Building a Surly LHT

All about touring, whether you are a local or visiting from overseas.

Building a Surly LHT

Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 04, 2008 12:31 pm

G'day

I have started planning my next stage of my cycling, road touring. I already have my off-road tourer and the BOB Ibex trailer, so looking for a road specific tourer which will pull the BOB and/or take panniers depending on the circumstances.

My initial thought was to get a tourer which would also substitute as my commuter replacing Chase my CRX 1, but I am now thinking of getting a second hand OCR or similar as my commuter and getting a dedicated tourer.

The road tourer I get will need to be okay on roads of course but I also plan to do a lot of riding on minor unsealed roads. Anything more "off-road" than that, I will use Julia my XTC 2. It will be used to climb hills (WA mountains).

So to get to the chase, I am thinking either a Surly LHT or the Vivente Randonneur that Pete is a fan of. For some reason, which I really can't put my finger on, I like the look of the Surly more hence this post.

What I am interested in is how would you, given the chance, modify a Surly LHT. I am really interested in thoughts on every part of the bike from tires right through to groupset. I guess my $$$ range would be under $2500 given I could buy a Surly off the shelf for around $1600 + accessories.

I suspect the frame would a be 56 cm hence 700 c tires.

Suggestions on how to spend my dollars?

Regards
Andrew
Last edited by Aushiker on Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by BNA » Sat Oct 04, 2008 12:37 pm

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Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 04, 2008 12:37 pm

G'day

Whoops, forgot one thing. I would prefer STI over bar ends. So first question is, is it simple to change the shifters? Worth it? Necessary if just used as a tourer? To get the ball rolling, the first cost is the complete bike is:

1 x 56 cm Surly LHT - $1565.00

Edited: Moving starting point to a complete bike.

Andrew
Last edited by Aushiker on Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Caelum » Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:00 pm

I was considering doing the same... but think i might go with the complete bike...


My thoughts on a build was:

View 64370
Shimano XT Chainset HollowTech II M770
175mm 4-Bolt 22.32.44

£85.10
(188.24 AUD)


View 73140
Avid Shorty 6
Front - Nickel

£22.97
(50.81 AUD)

View 73141
Avid Shorty 6
Rear - Nickel

£22.97
(50.81 AUD)

View 35236
Easton EA50 Ergo-Bend Road Bar
42cm Black 31.8

£23.82
(52.69 AUD)


View 64365
Shimano XT Cassette 9 Speed M770
11-32

£29.78
(65.87 AUD)

View 45679
Shimano XT Rear Derailleur M761
SGS Long Cage
Out Of Stock Item
About out of stock orders

£25.52
(56.45 AUD)


View 69296
Shimano Tiagra STI 9 Speed 4500
Set Left & Right Triple

£76.59
(169.42 AUD)

View 64379
Shimano XT Front Derailleur Top Swing M770
28.6-34.9 Dual Pull
Out Of Stock Item
About out of stock orders

£17.01
(37.63 AUD)


View 50890
Pro PLT 3D Alloy Stem
90mm -/+10 Deg Black 1.1/8" 31.8mm

£27.23
(60.23 AUD)

Total:
£330.99
(732.15 AUD)



Which would leave you with enough money for a decent wheelset, and any parts that i've missed :P
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Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:05 pm

Thanks. Good starting point. I have now wondered if going with a complete bike and modifying is a better option, but happy to explore both options.

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:14 pm

Yeah, i'm not completely convinced either way yet...

The only thing i'm not *Really* happy with on the complete bike is the crankset and front derailleur... I'd rather see an XT FD on there, along with crank.


I'm not totally convinced about the bar-end shifters either... but i'm thinking that they'll probably be more reliable than STIs...
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Postby il padrone » Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:16 pm

Just beware, XT derailleurs are designed for MTB, the FD may have a different radius and position angle from a road crankset.

For touring I'd add:
Tubus Cargo rear rack £75.00

Tubus Tara front rack ~£60.00
Last edited by il padrone on Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Kalgrm » Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:16 pm

Hi Andrew,

I realise this is not what you're asking for, and I really hate it when someone doesn't answer the question posed myself, but I'm going to try and lead you astray anyway ... :twisted:

Would you consider making a set of disc 700c touring wheels to fit on your XtC? Total cost for that would be around $500 including tyres. Mounting aero-bars and/or bar-ends to your current flat bar would help provide other hand positions.

I know it's not as much fun as planning a new toy, but it's a very viable option.

Cheers,
Graeme
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Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 05, 2008 1:30 am

G'day

Done some work on costing options. Not complete (e.g., brake and gear cables). Spreadsheet is published here. Looks like the Vivente World Randonneur comes out on top.

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:45 am

Where would you be looking at getting the Vivente from?
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Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:50 am

Caelum wrote:Where would you be looking at getting the Vivente from?


Well that is the big question. I went into Glen Parker Cycles at Nedlands yesterday as they normally stock one. Sadly they had nothing but will be getting another one in, when they become available. I have emailed Vivente to see if I can get an idea on availability. Awaiting a reply.

BTW I believe the 2009 LHT are now out as well along with a new colour scheme.

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:53 am

I spoke to Steve from Elite Racing Cycles about a week back, he's also getting in a LHT for me to have a test ride on... Be interesting to see which years model it'll be...
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Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:57 am

Caelum wrote:I spoke to Steve from Elite Racing Cycles about a week back, he's also getting in a LHT for me to have a test ride on... Be interesting to see which years model it'll be...


