Custom Build - Surly Long Haul Trucker

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Custom Build - Surly Long Haul Trucker

Postby ls119 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 13:59 pm

*Custom Build Surly LHT – Which components to replace for Long Distance/Expedition Touring

I'm currently looking into purchasing a new touring/expedition bike and have decided on the Surly Long Haul Trucker for its strong reliable frame and low off the shelf price. I have only heard good things about this bike and feel it would be best for my needs and requirements and low budget for future long distance touring plans next year. However I wish to custom build this bike and am looking for advice on components I should perhaps consider for Long Distance Expedition Touring.

My current ambitious plan is to take a year out from work and university and to cycle tour down from the UK to South East Asia. How far I will actually get will be budget permitted of course, but ideally I need a bike strong enough that it can see me through a year of travels and being away from home and to be used daily through the different types of terrain I will encounter along the way.

Due to the type of touring I will be embarking upon I will be custom building the bike and to build to own specification to suit my touring needs, as the standard off the shelf LHT I feel won’t be fully up to the task. Things like custom wheel build, better suited tyres, new V-brakes, saddle etc are things I feel I need to change from the standard stock components.
I am fairly new to the world of bike touring so any further advice anyone can provide on this or components I should consider for long distance touring to this extreme would be most welcome. :)


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Re: Custom Build - Surly Long Haul Trucker

Postby ugo.santalucia » Thu Jan 03, 2013 14:15 pm

Wheelwise, you need a well built set of 36 spokes with some durable and serviceable hubs, some decent quality Shimano ones give you the best chances of finding spares along the way in case you need to.
Standard 14 plain gauge stainless spokes fitted with washers to extend fatigue life and a set of durable rims, wide enough to fit 35-38 mm tyres, which is what you need to carry heavy loads. Then you need to look for a hard wearing set of tyres... maybe someone can give you more specific advice there, as I am no expert in recent developments in touring tyres.
I think wheel-wise you are looking at 200 pounds or just over. Drop me a line, I think it'd be a very exciting project!

As for the groupset, stay away from fancy light stuff, and if you can, fit downtube/bar end shifters, that would be best. STI levers can fail and if they do, you're pretty much screwed

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Monty Dog
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Re: Custom Build - Surly Long Haul Trucker

Postby Monty Dog » Thu Jan 03, 2013 14:48 pm

For expedition use, I'd consider a hub gear too. In terms of brakes, tough call between Avid BB7 discs and rim brakes - one gives you the ability to stop in any conditions and zero rim wear. You'd have to consider carrying a spare disc if one got broken?
Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..

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Re: Custom Build - Surly Long Haul Trucker

Postby passout » Fri Jan 04, 2013 15:02 pm

Surly are good but also check out Thorn Cycles and Spa Cycles - good sources of info & products. Salsa make the Fargo & casserole that may interest you too. Good luck.
'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.

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