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Build advice-Surly CrossCheck(13 posts)

Build advice-Surly CrossChecknew2cyclo
Sep 26, 2001 3:25 PM
I'm looking for advice on parts selection for building a Surly Cross Check, I don't like the specs on the complete bike they sell. I don't want to spend too much and I want it to be relatively light, given the frame weight. (will also take reco's on other frames in the $300 price range if they exist). I'm thinking Shimano 105 level stuff. I would like reco's specifically on wheelsets, shifters, and cranks(including size, I'm 5'11"). Can I use v-brakes or should I go with canti's and why? What mix of mountain vs road components? I plan on scouring the web to find great deals on parts and building it myself.
I've included a link to a wheelset, let me know what you think.

Any advice on parts would help, thanks.
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckJake Gilchrist
Sep 26, 2001 4:15 PM
I have a 54cm 2001 CrossCheck and I love it, but it is kind of a tank. Check out Spicer Cycles or maybe a Kona frameset if you want something lighter.

Bearings: I would try to get sealed bearing hubs and a sealed bearing headset (and BB of course). Your bike is going to get muddy every week and I am constantly rebuilding my FSA Orbit headset.

Parts group: 105 is probably fine, but I really like my Ultegra shifters on my road bike. I prefer them (9-speed model) to the 600 8-speed shifters I have on my Surly and to the 105s I have ridden on test rides.

I am running mountain cranks (standard rings) and derailleurs, road hubs, mountain stem, and cantis. I rode a bike this weekend that had the adapters on some V-brakes and they didn't work very well at all. I have some old XT cantis and I set them per some suggestions I found here and they work really well now. I will soon have a rear XT hub laced to a Velocity Semi-aero rim the back. I exploded a Rhino road hub last season. I think the shifting on my bike suffers from the XT (compact) derailleurs and the standard rings, but I could just be imagining that.

The Redline Team Manager suggests a double bolt seatpost. I don't have one, but I think I might get one. Landing hard on your seat is sometimes unavoidable and the post takes a lot of stress.

Maybe I'll post a photo of my bike tomorrow if you're interested.
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckBAM
Sep 26, 2001 6:41 PM
I have a Surly 2001 crosscheck with 8speed barend shifters , 105 brakelevers , old DiaCompe 980 canti`s. XTR 8spd midcage Rear der, Campy racing triple front der, old 110 5bolt LX mtn crank(46,34,24), and 8spd 11-30 cassette. Works very well together. If you are using a 110 crank with a compact front der then get rid of it and you will see better shifting immediately. A compact front der`s cage is not shaped correctly to allow you set the proper height for it, hence poor shiftiing. XT hubs are durable but the rear is a bit heavy. I am using the same hub laced to a Bontrager Fairlane hybrid rim with 42c tires. I would use deeper rims if weight is not too much of an issue. Heavier rims will hold up better in the long run although Mavic Open Pro`s are popular. My Surly is set up for trail riding. On my Lemond I`m using Matrix ISO 3 semi aero rims with Sram 9.0 hubs. The Velocity will be a good choice. As for your seatpost, you can never go wrong with a Thompson.
re: Build advice-Surly CrossChecknew2cyclo
Sep 30, 2001 9:46 AM
Thanks for the advice, it is much appreciated. I found a pretty good deal on a Cross Check frame online. I think I will buy the 57, but I'm not sure. I am 5'11", what do you think? Also, I might single-speed it, have you seen any good single-speed setups on cross bikes? Have you seen any racers on them?
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckbadabill
Sep 26, 2001 6:33 PM
My surly is set up with 105 triple, LX rear der. and cassette and the ame 105-CXP21 wheels you are lookong at. Its not a light weight at around 24lbs, but its tough and can take a lot of abuse. I use it for everything from singletrack, Racing, and touring and it rides great. Surly's are not for you if you are worried abourt weight.
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckBAM
Sep 26, 2001 6:57 PM
What size is your bike? I ride a 56cm and when I had it set up for road use, it was at 25.5lbs.. I had a lighter wheelset,20c conti tires, a RX100 triple with drilledout rings and alloy chainbolts, Sram 5.0 cassette( lighter than XT cassettes), XTR mid cage der(rear), and a Campy racing triple front der. Plus various other light but durable parts. Hell, my Lemond now has this set up with an even lighter stem and bar combo and it weighs in at 24lbs. Although I have a winwood carbon fork on order which will drop it below 24lbs. I will say the Surly has a more comfortable ride, but the Lemond hands quicker.
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckbadabill
Sep 27, 2001 7:13 AM
mines a 52cm. I have never really weighed my Surly Its just an estimate compared to my landshark. The Surly frame and fork are about 6lbs, a couple of lbs more than a lite ALU/ carbon fork set-up. I just could not justify the money to save a couple of pounds. For what I use it for the Surly is a great bike, if I was more into racing I might look at a carbon fork. the price of the cross carbon forks is way up there. On the road its a handfull on fast descents, real slow handling compared to my shark. I think the Surly is one of the best all-around bike deals out there, but you cant bee worried about the weight :-)
re: Build advice-Surly CrossCheckfreefal401
Sep 27, 2001 4:27 AM
No matter how you build it, it's gonna be heavy (but indestructible). My 60cm Cross-Check is probably 24 to 25 lbs or so. I have an Ultegra 8sp (48/39)(13-26) drivetrain, Shimano STX cantilevers, O4CD rims, spds, Easton seatpost, control tech stem, and Salsa bell lap bars. Cantis are cheap and plentiful--look around.

It's a great riding bike, and I take it on the road also. But if you're looking for a seriously light CX racing machine, this probably ain't it.
Unsolicited Gratuitous Photo of My BikeJake Gilchrist
Sep 27, 2001 11:38 AM
Here it is...
howja get an orange one?nm
Sep 27, 2001 11:47 AM
howja get an orange one?Jake Gilchrist
Sep 27, 2001 12:43 PM
I'm friends with a guy who works for a powder coater. I got sick of the top layer of green paint flaking off at every contact point. I was going to go with a blue bike but opted for orange at the last second. I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out.
To the picture posters:nova
Oct 4, 2001 5:49 AM
Where did you guys find the rear cable hanger/clamp?
Did it come with the bike?

I recently built up a Gunnar Crosshairs, and it didn't come with a rear cable hanger (either braze-on or seat clamp). It's still driving me nuts. My makeshift work-around prevents the rear brake from acheiving max power.
To the picture posters:badabill
Oct 5, 2001 12:51 PM
It came with the frame. Try schwab cycles or the Surly website, they might be able to help.