Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

My Big Dummy Build

Reply

Old 03-06-08, 04:48 PM
  #1  
Chris H
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My Big Dummy Build

Hi all,

Been seeing some talk here lately about the Big Dummy and thought I'd join in.

I just built up my Dig Dummy and thought I'd share some of the details. I know it's a bit long, but I'm a wordy person.

The frame is a 20 inch Big Dummy that I ordered as a frame and fork from my LBS.



A little background here. I'm about 5' 11" and this 20 inch frame rides nicely with drops and
100mm stem that has about a 10-15 degree rise (I don't remember the exact rise sorry). Granted
I do have more torso than legs and was going to order an 18 inch frame, but this one fits nicely.

My overall impression is that this frame is very well built. Nice clean welds and a very good job on the powdercoat.

The only thing I had to do to prep the frame was chase the threads on the bottom bracket.
Other than that this frame was good to go.

For the build I used components that I've been hoarding since I first read about the Big Dummy
at interbike 2006. Yeah, I'm one of the dorks that's been waiting 2 years for this frame.

The only component I didn't have were the wheels. Everything else was in a parts bin or off
another bike.

Also, I haven't ordered my xtracycle components yet. I wanted a bike in hand before I ordered
the rest.

Here's a list of my components:

Salsa Bell Lap Moto Ace bar

Tektro Road Brake Levers

Dura Ace Bar End Shifters

Paul Touring Canti Brakes front and rear

Campagnolo Veloce Triple Crank (52/42/30)

Miche 112mm Bottom Bracket

Shimano Ultegra Frond Derailleur

Shimano XT Rear Derailleur

Shimano XT Cassette 11-34 9 Speed

Brooks Team Pro Saddle

Thomson Elite 27.2 330 silver seatpost

Maxxis Overdrive wheels 26x1.75

The wheels are some Araya wheels that I had laying around. My real wheels aren't done yet.
However when they are, they'll be Shimano XT hubs laced to Salsa Gordo rims. Front will be a
disc compatible dyno hub, while the rear will be disc compatible. All black.

The bike went together easy enough. There were only a few challenges that were easily solved
just by looking at the problem and applying a little common sense (and some outside the box thinking
from time to time).

The brakes work well with this bike. Also, Paul Canti's have to be the easiest Canti Brakes
I've ever set up.



Initially, I thought the rear Canti would be more difficult to set up. It was a looong way from the
seatpost to the straddle wire on that Canti. Luckily, I was able to attach a rear cable hanger
and route the cable well enough. Works much better that I expected it to.



Drivetrain went in easily too. The big problem I was expecting was my front derailleur. The
Big Dummy is designed to use a Mountain Bike style Top-Pull derailleur. Well, since I was
using Campy cranks, that was out of the question. There are no Top Pull FD's that will
cover a 52 tooth ring. I thought about removing the big ring and putting a bash guard there and
just buying a FD that would work with my 42 tooth ring, really how often would I use a 52 crank
on a Utlilty bike anyways (I know you're all thinking that)? However, you really don't see
many bash guards on the market with a BCD of 135. So I thought it out.

Problem Solvers makes cable stops that would generally work great in this situation. I had actually
sort of anticipated this and ordered one a while back. My goal was to place it on the downtube
about where bar shifters would go and just route it like any other cable. Unfortunately, the downtube
on the Big Dummy is huge. Almost 35mm IIRC. So that didn't work. I ended up using a few zip ties
and putting the cable stop on the seat tube. It works pretty well and was much cheaper that
having to buy a new derailleur.



The chain is a little longer than 1.5x a regular chain. I also put some tape on the cross member
to prevent any chain slap. However that hasn't been a problem yet. As you can see I have plenty of
chain clearance. This pic is about middle on both ends of the drive train.









This bike rides very smoothly. Handles well, but does take a little getting used to. I think
one good 15-20 miles ride should make you about as comfortable with it as you can get. However,
I would also recommend putting a little tape of some sort on the rear of the frame on the part
that looks like footsies. Until you get used to the extra length of this bike, you're gonna
turn a few corners too sharply. Trust me, I know this because I've already scuffed the powdercoat
in that very spot. In the picture below it's the semi circle in the bottom right hand side of the
picture.







Man I love this bike. Reminds me why I went car free two years ago. Hopefully it will
help ease some of the hard parts about being car free as well.

Hope this has been helpful for those of you that are either building up your frames, or waiting
on them to arrive soon.
Chris H is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-08, 04:59 PM
  #2  
Old Dirt Hill
Bring That Beat Back
 
Old Dirt Hill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: I lost my legs
Posts: 937
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Nice review. How close is the color in the pics to what it looks like in person?

I hope to have a Dummy in my garage sometime soon.
Old Dirt Hill is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-08, 05:06 PM
  #3  
Chris H
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The color in the pics is actually a little darker than what it is in person. In the sunlight it's an almost perfect Military Olive Green.
Chris H is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-08, 05:17 PM
  #4  
Abneycat
Hooligan
 
Abneycat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Base of the Rocky Mountains, Canada. Wonderous things!
Posts: 1,431

Bikes: 2010 Cannondale Hooligan 3

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I like it quite a bit. The bar tape is a little intimidating, the whole bike has a whole rough utilitarian vibe to it, and then.. BAM! Its like the 80s in here
Abneycat is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-08, 05:18 PM
  #5  
Allen
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 4,757
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Bravo Chris.
Allen is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-08, 10:00 PM
  #6  
dwnptrl_777
SeŮor Member
 
dwnptrl_777's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 547

Bikes: Ti Fatback

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Double thumbs up on your Dummy, Chris. Great to hear it's on the road AND that you like it! Keep us posted!
dwnptrl_777 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-08, 04:34 AM
  #7  
penexpers
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Posts: 251

