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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the picture. I have been saving and will be purchasing a 46cm Cross Check in mid-May.

How tall are you? I am 5'6" and the 46cm seems the right size for me.

Are you satisfied with the Cross Check? What is your opinion of the bike?

Thanks alot.
 

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Hi,

I'm 5'8 with a 30" inseam. I am quite pleased with the bike. My only issue is toe overlap. It is an inherent issue with smaller frame road style bikes. This is my first Cyclocross bike and had never encountered the problem. I actually posted the issue today on the Surly blog and also sent a note to Surly.

You can read Surly's response below:

Ron Deitch

Hi Ron
You're experiencing a well known and oft-debated issue called toe overlap. It occurs on bikes that use larger diameter wheels and it exists because it can't be fully designed out without making the frame fit and handle badly. There a lot of variables contributing to toe overlap: frame size (smaller frames are more prone to TO), wheel size (you never experienced TO with your mountain bike because it had 26" wheels), tire size (fatter tires have a larger diameter), crank arm length, shoe size, foot position, and frame and fork design. But for most people on most 700c bikes (a wheel size standard. the other big one is 26" like on your MTB) there is a certain amount of TO.
So what do you do? Well, honestly, you get used to it. I have a long history in the bike biz and riding bikes (i can elaborate if you really want, but trust me, I've dealt with this one for a long time) and have found that while it can be annoying at first, most of the time people adjust to it with no problem.
For one thing, the window of opportunity for TO to be a problem is quite small; it only occurs when the wheel is turned far enough and only when your foot is in the right position. If you're pedalling while cornering this could be an issue, but pedalling while cornering isn't a good idea either because you can 'dig' a pedal into the ground and that's way worse than TO. The only time I have found TO to be truly problematic is on fixed gear bicycles, where you don't have the option of stopping pedalling briefly. But in my experience, even fixed gear has not been especially problematic. The only time I have ever felt truly uncertain about my safety, which is to say the only time I have come close to dumping the bike and hurting myself due to TO, is riding offroad fixed gear.
Honestly, the best defense is simply to be aware of it and develop automatic responses: look ahead to avoid situations that require quick evasion. If you do need to move quick stop pedalling and don't leave your feet perfectly parallel with the ground. Even tilting your foot (like toe up/heel down) can help a lot.
I seriously doubt that this will prove to be a big deal for you, but if you just can't get used to it, the next best thing is to try smaller tires.

Hope that helps,
Andy
 

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Ron...

Good to hear Andy C got back to you like that. Classic Surly service. One option I see he did not mention, which I will re-iterate here is "combine a shorter set of cranks, a set-back seatpost, and maybe a shorter stem to modify your riding position", that, or like it said, get used to it. One you're used to it, it's cool.
 

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obionespeedonly said:
Good to hear Andy C got back to you like that. Classic Surly service. One option I see he did not mention, which I will re-iterate here is "combine a shorter set of cranks, a set-back seatpost, and maybe a shorter stem to modify your riding position", that, or like it said, get used to it. One you're used to it, it's cool.
I don't see where that's a good option... dicking around with your position just to avoid toe overlap ain't really a good idea. The fore-aft saddle-BB position (along with height- duh) is critical to fit, which is more important on road bikes than mtb. A set-back seat post and shorter stem won't affect toe overlap by themselves, but could adversely affect the rider's comfort, again more important on the road since the rider is on more of a static position compared to a mtn bike. Shorter cranks *might* help, but often the change isn't enough. And don't even think of moving your cleats up to pull those toes back. A skinny low profile tires would help a little but is no cure. As mentioned, it's just something to be aware of and usually isn't a problem unless riding fixed... and even then shouldn't matter much since you'll be going slow when it happens, i.e., when going fast you won't turn the bars that much.
 
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