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Back of the pack fat guy
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ha - funny discussion over on the ID/MT/WY board about singlespeeds. Somebody had mentioned wanting to build or buy a singlespeed, and a couple of us Surly owners recommended a 1x1 or Karate Monkey. Here's the response from one of the locals:

http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?p=1401954&postcount=24

So, what's your take on Surly's quality level? For me, having owned 3 different Surly frames, I can truly attest that Surly gives you the best bang for the buck of any manufacturer of steel dedicated SS frames. Discuss.
 

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Not because I'm fast.....
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Surly frames have thoughtful designs and ride WAY nicer than anybody would think for the price. I have owned two Surly frames and the quality on both was great. I will always own some type of Surly frame. Surly is a different type of company for sure, and the guys that work there are top notch and provide excellent customer service. I fully support their products because they have contributed a lot to my happiness as a bike rider.
 

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Earthpig said:
So, what's your take on Surly's quality level? I can truly attest that Surly gives you the best bang for the buck of any manufacturer of steel dedicated SS frames. Discuss.
After a lot of research, test rides, and advice, I decided to pull the trigger on a Steamroller. Yes, there are "nicer" frames, and yes there are frames on either side of Surly's price point. But to me, Surly offers a unique product, they seem to be a company with a real conscience, and my e-mail inquiries were responded to immediately. Plus, out the bazillions of Surlys on the streets and trails today, I've not heard of one complaint about ride quality, other than the occasional gripe about weight.
No, the tubeset isn't some sexy premium-grade triple-butted wondersteel, but for the $400 asking price (and that includes the fork), I can't think of a bike with a more solid and widely-known reputation. When my frame comes in, I'll de-sticker it for style, but not because I'm ashamed to ride a Surly or for the whole world to know it.
 

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TRAIL KUBUKI CORNDOGGER
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I must admit that I was in the thick of the, um, discussion regarding SS builds and steel frames, so I was a bit taken aback that someone would actually say that Surly frames are not quality. I bought my frame (and I'll probably buy more) based on the simple fact that no one I know that has ridden a Surly has had anything bad to say about them.

Maybe some people are put off by a web page that has pictures of men in garage sale dresses riding their bikes.
 

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the surly way....

My very first SS was a 1x1. I fell in love with this bike, by far it was my favourite, and to be honest it was also one of the only bikes I trusted 100% no matter what the trail conditions were like.

A couple of years later I felt I 'needed' a better (or more expensive perhaps???) SS, so I bought an IF. You know what? The Surly still felt way better, and the IF was custom!!

Since the 1x1 purchase, I have bought another 1x1, a Karate Monkey, Long Haul Trucker. I am going to get a Pugsley, and when the green comes out, that will be in my garage too!

As mentioned above, the Surly guys are the best and always get prompt emails from them.
 

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My "Opinion"

TwistedCrank said:
I must admit that I was in the thick of the, um, discussion regarding SS builds and steel frames, so I was a bit taken aback that someone would actually say that Surly frames are not quality. I bought my frame (and I'll probably buy more) based on the simple fact that no one I know that has ridden a Surly has had anything bad to say about them.

Maybe some people are put off by a web page that has pictures of men in garage sale dresses riding their bikes.
I love my Surly, best steel H/T I've ridden in forever. I stand by the "STFU NOOB" post. Some people just ask random stuff and let someone else start a flame war. Whatever, guess that people just need to ride it to believe it. Their loss if they form an incorrect opinion, which it hopefully isn't just that. I still haven't seen any hard facts posted otherwise to sway my from supporting Surly, or their "owner/distributor", but would welcome educated feedback.
 

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I have a 3rd generation...

I am the 3rd owner of the local shops Surly 1 x1 shop whore bike. It was built up by one employee.....then he sold it to another employee....then he sold it to me. This thing has been thrashed thru the harsh Iowa winters and then some. It's still tick'n like the day it was new and it has to be at least 8 years old. No complaints from me. If you want an inexpensive do-all bike to thrash on look into Surly as an option.
 

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I bought my 1x1 second-hand as a temporary bike. I haven't been able to find anything good enough to replace it. Maybe it isn't the lightest out there, but it isn't heavy. Looks like we're stuck with each other :)

As for quality, I haven't had to give this a thought. I would be obsessing about each big drop with an alloy frame.
 

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I bought my cross check just over 5 years ago now. I have ridden it as a bike courier for two years in philadelphia, commuted on it for two years in VA and now commute on it back in philly. I have put it through everything, and I love it. I have no complaints at all.
 

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The quality is the best

My first Surly was (is) a Steamroller -grey - SS fixie and it is a blast. Built up with good parts and it is my favorite workout bike. Fixie riding is just different, and the Steamroller is a well made frame. I will have that bike until I die. It sits in my living room as a work of art when it is not in use.

My next Surly is a Instigator - orange. It is a great bike to ride and thrash around on. I use a front suspension and gears and just love it. That bike gets a lot of comments from folks I meet.

The only down side to steel frames is getting the frame prep inside. That sucks, especially in the winter when I build my bikes and the prep won't completely dry and out-gas until it is in the house. Not Surly's fault that.

I have a Ellsworth Joker, a Specialized P2 and a full Ultegra road bike, and my Surlys compare, in my humble opinion, equal in quality, fit, ride and dependability with the others. My next Surly is probably gonna be a Cross-Check, because I need something to go get groceries with :D . The Surly folks know what they are about.