Bikes: Surly Cross Check, Surly Big Dummy, Brompton M3L

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hey Chris, can you comment on exactly why the brakes were easy to set up? I'm in the market for a good pair of canti's.
penexpers is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-08, 07:52 AM
  #8  
vik 
cyclopath
 
vik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
Posts: 5,264

Bikes: Surly Krampus, Surly Straggler, Pivot Mach 6, Bike Friday Tikit, Bike Friday Tandem, Santa Cruz Nomad

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Glad you are enjoying your BD. Post some more pics with the Xtracycle longtail kit when you get it....
__________________
safe riding - Vik
VikApproved
vik is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-13-08, 08:33 PM
  #9  
Chris H
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by penexpers View Post
Hey Chris, can you comment on exactly why the brakes were easy to set up? I'm in the market for a good pair of canti's.
Sure!

The Pauls just screw onto the frame post with a single screw. The unusual thing about them (compared to Canti's I've used in the past) is that you can adjust the spring tension and set of the brakes with a wrench instead of lining them up on one of the 3 frame holes that most canti's need for the spring tension. Took less than a minute to get them just how I wanted them.

IMO it's hard to go wrong with Paul Brakes. Quality is fantastic.
Chris H is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-08, 09:59 AM
  #10  
coldfeet
Senior Member
 
coldfeet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,118
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Chris, you use the word "powdercoat" twice, is it powdercoat or just good paint?
coldfeet is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-08, 12:03 PM
  #11  
Chris H
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by coldfeet View Post
Chris, you use the word "powdercoat" twice, is it powdercoat or just good paint?
It looks like powdercoat to me. However, now that you mention it I guess it could be paint.

Actually, looking at the Surly blog they mention something about the paintshop. I guess I really don't know.
Chris H is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-08, 12:16 PM
  #12  
Old_Fart
Senior Member
 
Old_Fart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: In a cardboard box by Alki beach.
Posts: 346
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Surlys are all powdercoated.
Old_Fart is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-08, 12:26 PM
  #13  
Old_Fart
Senior Member
 
Old_Fart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: In a cardboard box by Alki beach.
Posts: 346
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Chris, your Dummy is a great example of what I like most about Surly builds (well, not so much their complete bikes). No two are quite the same. Where else will you find one bike with Veloce, XT, Dura Ace, Ultegra, Paul, etc.
Old_Fart is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-08, 12:47 PM
  #14  
coldfeet
Senior Member
 
coldfeet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,118
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Old_Fart View Post
Surlys are all powdercoated.
Thanks for that, I did some more research and found earlier ones (using Reynolds tubing)
were painted, since they went to the current steel (6130?) they are all powdercoated,
hence my confusion.
coldfeet is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-08, 12:12 AM
  #15  
Blue Roads
Senior Member
 
Blue Roads's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Seattle
Posts: 180
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Chris H,

What did you use to plug the unused holes where the front sections of the V-Racks and Wide Loaders would go?

As in the pic below.

Thanks.


Last edited by Blue Roads; 07-16-08 at 12:16 AM.
Blue Roads is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-08, 10:25 AM
  #16  
Chuckie J.
Senior Member
 
Chuckie J.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: North Carolina, USA
Posts: 297

Bikes: Too many... but I'm down to 8 :)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Blue Roads View Post
Chris H,

What did you use to plug the unused holes where the front sections of the V-Racks and Wide Loaders would go?

As in the pic below.

Thanks.

I just got a Big Dummy frame (not built up yet, I'm getting it repainted beforehand) and these things are actually tools to round out any damage to the tubes that take on the xtracycle parts. There is a rod that goes all the way through that section.

Technically, you can remove them (they weigh a lot) and were put in place for shipping. It doesn't hurt to leave it in place but I personally wouldn't.
Chuckie J. is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-08, 11:21 AM
  #17  
Diggidy_Dylan
I spit hot fire
 
Diggidy_Dylan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 167

Bikes: IRO Jamie Roy--Stolen, Specialized SJ, ****-tons of beaters

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Old_Fart View Post
Chris, your Dummy is a great example of what I like most about Surly builds (well, not so much their complete bikes). No two are quite the same. Where else will you find one bike with Veloce, XT, Dura Ace, Ultegra, Paul, etc.
Great point. It almost seems to be a mission statement for Surly to make every part compatible...

@Chris: I don't know that I'd ever set up a Dummy with Dropbars, cantis, triple road crank, or without full fenders and a dynamo light; but I like yours and I like that someone out there wanted all of that... Sweet Bike!
Diggidy_Dylan is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-14-08, 11:37 PM
  #18  
tim24k
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: NW
Posts: 529

Bikes: To many to list. I like them all!

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Nice Big Dummy Chris.

I built mine up with a SRAM X9 rear derailleur because of the stronger return spring. With this spring there is no need for a frame cover to protect from the chain slap.

I used Schwalbe Big Apple tires 2.35 for the best load rating (160kg) I could find. Also the built in tire suspension works amazingly well.

For stopping power, I used Avid BB7 disc brakes front and rear. When itís wet and loaded I want to stop like now, if needed!

I love my Big Dummy. But my build cost me around $2,300, so Iím not too comfortable leaving it locked up outside the grocery store.

-O-^O
tim24k is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-09, 10:44 AM
  #19  
NormanF
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,734
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 140 Post(s)
Its too big a bike to be practical for a bike thief and its very conspicuousness makes it hard to steal. You want something that can be tossed casually onto a car or pickup truck to be resold later. And not many can afford a BD. If I was a thief, there would be far easier and more profitable pickings. Besides a Surly just looks fugly!
NormanF is offline  
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service