Cool. Do you know what size and if it will be a stock item?

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:00 am

56cm, and it wont be a stock item.... unless i don't decide to purchase, then he'll have one in stock :P


I've not committed to a sale yet, but steve was really helpful on the phone, and was willing to order one in for me to try out beforehand.
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Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:01 am

Caelum wrote:56cm, and it wont be a stock item.... unless i don't decide to purchase, then he'll have one in stock :P


I've not committed to a sale yet, but steve was really helpful on the phone, and was willing to order one in for me to try out beforehand.


Sounds good. Let us know how you go. Would love to have a look at it and a ride either way :) My size I think too :)

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Postby Caelum » Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:02 am

I'll let you know when it comes in - he's going to give me a call on my mobile when it arrives :)
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Postby il padrone » Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:29 am

Aushiker wrote:Whoops, forgot one thing. I would prefer STI over bar ends. So first question is, is it simple to change the shifters? Worth it? Necessary if just used as a tourer?

One advantage of using bar-end shifters is it enables you to run the Dia-Compe brake levers that will work with V-brakes for better brake power. Using STI you need to fit the 'travel adjuster' fitting on the brake cables - I think this is a bit of a heath-robinson solution. V-brakes are a big plus for loaded touring, where you may have to slow a 25kg load on a steep mountain descent.

Looking at the complete LHT it runs cantilever brakes :? A shame really as they are not as powerful as V-brakes and a right pain to adjust.
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Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:33 am

il padrone wrote:Looking at the complete LHT it runs cantilever brakes :? A shame really as they are not as powerful as V-brakes and a right pain to adjust.


As does the Vivente it would seem ... Shimano Cantilever Br-r550 :(. Mind you they do offer a disc front as an option. That might be worth considering.

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Postby Aushiker » Wed Oct 08, 2008 3:26 pm

G'day

Just spoken to the WA rep for Vivente (impressive service - some distributors/LBS could learn a few tricks from these guys) and he thinks (off the top of his head) that Balmoral Cycles in East Vic Park and Cycle Centre (?), near the mint in the City have them in stock.

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Wed Oct 08, 2008 5:25 pm

I think i might be around vic park on the weekend, might take my bike up there and find this place.. check it out...


Or maybe i should not take my bike there... and ride a new one home :P
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Postby Aushiker » Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:23 pm

Caelum wrote:I think i might be around vic park on the weekend, might take my bike up there and find this place.. check it out...


Or maybe i should not take my bike there... and ride a new one home :P


I spoke to both dealers. Cycle Centre are in the process of a move or something so wasn't sure of stock. Balmoral have medium in stock. Me is heading there for a sticky.

From my chat with the WA rep, any LBS should be able to get one.

Oh got the prices are going up 15-25% from Balmoral Cycles too.

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Postby Caelum » Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:43 pm

Sigh. So better to buy sooner rather than later...



Medium eh? I dare say it is too small for me... But it'll be worth taking a look at, regardless.
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Postby Aushiker » Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:27 pm

G'day

Here is another possibility ... an Orbea Arama. Can't find much out on them but.

Andrew
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Postby Caelum » Thu Oct 09, 2008 1:53 am

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Cadro: Orbea Fitness Alu
Horquilla: Carbon Cross
Dirección: 1 1/8 Semiintegrated
Freos: Tektro 922 Ag
Maneta de Freo: Shimano Tiagra
Mandos: Shimano Tiagra
Pedalier: ---
Pedales: Vp-X93
Cadena: Shimano Hg 73
Cassete: Shimano Tiagra 9s 12x25
Bielas: Shimano Tiagra 50/39/30
Cubertas: Continental 700x32 Sport Contact Reflex
Llantas: 700 Orbea D.W.Black
Bujes: 700 Orbea D.W.Black
Potencia: Adjustable Swell X-Tasy
Manillar: Anatomic Road
Desviador: Shimano Tiagra
Cambio: ShimanoTiagra
Sillín: Selle Italia Zoo Gel Flow Trans Am
Tixa Sillín: Sp-297 Black
Cores: Branco,Azul ,Naranxa-Marron, Vermello-Gris, Negro-Banco
Tallas: 48,51,54,57,60
Peso: ---
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Postby il padrone » Thu Oct 09, 2008 11:36 am

Hmm, not a bad rig.

Don't try putting front panniers or a rack on those cool carbon forks though :(

Very good potential as a fine Audax bike.
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Postby Aushiker » Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:32 pm

G'day

Got this reply from Nick at Bikeforce:

The Arama is a lovely bike, just weird we have not sold it yet...anyway, spec as follows:

Frame Alloy 'made in Spain'
Carbon fork with Low rider mounts
105 parts as follows:
STI levers
Rear hub
both mechs
Chainset

Shimano Dyno front hub
Halogen lamp front
Tubus rear rack
Chromoplastic guards
Nice Xtacy adjustable stem
Alloy drop bars
Conti Tyres
Alloy Mini V's


Take it for a spin any time...


The carbon fork on a tourer is the thing the bothers me a little. I am not worried so much about not being able to use a front pannier as I will use the BOB [b]but[/but] if I wanted to tour interstate or overseas it could be an issue.

Anyway another option to consider.

Andrew
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