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specialized tricross sport triple for touring?

jluscher2011-03-11 03:16:45 +0000 #1

I'm looking to buy a relatively fast commuting bike to get me around the hilly, often wet roads of Providence Rhode Island. t needs to be suitable for slush and snow as well. I also plan to take the bike on light tours--no more than a weeks worth of stuff. I'm a relatively lightweight rider--125 lbs, and would probably not carry more than 40 lbs extra.

I'm currently interested in the Masi Randonneur, a lightweight touring bike, and possibly the specialized tricross sport triple.

from what I've read these bikes are different in many ways including that...

the Randonneur is steel and the tricross is aluminum.

the Tricross is 2 lbs lighter, but weight is similar.

The randonneur has bar end gear shifters.

the tricross has a triple crankset instead of the randonneur's double.

both bikes have gotten very good reviews, and I have found places where I can test ride both.

Is the tricross sport triple frame suitable to do loaded touring trips, or should I stick to the touring bike?

lauraelmore10332011-03-11 03:28:06 +0000 #2
I have a Specialized Tricross sport, but couldn't speak to how suitable it would be for YOU specifically, but you might be interested to know that I weigh as much as two of you, and have put several thousand problem free miles on it. So, I'd say it ought to serve you well as far as totin' stuff goes. I actually have two of them, and one was outfitted with a rack in the back, no problem, and I'm pretty sure it has the hardware in the front for a rack as well. