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Discussion Starter #1
There are certain bikes that catch my eye and I get so fixated on them that I get blinders and can't see anything else. I had it with the Yeti ASR5-C, GT Fury, Diamondback Mason HT (my current HT trailbike) and now the same thing happened with the Surly Straggler. I saw the bike on Dirt Rag's site a week ago and it was love at first sight.


Straggler.jpg

I ordered the frame yesterday from my LBS, I talked to the owner for a while and he actually rode the bike at the Saddledrive dealer event a few weeks ago and said it was one of the most fun bikes he's ever ridden. He already has a full size run ordered for the shop, including an extra to be his personal bike. I'm pretty particular about my bike setups so I opted to go with the frameset, it will be a few weeks until it arrives so I'd like to get all of the parts together so I can build it asap.

The biggest thing I'm torn about is the drivetrain, I'm about 70/30 leaning towards SS, and if I went geared I would most likely do a 1x10 setup with a MTB clutch derailleur. I plan on this bike being a CX/Monstercross/Adventure/Do everything Bike. I haven't built anything but a trail or DH bike over the last few years so I'm not fluent on some of the parts needed.

Here are some of my ideas so far:

Bars: Salsa Cowbell

Stem: Salsa or Thomson

Headset: Cane Creek something most likely

Shifter/brake levers: I'm torn between getting dedicated SS brake levers like the SRAM 500 or getting something like Rival shifters in case I don't like the bike SS and want to add gears

Post: Salsa or Thomson

Seat: Specialized Phenom most likely (only seat I've ridden in the last couple years) Open to suggestions though!

Brakes: Avid BB7sl 160mm front 140mm rear

Crankset: Not sure, I'd like to run a smaller chainring if possible because I plan to ride a lot of trails and bashing the chainring is a concern

Pedals: Will probably use my XT trail pedals from my trail bike

Wheels: I've been toying with building a set of wheels with Stan's Iron Cross rims and some kind of cheaper disc MTB hubs. I've also seen some crazy deals on Carbon Clincher Disc 700c on Ebay which have me intrigued. I've followed some of thread on here and other sites about the cheap Chinese carbon MTB rims and they sound like they're holding up for the most part. Again, open to all suggestions.

Tires: Surly Knad 41c, they weren't available on QBP yesterday when I ordered the bike but the shop owner thinks they'll be available even before I get the frame.

Chain: Not sure

Cassette: some sort of SS conversion

Gearing: 38/19?

Obviously things will change if I decide to go geared...


TL;DR - Looking for parts suggestions for my new Surly Straggler
 

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I have Thomson X2 stem and Thomson Elite seatpost on my cross bike. They are great but too expensive. I should have gone for Salsa

As for the rims, take a look at H+SON Archetype. They are wide, light, strong and come in 3 colours (polished/gray/black)

GL with the build!
 

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I have 2 Thomson X4 stems and 2 Thomson posts on my mountain bikes and I have a Salsa Cowbell Bar, Salsa Pro Moto 2 Stem and Salsa Pro Moto 2 post on my cross bike and they all work great. I like buying American made if I can but Salsa makes a great budget cockpit.

I prefer Charge Spoon Saddles but that's just me!

For wheels I went with DT Swiss 350 hubs, DT Swiss Revolution spokes and HED Belgium C2 rims. H+ Son Archetype, Velocity A23 or several Stans rims are all good options as well.

IMHO I would recommend doing a geared bike if you want it to be super versatile. I love SS and have 3 SS bikes but I built my CX bike up for the same purposes as you and I went fully geared. It is easy to set it up geared first and get a SS spacer and cog kit as well as a dedicated 3/32 chainring for SS down the road. You always have the option of going SS down the road or switching back to geared.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I slept on it for a couple days and decided geared would definitely make the bike more versatile and it would always be easier to go backwards and make the bike SS than having to order all the extra parts to add gears. I also opted to go with a more budget friendly build to leave room to upgrade where I see fit later.

Parts Ordered so far:

Bars: Salsa Cowbell

Stem: Salsa Moto

Bar Tape: Sram Cork Tape - now I have to remember how to wrap bars, it's been a couple years

Headset: Cane Creek 40

Post: Salsa Moto

Seat: Charge Spoon, I completely forgot about this saddle, I have it on my fixie and it's an awesome bang for the buck, I picked one up for 23 bucks!

Rear Derailleur: Sram X.9 type 2 short cage

Chain: KMC X-10 Ti

Brake: Avid BB7 S Road 160mm front 140mm rear

Crankset: Sram Rival, Picked up a NOS on ebay for 60 bucks

Wheelset: Velocity A23 Comp Disc, I opted to go with a reliable prebuilt wheelset, maybe I'll upgrade later but this should be a reliable set for now.


Still need

Cassette: PG1050 11-28

Shifters: Sram Rival, Watching a few Ebay auctions

Chainring - Wolf Tooth 38 or 40T (going to run a single ring)

Tires: Surly Knard 41c, just waiting for them to show up on QBP


I'm already looking up different gravel/monstercross/trail rides I want to take the bike on, now we play the waiting game...
 

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For shifters, have you considered the Retroshift setup? They look like an interesting option and are much more affordable that others. Otherwise, Chain Reaction has had pretty good prices on shifters.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
For shifters, have you considered the Retroshift setup? They look like an interesting option and are much more affordable that others. Otherwise, Chain Reaction has had pretty good prices on shifters.
I considered Retroshift but since I plan on riding this thing on trails a lot I wanted the security of a clutch derailleur so I went with the X.9 type 2 and I just picked up a set of Force Shifters. Other parts showed up this morning so I'm only missing a cassette, tires, and seatpost (salsa seatpost I ordered ended up being discontinued).
 

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Since you're going with a mountain derailleur, why not a wider-range cassette?

I've got one on order (black) - the plan is to also go 1x10 - SL-BS79 bar end shifter, xt (9 speed) derailleur, cane creek compact brake levers. Going to use a PG1050 11-36

Swapping pretty much everything else from my cross bike....though black parts will be swapped out for silver down the road. Really the only thing I want be swapping over from the cross bike are the tiagra STI's, front der, and 9 speed cassette.
 

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Yea. For alot of versatility since you are allready running a mtn rear der, I would swap out a 12-36 for what you are running.

FYI wolf tooth are awesome chainrings

Bill
 

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Different frame but same idea. Ive converted my swobo crosby back and forth between gears and SS. Shifter wise ive used shimano barcons mounted with IRD thumbies and traditionally. Ive used CC V levers with cants, Vs, Mini Vs and BB7s. Crank wise ive ran a MTB double, road double and now a road triple converted to a 28/42 double. The Q factor was widest with the MTB and now its perfect with the converted triple. I also like 172.5mm crankarms more then 170s or 175s on this bike. Rim wise, the A23s laced to DT 350 hubs has really held up well for me. Lastly ive recently switched from a cowbell II to a on one mungo. Although it has less hand positions i find that i have a lot more control then i did riding the cowbell II hoods off road and a lot more leverage. The mungos pretty ugly but function trumps aesthetics...so far. Questions..fire away
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well it just so happens that I had been toying around with that idea as well. I plan to ride a good bit offroad so that added low gearing would probably be a life saver on longer rides. I haven't ordered a cassette yet so I'll look get an 11-36 or similar. Only thing I'm not sure about is the largest cog capacity of the short cage deraileur. I ran 11-34t with a short cage X.9 on my last bike with 1x9 and my current mountain bike is 1x10 with 11-36t and a medium cage. I already have the X.9 short cage for the Straggler so i might have to make my cassette purchase based on that.
 

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Well it just so happens that I had been toying around with that idea as well. I plan to ride a good bit offroad so that added low gearing would probably be a life saver on longer rides. I haven't ordered a cassette yet so I'll look get an 11-36 or similar. Only thing I'm not sure about is the largest cog capacity of the short cage deraileur. I ran 11-34t with a short cage X.9 on my last bike with 1x9 and my current mountain bike is 1x10 with 11-36t and a medium cage. I already have the X.9 short cage for the Straggler so i might have to make my cassette purchase based on that.
You shouldn't have any problems with a mountain short cage and an 11-36 cassette. Road derailleurs, that's another story.
 

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Straggler Builds, Light Touring & Commuter

I have two Glitter Dream Purple Straggler framesets preordered also; due in late September. Both 52cm. One I am building as a touring bike for me. The other for my 22 y/o daughter as a commuter. Hers will be built up with silver accessories, mine will be black accessories.

Update: These are built and work perfectly.

Here are the builds.

His: Light Touring
Headset: Chris King
Headset spacers: FSA Black Headset Spacers 10mm
Crankset: Shimano CX50 Hollowtech 46T/36T - blackBottom Bracket: Shimano Ultegra SM-BBR60
Brakes: 2012 Avid BB7 Mountain, 160mm Discs Fr & Rr
Brake Levers: Avid Speed Dial 7
Shifters: Shimano SL-4600 Tiagra 10-speed Flat Bar Shifter 2x10
Downtube stops: Shimano ST74 STI Downtube Cable Stop and Adjuster
Rims: Alex XD-Lite 700c x 18 - black
Front Derailleur: Shimano CX70
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT RD-M772-SG Shadow (long cage)
Cassette: Shimano XT CS-M771 10-speed 11-34T
Stem: Thomson x4 Elite - Black
Handlebar: MTB short rise flat bar
Grips: Ergon GP5 Biokork with Bar Ends
Seatpost: Race Face Respond - black
Chain: KMC 10.93
Hubs: Shimano M529 Fr & Rr
Spokes: DT Swiss Competition Black 292mm
Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Racer Evolution HD Speedguard 700x35C
Cables: Jagwire Carbon Fiber Black
Racks: Tubus Cosmo SS & Tubus Nova SS
Panniers & Bags: Ortlieb Classic Rollers
Fenders: SKS P45 Chromoplastic

Hers: Commuter
Headset: FSA Orbit X Silver
Headset spacers: Vuelta Silver Aluminum Headset Spacers 10mm
Crankset: Shimano CX50 Hollowtech 46T/36T - silver
Bottom Bracket: Shimano Ultegra SM-BBR60
Brakes: 2012 Avid BB7 Mountain, 160mm Discs Fr & Rr
Brake/shift Levers: Retroshift CXV Silver/Gray
Downtube stops: Shimano ST74 STI Downtube Cable Stop and Adjuster
Rims: Sun CR18 700c x 22.5 - silver
Front Derailleur: Shimano CX70
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT RD-M772-SG Shadow
Cassette: Shimano XT CS-M771 10-speed 11-36T
Stem: Thomson xs Elite - silver
Handlebar: On One Midge shallow drop bar - silver
Bar tape: Green Salsa Gel Cork Tape
Saddle: Selle Italia Lady Gel Flow - black
Seatpost: Velo Orange Grand Cru Long Setback 2-bolt adjust - silver
Chain: KMC 10.93
Hubs: Shimano M529 Fr & Rr (silver powder coat)
Spokes: DT Swiss Competition DB silver 297mm
Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Mondial 700x35 Raceguard
Cables: Jagwire Green
 

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I'll be moving most of my bits over from my DoubleCross but changing up the gearing based on expected use. It's going to see a lot of commuting but no really high speed road riding, lots of gravel grinding, a handful of cyclocross races, the occasional singletrack commute home from work. Basically built like most of my mountain bikes, SRAM shifters/derailleurs, Shimano cassette, KMC chain.

Build will look like this on the Straggler:
Bars: Salsa Cowbell
Stem: Thomson X4
Post: Thomson Elite
Shifters: SRAM Rival
Brakes: Avid BB7 road
Cranks: SRAM Rival with 34/46 rings (upgrading to a 36 small ring when I wear out the 34)
Pedals: XT Trail
Front Mech: SRAM Rival
Rear Mech: SRAM X7 or X9 Type 2
Cassette: Shimano XT 11-32
Wheels: 36 spoke Shimano SLX hubs laced to Velocity Chukkers - have been beating on these wheels for a while, probably going to upgrade the rims after cross season.
Chain: KMC 10.93 with Wippermann Connex masterlink

Thinking I'm going to build it with a black saddle and blue tape with black components; my GF rides a glittery pink Bianchi road bike with a silver build so cant look too similar to her bike. My red saddle/tape that looks great on my Double Cross probably wont look so good on glittery purple.
 

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Since you're going with a mountain derailleur, why not a wider-range cassette?

I've got one on order (black) - the plan is to also go 1x10 - SL-BS79 bar end shifter, xt (9 speed) derailleur, cane creek compact brake levers. Going to use a PG1050 11-36

Swapping pretty much everything else from my cross bike....though black parts will be swapped out for silver down the road. Really the only thing I want be swapping over from the cross bike are the tiagra STI's, front der, and 9 speed cassette.
I completely agree with you all that if I were going to do any trail riding or Cyclocross I would have gone with a 11-36. I do realize that this is a Cyclocross thread so I hope I wasn't misleading, just wanetd to give you all a build option since there is very little of that out there on the Straggler. I am wondering if I am even being conservative with it as a touring bike since the lowest chainring is only 36. But time will tell. If I can't make the hills I'll have to swap out later to a wider range cassette. But I went with the narrower cassette because I wanted to have more usable closer range ratios for road/touring. Also when I ran a matrix out of ratios with the 11-32 cog and 36/46 chainrings there were several ratios that were duplicated (at least very close) in both chainrings. With the 11-28 the ratios were better separated, so if I were on a long stretch of road I would be able to find the most comfortable ratio in one ring or the other.
 

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I completely agree with you all that if I were going to do any trail riding or Cyclocross I would have gone with a 11-36. I do realize that this is a Cyclocross thread so I hope I wasn't misleading, just wanetd to give you all a build option since there is very little of that out there on the Straggler. I am wondering if I am even being conservative with it as a touring bike since the lowest chainring is only 36. But time will tell. If I can't make the hills I'll have to swap out later to a wider range cassette. But I went with the narrower cassette because I wanted to have more usable closer range ratios for road/touring. Also when I ran a matrix out of ratios with the 11-32 cog and 36/46 chainrings there were several ratios that were duplicated (at least very close) in both chainrings. With the 11-28 the ratios were better separated, so if I were on a long stretch of road I would be able to find the most comfortable ratio in one ring or the other.
36/28 is a bit of a tough gear for touring, if you ask me. For regular road riding, or a cross race, your gearing would be pretty ideal. For touring, and going 2x10, I'd look more towards something like a 34x50 and at least a 11-32 cassette. That gives you nearly a 1:1 gear, something that you'll definitely want if you're touring anywhere there are hills. When I went across the country, I was very happy to have a low gear of 28/32, which I did resort to on several of the big climbs to be able to stay seated a climb comfortable, without having to stand and mash. This was towing a BoB, fwiw.

I'm probably not going to be doing much heavy-duty touring with this bike in the near future, just some light touring on rail-trail, so I should be pretty well set with a 38/36 low gear.
 

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36/28 is a bit of a tough gear for touring, if you ask me. For regular road riding, or a cross race, your gearing would be pretty ideal. For touring, and going 2x10, I'd look more towards something like a 34x50 and at least a 11-32 cassette. That gives you nearly a 1:1 gear, something that you'll definitely want if you're touring anywhere there are hills. When I went across the country, I was very happy to have a low gear of 28/32, which I did resort to on several of the big climbs to be able to stay seated a climb comfortable, without having to stand and mash. This was towing a BoB, fwiw.

I'm probably not going to be doing much heavy-duty touring with this bike in the near future, just some light touring on rail-trail, so I should be pretty well set with a 38/36 low gear.
Thank you. This is my first venture into touring, so the input helps. I'll be getting an 11/36 cassette.
 

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Thank you. This is my first venture into touring, so the input helps. I'll be getting an 11/36 cassette.
What kind of touring are you looking to get into? You may be better of with a differently geared crankset, especially if having tighter-spaced gears is a concern to you.

With a double crank, the larger the difference in teeth between the big and small ring, the less overlap you'll have.

I know I mentioned a 1:1 ratio earlier, but the real important numbers are what you're going to be running as far as gear inches. Depending how heavy you pack and what kind of terrain you're dealing with, your lower gear inches would be somewhere between 20 and 40 gear inches. You can go a bit higher if you're doing light touring on flat terrain, or if you have monster legs.

The 38 x 11-36 on 700x45's gives me right around 30 gear inches, which should be pretty good for me with a medium-sized load and some decent hills thrown in for good measure. I'm not so concerned with having a tightly-spaced cassette, I'll gladly give that up for the gear range.

Eventually, I'd like to go IGH, but may end up going to a 34x50 double, with the 11-36 cassette just to open up the range real nice.


Also, not sure what you're using to check and compare gearing, but http://gear-calculator.com/ works really nice and lets you compare two different setups. Shows gear-inches along with speed at a given cadence, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Rumor has it that the frames are going to ship before the Knard 120tpi tires will be available, so I need to order some tires to hold me over until they're available. I'm thinking about Kenda Happy Mediums because they look like they nice side knobs for riding offroad, come in 40c and are relatively cheap ($35). Going to make a decision later today, I'd hate for the frame to show up and have tires be the only thing holding me up from riding.
 

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Rumor has it that the frames are going to ship before the Knard 120tpi tires will be available, so I need to order some tires to hold me over until they're available. I'm thinking about Kenda Happy Mediums because they look like they nice side knobs for riding offroad, come in 40c and are relatively cheap ($35). Going to make a decision later today, I'd hate for the frame to show up and have tires be the only thing holding me up from riding.
Why don't you get some bigger tires instead? Those Kendas will be essentially the same size as Knards. With something like 29x2.0 Crows or 700x50 Big Apples, you will at least have something different for maybe some rougher rides.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Why don't you get some bigger tires instead? Those Kendas will be essentially the same size as Knards. With something like 29x2.0 Crows or 700x50 Big Apples, you will at least have something different for maybe some rougher rides.
I'm planning on riding the Straggler anywhere from 7-15 miles on road to get to various trail heads so I don't know if I want to push a 2.0 tire that far. And for rougher rides I already have a 29er hardtail trail bike.
 
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