's Forum Archives - Cyclo-Cross

Archive Home >> Cyclo-Cross(1 2 3 )

Cross bike for touring?(10 posts)

Cross bike for touring?adventurefind
Jan 9, 2003 9:00 AM
Pictures will follow on the Fred rack I installed on my Cross Hairs, but do any of you use a cross bike for touring?

I have Vaude panniers and I set them up well too so that they don't rub my heels. I'd like to do some adventure touring in northern WI's logging roads when we move back to the northwoods.

I practically have all the camping gear to do a few day's tour. Would panniers do a better job than my BOB trailer?
re: Cross bike for touring?flyweight
Jan 9, 2003 11:26 AM
I've done SF-LA on my Gunnar with no major problems. I used an IRD stainless rear rack w/ Ortleib panniers and a Vaude handlebar bag. I encountered two problems and both of them are pretty minor.

The first is that the rear of the bike is a bit too light and I could feel it fishtail when climbing out of the saddle on short steep climbs.

The other is that my Gunnar is an older model with the 1" headtube. On downhills the fork was a bit too flexy. I'm going to have Waterford make me a stronger fork (like the one on their touring bikes) which should solve both problems by being stiffer and also allowing me to carry the panniers on a front rack which works much better than a rear rack.

Overall the bike is fine for lightweight touring considering it a cross bike.
re: Cross bike for touring?The Walrus
Jan 9, 2003 11:34 AM
I've done some tours ranging from lightly loaded overnighters to week-long treks with 60 pounds of gear, both on pavement and dirt. You need more for loaded touring than rack mounts--a really burly top tube is essential to prevent shimmying at speed, especially on downhills. Not too many non-touring-specific frames are designed with that vibration in mind. If I'm carrying more than 15-20 pounds on a 'cross bike, I lean toward using a B.O.B., since the load is then divided between two axles on something specifically designed for it. Trailers are not always a perfect solution, depending on terrain, traffic and other factors. That's why I continue to hang on to the elderly but stable touring bike I bought about a dozen years ago.

Incidentally, if you're really looking to do a lot of touring, you might want to check out the Adventure Cycling Association (
re: Cross bike for touring?adventurefind
Jan 9, 2003 12:39 PM
Thanks for the info guys. I do have a BOB, so if it shimmies too much with the panniers, I can always rely on the trailer. I have used the trailer for traning too. I have been lazy with it right now, but during the summer I attached a 25 lb. dumbell to it and would do my daily 37 miles from home to the RH Phillips Winery and back.

And yesterday I was asking about a CX specific susp. fork...but I think to keep the integrity of the frame I will keep my Gunnar as is. As for the rack, it's an adjustable Gary Fisher rack. Rather nice rack (heh!) and I can move it around to accomodate different sized panniers.
picture of a fred bikeadventurefind
Jan 9, 2003 7:42 PM
I know...ugh!
the only thing that I see wrong ...laffeaux
Jan 10, 2003 8:38 PM
Why do you need paniers while on a bike trainer?
nothing wrong ...adventurefind
Jan 11, 2003 5:54 AM
I put the bike on my trainer so I could adjust the panniers worry free. If I had them on my portable repair stand, the thing would have tipped over.

I also put a lot of stuff in one of the panniers to see how much the bag expanded.
re: Cross bike for touring?Max11
Jan 11, 2003 4:21 PM
How would you think your Crosshair would perform as a roadbike? I'm the guy who can't decide between a Crosshair and a Roadie. Is the Crosshair able to ride like a good roadbike or are there limits to it? My main concern would be the longer wheelbase but I don't know if that would effect the bikes agility or performance as a roadbike. What do you think?
it handles great!adventurefind
Jan 11, 2003 6:17 PM
it's a great bike. Very versatile. I see nothing wrong with it.
re: Cross bike for touring?flyweight
Jan 13, 2003 12:44 PM
I was using my Crosshair as a road bike and it was fine. I suppose if you're looking to race crits you might have some problems but that would be about it.