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  1. #1
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    Opinions from builders on Tout Terrain and Thorn?

    I'm specifically interested in the silk road and the nomad.


    The main thing I want to know for now is, are gussets really important? I mean, if I'm dragging 300lbs or so of lumber in a trailer (this does happen) and I slam on the front brake going 20mph down a hill, will the tout terrain down tube and the rest of the frame be able to handle the forces as well as the nomad? Will it break with a crease in the down tube?

    Also, will the tout terrain fork really, as told by Thorn, cause the wheel to want to turn every time I hit a bump?

  2. #2
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    Umm, this is a frame BUILDERS forum. You know, we make frames. What would we know about a production frame? You need to ask the maker if it is suitable
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  3. #3
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    I thought I'd ask the opinions of people who'd know. Doubt you'd be losing any business as your frames tend to be much more expensive.

  4. #4
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    three things that may or may not apply:
    1 gussets are problematic because they can cause stress concentrations.
    2 low trail tends towards self-steering unless there is a load
    3 production bikes are designed as a marketing exercise

    Most experienced people that build frames are not going around evaluating production bikes for ideas. The flow of ideas is almost always the other way. I think NAHBS would be out of business if it weren't for the industry types that are there to see what's going on. Not that they get anything out of it, who knows?

  5. #5
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    You can pay me to consult on this question and I'll happily dissect the geometry of anything you want. Call me up with your credit card number ready!

    _Walt
    Waltworks Custom Bicycles
    Park City, UT USA
    www.waltworks.com
    waltworks.blogspot.com

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by aBicycle View Post
    The main thing I want to know for now is, are gussets really important? I mean, if I'm dragging 300lbs or so of lumber in a trailer (this does happen) and I slam on the front brake going 20mph down a hill, will the tout terrain down tube and the rest of the frame be able to handle the forces as well as the nomad? Will it break with a crease in the down tube?
    I don't think the traction of the front wheel can create enough force to damage a bicycle frame from braking. If you slam on the brake and you remain in control of the bicycle you will be fine but if you are towing a trailer and you load up on the front brake you might exceed your traction limit and then crash. In a crash bad things can and will happen to good designs.
    Mark Farnsworth, Raleigh, NC
    http://farnsworthbikes.com

  7. #7
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    Both bikes are not exactly common, especially over in the US where most of the forum members are. There's also not enough detailed information published about the frames to make any sort of judgement. Then your use case is not exactly common either. Test ride both, get the more comfortable of the two, and if you break it give the broken frame to your framebuilder of choice to dissect and improve upon.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by febikes View Post
    I don't think the traction of the front wheel can create enough force to damage a bicycle frame from braking. If you slam on the brake and you remain in control of the bicycle you will be fine but if you are towing a trailer and you load up on the front brake you might exceed your traction limit and then crash. In a crash bad things can and will happen to good designs.
    This. You're much more likely to break traction on the front tire before breaking a downtube.

    That is, unless you're instantly stopping, ie: hitting something.
    Oh noes. I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcaino View Post
    This. You're much more likely to break traction on the front tire before breaking a downtube.

    That is, unless you're instantly stopping, ie: hitting something.

    I was hauling that kinda weight on my cross check and I hit the front brake once and let off it immediately because it felt like it may have been starting to do just what I fear. Of course, I may have just overreacted.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    three things that may or may not apply:
    1 gussets are problematic because they can cause stress concentrations.
    2 low trail tends towards self-steering unless there is a load
    3 production bikes are designed as a marketing exercise

    Most experienced people that build frames are not going around evaluating production bikes for ideas. The flow of ideas is almost always the other way. I think NAHBS would be out of business if it weren't for the industry types that are there to see what's going on. Not that they get anything out of it, who knows?
    What is trail?

  11. #11
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    I'm a big fellow, used to be fairly strong when I worked with weights more. I have torn the hubs out of rear wheels trying pedal wheelies. No frame damage. The same amount of force on a disc brake would perhaps have the same effect.

    My daughter was hit by a car on her bike a couple of years ago: luckily no serious injuries to HER. The bike, not quite so lucky. She apparently had her hands clamped pretty hard on the rim brakes, as the pads were literally melted onto the rims. No fork damage, front triangle survived fine.

    I just don't believe a bike tire could gain enough traction to transfer enough force to a frame to damage it.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by aBicycle View Post
    What is trail?
    google bicycle trail

    Brian

  13. #13
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    What do you think about the unequally sized blades on that fork and the effects it would have on steering and shock absorption (the fork on the silk road)?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by aBicycle View Post
    What do you think about the unequally sized blades on that fork and the effects it would have on steering and shock absorption (the fork on the silk road)?
    I think it will ride like a bike.
    Oh noes. I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid.

  15. #15
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    You should direct your questions towards bicycle tourists, rather than frame builders.

    There are many happy customers on both who have ridden around the block, and around the world. The Thorn company are a little bit oddball but have excellent customer service. Tout Terrain, from what I gather, are typically Germanic, efficient and, again, offer excellent customer service.

    FWIW, I have ridden most of the way around the world, clocking up ~25,000mi of loaded touring. My current bike is a Surly Troll. It is cheap, I don't feel sad when it gets scratched, it has disc brakes (a must, for me, for a touring bike) has geometry that works and is thick and strong.

    My 2 cents is to save your money from a nomad or tout terrain, get a surly and a rohloff hub and spend the change on 20 packets of instant ramen, which will sustain you for approximately one day on the road.

  16. #16
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    That ramen **** will kill you dude. Fast food is BAD. Is there anyway to eat healthy organic stuff while touring? You've piqued my curiosity.

    What other frames have you tried?

    And one reason I like the tout terrain was the forward facing dropouts. I don't know why surly doesn't offer those type of dropouts up front.

  17. #17
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    This thread got me thinking about the handlebar stop on the Tout Terrain.


    The doohickey on the headtube works in conjunction with the boss on the head tube. The idea is to prevent bar/top tube interactions that can occur when a bicycle is dropped or mishandled. I have not seen any other brands doing and am interested in what others think of the approach.
    Mark Farnsworth, Raleigh, NC
    http://farnsworthbikes.com

  18. #18
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    I have seen something similar many years ago off the fork crown, also incorporating a security lock. They tended to get knocked about badly, breaking the tabs off the frame.
    My only comment from that example is make sure that there is enough restriction so the H-bars don't hit the top tube and dent it, but allows enough movement for the front wheel to have a natural movement, and not batter the stops to pieces due to lack of an acceptable arch. Motorcycles have these by default, but bikes need more freedom in the steering lock limits.

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  19. #19
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    Name:  9975137463_48c0a09d61_m.jpg
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Size:  28.8 KBEven without front panniers when loaded touring, I spend enough time reaching around to get things out of rear bags/panniers that my front wheel is always bumping into the frame. I can see that these stops can take lots of abuse. I'd like to try making some on my next touring fork.
    cheers
    andy

  20. #20
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    A customer of my friends shop got a Thorn and had the shop build it up for him.

    For a "custom" bike I scratch my head on why it needed 40,000 stem spacers and many inches of steer above the top tube. Frame seemed like it was 2 sizes too small for the guy.

    Ended up looking like a pretty whacky bike, I think the fork had to be sent back and replaced.

    No way I'd set off to ride in some far off lands on it.

    If Garro's que wasn't closed I'd say get him to build you a bike.

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