Thursday, September 29, 2016

Surly Cross Check

I finally found my next bicycle.  I have to reluctantly admit that I can quickly fall victim to the correct number of bikes to own is "n + 1 < d" with "n" being the number of bikes I currently own and "d" being the number that will end up in divorce.

I currently have a great road bike which needs a tune up and a great back-up road bike.  Over the past 5 years I have debated getting a triathlon bike, a mountain bike, a cyclocross bike or a commuter bike.  I obviously don't ride in those styles often enough to have pulled the trigger already.  However, with a great new bike path opening near the house and winter coming, I am ready to buy a Surly Cross Check.

I had considered the Colnago World Cup, Redline Conquest and frames by other manufacturers such as Specialized and Moots.  However, the versatility of the cross check has thoroughly won my heart.  Versatility is important as my back-up road bike has twice been built as a triathlon bike for a brief period was a fixed gear bike.

I reconsidered the Surly when I realized that the 2016 frame color was tangerine dream, which brought back fond memories of my first geared bike which was an orange Fuji.  I went as far as test riding back in July but had mixed feelings about the bar end shifters included with the build.  Back in 2013, I had actually priced out a custom build and it unfortunately was running close to $2,000 (a little steep for a commuter/trail bike).

Then I came across the Surly Cross Check Flat Bar offering.  This pairs the frame I love, with flat handlebars, bomb proof 32 spoke wheels with 41mm tires, a 1x9 drivetrain and even a rear rack.  The MSRP is $875 and The Bicycle Broker has been throwing in free Brooks B17 saddles with Surly Road Bike purchases.

Unfortunately at that price point the rest of the group set is pretty weak with Tektro brakes and brake levers, SRAM X9 rear derailleur, cassette and trigger shifter and a TruVativ crank.  I figure worst case scenario if I ride it enough, I will upgrade the whole drivetrain down the road.  I can also tack on niceties here and there.  I am not too excited about the Urban DeGray color, but that is much easier to overlook.

I got on the phone with the local dealer and was taken aback to find out they would not have any in stock until December.  I won't say that I am not disappointed, but this will definitely make a great Christmas present.

This will certainly make running errands, my once a year bike to work day commute, and riding with the kids more fun.  I may even consider doing the Racing Underground Winter Duathlon series.

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