Rick
 

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Recovering couch patato
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The KM was my first Surly. Just riding it on pavement (and I had lots prior 29" experience), even in a straight line, it was special. It took me half a year to buy another 2 Surly's. First a Pacer because I had refused to ride my TCR for years. I stuck a Singleator to the Pacer too, and it's still on there. Then the Sunn Cycloss had to go, for the Cross-Check obviously. For some reason Surly's seem like an extension of your riding personality. They boost your confidence with sharp handling and BB stiffness. To me they've been keeping me from going custom. I just got my Cross-Check a size too large probably. I should've known, it's pretty much the same as my custom CX racer, which is too big as well (long story). Still a great bike though, just not perfect for me.
 

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Cloxxki said:
I just got my Cross-Check a size too large probably.
My Cross Check is probably too large for me as well, but after setting it up more like a vintage road bike it fits and rides quite well. Look at any road bike made before maybe the mid 1990's; there is barely any seatpost sticking out of the frame, and the stems are about 100mm. My 1987 Cannondale road bike came with a 190mm seatpost, which allows for less than 4" out of the frame! But I digress... I set my Cross Check up with minimal seatpost (by default since the frame is pretty big), and a 90mm stem. Set up as such it fits and rides like it was custom made for me. I initially regretted buying a 58cm instead of a 56cm, but now I am happy with my decision. A steel bike is a bit retro these days, so why not set it up that way? :)
 

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Earthpig said:
Ha - funny discussion over on the ID/MT/WY board about singlespeeds. Somebody had mentioned wanting to build or buy a singlespeed, and a couple of us Surly owners recommended a 1x1 or Karate Monkey. Here's the response from one of the locals:

http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?p=1401954&postcount=24

So, what's your take on Surly's quality level? For me, having owned 3 different Surly frames, I can truly attest that Surly gives you the best bang for the buck of any manufacturer of steel dedicated SS frames. Discuss.
My 1x1 spends almost all winter hanging off the spare tire rack on my trooper. Ohio winters are wet and cold and salty, My 1x1 is still flawless except for the bolts on the stem The frame is still like new AMAZING. I love the bike and would be hard pressed to ever buy something else, I did also just take delivery of a crosscheck frame set to replace my Bianchi Axis which only lasted 3 years untill it corroded to crap from the bottle bosses down.
 

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your ankles are fat
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word up

I've been through my fair share of bikes being a BikeShopLacky...

the beauty of my work environment is that I get to see more than my fair share of "tech", 24/7/365.

Surly frames have been a strong company in our shop for almost 5 yrs...that said, there are at least 5 of us that own them(from Long Haul's to Pugsley's)that work at the shop alone. My household currently alone can account for a Steamroller(Cx'd and race'd in the A's of MB and MN) and 1x1 for winter training and as backup here in Manitoba and my wife's singled Cross-check commuter. Sure, my main race bike this year will be a Giant 2to1(again) but like I said I work at a shop....

All comments aside about quality, and price aside, they're great framesets even if they're a bit heftier...after 2003 Solo 24hr Worlds, I was without a frame(from lauching my then Giant 2to1 of a scree ridge in Whistler) Came home, swapped my parts off onto a 1x1 frame we had at thewww.olympiacycle.com, sure it was all of 1 pound heavier, but it was also way more compliant that my Giant...

ride whatever you want, but I bet there is somone out there way faster than you on a cheaper, heavier, shitier bike..that just the way it is.

ps-I do have a 22 lb NRS as well, but it gathers dust most days(360-to be exact) of the
year...I bust it out once and a while to see if I'm faster on a geared bike..most of the
time, I'm not.
 

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Back of the pack fat guy
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
PaddyH said:
I've been through my fair share of bikes being a BikeShopLacky...

the beauty of my work environment is that I get to see more than my fair share of "tech", 24/7/365.
Good post. Interestingly enough, the guy who opined on the ID/MT/WY board that Surly is not "quality steel" is also a LBS lackey.
 

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I think the poster, Smoking39, is smoking crack! Ever since I saw my first Surly (a 1x1 with super-fat tires on holey winter-rims, at Pedrosfest in '95 or '96, in Randolph, VT), I've wanted one. I finally acquired an Instigator at the beginning of the year and finally put it together a few months ago. Let me tell you...no complaints here. I love it...so smooth, tough, good-looking, and great quality! That guy definitely has no clue about Surly bicycles because he's never given them a chance and put a leg over one! Here's mine:
 

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Baked Alaskan
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I have to say, my Turner is a much nicer frame in terms of overall build quality, finish and so forth, but I do find Surly's build quality to be incredible for the price.

I don't think there's anything near Surly in terms of price to build quality. All the other lower price frames that I have seen and ridden are definitely inferior. Surly builds one hell of a bike at any price point.

FYI I have a 1x1 and a Pugsley and they are both fantastic frames at any price. The small weightt penalty you pay is outdone by things like tire clearance, ride and versatility. But for the money they clearly can't be beat.
 

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Earthpig said:
Here's smoking39's explanation of his opinion that Surly does not make a quality frame:

http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?p=1422254&postcount=37

Thoughts? Counter-opinions? Similar opinions? My 3 Surly frames have had none of the problems he mentions.
I don't lend much creedence to that explanation. The Taiwenese frame building shops see tons of business from many bike companies. Smoking39's post mentions that those problems occur on other bikes, but at a higher percentage on Surlys. If that were the case, would that mean that the Taiweese framebuilders put less effort into the Surlys than any of the other brands they build on a day to day basis? Not likely.

I've seen and buillt plenty of Surlys, but not nearly as many as the Treks, Giants, Specialized, etc that I've built. I can say for certain that Surly is, at the very least, as good as those brands (which were likely made by the same people in some cases), if not alot better.

TG
 
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