caliper brakes. I think that one had been around a while, I read a review on that model that was published in 2015. So my bike might have been three years old when I bought it.
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Old 10-19-22, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute
A narrower hub will result in more dish for the same gear cluster. More dish means a larger tension differential between the drive and nondrive side spokes which could result in a weaker wheel. This would be more of an issue for a heavier rider with a heavy load and could result in more broken spokes. A relatively light rider with a heavy load isn't going to have that much of a problem with a 130 over a 135mm hub.

Hub width makes negligible difference to spoke tension imbalance. The below are the tensions for a Mavic A719 rim built on a Shimano 105 FH-R7000 vs FH Shimano 105 FH-R7070 hub.


These two hubs are twin models from the same Shimano 105 generation. The only difference is the R7000 is a 130mm standard road hub. The R7070 is a 142mm disc brake thru-axle road hub. As you can see the difference in tension is only 47% vs 55%. If there was a 135mm version of this hub (there isn't), the difference would be even smaller.


If you want to improve tension balance, use an offset rim. The R7000 hub gets a 61% tension balance when used with a Kinlin XR-31T rim, a bigger improvement than using a wider hub.


Builder skill makes a much bigger difference than hub dimensions. The main problem with touring on a 130mm spaced frame is that nowadays it is almost impossible to find rim brake 36H hubs in 130mm width. The aforementioned Shimano 105 FH-R7000 hub is one of the only remaining options on the market. When these stop being sold, 130mm touring frame owners are screwed. Hoard these hubs while you still can. Also, I'm personally not a fan of servicing Shimano loose ball bearing hubs while squatted on the side of the road during a tour.





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Old 10-19-22, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
Also, I'm personally not a fan of servicing Shimano loose ball bearing hubs while squatted on the side of the road during a tour.
if you are doing that, your problem is how you service your hubs. I've had a cone get slightly loose once on a trip, noticed it while taking a day off and doing my usual clean and check out everything routine. Could feel a slight looseness, so went to a bike shop and the owner did a one minute cone wrench tightening. I guess I didnt do a proper job when last regreasing that hub, but it wasnt a huge issue.
I don't take cone wrenches with me on trips, and generally my loose ball hubs last and last and last, and stay in good shape , especially the better quality ones, XT level.
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Old 10-19-22, 04:30 PM
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Here we go again, folks. Any bets on which vegetable and home tool we’ll use in an analogy?

Originally Posted by Yan
Hub width makes negligible difference to spoke tension imbalance. The below are the tensions for a Mavic A719 rim built on a Shimano 105 FH-R7000 vs FH Shimano 105 FH-R7070 hub.


These two hubs are twin models from the same Shimano 105 generation. The only difference is the R7000 is a 130mm standard road hub. The R7070 is a 142mm disc brake thru-axle road hub. As you can see the difference in tension is only 47% vs 55%. If there was a 135mm version of this hub (there isn't), the difference would be even smaller.
The point is there is a difference. They are not equal.

If you want to improve tension balance, use an offset rim. The R7000 hub gets a 61% tension balance when used with a Kinlin XR-31T rim, a bigger improvement than using a wider hub.
No one said anything about offset rims nor would anyone argue that they don’t give better tension balance. Even with a narrower hub, the values on the tension become almost equal with an offset rim. But that’s not the topic.

​​​​​​Builder skill makes a much bigger difference than hub dimensions. The main problem with touring on a 130mm spaced frame is that nowadays it is almost impossible to find rim brake 36H hubs in 130mm width. The aforementioned Shimano 105 FH-R7000 hub is one of the only remaining options on the market. When these stop being sold, 130mm touring frame owners are screwed. Hoard these hubs while you still can. Also, I'm personally not a fan of servicing Shimano loose ball bearing hubs while squatted on the side of the road during a tour.
Why does everyone assume that a builder is going to build differently when using one component over another? All things being equal (which means the same rim, the same spokes, the same skill level with build, the stars being properly aligned, the seasons being the same, etc.), everything I said still holds. There is a difference in the spoke tension between a narrow hub and a wider hub.
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Old 10-19-22, 04:54 PM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by djb
if you are doing that, your problem is how you service your hubs. I've had a cone get slightly loose once on a trip, noticed it while taking a day off and doing my usual clean and check out everything routine. Could feel a slight looseness, so went to a bike shop and the owner did a one minute cone wrench tightening. I guess I didnt do a proper job when last regreasing that hub, but it wasnt a huge issue.
I don't take cone wrenches with me on trips, and generally my loose ball hubs last and last and last, and stay in good shape , especially the better quality ones, XT level.
It was a cross-Asia tour.

If your tour is long enough you'll need a hub repack simply from the distance. It's not to fix any problem. It's standard service interval preventative maintenance.
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Old 10-19-22, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
...
Builder skill makes a much bigger difference than hub dimensions. The main problem with touring on a 130mm spaced frame is that nowadays it is almost impossible to find rim brake 36H hubs in 130mm width. The aforementioned Shimano 105 FH-R7000 hub is one of the only remaining options on the market. When these stop being sold, 130mm touring frame owners are screwed. Hoard these hubs while you still can. ...
...
Not really a problem with steel frames, and most touring bikes have steel, not aluminum frames. You usually can just use a 135mm hub if you want. I have been using a 135mm hub in my 130mm rando bike frame since the day I bought it, that has a steel frame. I just have to use a small amount of extra muscle to spread the stays when I drop the wheel into the frame.

And the Bikes Direct bike we are talking about with the 130mm hub is steel.
https://www.bikesdirect.com/products...ng-bikes-v.htm

There are some touring frames with much heavier gauge steel that would be hard to use a hub with a different width, but those are likely 135mm frames. From what I have seen, only lighter frames were built with 130mm spacing. The two 130mm steel frame bikes I have were not built to carry much of a load.
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