How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    A God Without A Name
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Lets be honest, In spite of their speed (And stability at speed)Road bikes Ride like jackhammers and corner like cruise ships.

    Mountain bikes maneuver like... well, Mountain goats. and ride like sofa's.

    But the mountain bike is sluggish, Usually far too easy to spin gearing on and annoyingly heavy.

    So lets get theoretical, what's the best way to build something meant to go real fast on asphalt, that has enough of a contact patch with the road to cut a sharp turn at speed (without skidding out.) that offers a forgiving enough ride?

    My idea? Lightweight 29'er with cruiser slicks. probably rigid, with a road bike drive train.

    Something like the Niner EMD9.

    your thoughts?

    I'm guessing the Cross Check gets mentioned by the second reply.

  2. #2
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    My friend bought one of these full carbon cross bikes. Light and fast, 34mm tires, and yes, he commutes on it.

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-bianchicavaria-_sram_.jpg

    Cavaria | Bianchi USA

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    My friend bought one of these full carbon cross bikes. Light and fast, 34mm tires, and yes, he commutes on it.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Cavaria | Bianchi USA
    I expected something more exotic.

    Looks like a regular 10 speed road bike to me.

    Me and a buddy went on a mission to build hybrid road/mountain.

    We did this on the cheap and its turned out to be more fun than we ever imagined.

    Ok they are not 3 thousand dollar bikes but i have to tell you the level of fun surpassed what we expected.

    Ok so we ended up buying gt karakoram frames.
    A medium and a xl.

    Both 29er s

    Low down.

    We used 720 am bars with 1 and 2 in risers.
    8 speed cassettes, shimano and sram with hyperglide.
    Hallowtech cranks
    A slightly larger chain ring up front. Ended up with two chain rings up front.
    Pc 830 chains that we cut to exact length.
    X.4 shifters and derailuers with a long cage and swaped out pullys for sealed bearings.
    Sswaped out wheels for some dtswiss dh class
    Schwable marathon tyres at 35c up front and 40c on back because these are hardtails.
    We stuck with flat pedals and went with deity's
    We did buy some carbon seatposts but that all the carbon we used.
    Answer dj stems.
    Forks are x-fusion slide 29
    cane creek seal hed stak
    shimano external bb

    I gotta tell you guys. These bikes are kinda funny lookin but omg they are fun.
    we kept the old wheel set with kendas for off trail stuff but for the most part its been a blast, fast, smooth and we can pull off 30 miles rides like its nothing.

    Most fun i have had on bikes in like for ever.


    Total cost is around 1400.00

  4. #4
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    Re: How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    This isn't a hard bike to find these days; you are basically looking for a common commuter. 29er is overkill, and about 35-40mm is fine. Steel is real.

  5. #5
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    I'm not sure I understand the "corner like cruise ships" comment...my road bike will out corner my mountain bike or commuter (Cross Check) any day of the week....

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Straz85 View Post
    I'm not sure I understand the "corner like cruise ships" comment...my road bike will out corner my mountain bike or commuter (Cross Check) any day of the week....
    I would agree. On asphalt my road bike will corner as good or better than my XC mountain bike with slicks.

  7. #7
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    My EXISTING commuter is a rigid steel 26'er that comes in just over 26 pounds and rides on 2.15 Big Apples. And its not a bad bike. at all. I can hook a corner at relatively high speeds with it. It's just not a bike that particularly likes speed. When I've ridden road bikes with 28mm tires it always felt like the back end was trying to get away from me in sharp turns. more than once it actually slid out from under me.

    Mind you I am by no means "used to" a road bike. because every time I've ridden one I've found the ride too unforgiving.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    My EXISTING commuter is a rigid steel 26'er that comes in just over 26 pounds and rides on 2.15 Big Apples...
    My "speedy" bike is my rigid steel 26er with BAs. It feels speedy because it's a singlespeed that's geared pretty high, the bars are way below the saddle, and my other two bikes are pigs. So those are my simple suggestions - make yours an ss, play with the geo (maybe drop bars?), or just get a slower bike to make this one feel faster.

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    On small low-frequency bumps typical of rough roads, my carbon mountain bike with 700x23C tires (and the fork locked out) rides harsher than my carbon road bike* on 700x23C tires.

    Not much harsher, but a bit.

    *Not actually mine
    The above statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by newfangled View Post
    My "speedy" bike is my rigid steel 26er with BAs. It feels speedy because it's a singlespeed that's geared pretty high, the bars are way below the saddle, and my other two bikes are pigs. So those are my simple suggestions - make yours an ss, play with the geo (maybe drop bars?), or just get a slower bike to make this one feel faster.
    xD, Valid idea. I've played with drops on the soma before, but they've never felt right. right now its got a 660mm flat bar with virtually no rise. its still a bit tall but for the bike it feels like a good compromise. the biggest thing slowing my bike down is gearing... actually it's me. but after me it's gearing. But This bike is about to Become my girlfriends commuter. meaning I get a new bike. So... THE DREAMING BEGINS.

    *EDIT
    The reason it matters that it's going to be my girlfriends bike is the fact that she is very much a novice to the sport. so ease of fit and relaxing the handling are what matters most on it now.

  11. #11
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    700c wheeled hybrid is it. Still wont be faster, or handle as well as a road bike. YMMV

  12. #12
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    Drop bar 29er.
    Pick a 29er. Make it a road bike.

    I've done 2:



    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-picture1.jpg
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

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    I was waiting for you, CB.

    On thing that I find, is that on a route with lots of stop-n-go I enjoy my 26ers. I notice the extra effort it takes to spin up my 29er (even though it has better wheels and tires than my 26ers), and that makes the 26ers feel zippier. That's a quirk of my typical commute though, where my longest run without stopping is half a mile, and there are plenty of spots where I have to stop every block.

  14. #14
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    ^^I only stop to take pictures
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  15. #15
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    Re: How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    My EXISTING commuter is a rigid steel 26'er that comes in just over 26 pounds and rides on 2.15 Big Apples. And its not a bad bike. at all. I can hook a corner at relatively high speeds with it. It's just not a bike that particularly likes speed. When I've ridden road bikes with 28mm tires it always felt like the back end was trying to get away from me in sharp turns. more than once it actually slid out from under me.

    Mind you I am by no means "used to" a road bike. because every time I've ridden one I've found the ride too unforgiving.
    Sounds like a really lousy set of tires. That's simply not normal.

  16. #16
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    really? while I cant name the model of tires, I tried a bike with moderately worn Michelin's, fresh specializeds and sad bontragers.

    the specializeds were the best.

    I just... I want zoom zoom at this point! but more rally car zoom than ferrari zoom

    If that made any sense at all.

  17. #17
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    I disagree with both parts of your opening line.

    As with mountain bikes, part of getting a good ride and traction out of a road bike is tuning tire pressure. My 'A' road bike gets 80 and 95. (23 mm tires.) My commuter gets 80 and 102. It has bigger tires, but I also carry a load on it and strap a couple locks to the rack, so I've sometimes had trouble with pinch flats on it, that I haven't had come up on the one I only ride for fun or training.

    I guess I'd also ask if you feel that jackhammer thing all the time, or just when you plow through a section of particularly bad pavement. As with mountain bikes, you need to post when the going gets rough.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  18. #18
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    because of my weight (260+) i tend to ride a bit higher in the pressures. I tend to inflate to MAX recommended PSI then back off till I find a sweet zone. for the one road bike I was on for more than an afternoon (The specialized... I want to say Roubaix? no idea.) I was at around 105 in the rear and 100 in the front. I don't remember his exact tire size. but I'd put it at around 28. not the stock rubbers but still specialized.

    with my weight pinch flats and torn casings tend to happen if I run at the pressures a 170 pound person does.

    With the roubaix, on the streets I commute (suburban and surface) that jackhammer was at the slightest bump. I always felt at the edge of control. I did check my fit on the bike, and while not ideal it was more than good enough to get an idea of it. my turning radius was enormous and traction was abysmal.

    so lets start with what I'd like. Lighter weight, tons of acceleration, turns on a dime. lets me haulass when I want to but rides smooth enough my wrists and posterior don't kill me 20 miles in.

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    Re: How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    really?
    Yes, it really is not normal to have the back wheel skid out on every corner when running a road bike on asphalt. I would guess that given your weight, the tires were severely underinflated. (For 28s I'd start at about 130 pounds.) For a lower pressure you'd need a bigger tire (like the 35s I suggested earlier). For a built bike, look at something like the Jamis Bosanova. There's a good market these days for that sort of bike, with relaxed road geometry, ability to mount larger tires, fender & rack mounts, etc.--you're not really describing something novel. You'll generally find the manufacturers filing them under something like urban/commuter/multi-use.

  20. #20
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    Titanium Cross Bike. Goes fast, rugged but lightweight, disc brakes for wet weather, attachment points for all your commuting goodies.


  21. #21
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    Seems to me like there are a lot of road bikes out there now that will take wider tires. I can fit 35's on my Casseroll, and that has regular road brakes (long reach).
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    because of my weight (260+) i tend to ride a bit higher in the pressures. I tend to inflate to MAX recommended PSI then back off till I find a sweet zone. for the one road bike I was on for more than an afternoon (The specialized... I want to say Roubaix? no idea.) I was at around 105 in the rear and 100 in the front. I don't remember his exact tire size. but I'd put it at around 28. not the stock rubbers but still specialized.

    with my weight pinch flats and torn casings tend to happen if I run at the pressures a 170 pound person does.

    With the roubaix, on the streets I commute (suburban and surface) that jackhammer was at the slightest bump. I always felt at the edge of control. I did check my fit on the bike, and while not ideal it was more than good enough to get an idea of it. my turning radius was enormous and traction was abysmal.

    so lets start with what I'd like. Lighter weight, tons of acceleration, turns on a dime. lets me haulass when I want to but rides smooth enough my wrists and posterior don't kill me 20 miles in.
    Don't you already have a road bike? I forget what it was...

    Anyway, IMO you need to keep going bigger on the tires until you find something big enough to let you use less than max pressure. I think you need to let go of "light" from the bike and understand that acceleration comes mostly from you, hauling ass comes mostly from you and also from getting you out of the wind, and handling comes to a large degree from you, but you need not to be fighting the bike.

    What's the biggest road tire you've tried? They're available up to 40 mm or so - touring tires at that point. They're not all "fast," but the truth is that it doesn't make all that much difference. The Schwalbe Marathon is popular with a lot of people. Looks like Maxxis goes pretty wide on some slick hybrid tires.

    The next problem is that you need a frame that clears them. You can do a 29er like CommuterBoy's, you can do a cyclocross or touring bike, you can do something from Rivendell, you get a couple options in Surly (Cross Check for a narrower tire and, supposedly, quicker-handling bike, LHT lets you go up to a 2.1" tire if you do the 26" version) the Salsa Fargo may have "Agwan" written all over it, I think Jamis has something... as vmps says, this is not such a rare type of bike.

    If I were having your problem with being able to get a smooth ride, what I'd be looking for is the ability to fit a big enough tire to use "my" pressure. What I'd be trying to keep from a road bike would be the drop bars - these are a big part of sustaining higher cruising speeds on the flats and also contribute to comfort on a longer ride and accelerations - and some aspects of the geometry, particularly a top tube length that plays well with drop bars, a steep head tube relative to a mountain bike (though it's really only about a degree) and a bit lower bottom bracket, again relative to a mountain bike.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    The smoother ride is achieved with frame inserts Specialized calls them Zertz....I have riden a bike with them it was an older Tricross...

    Seems like this is the model nowadays.

    Specialized Bicycle Components

  24. #24
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    I am a big fan of bikes that bend or break stereotypes.

    I have an On-One Pompetamine that is really a road bike that I built up with wheels durable enough for the trails (Shimano 29er - M529 or somesuch -specific hubs with bigger flanges for strength and reflective Velocity Dyad rims).

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/8489759289/" title="DSCN2682 by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8236/8489759289_ef592beb3b.jpg" width="500" height="375" alt="DSCN2682"></a>

    It does handle like a road bike, though. Slow speed turns are not a strength. But if you lean into a turn with some speed, it'll carve. As pictured, it's got 32mm tires. I have 38's with more tread that I can put on it if I want. It's SS right now, but I'm considering making it 1x, maybe using an IGH for a new rear wheel build or putting a cassette and derailleur on it for a more traditional 1x build.

    I have fun with this bike. I don't have fun with it the same way I have fun with a mtb, though, so I don't want it to be one.

  25. #25
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    I'll just throw another wrench into the mix based on some riding I've been doing lately. I'd like a bike that has an ~80mm suspension fork, a road bike like pedaling position, drop bars, and 700x32c tires. I'm sure I could build one up like this, but the pedaling position and efficiency is pretty important.

    The reason why is that there are several pavement/dirt road rides in my area that offer great fitness challenges. I've ridden them on the road bike but have to be really careful about pinch flats going down and end up with numb hands/feet on the fast dirt descents. On the flip side, I've taken my MTB up there which is fantastic on the dirt sections but a heavy tank and inefficient pedaling position on the road, plus non-aero position and low geared. A cross bike is not going to cut it, I basically have a cross bike now with 23c road tires on it.

    Here's one of those rides. About 50% nice pavement, 25% terrible pavement, and 25% dirt roads

    Honey Run -> Sawmill - > Centerville - A bike ride in Chico, California
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  26. #26
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    Dat ^

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by kapusta View Post
    Seems to me like there are a lot of road bikes out there now that will take wider tires. I can fit 35's on my Casseroll, and that has regular road brakes (long reach).
    On the subject of road bikes which the OP excluded, but which I think could be good unless disc brakes are needed. If one is handy with tools, a steel 27" classic butted Reynolds 531 or Columbus 4020 can be cold set to 130 mm, and it will fit 35 mm 700 C wheels and tires no fenders on narrow rims or with fenders on Dyads or A23s. Stay away from the competition frames with their tighter geometry and you get a great ride.

    An example, if a bit overdone:



    Tires make a huge difference. The Tourguard tires with Kevlar belt ride hard compared to the unbelted or the Soma New Xpress (also made by panasonic).

    BrianMc

  28. #28
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    Would also be killer to rig up a bike that was light enough to take on century rides. I like my road bike, but it's nothing special. Just an aluminum frame roadie around the 20# mark. I've had thoughts of building up a 29er and using almost all my parts from the roadie. I just wonder what 29er frame would have a pedaling position that would be efficient enough for decent times on a 100 miler.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    Would also be killer to rig up a bike that was light enough to take on century rides. I like my road bike, but it's nothing special. Just an aluminum frame roadie around the 20# mark. I've had thoughts of building up a 29er and using almost all my parts from the roadie. I just wonder what 29er frame would have a pedaling position that would be efficient enough for decent times on a 100 miler.
    I basically did that with a Nashbar 'cross frame. I put 38's on it, and it was very plush. Did my first century on this bike.
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-commuter.jpg


    That said, I woudn't hesitate to do a century on my Ogre now, or on the Access I had before with drops on it. I did a 7 day tour on that bike, loaded and with a trailer, and it was very comfy for some long days in the saddle. Riding position is very comfortable on a 29er with drops, and you can play with spacers/stem to dial it in for comfort. My drop bar Ogre is THE bike for some of the Chico rides you describe.
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  30. #30
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    My issue with using mtb frames for the road is that in general I don't think they handle as nicely at road speeds. I notice this almost anytime I ride one of my mtb's downhill on pavement. But I also found this to be true when I set up my Karate Monkey for the road (42mm tires) and my Miyata 26" mtb frame set up as my daily commuter.

    Actually, for what I use the commuter for, it's fine, because I'm generally not going that fast or riding that aggressively, and I'm often in slow, tight situations. But if I could do the commuter over again (and I might at some point) I will base it on a road frame, something like my Casseroll, but better suited for heavy loads.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    I much prefer discs. not necessarily for the power. that Roubaix could lock wheels in a split second. it's more for icy, wet weather conditions. I'm not sure I can trust Rim brakes then.

  32. #32
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    I wonder if there are any suitable CF 26" hardtail frames that would work well. Something like the Sette Serum Carbon with a decent 80mm fork, wheelset and disc brakes? I currently ride a 17" frame, and the 29ers I've tried all feel a bit clunky. Maybe that's a good thing at speed, but losing a couple pounds for the climbs would also be nice.

    Sette Serum Elite Carbon Hardtail Frame at Price Point
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    I thought about the idea of building up a MTB frame with road parts. When I started looking at the geometry, I ended up giving up on the idea.

    I was starting to write a longer post, but actually there's a pretty simple answer to the road bike with suspension idea - Fargo, and be happy.

    I don't think starting with a little heavier frame really kills the project of making a relatively light bike. The swing in weight among decent-quality non-suspension frames is never all that big, so as long as the rest of the build is sensibly light...
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  34. #34
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    Maybe I should scrap the idea of a fork; it's extra weight and adds a lot of money to the build. With some wide 700c tires at lower PSI, that should enable me to tackle some gnarly roads but still keep the weight low. What do you think of a Surly Cross Check build with most of my current road parts swapped over?

    Frame: Surly Cross Check 52cm - $440 w/ fork
    Wheels: Vuelta XRP Pro (have) - pretty heavy but strong
    Tires: Kenda Happy Medium 700x40c - $35 x2
    Shifters: Ultegra STI 6700 3x10 (have)
    Derailleurs: Ultegra 6700 (have)
    Cassette: Ultegra 6700 (have)
    Crankset: FSA Elita Triple (have)
    Brakes: Cane Creek SCX-5 Cantis - $40 x2 (or Paul Comp since I live in the same town)
    Headset: Cane Creek 40 (have)
    Bars: Ritchey Pro Logic ergo (have)
    Seatpost: FSA carbon 27.2 (have)

    So around $600 total to move into a more multi-purpose bike. I could still ride fast on the road, even with a couple extra pounds over my Al frame and CF fork. And with the fatter tires and steel frame, I'm hoping it would offer a smoother and more controlled ride on the gravel roads (especially the downhills). Anyone do a build like this? Worth it?
    Last edited by TwoHeadsBrewing; 03-07-2013 at 05:32 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    Maybe I should scrap the idea of a fork; it's extra weight and adds a lot of money to the build. With some wide 700c tires at lower PSI, that should enable me to tackle some gnarly roads but still keep the weight low. What do you think of a Surly Cross Check build with most of my current road parts swapped over?

    Frame: Surly Cross Check 52cm - $440 w/ fork
    Wheels: Vuelta XRP Pro (have) - pretty heavy but strong
    Tires: Kenda Happy Medium 700x40c - $35 x2
    Shifters: Ultegra STI 6700 3x10 (have)
    Derailleurs: Ultegra 6700 (have)
    Cassette: Ultegra 6700 (have)
    Crankset: FSA Elita Triple (have)
    Brakes: Cane Creek SCX-5 Cantis - $40 x2 (or Paul Comp since I live in the same town)
    Headset: Cane Creek 40 (have)
    Bars: Ritchey Pro Logic ergo (have)
    Seatpost: FSA carbon 27.2 (have)

    So around $600 total to move into a more multi-purpose bike. I could still ride fast on the road, even with a couple extra pounds over my Al frame and CF fork. And with the fatter tires and steel frame, I'm hoping it would offer a smoother and more controlled ride on the gravel roads (especially the downhills). Anyone do a build like this? Worth it?
    I picked up a 600 dollar fork for free, i just waited till they went inside and rode off with it.

    Pshhhh i dont need no stinking federal reserve notes. All i need are two arms and two legs.

    Dont leave that nice bike alone, i might gank it. Hell i heard of dudes just rollin up on huffies with tazers and riding back to the hood on brand new fs bikes.

    Five finger discounts baby, the hood pumps out quality parts at dirt cheap prices.

    All those white kids with nice bikes way out in the sticks, easy pickins for a poor roughneck.

    Psh, you know what i say when i see that? Would you just look at that, just look at it.

  36. #36
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    Yep, just look at it.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    Anyone do a build like this? Worth it?
    Uh ... not exactly but somewhat similar. I recently put some road parts (drop bar, Sora brifters) on my pavement cruiser, a '92 Marin Bear Valley 26" rigid with Continental slicks. I considered purchasing a road or cx ... but I just love this steel bike! So I thought I'd simply turn it into a more capable road ride.

    As AndrwSwitch mentioned, the geometry needs to be right to pull it off. On my bike, it has a relatively long top tube, short head tube, 74 deg STA and 70 deg HTA. While the front end might seem slack, the fork has a fairly small offset (37mm) which keeps the trail at a reasonable 6.7cm, i.e. steering is not at all heavy.

    I'm currently waiting on a set of mini v brakes to complete the build which should be a better match than the full-size v's it currently wears. If building from new, though, I'd definitely opt for road-specific disc brakes.

    As for off-road performance, I'm not a fan of hybrid/dual-purpose rubber. On pavement, they add rolling resistance and, on the loose stuff, only provide adequate grip. So I'll switch to knobbies if I want to try it out on some trails. Fit should not be a problem.

    I've only been out for a few rides (damn Chicago winters) but I was very pleased with its performance. With the 1.6" slicks at 50 psi and its long wheelbase (104cm), it produces a fairly compliant, yet, lively ride. In the drops, I actually felt a bit more confident in high-speed corners, cut through the wind with relative ease and they were surprisingly comfortable over small pot holes or train tracks. And being able to spin fast while descending is a blast.

    As you can see, below, I have the same Ritchey drop bar you plan to use. I've replaced the mountain crank with a 48/38/28 FSA and the saddle with a Specialized Avatar Comp Gel (thank god for Craigslist and eBay!). Can't wait for Spring to see how it works off-road but, for its primary use, I think my re-purposed mtb will continue to get her done.

    Last summer


    26 lbs without pedals or accessories


    Now


    Will weigh it, again, after I install the new brakes
    Last edited by joeinchi; 03-07-2013 at 08:58 PM.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    My idea? Lightweight 29'er with cruiser slicks. probably rigid, with a road bike drive train.
    29 incher mountain bike with fast tires like Vulpines. Just add some teeth to the largest ring and learn to spin faster as needed. Problem solved. I used to think cyclocross bikes with "big" 35 road tires were the bees knees for such a role but larger twenty nine inch (50x700) tires just roll over anything effortlessly with as much speed as 35x700 tires and far more comfort and enjoyability and that's what it's all about. When it's all fun all the time you'll want to ride more and will end up doing so. You can add drop bars and other "monster-cross" features if you want to but you don't need to. With semi-slick tires like the Vulpines you can also competently ride trails too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    Maybe I should scrap the idea of a fork; it's extra weight and adds a lot of money to the build. With some wide 700c tires at lower PSI, that should enable me to tackle some gnarly roads but still keep the weight low. What do you think of a Surly Cross Check build with most of my current road parts swapped over?
    Friends of mine with the Cross-Check go through a lot of different builds over time. Seems to be a big part of the fun with that frame - it won't fight you on being repurposed.

    I have both road and off-road time on my 'cross bike. It's really all about the tires. I actually never had anything bigger than a racing tire (35 mm, give or take) on it, but it's got clearance for more. It's moving into a role as my primary road bike lately, with some skinny slicks.

    Hard to say if it'll change your feeling about riding gravel roads. Not something I do much outside the context of also riding singletrack, so I'm typically on my mountain bike.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    I'd like a bike that has an ~80mm suspension fork, a road bike like pedaling position, drop bars, and 700x32c tires.

    Here's one of those rides. About 50% nice pavement, 25% terrible pavement, and 25% dirt roads
    There have been a few road bikes on the market with suspension forks (not sure if any had that travel), but they didn`t sell enough, and never lasted long on the market. You might be able to dig one up if you look patiently. I think Cannondale Silk Road was the closest to a success and most prevalent of those.

    Mmmm... nice looking route. That wandering snake labeled Centerville Rd looks downright delightful. Is it paved? Can`t zoom in enough to tell from sat images.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I thought about the idea of building up a MTB frame with road parts. When I started looking at the geometry, I ended up giving up on the idea.
    Andrew, you probably have enough parts stashed to pull that off. You might just ignore the published geo and give it a shot with an old rigid bike. You could end up with a nice surprise, and if you don`t like it you could always just swap the original cockpit back on and resell, getting back both your money and your parts stash. I honestly don`t understand geometry specs very well, but love the ride and handling of my rigid Schwinn beast- have had it up to over 50 MPH both loaded and unloaded with not a worry. The one road bike I`ve owned in my adult life was gorgeous, but somehow just didn`t feel right to me. I`ll probably try another in the next couple years (or sooner if I can`t keep my dumb a$$ off Craigslist), but so far I haven`t been able to top that overloaded tank of an mtb.
    Recalculating....

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    ^^^
    You'd be surprised at how little bike stuff I have, actually. I just dropped from five to four bikes, and I've been pretty good about keeping my parts shelves to direct spares of wear parts.

    Now, bring it up again when I've lived in a house of my own with a bit more storage space for a few years, and it may be another story...
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    @rodar y rodar: Centerville Rd is paved up until the real squiggly part and then it turns to well maintained gravel. It's actually not bad riding UP on the road bike, but going down it is where I get the numb hands and feet. Not sure if anything short of a MTB with fatties is going to be able to provide a nice ride at 20mph though...
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    ^^ I'm telling you, rigid drop bar 29er with something in the 2.0 range for tires. It's glorious. Like riding a Cadillac.
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    26" hardrock with 2.5" hookworm tires is a nice heavy trainer, my 29er is faster and has a lockout fork option which is missing on my hardrock. However, these hookworm tires are very nice on the road at 65psi, but heavy. I think that a cyclecross bike would be a nice choice for a fast do all commuter such as this one.

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    That's a great suggestion on the Specialized Tricross! I hadn't even thought of that bike, but it would be within my budget if I swapped parts and sold my existing road bike. From the reviews, it sounds like a good all-rounder. With my Ultegra drive train, I think it would be a really nice do it all bike.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    ^^ I'm telling you, rigid drop bar 29er with something in the 2.0 range for tires. It's glorious. Like riding a Cadillac.
    I've actually thought about doing that, even to the point of speccing out a build. A really spendy, carbon fiber build! Unfortunately, I'm saving up for a trip to Kaua'i so I don't have that much to spend.

    Here's an idea for a build with a Motobecane Fantom CX for under $500 - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...3c&usp=sharing
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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I thought about the idea of building up a MTB frame with road parts. When I started looking at the geometry, I ended up giving up on the idea.

    I was starting to write a longer post, but actually there's a pretty simple answer to the road bike with suspension idea - Fargo, and be happy.

    I don't think starting with a little heavier frame really kills the project of making a relatively light bike. The swing in weight among decent-quality non-suspension frames is never all that big, so as long as the rest of the build is sensibly light...
    The Fargo or the pricier Comotion Divide would be pretty close to my ideal for this type of bike. I ride a Salsa El Mariachi, with an 80 mm Reba, which is close enough for now. If I was doing long rides on paved and gravel roads I'd want the drop bars for sure and I could live with a rigid steel fork.

  48. #48
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    Sweet Dreaming

    You guys remember Sakurama`s BadBoy? Post 1606 in the Post Your Commuter sticky.
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-dscf3928-x2.jpg
    Joeinchi, I like your Marin. Prettier than either of my roadie mtbs. I`m curious to find out how it weighs out for you- an 89 Rockhopper is the lighter of my two, at just about 26# in the lightest mode I ride in (tool/tube bag and pump attatched but no rack or water.)
    Recalculating....

  49. #49
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    im using this

    This bike has room for some bigger tires.. And its belt drive .. wooo


    Commuter Bike | Civia Bryant Belt Drive Alfine
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    Thanks, will update when done.
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    These are couple of bikes that I've built from scratch as all-year/all-weather/all-sh*t UK roads training/commuting bikes.
    They make far more sense than most of "proper" road bikes IMO.
    The one on the right (used currently) is based on mid 90s Corratec frame.
    MTB frame needs to be one or two sizes smaller for the right reach (hoods/drops).

    They both ride brilliantly and float over everything and the level of comfort, grip and confidence is in a completely different league to road bikes.
    I have no idea what the angles are and I tend not to over-analyse it but handling is best with 2" tyres in this case Kojaks run at 20-25 PSI FR and 40-45 REAR, (175lb) tubeless on Flow rims.

    I don't really think that building a bike like that is big deal. There are plenty of retro frames/bikes on Ebay that would make great candidates...

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3643.jpgHow do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3645.jpg
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-4580145056.swf.jpg  

    Last edited by Barteos; 08-25-2013 at 02:29 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    MTB frame needs to be one or two sizes smaller for the right reach (hoods/drops).
    That's about what I'd thought looking at the geometry on paper.

    What size MTB do you ride? I'm typically on a 17", and something that bothers me about the 13" size is that often, the geometry gets kinda wonky and I think I'm not reducing the reach as much as I'd need to.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    I ride a 17.5 Soma Groove. Set up in much the same fashion as above... but that has already been stated in this thread.

    My next bike is a Cross Check, though I sorely wish it had discs,literally everything else about it is too my liking.

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    Sorry, my "you" in post #52 was Barteos.

    Agwan, if you wish the Cross Check had discs, why don't you buy a disc bike? I think the Traitor Ruben or Soma Double Cross keep a lot of the Cross Check's positives. For a complete bike, maybe the Redline Metro Classic or whichever of Jamis' bikes it is.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I`m curious to find out how it weighs out for you
    The bikes weighs about 1/2 lb less or 25.5 without pedals/acc. I lost about 4 oz going from full size V brakes to the mini V's. Bar with tape saved a few more ounces vs flat bar with Ergon grips. Brifters were a wash. I still have original Araya rims, so I might be able to go a little lower.

    Huge improvement in performance with the Tektro RX5 minis vs Avid V brakes. RX5 arms measure 80mm vs the Avid's at 100mm


    They also "fit" the smaller tires better. Clearance down to 7mm for the Conti SportContacts 26x1.6 (1.5 actual). Still room for a 1.75.
    Joe
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    @AndrwSwitch

    Regarding frame size, I think it makes sense to go to a smaller size but ONLY if the frame you're considering has a relatively long top tube. A lot of those 90's bikes definitely have "road like" geometry but not all contemporary bikes feature a shorter top tube, e.g. Gary Fisher Genesis. I'd suggest you, first, confirm the ETT that works for you and then adjust from there.

    As for hood/drop reach, keep in mind that road bars are about 10" narrower than a modern 700mm mtb bar. You'll increase your physical reach by simply holding the bar nearer the stem.

    Then there's the matter of drop from saddle to bar. For every 30mm you raise the bar, you decrease the reach by ~12mm (or 1/2"). If you plan to set the road bar higher than your current mtb setup, then you'll want to adjust accordingly.

    To limit some of the guesswork, I'd suggest you use a compact/shallow reach handlebar like the ones on Barteos's bikes. They're similar to an FSA Omega Compact which has a flat top (great for cruising on the hoods) and isn't much more forward or lower than your current bar.

    I think you'll enjoy the project. Those old steel frames are great, especially when matched with some fast, comfy road rubber. As Barteos wrote They make far more sense than most "proper" road bikes
    Joe
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    That's about what I'd thought looking at the geometry on paper.

    What size MTB do you ride? I'm typically on a 17", and something that bothers me about the 13" size is that often, the geometry gets kinda wonky and I think I'm not reducing the reach as much as I'd need to.
    I'm 5'11 and always ride L, 19.5"-20.0" MTB bikes with 620-625mm effective TT and 100mm stems.
    Eff top tubes on my road bikes need to be 560mm-570mm (110-120mm stem, shallow bar)
    Last edited by Barteos; 03-17-2013 at 05:43 PM.
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  58. #58
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    LOL, way too many "yous" running around this thread. It may stilted, but this is part of why I've been trying to get into the habit of writing "one" instead of "you" when I don't mean someone specific and don't mean to address my reader directly. "One does not simply walk into Morder..." as opposed to "You don't simply walk into Mordor." Because maybe I do simply walk into Mordor. And better yet, "I hate it when I bang my knee on my pedal," and not "I hate it when you bang your knee on your pedal." Because while I don't wish ill on anybody, I usually don't even know whether or not someone else bangs his knee. Now if only we had a pronoun that didn't imply gender, didn't refer to a group, and didn't refer to an inanimate object. Because women bang their knees too, but a woman doesn't bang their knee, that would be a group of women.

    Anyway, at least it's not scientific writing. The part of me that earned a BA cries a little whenever I have to spray passive voice all over a paper for one of my engineering classes.

    Grammar geek rant aside, (it's really about clarity, I swear!) if "you" is me, FWIW I have some proper road bikes and I'm actually very happy with them. I guess right now, I only have sort-of proper road bikes, I have a Trek Portland - marketed as a touring bike - and a Kona Jake, which is a 'cross bike.

    I feel like part of the impetus for threads like this is that racing bikes sell. The first road bike I owned, which I vandalized with a bad flat bar conversion, was an old sport/touring bike. Actually a really great class of bike, but, like station wagons, they're not really sexy and they're not quite a pickup truck. I've also had a racer, a different '70s 10-speed, a fairly racy '80s 12-speed, and the current slightly chunky road bikes.

    I gotta say, I've ridden a lot of dirt on the 'cross bike and the Portland does well with the loads I ask it to and is great in the rain. That's my commuter right now, and I think that Trek is a gang of idiots for not keeping it in their line, even if the CrossRip is pretty much the same bike with a black paint job.

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-0109turtlesamantha02.jpg

    So good for Surly for releasing some road bikes that fit decent-sized tires and still have all the right fittings even during periods when the other guys are only doing racers.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  59. #59
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    I hate it when one bangs your knees on my pedals!

    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    The bikes weighs about 1/2 lb less or 25.5 without pedals/acc. I lost about 4 oz going from full size V brakes to the mini V's. Bar with tape saved a few more ounces vs flat bar with Ergon grips. Brifters were a wash. I still have original Araya rims, so I might be able to go a little lower.
    Wow, quite a drop for your brake change. If I were going to keep my Rockhopper, I`d have put mini Vs at least on the rear (heel interference), but there are a few other other things that didn`t work out with it. It`s going back to flat bars and back on CL. I just "did" that bike over the last couple months, weighed everything that came off it and everything that went on. It lost about 3.5 pounds going from flat to drop with no special parts- I just picked the lightest I had on hand that would work. Most of the weight loss came from tires (and it already had 1.5 "townie" tires), a good bit from the saddle, and the rest just little by little.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    What size MTB do you ride? I'm typically on a 17", and something that bothers me about the 13" size is that often, the geometry gets kinda wonky and I think I'm not reducing the reach as much as I'd need to.
    I was going to suggest that older mtbs weren`t as far off from road bikes as modern ones are, but Joeinchi beat me to it, along with some extra info that I hadn`t considered. Good point about the bar width! One that didn`t get in Joe`s nice summary was stem length- look how long the stems are on most of those old rigids. Andrew, I hope you get a chance to play with one someday, but it really does take some patience, and it`s helpful to have a nice stash before diving in, because there will most likely be a few little things that just don`t quite work out and require experimentation. The first bike I did that to just clicked, and we`ve been a happy couple since then. The second one didn`t work at all, so I`m going back to the drawing board.

    FWIW, my Beastie Bike should be too long for me, in theory. I have a very short reach stem that sticks up really high, and it works. I love the handling. For the next try, I chose a smaller frame to start with, and I think the overly quick handling that I don`t like is mostly due to the weight distribution being oriented too forward oriented, a direct result of that shorter frame. I could be wrong, of course.
    Recalculating....

  60. #60
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    I just went with ETT... I did not wind up ordering a smaller MTB Frame for my drop-bar bikes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I hate it when one bangs your knees on my pedals!
    LOL, me too. My knees end up hurting, you're wondering what I'm doing at your house, and there's some odd person running around who orchestrated the whole thing!
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    I found this in the "Cross Check Photos" thread: https://forums.mtbr.com/surly/cross-...ml#post8434444

    A build like that, and then an extra set of sturdy wheels with some fatties seems like a good place to start. Maybe some Woodchipper bars after that.

    "Got everything you need?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Most of the weight loss came from tires (and it already had 1.5 "townie" tires), a good bit from the saddle, and the rest just little by little.
    Yep, tires were big for me, too ... 1/2 lb off each rim.

    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    For the next try, I chose a smaller frame to start with, and I think the overly quick handling that I don`t like is mostly due to the weight distribution being oriented too forward oriented, a direct result of that shorter frame. I could be wrong, of course.
    It sound like you realized some wheel flop. The one thing about mtb geo is that, while the extra fork trail makes for a more stable ride in rough terrain, it also make the front end sensitive to load. As you surmised, any course correction is somewhat amplified when you have excessive weight on the bars.
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Commuterboy...Where did you get your fenders?


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    Quote Originally Posted by p08757 View Post
    I would agree. On asphalt my road bike will corner as good or better than my XC mountain bike with slicks.
    Quote Originally Posted by Straz85 View Post
    I'm not sure I understand the "corner like cruise ships" comment...my road bike will out corner my mountain bike or commuter (Cross Check) any day of the week....
    This is interesting -riding in and out of San Fran, many times overnights up the coast, Hwy 1, doesn't matter. My Bridgestone MB-1 w 1.5 slicks bests every road bike we encountered on fast-fast, curvy downhills. And no, it's not just about weight. As for manic-inner city, no contest there either, of course.

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    I guess my next bike will be pretty boring. A black cross check with 29x2.00 fat franks in brown. brown seat, Shimano 105 black and Linear pulls...

    the two things I've not settled on are the rims, and the bars.

    I'd like a cheap 29er wheelset that's plenty wide for the Franks. And at least a compact drop up front. so I can pretend I'm a roadie from time to time.

    Is there a good wheelset for this idea? also bars?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ordinaryguy View Post
    Commuterboy...Where did you get your fenders?

    sorry, missed this... I think Tree Fort Bikes:

    Planet Bike Cascadia 29er Black Fenders in Tree Fort Bikes Fenders (cat143)
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  68. #68
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    How do you figure that`s boring, Agwan? Sounds pretty killer to me
    Recalculating....

  69. #69
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    For a rural application that would be the bees knees. I love doing big ol FR grinds on my 9er up in the sierras but for city riding i'm sticking to my roadie. Its just too fast, agile and quick.

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    I've gotten a couple pairs of good beefy Mavic 29er rims with less than top-end hubs from pricepoint for pretty cheap. They've been great.
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  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    I guess my next bike will be pretty boring. A black cross check with 29x2.00 fat franks in brown. brown seat, Shimano 105 black and Linear pulls...

    the two things I've not settled on are the rims, and the bars.

    I'd like a cheap 29er wheelset that's plenty wide for the Franks. And at least a compact drop up front. so I can pretend I'm a roadie from time to time.

    Is there a good wheelset for this idea? also bars?
    bicyclewheelwarehouse.com can be pretty good for complete wheelsets. A 17-19 mm rim would do the job for you.

    Handlebars are almost as much of a preference item as saddles, once you get into it. I really like FSA's compact bend shape. There are a few different handlebars in their line that are available in it. You can choose between carbon and aluminum and a round or flattened top section. Those are good for someone who has a fairly traditional attitude toward riding position - hands about shoulder width and on the ramps or hoods for general riding. I like the slight flare because it's a little roomier in a sprint, the shallower drop because I don't like to get that much lower than I am in the first place, and the tighter radius at the top of the bar because I think it plays really nicely with Shimano's hood shape. Be aware that if you want the same width at the hoods as a bar without the flare, you'd want to move up one size. FSA reports the width of their compact bars at the ends, which everyone else does, but not everyone else flared to get there.

    I know the appearance of your bike is important to you, but I think you'll get over it. One of the things I like about this sport is the primacy of the athlete. I decided to try track racing last summer and since I've been in school, I'm trying to be efficient with my use of money. So my racer is a sub-$1000 complete track bike that I picked up used via Craig's List. It's navy blue steel with 32-spoke clinchers and a cheap fixie crank, so probably even more boring than your new build, but it was good enough for me to move from 5 to 4 (actually pretty easy on the track) and it's been good enough for me to collect my first few upgrade points toward Cat. 3. Did it on the crappy stock tires, no less, although I do have some "faster" ones for this season.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    I guess my next bike will be pretty boring. A black cross check with 29x2.00 fat franks in brown. brown seat, Shimano 105 black and Linear pulls...

    the two things I've not settled on are the rims, and the bars.

    I'd like a cheap 29er wheelset that's plenty wide for the Franks. And at least a compact drop up front. so I can pretend I'm a roadie from time to time.

    Is there a good wheelset for this idea? also bars?
    Very cool bike! You might not be able to use the Fat Franks, though, since Surly does not recommend tires wider than 45mm (1.77"). Cross-Check Frame Highlights. Here's a thread covering the Monstercross Tire Options.

    As for handlebars, the FSA Omega Compact is a nice road bar with short reach/drop, slight flare (4 deg) and reasonably priced. Or the Salsa Cowbell which is a true gravel grinder bar with 12 deg flare.

    As for your other requirements ...
    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    so lets start with what I'd like. Lighter weight, tons of acceleration, turns on a dime. lets me haulass when I want to but rides smooth enough my wrists and posterior don't kill me 20 miles in.
    Lightweight - Stick with tires less than 2" wide. A pair of Continental Cyclocross 700x35's weighs 720g (1.6 lbs) while the Fat Franks total 1560g (3.4 lbs).

    Acceleration - Keeping the rotating mass (wheels/tires) as light as possible will help. But efficient power transfer usually means stiff, lightweight, frame, fork and wheels riding on high psi tires. Your call as to how much comfort you're willing to sacrifice.

    Turns on a dime - If you're talking about traction while cornering at high speeds, then a relatively wide tire, 35-40mm, run at 70-80 psi will feel a lot more stable than a road tire, 23-25mm.

    Smooth ride for wrists and posterior - It sounds like you already know how to find the sweet spot on tire pressures that yields the best compromise between ride quality and puncture resistance. That's a good approach. The other area to focus on is bike fit. There are countless threads covering this topic but it may be worthwhile for you to get a professional fitting to ensure your setup improves long term comfort.

    And don't settle for a "boring" CC. Bling it out!
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-surly-56cm-black-001-1024x768.jpg
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  73. #73
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-7314116966_8509cb0021_z.jpg

    Oh... they fit... and they're SEXY.

    My build on this has plenty of time. the Missus Is getting a Soma San Marcos (she has it as her wallpaper on her phone and laptop... as well as a printed out poster) And that thing is going to be her first NEW, Non borrowed, non hand me down bike. even with a mild Tiagra/Velo Orange build... It's gonna set us back a good 2,400.

    But worth it. when the lady friend finally gets into cycling... And has impeccable tastes. xD

    So my bike will probably be done, oh... January?

  74. #74
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    Here's how... I am always looking out for you folks that want to get to work faster....

    One Gear, One Goal: Bike Is 'Good To 100 MPH,' Builder Says : The Two-Way : NPR

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    A little update

    I've used Kojaks on my 26" "road" bikes for quite a while now and they are great all-round tyres but their rather basic stiff casing limits their performance both in terms of speed and comfort.
    It's the same story with almost all high volume 26" road tyres. Supermotos may be an exception but they could be still thinner and... available in 2.00" width.

    So... I did something I was going to do long time ago. To get thin and flexible 120TPI MTB tyres with no puncture protection and shave them! In fact it's not my first attempt of this kind. I tried using Furious Freds on the road but binned them after a puncture that didn't want to seal. Racing Ralphs 2.10 seem to be better candidates. Slightly more robust but of a similar rolling resistance.

    They are run tubeless on Stans Flows (54mm actual width) at around 20PSI FRONT, 30PSI REAR (15% tyre drop calc.) It seems very low but more than that only reduces comfort and doesn't make the bike any faster.
    BTW, I've always wondered what people riding smooth trails/XC courses with 40-60PSI in their tyres are trying to achieve...

    So how fast can you go on these?
    On my my 50min. commute I consistently clock 18-19mph on some broken country roads.
    That's with a commuting backpack, baggies and just 1.5" handlebar drop.

    Av speed usually doesn't mean a lot but I believe that in this case can demonstrate the potential of the tyres and change some misconceptions.

    If you'd like to make your own Shaven Ralphs then just inflate them quite hard and use side cutters to remove the tread. It's really that simple.

    P.S. 400g each after shaving
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3650.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3659-002.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3661.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3578.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3608.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3610.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3611.jpg  

    Last edited by Barteos; 08-25-2013 at 02:33 PM.
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
    fast 26" road bike, shaven Racing Ralphs as road tyres, homemade "Paul thumbies"...

  76. #76
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    That is a lot of work

  77. #77
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    Wow, that`s light for such a fat tire, Barteos! You started with a brand new pair? You`ve got more nerve than I do to take a pair of clippers to such a big investment!
    Recalculating....

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    A little update
    Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    They are run tubeless on Stans Flows (54mm actual width) at around 20PSI FRONT, 30PSI REAR (15% tyre drop calc.) It seems very low but more than that only reduces comfort and doesn't make the bike any faster.
    BTW, I've always wondered what people riding smooth trails/XC courses with 40-60PSI in their tyres are trying to achieve...
    I like the 15% drop guideline, too, and find it works especially well for unpaved trails. If I'm sticking to pavement, though, I like to increase the pressure 10 psi, i.e. 45f/55r on 1.5" slicks. While rolling resistance doesn't change, the ride is less springy when I spin fast and hard. I feel I can generate power more smoothly with a bit more pressure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    So how fast can you go on these?
    On my my 50min. commute I consistently clock 18-19mph on some broken country roads.
    That's with a commuting backpack, baggies and just 1.5" handlebar drop.

    Av speed usually doesn't mean a lot but I believe that in this case can demonstrate the potential of the tyres and change some misconceptions.
    Wow, you're moving at a pretty good pace! I'm not sure the avg roadie consistently cruises >20mph but it's nice to see the potential is there.

    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  79. #79
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    ^^ What kind of life do you expect to get out of those? I'm doing the math... figuring I'd be OK with arriving 3 minutes later if it meant I could get an extra 1500 miles out of my tires.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  80. #80
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    Tyres were second hand from Ebay so I didn't have much to loose. I wouldn't hesitate to do it to the new ones at all. Side cutters are really safe and it would be really difficult to damage the casing. The idea is to press quite firmly against the casing to make a relatively clean cut. It only takes 1.5h (both tyres) and a pair of blisters .

    Regarding pressure if the roads around my area were smoother I'd probably add 5 PSI or more but it probably wouldn't make much difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    ^^ What kind of life do you expect to get out of those? I'm doing the math... figuring I'd be OK with arriving 3 minutes later if it meant I could get an extra 1500 miles out of my tires.
    If I want to arrive to work quicker I can always pick a shorter (by 30min) route

    It's not about making a commute shorter. It's about making it faster and more comfortable - more fun especially as it's my only road bike on which I spend 90% of the riding time.
    Above all it's about experimenting, testing the extremes and proving certain concepts.

    I reckon the lifespan of such wide tyres will be probably better than a typical road clincher simply because the wear is spread over a larger surface.
    Also, thanks to the lower pressure the rear tyre won't end up square so soon.
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
    fast 26" road bike, shaven Racing Ralphs as road tyres, homemade "Paul thumbies"...

  81. #81
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    I didn`t think it would ever happen, but I`m feeling a bit disappointed in my 26 inch wheels. Diameter envy?

    Since I almost always ride solo, I don`t have much chance for comparison. Recently I`ve been out on a few organized rides, mixing it up with many other riders on a wide variety of bikes- all but mine 700c, and the tire range looks like everything from 23mm to roughly the same width as my 1.25s. Have noticed that I often have to pedal to keep up on a slight downhill when everybody else is coasting. That could be my crappy aerodynamics, but I mostly blame the wheels because some of those other bikes look even worse than mine from an aero standpoint. Somewhere, I`m being leached by inefficiency. Anyway, my next dropbar mtb project is officially on hold until I get some quality time with a road or cross bike under my butt.

    I`ve been watching Craigslist closely since even before I decided that, but there don`t seem to be any suitable bikes lately. I have no doubt they`ll show up by the dozens as soon as I`m not in the market, though! In the mean time, I`m hoarding up parts. I still need the big money parts (wheels and cranks) and a little bit of that piddly stuff that adds up. If I don`t find a frame by the time I get cranks and wheels, I`ll grit my teeth and buy brand new.
    Recalculating....

  82. #82
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    ^^ Can you cram 700c's and some 28's or so under the Schwinn? Some bikes of that era had plenty of clearance...
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  83. #83
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    IME, 700x28 tires are a slam dunk to fit in a 26" mountain frame of pretty much whatever vintage. They're not much bigger than a 26x2.1" tire and mud clearance takes it the rest of the way there.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  84. #84
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    I thought breifly about trying 700 x 28 in the frame that I already have waiting, maybe was too quick to dismiss the idea. My concerns were handling problems due to the "wrong" wheel size and brake fit. I bet Andrew is right that there isn`t that much difference in OD. The bike originally had 26 x 2.0 tires (still has them, actually). The difference between those and the 26 x 1.25 that I run on its twin is probably about the same as the difference between 2.0 and 700-28, just in the other direction. Worth a try as far as that goes.

    Brakes might still be a deal killer. I`m not going to take a torch to the fancy paint job to braze on new canti studs. I just measured the radial distance from dropout to fender hole, looks like I`d need 47 reach for the fork and 60 reach in the rear. I know sidepulls are available in those reaches, but not sure if I can just bolt them right into my existing fender holes. I don`t understand the business about "recessed" and Non-recessed" caliper mounts. Anybody know? I`m guessing that non-recessed are what I`d need (if they`ll work), but then would those calipers be incompatible if I later bought a modern sport geo road bike? Most spec for 57mm reach, so at least one caliper might be transferable. Maybe I could use a drop mount for 57s on the rear of my mtb frame also.

    As far as new frames go, I really have the hots for the Soma ES lately- takes 57 mm sidepulls, which I don`t have. Pake C`mute looks pretty nice too, and could save me save about two hundred between lower frame/fork prices and not having to buy brakes. Sidepull calipers are expensive!
    Recalculating....

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post


    If I want to arrive to work quicker I can always pick a shorter (by 30min) route

    It's not about making a commute shorter. It's about making it faster and more comfortable - more fun especially as it's my only road bike on which I spend 90% of the riding time.
    Above all it's about experimenting, testing the extremes and proving certain concepts.
    I wasn't suggesting that the goal was arriving quicker. I was just wondering how long those are going to last you. I'd happily be slower if it meant I could get an extra 1500 miles out of my tires.... just wondering how long those will last compared to something like a Big Apple or a Serfas Drifter (both of which I've used for similar terrain). Your creation definitely has an advantage in the weight department... but I'd be very curious to know how many miles you get out of them. Please do let us know.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  86. #86
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    Most of my commuting is done on a 26er. Cheap-o carbon fork, old aluminium frame. Front disc wheel, WTB Vulpines, 1x8 setup... w/o the rack, it weighs 21.7lb. If I had a wheelset from this decade, clipless pedals, lighter seat, and no barends, it would probably be under 20lb.

    I've had a 17lb single-speed... I'll take a 22lb 8-speed any day.
    - The only thing that keeps me on a bike is happiness.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I know sidepulls are available in those reaches, but not sure if I can just bolt them right into my existing fender holes. I don`t understand the business about "recessed" and Non-recessed" caliper mounts. Anybody know?
    Sheldon do: Installing and Adjusting Caliper Brakes (page down to the topic).

    BrianMc

  88. #88
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    Thanks, Brian. I guess the studs aren`t interchangeable, so you need to be sure you get what`s going to work out of the box. I have a set of 700c wheels on the way for N+1 (whatever it ends up being). If I can find some brakes at the bike junk yard that will work to stop the mtb with road wheels mounted, I might experiment with that. Two sets of center pulls on the Post Your Commuter thread will have me looking at those before sidepulls, but I guess either way would do the trick.
    Recalculating....

  89. #89
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Sub

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    ... 700x28 tires are a slam dunk to fit in a 26" mountain frame ...
    +1

    My 26" MTB frame ... 26" 2.1" tyre ...
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-20070902-yeti-arc-69er-htr-04-forum.jpg

    Same frame with a 700C 28mm Conti Gatorskin ...
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-20121019-yeti-arc-700c-43-forum.jpg

    I did not get to the stage of putting on drop-bars ... loved my hydros too much

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Have noticed that I often have to pedal to keep up on a slight downhill when everybody else is coasting. That could be my crappy aerodynamics, but I mostly blame the wheels because some of those other bikes look even worse than mine from an aero standpoint. Somewhere, I`m being leached by inefficiency
    Do you still have an MTB crankset on your MTB road bike? Most road cranks feature a 50-53t high gear vs a 42t mtb'er. It not only produces a higher top end but gets you going pretty fast on descents.

    You may want to plug in some numbers into Sheldon Brown's Bicycle Gear Calculator to, at least, see what kind of speed you're giving up vs a typical road spec. I use an FSA 28/38/48 on my road-franken (now with white saddle/tape--done!).

    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by chinaman View Post
    Same frame with a 700C 28mm Conti Gatorskin ...
    Jeez, you`ve got loads of space. I`m still looking for a road frame, but getting so curious about how my bike would handle with your tires that I might not be able to stop myself from trying it anyway!

    Just got to thinking that the AC length of a nonsupsension mtb fork is probably pretty close to a road fork. I`ll measure my length and rake, see how close I can come to that in a prettier, less bowlegged version. Might even be able to compensate for whatever trail difference the wheel swap creates. With 28-622 tires mounted, the fat unicrown front end is what looks odd, the rear actually looks pretty normal.

    My new wheelset arrived yesterday. Nice parts, but really crappy asembly, will retension before mounting them on anything. Still need tubes and tires.
    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    Do you still have an MTB crankset on your MTB road bike? Most road cranks feature a 50-53t high gear vs a 42t mtb'er. It not only produces a higher top end but gets you going pretty fast on descents.
    Touring gears (24-32-48 with 11-28), but I`m talking about sub 25MPH cruising, where I`m not even close to being out of gears. I currently have a high gear of 107 GI, and can spin up to about 40. Though more would be nice, I could be happy with even less. Yeah, I have Sheldon`t gear calculator as a quick link on my computer and play with it several times per week!
    Recalculating....

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Yeah, I have Sheldon`t gear calculator as a quick link on my computer and play with it several times per week!
    LOL

    Maybe faster tires? As Barteos mentioned, a supple (often high tpi) compound translates into a faster, smoother ride. My Conti SportContacts are very soft (and fast) but I also tried some Specialized Nimbus Armadillo townies. They certainly looked the part--slick, 26x1.5, 595g--but holy shit, they rode like ass! The stiff sidewalls and hard, puncture-resistant compound delivered a harsh, sluggish ride. This lack of compliance at any recommended psi just made for a slow, bumpy tire.

    I didn't catch what rubber you're using but that might not be another piece that's slowing you down. Food for thought.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  94. #94
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    I introduce the Giant Anyroad. Boom.

    Giant Anyroad Making Its North American Debut, this Fall

    So ugly it's awesome or just plain ugly?

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    I dig it, but of course there is some "flattery' re my set-up with 32s
    (put some Hutchinson 28c tubeless slicks on this would be nice too!)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-long-commuter-2.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-3.4-rear-29road.jpg  


  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    So ugly it's awesome or just plain ugly?
    Maybe some blue crankarms?
    Sheesh- even with seriously sloped top tube, I`d need a ladder to climb aboard if sizing by length. Must be for long legged people.

    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    I didn't catch what rubber you're using but that might not be another piece that's slowing you down. Food for thought.
    Usually 1.25 Paselas. Trying to get better reliability, I went a round with Sport Contacts and they did give me great reliability (zero flats is about as good as it gets), but I like the ride of the Paselas a lot better. I took off the Contis at about their half life and stashed them for occasions when I might want that skinny + bombproof combo. My paselas are doing better now that I`ve been more careful about watching the pressure, but they still like to puncture before they start looking obviously worn.

    I made an offer tonight on an 86 Miyata 710 frame that sounds like it`ll fit. Not exactly what I wanted, but close enough, and I love lugs. Now just waiting for morning in Texas to see if the offer flies.
    Recalculating....

  97. #97
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    Yep, I hear the Paselas are plenty quick. Hmmm ... maybe you just need to hammer just a little harder before the descent, i.e. upshift and out of the saddle.

    Miyata project sounds cool. Hope you score. A build thread would be nice.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  98. #98
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    Looks pretty cool. I like the geometry. wonder if it will fit 35s or 40s...

    <img src=https://brimages.bikeboardmedia.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Anyroad_1_black-600x380.jpg>

  99. #99
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    No Miyata
    It was (is) on a trade thread on BFnet, but he says he doesn`t want to mess with packing and shipping, will wait for a local deal. Fine, I`ll keep looking. Also passed up a purchase from local CL this weekend. The seller pissed me off and I left- bike wasn`t my style (2005 aluminum w/ cheap carbon fork, STI, integrated headset, etc), but the price would have been good enough to buy, play, turn over. Now looking at an early Trek 520 that I THINK will be too small, but for $150 for a complete bike with 531 tubes, it`s a steal. Will kick myself if I don`t at least go try it on for size.
    Recalculating....

  100. #100
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    I'm wondering if you'll like the 520. I thought you were looking for something a bit quicker? A 520 is no lightweight, has slack geo, longish trail and even a smaller size comes with long (flexy) chainstays. It's built for comfort and I don't think will feel much different than your road mtb.

    How about something like this to go with your new wheels? $100 steel Allez on CL.

    Specialized Allez Sport 53 cm


    Of course, if the 520's components are in good shape, you may as well grab it for parts ... at the very least. Food for thought.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  101. #101
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    The 520s are labeled as touring bikes, but according to old catalogue scans, the frame specs on the 80s models changed frequently. Always with slack angles, but CSs ranging from 425 to crazy-long, sometimes with stout tubing, a few years with the same tubing as the sport models. I can`t tell from the CL ad what year it is. First email reply to that ad bounced, tried again from home. Maybe not right for me, but it`s a bargain price for that model- can`t help myself from looking!
    Trek Touring 520

    Wouldn`t mind an old Allez a bit. The steel ones never show up on my CL, though. Lots of aluminum ones and a surprising number of those scary looking bonded carbon/aluminum jobbers. They must have really sold a lot of those.
    Recalculating....

  102. #102
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    That 520 appears to be a 92-95, black forest green with gold. The crank, stem and bolt on wheels seem to be replacement parts but those bikes were essentially the same.

    Yep, I hear ya' on all the early aluminum and cf bikes. I think the ride on those AL bikes was so unpleasant (skinny tires, stiff tubes, short HTs) that they saw little use and have been flooding the market with the help of CL.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

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    Good job!

    Another few weeks of cycling with "Shaven Ralphs" including some longer weekend rides and I'm 100% convinced that this kind of bike bike(s) with the right tyres can be a viable fast alternative to a "proper" road bike, not just for commuting but general road use, gravel etc...

    Even though the bike has a flexible frame (I like it) weighs around 26.5-27lb has only 1.5" saddle to bar drop, basic Time pedals with not-so-stiff Shimano MT42 shoes, the average speeds don't want to drop below 18-18.50mph... (on drops most of the time, usually with a bulky 10-15lb commuting backpack...) I'm not even in the top form...
    This is REALLY not about bragging about my (non-existing) quad power but about how capable such a freak bike can be and how overrated and impractical modern road bikes really are.

    Also while 2.1" (54mm) tyres may not be exactly the optimum size to ride on the road (aerodynamics) they must have seriously low rolling resistance that beats that of the best road clinchers and the whole experience only reinforces my strong long held convictions that tyres on most of bikes are too narrow and offer no benefits at typical riding speeds and on typical roads.

    Jan Heine from Bicycle Quarterly and many other guys from the 650B touring/randonneuring community have been saying the same thing for ages and they all know very well how fast 42x650B tyres e.g. Hetre can be.

    P.S. 1. The tyres are holding well. I've only had one rear puncture (shard) that sealed in a few seconds and costed me about 10PSI. I just kept riding...
    2. I'd really like to get hold of "proper" road bike for a week or two now to do some comparison tests... Same riding position, same weight... Could be interesting.


    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    These are couple of bikes that I've built from scratch as all-year/all-weather/all-sh*t UK roads training/commuting bikes.
    They make far more sense than most of "proper" road bikes IMO.
    The one on the right (used currently) is based on mid 90s Corratec frame.
    MTB frame needs to be one or two sizes smaller for the right reach (hoods/drops).

    They both ride brilliantly and float over everything and the level of comfort, grip and confidence is in a completely different league to road bikes.
    I have no idea what the angles are and I tend not to over-analyse it but handling is best with 2" tyres in this case Kojaks run at 20-25 PSI FR and 40-45 REAR, (175lb) tubeless on Flow rims.

    I don't really think that building a bike like that is big deal. There are plenty of retro frames/bikes on Ebay that would make great candidates...

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-4576031376.swf.jpgHow do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-4580145056.swf.jpg
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
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  104. #104
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    Averaging 18 miles an hour is under 30k. That's not fast. I ride faster than that on my heavy mtn bike with knobbies and a stuffed backpack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    Averaging 18 miles an hour is under 30k. That's not fast. I ride faster than that on my heavy mtn bike with knobbies and a stuffed backpack.
    Depends on how far you're riding, and if you're riding alone. 18mph is a great average speed if you're doing a solo century ride. Not so good if you're doing a fast group 30 miler.
    "Got everything you need?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    Averaging 18 miles an hour is under 30k. That's not fast. I ride faster than that on my heavy mtn bike with knobbies and a stuffed backpack.
    Hang on limba. I think you may have missed the point Barteos was making.

    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    This is REALLY not about bragging about my (non-existing) quad power but about how capable such a freak bike can be and how overrated and impractical modern road bikes really are.
    Keep in mind, the subject of this discussion is building a faster bike within the Commuting forum, i.e. cycling in your work clothes while hardly breaking a sweat. In that context, doing 18-18.5 mph is blazing fast.
    Joe
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  107. #107
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    Btw, thanks for the update, Barteos.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

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    Damn! I thought I was so awesome


    Seriously though, I ride in the New Forest area (UK) and the distance of my weekend route is 48.7m and my times around 2:40 (today's - 2.37). Hard work but not exactly flat-out effort.
    I certainly won't break any speed records by riding at 18.5mph but I don't think it's slow either, especially considering the road surfaces.
    What is really relevant though is that my average speeds on Salsa Caseroll with GP4000s were lower, around 3 years ago.
    Part of the speed difference (about 10 minutes!) could be explained by spending more time on drops and losing 3 stones recently, though... More testing on a "normal" road bike will be required.

    P.S. My new goofy grips...
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3621.jpgHow do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3618.jpg
    Last edited by Barteos; 05-27-2013 at 04:38 PM.
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  109. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    Averaging 18 miles an hour is under 30k. That's not fast. I ride faster than that on my heavy mtn bike with knobbies and a stuffed backpack.
    you win bike commuting. come claim your prize.



    I average a good bit less than that when bike commuting. average speed on my last commute was more like 11mph. I was still moving pretty quick. my max was 27.8mph. avg uphill speed was 13.7mph. avg downhill was 15.7mph. The hills weren't very much to speak of. Usually ride a mile and have to slow down for a light which may or may not change in time. kept my average down. Once I got downtown, the intervals between lights was much less.

    if you're averaging 18 on a commute in the city, you're smoking. out in the country, maybe not so much.

  110. #110
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    I'm not bragging, I just don't think 30k is fast. I guess everyone has their own definition of what fast is. I average 30k whether I'm riding to work (I still wear lycra and change at work) or doing a century alone. That's my average speed all the time, 30k.

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    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    I'm not bragging, I just don't think 30k is fast. I guess everyone has their own definition of what fast is. I average 30k whether I'm riding to work (I still wear lycra and change at work) or doing a century alone. That's my average speed all the time, 30k.
    I think you may be slightly confused.

    What you personally consider as fast or slow has no relevance to the discussion.
    It's about comparing speeds of two bikes ridden by the same person in the same conditions: a road bike and a freak non-road bike built to be ridden on the road.

    E.g. If a guy could push 15mph on his decent road bike and 14.8mph on my freak non-bike that would make my bike fast (for a non-road bike) even though the nominal speed would be quite low.
    Last edited by Barteos; 06-08-2013 at 04:34 AM.
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by limba View Post
    I'm not bragging, I just don't think 30k is fast. I guess everyone has their own definition of what fast is. I average 30k whether I'm riding to work (I still wear lycra and change at work) or doing a century alone. That's my average speed all the time, 30k.
    You are bragging. This is the commuting forum and we don't comprete for strava segments here. Pray tell, what sort of bike are you doing your riding on? Most of us are riding some variation of fatter tires, more relaxed geometry, racks, fenders, and lights. All of which serve to improve safety but also limit speed due to weight and/or aerodynamic properties. Some folks are rocking the entire setup and powering stuff with a dynamo hub and the drag it includes.

    For that matter, I am doing my miles singlespeed, even. I hit a comfortable cadence and that is how fast I go.

    What is fast on a commuter bike is not the same as what's fast on a mtb or a lightweight road bike.

  113. #113
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    I'm not bragging. I've never considered 30k fast on any sort of bike. I guess some people think it is.

    and for the record I commute to work 6 days a week, even in my crappy Canadian winters on a 1997 Blizzard mtn.bike. It's a 8 speed, v-brake, knobby tire, 26 plus pound bike. The steel frame is badly rusting, it sometimes has fenders on it, I always have lights on it and my helmet and I'm always wearing a backpack stuffed with junk.

    and I don't have or want a Garmin because I stopped caring about speed/racing 10 years ago.

  114. #114
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    1. I`d be delighted with an 18MPH average speed for any distance of stop and go or anything over an hour on the open road.

    2. Jan Heine is a fast rider, and is going to be fast whether he`s on tubuar race tires or on the mega bucks 650Bs that he happens to be one of the few distributors for. Think about that combo for a bit.

    3. Interresting shifter mount, Barteos.
    Recalculating....

  115. #115
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    Cat 6!

    I typically average about 18 on my mainly road route with some dirt route, including some twisty bike path stuff.. it's 9 miles. This is on my drop-bar surly ogre with 2.0" 29er tires. When I ride the same route on my road bike, I make up on the road what I lose on the dirt, for about the same average (sometimes a little quicker). the difference is that I don't feel every pebble in the road on the Ogre, and I don't have to think. It's just point and shoot. And for all-day comfort, I'll happily carry around the extra weight and tire size.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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    SB'8 work pretty well for light trail/pavement. They are light , wear relatively fast with a definite loud road buzz. I have some Marathon Supreme's 26x2 coming, hoping for enhanced flat protection
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-image.jpg  

    Last edited by rjedoaks; 05-28-2013 at 01:59 PM.

  117. #117
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    I have SB8's on the mountian bike. I like the road buzz

    They do roll pretty fast. For a capable knobby, they are a great compromise in my opinion. They do great until it gets wet and sticky. They do not shed the sticky stuff very well. In all other areas they have surprised the heck out of me.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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  118. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Jan Heine is a fast rider, and is going to be fast whether he`s on tubuar race tires or on the mega bucks 650Bs that he happens to be one of the few distributors for. Think about that combo for a bit.
    I get your point but it's worth noting that in his tests and articles (especially the ones about lower rolling resistance of wider tyres) the fastest tyres (used as benchmarks) are always racing skinnies e.g. Vittoria Corsa Evo CX in the latest issue of BQ.

    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Interresting shifter mount, Barteos.
    Thanks. I've originally made them as an alternative to the STI setup after one of my 105 STI levers failed (again). They really work brilliantly.
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_1619-002.jpg
    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3618.jpg
    The new position on the drops is just an experiment. After a few rides I already think that they are nicer to use than std bar end shifters. Cable angles/routing is a bit of a mess, though.
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
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  119. #119
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    Want a bomb proof road bike, buy an old Schwinn.
    I had a Varsity that I averaged +25mph on, and nothing seemed to phase it.

    No one in their right mind would consider it a "road bike" by todays standards.

    Your other option is a 29 with 700 tires on it.

  120. #120
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    Here's my effort

    I call it Special Ed.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_9091.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_9092.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_9094.jpg  

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_9093.jpg  


  121. #121
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    The Cross Check

    Well, here's my entry. But to be honest, it's a road bike that actually IS a road bike. It just also happens to be a cylocross bike, a commuter, a touring/bikepacking bike, AND a rigid mountain bike that can take up to 1.9" wide tires.

    Right now I've got it outfitted with some 35c Conti cross tires that are decent on the road for commuting but also have held up well on the trails. I've got a set of 25c slicks hanging up in the garage for longer road rides.

    My next project is to build up some stronger wheels and some wider knobbies for those purely trail or gravel road days. I'm thinking XT hubs and Mavic Open Pro rims. Any suggestions for something not overly heavy that will take some abuse?

    "Got everything you need?"

  122. #122
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    Nice do all bikes!
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    My next project is to build up some stronger wheels and some wider knobbies for those purely trail or gravel road days. I'm thinking XT hubs and Mavic Open Pro rims. Any suggestions for something not overly heavy that will take some abuse?

    Go for Velocity Dyads instead of the Open Pros...stronger and wider, so they can support a wider tire. I have a set of those laced to XTR m950 hubs on my CrossCheck and I've been really happy with them.

  124. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by HOOKEM View Post
    I call it Special Ed.
    excuse me?


    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-picture1.jpg
    You have no excuse for driving to work
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    (no excuse for that either)

  125. #125
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    Nice!

  126. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    Well, here's my entry. But to be honest, it's a road bike that actually IS a road bike.
    Looks nice!
    I remember hearing or reading somewhere that the CC was the first Surly frame. If that`s true, anybody know when they first came on the market? And was Surly a QBP project from the start, or did it beging as an independent company and get sucked up like Salsa did?

    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    excuse me?
    I remembered, and that was my thought too!
    But I hope I don`t hurt your Ed`s feelings by saying that Hookem`s Ed is prettier
    No offense, but with an aluminum frame, weird brakes and no locknut on the headset, it`s tough to compete against a sensible bike. Especially one sporting most of a Miami Vice paint job!
    Recalculating....

  127. #127
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    Thanks Rodar y Rodar. Yes, most of the Miami Vice Paint Job is now covered in protective, utilitarian friction tape. No hard feelings, Commuterboy?

  128. #128
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    It's cool

    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  129. #129
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    Carbon is pretty nice and really fast.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing View Post
    I wonder if there are any suitable CF 26" hardtail frames that would work well. Something like the Sette Serum Carbon with a decent 80mm fork, wheelset and disc brakes? I currently ride a 17" frame, and the 29ers I've tried all feel a bit clunky. Maybe that's a good thing at speed, but losing a couple pounds for the climbs would also be nice.

    Sette Serum Elite Carbon Hardtail Frame at Price Point
    I know that at least a couple of the Chinese carbon vendors have 26ers and rigid carbon forks to go with them. I personally like a 29er with 48/38/26 chainrings this thing really goes:

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-photo.jpg

  130. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I didn`t think it would ever happen, but I`m feeling a bit disappointed in my 26 inch wheels. Diameter envy?
    I hear ya'. I often wonder how much faster I could go on a real road bike ... so I picked up a Giant OCR3 off CL for $200. Pertinent specs: 21 lbs, alum frame, carbon fork, 24-spd and 700x28 tires at 90 psi.

    I've only taken the Giant on one 20-miler but it's the same paved route I take with my frankenbike on 1.5" slicks. Initial impressions:

    Acceleration: Yep, it gets going quicker

    Cruising Speed: No difference (riding >20 mph still requires effort )

    Descending Speed: No difference

    Comfort: Surprisingly nice ride! These modern alum bikes w/ carbon forks and wide 28s deliver a very nice ride. While my franken provides cushioning through the tires, the Giant's frame/fork take the sting out of high-psi tires on pavement. For packed trails, the ability to go lower on wide rubber would give the 26/29 compounds the edge.

    Handling: The lower BB and shorter chainstays allow the Giant to corner faster than the franken. Its geo is simply designed for fast sweepers.

    Climbing out of the saddle: Slight edge to the Giant ... more torsional stiffness definitely feels faster

    Climbing while seated: No difference

    Ergonomics: I bought a bike with the same ETT and head tube length as my franken (adjusting for BB drop diff), so my riding position and aerodynamics were unchanged.

    Geometry: As mentioned, the shorter chainstays and lower BB definitely lend stability to high-speed maneuvers. The shorter wheelbase was a non-issue, though, most of my rides are for exercise/fun and without loads. The steeper HT angle provides slightly lighter steering ... but only just.
    The steeper ST angle, however, lowered the bottom of my pedal stroke and made me feel as if I were standing more so than sitting, like being on a stairmaster vs a stationary bike. While I didn't ride long enough to realize any fatigue variances, I would imagine that saddle comfort might be improved since I was floating off the saddle during hard climbing efforts.

    Again, that's just an initial impression. Giant's OCR bikes have claimed numerous Editor's choice awards and it really did not disappoint but I was definitely surprised that speed on the flats and descents were not appreciably different than my franken. Apparently, regardless of diameter, fast-rolling tires is really the critical piece when trying to extract speed. YMMV

    Questions?
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

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    Interesting.

    I really wonder if the bike makes any significant difference at all at steady efforts and speeds up to 18-20mph.
    It looks like once you put some half decent tyres on and get the body position right (aero) everything else has little relevance at least when talking about no-competitive cycling.

    I've ordered a pair of Conti Grand Prix 26x1.20 tyres and I'll be testing them against my "Shaven Ralphs".
    I'm really curious what effect the aerodynamics of 28mm and 54mm tyres will have at high speeds...

    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    I hear ya'. I often wonder how much faster I could go on a real road bike ... so I picked up a Giant OCR3 off CL for $200. Pertinent specs: 21 lbs, alum frame, carbon fork, 24-spd and 700x28 tires at 90 psi.

    I've only taken the Giant on one 20-miler but it's the same paved route I take with my frankenbike on 1.5" slicks. Initial impressions:

    Acceleration: Yep, it gets going quicker

    Cruising Speed: No difference (riding >20 mph still requires effort )

    Descending Speed: No difference

    Comfort: Surprisingly nice ride! These modern alum bikes w/ carbon forks and wide 28s deliver a very nice ride. While my franken provides cushioning through the tires, the Giant's frame/fork take the sting out of high-psi tires on pavement. For packed trails, the ability to go lower on wide rubber would give the 26/29 compounds the edge.

    Handling: The lower BB and shorter chainstays allow the Giant to corner faster than the franken. Its geo is simply designed for fast sweepers.

    Climbing out of the saddle: Slight edge to the Giant ... more torsional stiffness definitely feels faster

    Climbing while seated: No difference

    Ergonomics: I bought a bike with the same ETT and head tube length as my franken (adjusting for BB drop diff), so my riding position and aerodynamics were unchanged.

    Geometry: As mentioned, the shorter chainstays and lower BB definitely lend stability to high-speed maneuvers. The shorter wheelbase was a non-issue, though, most of my rides are for exercise/fun and without loads. The steeper HT angle provides slightly lighter steering ... but only just.
    The steeper ST angle, however, lowered the bottom of my pedal stroke and made me feel as if I were standing more so than sitting, like being on a stairmaster vs a stationary bike. While I didn't ride long enough to realize any fatigue variances, I would imagine that saddle comfort might be improved since I was floating off the saddle during hard climbing efforts.

    Again, that's just an initial impression. Giant's OCR bikes have claimed numerous Editor's choice awards and it really did not disappoint but I was definitely surprised that speed on the flats and descents were not appreciably different than my franken. Apparently, regardless of diameter, fast-rolling tires is really the critical piece when trying to extract speed. YMMV

    Questions?
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
    fast 26" road bike, shaven Racing Ralphs as road tyres, homemade "Paul thumbies"...

  132. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    I was definitely surprised that speed on the flats and descents were not appreciably different than my franken.
    Rider position vs. the wind is huge here. Handlebar/stem drop and riding in the drops vs. the bar tops is worth at least a few kph.
    The above statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration

  133. #133
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    Sigh...
    Joe, you`re deflating me again. Every time I convince myself that my motor is fine and all I need is to drop some Dollars, some inconsiderate soul comes along and shatters my idea. No matter, though- give me a week and I`ll have myself convinced again

    BTW, the 520 I was looking at was a dog. The frame design itself was incredibly ugly, paint was trashed, somebody on the past had swapped on a beaten and battered set of older components including wobbly 27 inch wheels and it looks like the brakes were still set up for 700c! If I had pulled hard enough on the levers, the pads would have dived under the rim and stopped very well as soon as they grabbed a few spokes!
    Recalculating....

  134. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barteos View Post
    I really wonder if the bike makes any significant difference at all at steady efforts and speeds up to 18-20mph.
    It looks like once you put some half decent tyres on and get the body position right (aero) everything else has little relevance at least when talking about no-competitive cycling
    I tend to agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
    Rider position vs. the wind is huge here. Handlebar/stem drop and riding in the drops vs. the bar tops is worth at least a few kph.
    Yep

    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Sigh...
    Joe, you`re deflating me again. Every time I convince myself that my motor is fine and all I need is to drop some Dollars, some inconsiderate soul comes along and shatters my idea. No matter, though- give me a week and I`ll have myself convinced again
    LOL

    I was definitely hoping for a different outcome but it looks my motor will need work if I'm going to keep pace with the fast guys out there. Also, Rodar, it sounds like you dodged a bullet with that 520--yuck--but I don't think you'll regret picking up a proper road bike. While they may not produce instant speed gains, the geo and frame design seem to encourage hard efforts. Very entertaining.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  135. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeinchi View Post
    While they may not produce instant speed gains, the geo and frame design seem to encourage hard efforts.
    The power of a placebo shouldn`t be understated.

    About a year ago, I did a comparrison of my commute times with different tries on the same bike. I tracked for three pairs of weeks, one week with Paselas alternating with one week with bomb-proof tires (1.75 Maxxis Overdrives at that time), and came to two conclusions: that my times WERE better with the nimble, smooth Paselas, and that I arrived shorter of breath when I rode the nice tires than when I rode those stiff and heavy bastids. No Powertap involved, but I have no doubt I was actually putting out more power when I got a better reward for doing it.

    Back to my ego massaging...
    It takes a lot more percieved effort to climb with an extra 5 to 10 pounds on my bike compared to riding completely unloaded. How much placebo is involved there and how much real world speed/time difference for equal actual energy input is impossible to detrimine without a meter that I`m not going to buy. Since my bike weighs in the upper 20s unloaded (varries according to tires, etc), I`m going on the hope that a bike weighing in the low 20s should take a lot LESS effort to pull up the grades, with my choice of either faster climb times or finishing each climb in the same time but with more "juice" left than on my tank. I also keep thinking back to the recent episodes I mentioned a page back on this thread, where I tagged along with several other riders and noticed that they were coasting on slight downhills where I had to pedal to keep up. Lots of variables involved, but something in there was amiss.

    For now, I choose to ignore all the tests demonstrating that all that ^^ is total BS.
    Recalculating....

  136. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    For now, I choose to ignore all the tests demonstrating that all that ^^ is total BS.


    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    The power of a placebo shouldn`t be understated.
    Agree

    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I also keep thinking back to the recent episodes I mentioned a page back on this thread, where I tagged along with several other riders and noticed that they were coasting on slight downhills where I had to pedal to keep up. Lots of variables involved, but something in there was amiss
    What tire pressures were you running? IME, 60-70 psi would be optimal for a 1.25" tire like the Paselas. Less than 60 will feel a bit squirmy but over 70 could make for a bumpy ride and slow you down, as well.

    Aside from rolling resistance and aero (rider position and apparel), the other negative force might be friction. If it's been a while, you may want to check your hubs and ensure the bearing are rolling smoothly. Also, too much pressure from the cones or even quick release skewers could be holding you up.

    While hard to service, you should see if your freehub is "sticky" by spinning the crank in reverse. Finally, (and no offense intended) make sure your brakes aren't rubbing while on your bike. If you have a trainer, mount up and see if any frame or fork flex puts the pad in contact with your rim. An asymmetrical design, might sit differently while loaded.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  137. #137
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    No offense taken, Joe. I appreciate the comments- some might pan out and would be simpler than arranging for Barteos to tow me.

    I used to have a lot of pinch flat problems, which have mostly gone away since I started pumping up to 5.5 bars (about 80 PSI according to Google- can`t read the PSI scale on my gauge). Before that I really didn`t pay much attention to pressure, so really ought to play around with that and can maybe get it lower without going back to flatting. I realize that overly hard tires can make you go slower on rough surfaces, but do you think they actually have more resistance when that issue doesn`t come up?

    Hubs is a factor I should have thought of. I use a dyno hub and most (not all) of the other people on those rides used battery lights. We were usually pretty spread out by nightfall, so that was solo riding, and the times when I had company were mostly during daylight with my lights turned off. Still some drag from the magnets and coils though, and the bearings are tough to adjust, so I might have them too tight. Along the same lines, I always service my hubs myself, and have never had an expert over my shoulder to advise me. It could be that I have a heavy hand with them. Or too loose, for that matter. Next time I get down near the bike Co-op I`ll drop in and see if I can get a couple of the guys there to check my work and give me some feedback. Overly tight skewers is very unlikely for me. I keep them so loose that Shimano`s legal defense team would cringe if they ever removed one of my wheels. And I have no lawyers lips either

    Pretty sure the freewheel part of my hub is fine- at least it acts the same as any other freehub I`ve messed with. My brakes don`t rub when I`m off the bike- never thought to check and see if that changes when I get on. Ya never know, I guess.
    Recalculating....

  138. #138
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    You might need to break down and wear some lycra on those long rides too.

    I'm a believer in the hub factor. Do the wheels spin on and on in the stand?

  139. #139
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    I did get myself some lycra! Bought a pair of genuine slick and smooth bike shorts last year. When they arrived I put them on and waddled to my bike, rode ten minutes, turned around and rode home to change into my geezer shorts (with skivvies), THEN went out for a nice ride . When Stayfree puts out a Kathy Rigby version, maybe I`ll try a pair of those!

    You mean for the dyno hub? It`s weird- when you turn one with your fingers you`d think you were trying to unscrew a lock nut or something, but it does actually spin quite a while in a truing stand. Not quite as long as a regular hub, but still surprisingly long. My rear wheels spin just dandy in a stand to my eye, but I still think I`ll have somebody double check my bearing adjustment.

    Here`s an interresting video comparison between two dyno hubs (though neither is my model) spinning with lights off.
    Light off test for SP SV-8-F and German hub (the best 2 6V3W for 20", OLD74mm dynamo hubs). - YouTube
    Recalculating....

  140. #140
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    Joe, I'm surprised you didn't see a change in your cruising speed. But, I don't know how fast you are on your other bike or what it is. I feel like my road bikes give me a speed in the high teens when I'm riding on the flats before I have to start working for it. I don't have a ton of other comparison because the two biggest reasons I own a road bike are that I'm a lot more comfortable on it when I don't need the low-speed handling of my mountain bike and that I don't want to screw around with changing tires (or wear out lots of MTB tires really fast) when I switch between riding on the road and on dirt.

    I also wonder what you were expecting, though - over 20 mph is a pretty fast speed, regardless of bike. One of the bits of lore that roadies pass around is that if someone is getting ready to race, being able to average 20 for an hour shows that he's ready. Since this is the Internet, we can all be as fast as we want, of course. But I don't mind saying that for me to actually sustain a speed above 20 is quite difficult.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  141. #141
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    But I don't mind saying that for me to actually sustain a speed above 20 is quite difficult.
    I'd say I'm going at a similar pace--high teens on either bike. The only folks who pass me appear to be racers (or that's what I'd like to believe). I guess I was looking for an easy jump to 20mph cruising speeds. I normally wear a heart rate monitor, which gives me a good idea of speed and effort, and saw no difference.

    And just to muddy the waters a bit more and underscore Rodar's placebo effect, I converted the franken back to flatbar and managed a new personal best on my downhill test. It's a short down and up over a ravine and I topped out at 34 mph thereby crushing my previous best--on either bike--by 2 mph.

    Those flat bars are perfect for out of the saddle mashing and gave me the confidence to go all out as I dove for the bottom. They're also chopped down to 20" and equipped with Ergon grips and bar ends, so it's a pretty good setup for all day cruising, dodging cars and aggressive climbs. The only thing it's not good for are windy days ... but I guess that's what the road bike is for.

    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  142. #142
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    ... turned around and rode home to change into my geezer shorts (with skivvies), THEN went out for a nice ride . When Stayfree puts out a Kathy Rigby version, maybe I`ll try a pair of those!
    No need to share pics when it does happen, okay?

    Interesting video, too. Any luck on finding your own roadie test bed?
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  143. #143
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    Yeah, I bought a lean mean 30 year old Centurion this week. Since it`s complete (will need a longer stem and some wimp friendly chainrings), I`ll go ahead and hang the parts I`ve been stashing away and the 700c wheelset I just finished on a rigid mtb that I`ve ALSO been hoarding for that purpose.
    That ought to be enough of an information overload to keep me confused for a while, but it`s all going to have to wait til I get back from vacation in August.

    You like videos, eh?
    1981 - Commercial - Stayfree Maxi-Pads - Comfort you can count on. - Cathy Rigby on Balance Beam - YouTube
    Wow, 1981. Been that long?
    Recalculating....

  144. #144
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    I'd like to chime in here a little bit. I have a 2012 Carve and have the Specialized Ground Cntrls 2.1, and ride them about 50-60psi. I average around 15mph on my commute. I have my fork locked out and stock gears (3X10, 42,32,24; 11-36). I can get up to 25mph or so on downhill street runs and ave low 20's on mild up and downs. However, I am pushing very hard to keep it there (42/13) and (42/15) puts me into high teens at my cadence. So hearing about how hard it is to ave 20mph or greater makes me feel better. Nevertheless, I am on a 28lb Mtn bike and not some sleek road bike with a 53 tooth large ring and a 11-28 rear cog. My tires have lasted over 1500 miles with a rotation at 800, and still going.

    Mark
    2012 XXL Carve Expert

  145. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by millertm View Post
    So hearing about how hard it is to ave 20mph or greater makes me feel better.
    Anything we can do to brighten up your day

    For comparison:
    The best I`ve ever managed on my 9.25 mile unofficial time trial (fairly flat, one stop sign that I blow and one that I have to slow or stop for) was 19.0 MPH.
    http://www.mapmyride.com/us/lemmon-v...oute-171338612

    The best I`ve managed on my local road loop (59 mi/2300ft) was 16.9 MPH.
    http://www.mapmyride.com/us/lemmon-v...oute-171344776

    And to REALLY make your day, the last of the events I was talking about in my last few posts saw about 11 MPH av , although that statistic included an embarrasing amount of off bike time. I can`t find the rolling average for it, somewhere around 13. I need to work on my off-bike as much as my on-bike.

    My bike is about the same weight as yours, 3X8 gearing in between mtb and road, and skinnier, more road friendly tires.
    Recalculating....

  146. #146
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    Thanks, I feel ya. My ride home 7.4miles with a cat 4 climb is about 11 mph ave as well.

    Mountain Bike Ride Profile | 7miles near Rio Rancho | Times and Records | Strava

    Mountain Bike Ride Profile | Evening Ride near Rio Rancho | Times and Records | Strava

    Here are some highlights. Meh, I need a road bike.

    Mark
    2012 XXL Carve Expert

  147. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    I did get myself some lycra! Bought a pair of genuine slick and smooth bike shorts last year. When they arrived I put them on and waddled to my bike, rode ten minutes, turned around and rode home to change into my geezer shorts (with skivvies), THEN went out for a nice ride . When Stayfree puts out a Kathy Rigby version, maybe I`ll try a pair of those!
    Did you pass me yesterday with jean shorts, golf shirt, and white knee high support hose?

  148. #148
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    ^^Not me, Xplorer. Support hose maybe, but jeans are too much for even my butt!
    Quote Originally Posted by millertm View Post
    Meh, I need a road bike.
    Well, of course! Everybody needs another bike
    Recalculating....

  149. #149
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    n+1 baby, n+1
    The ridiculousness of cycling clothes increase exponentially in relation to the distance from your bicycle.

  150. #150
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    Nice vid.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  151. #151
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    You also slap a big 'ol 52 tooth chainring on the outside! I did this last week-end, and now I can get back and forth to work almost as fast as I can on my Litespeed (which has also been known to see a commute or two).

  152. #152
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    I would say that my Handsome Devil fits the bill perfectly. It has parallel 73 degree head/seat tube angles, 70mm of BB drop, 45mm of fork rake and a top-tube in between "drop" and "flat" bar length so you can easily run either. Pretty much relaxed road bike geometry but it has longer chainstays (specs list 43.6 but mine are at 44.5 due to front facing dropouts) and can accommodate tires up to the low-mid 40mm range.

    I've got it set up with a 48/36/26 triple and V-brakes. I've got 40mm Schalbe Duremes on it in this photo but it usually sports Vittoria Randonneur Hypers, which are light, fast and comfortable.

    It's got a very lively ride yet it's very stable. It has a lot of braze-ons for commuter type accessories and is built Surly sturdy so it can carry some baggage. The only thing it really lacks as far as commuting is the ability to run disc brakes.

    I would love to do a side-by-side comparison with a similarly equipped Cross Check. The Devil has a livelier front-end and lower bottom bracket but the Cross Check has shorter chainstays. It would be interesting to see how different or similar the two bikes ride.


    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_1308.jpg

  153. #153
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    That set up crys for a on-one Mungo bar. i have one on my SS CX bike and its the bees knees

    <img src=https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSxKc8k0fTUxFF1qr-pBaDh4rh2gq4YJbsW7DZdyfWCMfLdI6l1>

  154. #154
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    Nice bike!

    It's interesting how current and versatile the geometry specs are. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a new bike which could offer much improvement in terms of do all capabilities.

    Relative to the Surly CC, I think you'd find it handles similarly. It comes with a 72 HTA and 44mm rake which is pretty close to yours. And the BB drop and CS lengths (which work hand in hand) may affect lateral stiffness but with different metals, hard to say.

    Aside from tire clearance, the biggest difference appears to be the head tube length. The CC uses a relatively short HT (52 = 91, 54 =102, 56 = 121) whereas your bikes appears to have a taller HT. While a short HT would facilitate a low, areo position, I think a taller tube would be more desirable in an all arounder.

    Again, hard to imagine you could get much more bike than what you already have.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  155. #155
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    I'm pretty happy with the Devil. I've been riding bikes with the same geometry since 1995 (3 Trek Multitracks....basically 700c mountain bikes) and I find that my curiosity still isn't satisfied. I'd love to try a modern MTB like the Surly Ogre as well as a full-blown touring bike. Rivendell bikes interest me because the primary praise I hear about them is their superb ride. I would like to experience that.

    According to the guys at Handsome Cycles, the Devil is a 700c version of the Bridgestone X0-1 with slight modifications. The first year it was actually marketed with moustache handlebars and it did look slick! Now they are promoting it more as a city bike and show it with city handlebars.

    Sheldon Brown described the XO series of Bridgestones as fast, sporty urban street machines and that always appealed to me and that's a pretty good descriptor of the Devil.

  156. #156
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    Smile New tires!

    So after a couple thousand miles, I finally retired the Conti Sport Contacts. I noticed a lateral cut on the rear and didn't want to press my luck. Plus, who doesn't like new tires?

    I use my old Marin to run around town and recovery rides. I love its versatility and ability to ride over virtually anything I come across. It's just fun to ride EXCEPT on bike paths. The Conti slicks were just a bit too harsh and slippery for off-road sprints.

    Inspired by Barteos's "Shaven Fred" experiment (page 3), I decided to look for a fast, high volume tire with low profile knobs and a supple casing. Performance Bicycle is just down the road so I headed over since I prefer to handle and compare tires side-by-side. In the end, I opted for the Forte Dartmoor:
    Fort Dartmoor 26x2.0 Mountain Tire -- Wire Bead - Mountain Bike Tires

    After 40 miles in the last two days, I feel pretty pleased with my choice. Wih pressures at 28f/35r (160 lbs), they're nearly as fast as the Conti's; they take a little more effort to spin up. Otherwise, they coast like a road tire, make virtually no noise and give me that extra cushion and traction I need when I want to push it over hard pack. I can't speak to durability and puncture resistance (though, I did not get a flat) but with the new rubber, I think I now have a very capable and fun all arounder.

    And they still look like real mtb tires! (if you're into that sort of thing )





    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  157. #157
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    Not to Re-rail my thread or anything.

    But how I will do this. is I will build a Flat bar Surly Straggler (Cannibalizing my Soma severely) and roll 38mm tires on a 29er wheelset.

  158. #158
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    Cool.

    Here is another lesser known tyre worth considering:
    Geax AKA Pluma 26x1.80 (46mm on Stans Flow) 295g! 220TPI
    products Geax.com

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3652-001.jpgHow do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3653.jpgHow do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-img_3654.jpg
    www.bartthebikeman.wordpress.com
    fast 26" road bike, shaven Racing Ralphs as road tyres, homemade "Paul thumbies"...

  159. #159
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    Nice tires!

    Thanks, Bart. Your formula was definitely on the mark.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  160. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    Not to Re-rail my thread or anything.
    Feel free.

    Is there some reason you need to run 38's? I just got off 38s (26 x1.5) and could not run them under 50 psi without excessive sidewall flex (160 lbs). That's not an issue on pavement but it's not a whole of fun when you go off road.

    Food for thought.
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  161. #161
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    The Straggler, like the cross check has GOBS of tire clearance, and clinchers are not hard to swap tires on. with 29er wheels I'll be running the 38's in the ballpark of 85-100 psi, then I can swap on some 29er rubber and run dirt PSIs when I take it too a trail.

    Though in time The Soma will see a suspension fork, BIG knobbies and better brakes, and will become the "Trail" bike. I know its not the intended purpose, but I like a stiff bike and the riding here is pretty tame.

    I'm really stoked for the new frame. With so many of the measurements being Identical to the Groove, the ones that aren't are going to give me a few surprises!

  162. #162
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    just just built up a Pake C'Mute. the frame was cheap, it's about 5 pounds, has braze-ons for a rear rack, two water bottle cages, and fenders. room for big tires with canti brakes, a tall head tube, can be set up geared or single speed. it's kind of like a Cross Check but cheaper and with a taller head tube. I love it.

    I set it up with 32mm slicks, a 11-32 cassette with an older XT derailleur, compact road rings, old bar end friction shifters, Cane Creek levers, a comfy WTB saddle, and a rear rack. I had a some of these parts on an On-One Pompino (single speed 39/17) and my first ride on to work with a rack full of lunch and stuff was 26 minutes for 7.5 miles. on my old SS setup, that too me closer to 40 minutes every time. placebo has an affect here in that I probably rode more aggressively on the new bike, but that's a lot faster.

  163. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    because of my weight (260+) i tend to ride a bit higher in the pressures. I tend to inflate to MAX recommended PSI then back off till I find a sweet zone. for the one road bike I was on for more than an afternoon (The specialized... I want to say Roubaix? no idea.) I was at around 105 in the rear and 100 in the front. I don't remember his exact tire size. but I'd put it at around 28. not the stock rubbers but still specialized.

    with my weight pinch flats and torn casings tend to happen if I run at the pressures a 170 pound person does.

    With the roubaix, on the streets I commute (suburban and surface) that jackhammer was at the slightest bump. I always felt at the edge of control. I did check my fit on the bike, and while not ideal it was more than good enough to get an idea of it. my turning radius was enormous and traction was abysmal.

    so lets start with what I'd like. Lighter weight, tons of acceleration, turns on a dime. lets me haulass when I want to but rides smooth enough my wrists and posterior don't kill me 20 miles in.
    You just described a Tarmac.

  164. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    just just built up a Pake C'Mute. the frame was cheap, it's about 5 pounds, has braze-ons for a rear rack, two water bottle cages, and fenders. room for big tires with canti brakes, a tall head tube, can be set up geared or single speed. it's kind of like a Cross Check but cheaper and with a taller head tube. I love it.

    I set it up with 32mm slicks, a 11-32 cassette with an older XT derailleur, compact road rings, old bar end friction shifters, Cane Creek levers, a comfy WTB saddle, and a rear rack. I had a some of these parts on an On-One Pompino (single speed 39/17) and my first ride on to work with a rack full of lunch and stuff was 26 minutes for 7.5 miles. on my old SS setup, that too me closer to 40 minutes every time. placebo has an affect here in that I probably rode more aggressively on the new bike, but that's a lot faster.
    Please tell me there are pics somewhere?

    *Stalks user profile*
    *Goes to recent posts*

    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    Old man's road bike. I just couldn't hack it anymore with only one gear on my Pompino, so I built up a Pake C'Mute. inexpensive frame is well built and weighs about 5 pounds. it's a tank with all the extra crap on it now, but it's comfy and much easier to get to work on with gears than my old SS.

    52cm Pake C'Mute, generic carbon hybrid fork, ancient Suntour barcons, Tiagra compact crank, mtn rear mech and cassette, etc



    I used the Surly Monkey Nutz from my Karate Monkey to center the rear wheel. these bits are for front derailleur clearance on a KM but my KM is never going to see a FD.


    f3ndorz! need something to keep the bat poop under the bridges off me.


    nothing scary about nighttime with a Niterider.


    I don't mess around with lights. one on each hub, two on my helmet, major firepower on the bars, and a second blinky on my trunk bag.


    stealth Thomson post to discourage thieves.
    Yessssss.

  165. #165
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    I like it, Mack
    Saw it just a few hours ago in the coppied post above, but might as well post my thubmsup here. The C`Mute was near the top of my shopping list too, but I was hoping to find an older lugged frame due to asthetic preferences. Found that, STILL have the rigid mtb frame that I bought to roadify, then sort of lost interest in the whole project and went back to playing with my Bike Friday and haven`t done anything with along "road bike" lines in a few months
    Recalculating....

  166. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    Drop bar 29er.
    Pick a 29er. Make it a road bike.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Had a "spare frame" and parts, so i gave it a shot. A few compromises, but overall I'm quite pleased with the ride.


  167. #167
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    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  168. #168
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    Nice. Do you have any more pics? What compromises do you think you made? What went into the build? Were you able to get decent braking? What type of riding do you planning to do with it? Any upgrades in mind?

    Just curious.

    Quote Originally Posted by antonio View Post
    Had a "spare frame" and parts, so i gave it a shot. A few compromises, but overall I'm quite pleased with the ride.

    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  169. #169
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    Thanks, Joe.

    Compromises were minor (to me), but they were 1) Weight: heavy-ish steel mountain bike frame and fork and 29er mtb wheels do add a few extra grams (however, I do appreciate how stout this bike feels on the road), 2) Aesthetics: lots of steerer tube and seatpost showing, and 3) Rack compatibility: no easy way to add racks (otoh, I don't care for the way racks impact the ride).

    Disc brakes are great. In fact, it took some getting used to be able to stop so quickly on the road.

    This bike will mainly serve as my commuter. I will also ride it occasionally for some road miles when conditions/commitments don't allow me to ride singletrack. I've even thought of borrowing my wife's MTB wheels (same size rotors, quick-release) to try this bike out on singletrack, but who knows when that may happen.

    Here is a list of some of the parts that went into this build (from the post your commuter thread):

    - Frame is a Haro Mary XC. My first 29er. One size too small, so it sat in the basement for years.

    - Wheels are Sun Ringle Black Flag Pros. Got a great deal from CRC a few years ago (probably due to the garish gold). Tried selling them recently after finding a ridiculous deal on carbon wheels, but apparently no one likes gold.

    - Fork is a Nashbar brand 26" steel fork I purchased about 6 years ago when I wanted to try out riding a rigid singlespeed. I was afraid the short AC length would compromise the bikes handling, but it works really well with this set-up.

    - The remaining parts are Salsa Cowbell handlebars, Panaracer RIBMO 700x35 tires, Ritchey WCS seatpost, AVID BB7s (185/160 rotors), Truvativ Stylo cranks (170s, 42/32/22), 11-28 9 speed cassette, 2004 XT RD, FSA FD, old Tiagra brifters, Terry Zero saddle, Jandd saddle bag, Halo bolt-on skewers, etc.



  170. #170
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    Inspirational roadie picture:

    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-drop.jpg
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  171. #171
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    Cool pic.

  172. #172
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    Thanks for sharing, guys. Enjoy!
    Joe
    Chicago, IL

  173. #173
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    This thread makes me want to modify my hybrid to make it more like a road bike (drop handlebars, road tires, bigger chain ring on the front, etc). It would be funny to see a "road bike" with 80mm travel front suspension. lol
    2014 NS Bikes Clash 1 - all original
    2014 Trek Fuel EX 7 29er - modified
    2013 Trek Mamba 29er - modified

  174. #174
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    Yeeeeehhhhaaaawwwww

  175. #175
    jrm
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    Recently installed a moustache bar on the SSCX and noticed how much more comfortable it is that a drop bar even though it has less hand positions. This weekend the SSCX gets gears 28/40 - 11-32 and the mullet treatment with a 140 disc up front.

  176. #176
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    It really depends what your commute is like. But if it's for going to and from work, I would want something relaxed so I could ride it without getting too tired.

    I would want mudguards. No way I am riding along a street where dogs have been pissing.

    If I was going over 8 miles or so purely on good country roads, I would like 28mm tyres.

    If I was going over 8 miles or so on slightly rougher roads, I would want 32mm tyres.

    If I was riding in a city, I would buy an ugly old mountain bike. You get better acceleration with 26" wheels, and they're better at stop-start traffic. Plus, if it gets stolen, it is not the end of the world. Any weight saving you get from more expensive parts is offset by having to carry extra locks anyway. Discs make bikes look more attractive to thieves; I have a Magura front on my current town bike, and a U brake rear. It's a good bike. It has 26 x 1.5 slicks, and with its 5arm 110bcd chainset I could still get a large big ring.

    My current MTB is a great bike and I like it a lot.

  177. #177
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    How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?-10565228_719666204772150_231595905552666567_n.jpg

    the last reply to this thread was over a year ago, I ride this now. It's a happy compromise.

  178. #178
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    ^ Is that your straggler, or something else?

    Seeing this old thread reminds me I never posted my "urban" bike after I switched it to dirtdrops:


  179. #179
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    that is indeed my Straggler, I ran drops for a while, but soon realized that my huge shoulders are too wide to enjoy 46cm bars. I'll try some Zinn 48cm wide bars in a bit. but even the Salsas were too narrow for my liking.

    I also took off that Alfine, I got it running tops but I just wanted to try something else for a lark, it's currently running a complete deore 3x10 kit. 44x11 is not tall enough for my liking so it will go on my 1995 rockhopper that I bought new in 2013. I feel bad for the purists who find out I had a brand new, never used, rigid steel rockhopper, and promptly took off all the crappy OEM parts and put on good stuff.

    a mint rockhopper is still only worth like, 400 dollars on a good day. so I don't feel bad about updating it's kit.

    the Straggler will eventually get 105.

  180. #180
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    Lets be honest, In spite of their speed (And stability at speed)Road bikes Ride like jackhammers and corner like cruise ships.
    Thanks for demonstrating how high on nonsense, those who try to advocate to ride a mountain bike on the road over a road bike are.

    I can't believe you write the crap you write and then tout Surly who use sh1t generic steel tubing and make excuses for it and act like it is better, when it is just cheaper because that is what Surly peddles cheap shyte:
    Some Things About Our Steel | Surly Bikes

  181. #181
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    You're not smart, and I am. So at night I rest well.

    Also, surly tubing is cheap and has a dull quality to it. but it's not some shitty high-ten. It's working grade 4130 that they order with a thicker wall thickness/dimension than I like. If you've like, ever read my other posts you would know it's probably my biggest complaint about the straggler. but it's a stout, reliable frame that will most likely become "winter bike" in a year or so. Now that Soma FINALLY released the Wolverine, which I would have bought in a heart beat. had it existed last fall when I was bike shopping. the Wolverine is a slightly more delicate bike than the straggler, but I prefer the Tange Prestige tubes for commuting.

    Also, I get amused when people I could rip in half get all puff chested and macho online. like somehow being a jerk makes them strong.

    good luck with that.

    Edit: Oh, and in the like... year+ since I posted this thread. I've had plenty of saddle time on "proper" road bikes. As well as training in FITTING them. 23c tires, aluminum frames, and race geometry absolutely make a poor commuter choice for MOST people. doesn't stop them from being fun. It stops them from being pleasant to ride 20+ miles a day, 5 days a week, year round, on poorly maintained suburban streets. especially if you commute by bike for financial reasons and not egotistical ones.

    My Straggler is enough like a road bike to be helpful, but thoughfully tweaked for the terrain it is ridden on.

    Which is why It had an Alfine 8 when I had a teeny commute in a flat California hippie town. and now has full 3x10 and skinnier tires because I have a 21 mile round trip in redneck Utah.

    build for your commute. Not your Ego.

  182. #182
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    Just realized I got fooled by a bumped 1+ year old thread. Here is all you need to need from a selective quote:
    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    because of my weight (260+) i tend to ride a bit higher in the pressures. ...
    Overweight guy: "It must be the road bikes." Of course! Except everyone else who has rode road bikes regularly feels like mountain bikes on the street are like hauling bricks on a fat tire, flat handlebar, road bike -- by comparison.

    That is what I get for thinking once again I could learn about or discuss what the thread title implied, by clicking the thread... Instead I got mostly made up nonsense.

  183. #183
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    It took you a really long time to type a reply that short. I saw you log into the thread like 3 different times too.

    I'm definitely a chubby guy, but I'm also a weightlifter. a big part of that overweight would be muscle-mass you'd beg for. So somehow I don't feel so bad about it.

    Also, I am glad you know the thoughts of "Everyone else" I'm sure your data is fully verified and empirical. not just an opinion you feel others share.

    because "road bike" definitely defines the smooth wheeled bicycle world as a whole.

    Oh yeah, you seem to think the Straggler isn't a "Road Bike"

    yeah, I'm real affected there buddy. keep going. maybe next time you should go after me for being black.

    EDIT: Oh look at that, Roy is typing again. I bet in 15 or 20 minutes he will have a fresh Zinger or two for us! I bet it's a whole paragraph!

  184. #184
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    Yeah, every overweight guy is a weightlifter on the net. I thought I was gonna read a thread on, "How do we build ourselves a fast road bike." Actually I saw a few minutes ago the full thread title is 80 oz. of this juicy oxymoron:
    "How do we build ourselves a fast road bike... that isn't a road bike?"

    If I were you, but knowing what I know I would have justed stated I was heavy and that I would like some advantages of a sporty road bike within the limits of a touring, cyclocross, randonee, etc. frame, since road racing bikes like the Roubaix you said you tried and were not pleased with are not built for nearly 300 lbs guys(duh those bikes are built for Lance wannabes, almost no one who weighs that much is competing or pretending they are competing, thus it would be stupid to build a Roubaix for that weight rider...). That would have produced much more actually useful discussion, which I don't think interests you. Now, I will allow you to continue type whatever that doesn't really contribute anything to anywhere.

  185. #185
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    Wow, that was so informative. you've really given me a lot to think about. you're so smart.

    also, you probably can't do the the math. so let me make it mostly words for you.

    March 2013... was a long time ago. 18 months. Neither the Straggler or the Wolverine or MOST "gravel" bikes were on the market at that time.

    besides that point. I asked a question 18 MONTHS ago. got it answered like, 17 months and 28 days ago.

    I don't really care what your opinion of this thread is... because it became irrelevant to me... oh I dunno... 18 months ago?

    Keep trying. I'm going to enjoy mocking you until the mods make me stop.

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