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Steel Fork on Alu. Frame and other questions for a first tour

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Steel Fork on Alu. Frame and other questions for a first tour

Old 03-18-08, 09:09 PM
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Steel Fork on Alu. Frame and other questions for a first tour

Hi there,

so I am changing out tonnes of parts on my Trek 1000 in order to get it ready for a 6-week long tour. I would ideally like to have canti's in the front as well as a low-rider rack with front panniers but the current fork doesn't accommodate either of these. Would there be any issues with putting a Surly LHT fork onto the frame? Would the steel fork place any unwanted stress on the aluminum frame/head tube? how would the geometry change? (I imagine the LHT fork might stretch the bike out a bit)

I am also on a really tight budget so I might not even be able to afford the fork+front rack combo. In your experiences, is it possible to do a self-supported long distance tour (Vancouver-Toronto) with just rear panniers? I would be in a group of 3-4 so many items could be split amongst the group and I wouldn't have to carry everything. If I couldn't get the canti's, would regular single-pivot brakes (older 105's) offer a safe amount of braking power for a fully loaded bike?

Finally, I am planning on building a wheel with Shimano 105 36h rear hub and DT Alpine III spokes. Are there any issues with the thick ends (13ga.) of the spokes not fitting into the shimano hub? What is the spoke hole diameter of the shimano FH-5600. I have read that it is 2.6mm but I would like to verify before buying the spokes.

Thanks,
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Old 03-18-08, 10:47 PM
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Hi there,

Would there be any issues with putting a Surly LHT fork onto the frame?
Assuming your current fork is 1.125, and if it's crown height is within 5mm or thereabouts, could be fine. You also need to have a similar head tube angle on your current bike.

Would the steel fork place any unwanted stress on the aluminum frame/head tube? how would the geometry change? (I imagine the LHT fork might stretch the bike out a bit)
Check the crown height. Steel fork on aluminum is: A) fine, B) commonplace.

I am also on a really tight budget so I might not even be able to afford the fork+front rack combo. In your experiences, is it possible to do a self-supported long distance tour (Vancouver-Toronto) with just rear panniers? I would be in a group of 3-4 so many items could be split amongst the group and I wouldn't have to carry everything.
Almost everyone these days runs front and back or a trailer. You will find lots of folks with different ideas but in the flow, transcan, I think it is almost all front and back or trailer. I remember back in the late seventies early 80s when lows became cool, up till then most people used a handlebar bag and rear panniers, but if you don't want to be remembered as the guy with only rear panniers who parked all his gear, you probably need more space. Back in the 70s a lot of folks used down bags etc... There are reasons why we carry more stuff these days, not necessarily good reasons.

If I couldn't get the canti's, would regular single-pivot brakes (older 105's) offer a safe amount of braking power for a fully loaded bike?
I would only consider cantis, discs, Vs, or mafac type brakes like the newer Paul Racers (I'd use the old one, just saying they look like the pauls). If you have something you prefer, stops hard, has reach, takes fenders, and looks like it would hold up come hell or high water, go for it.

Finally, I am planning on building a wheel with Shimano 105 36h rear hub and DT Alpine III spokes. Are there any issues with the thick ends (13ga.) of the spokes not fitting into the shimano hub? What is the spoke hole diameter of the shimano FH-5600. I have read that it is 2.6mm but I would like to verify before buying the spokes."
I don't know. I wouldn't waste money on triples (?) just run 14s there are 5 and 6 K dedicated touring bikes that come with straight fourteens, and the savings will get you your fork.
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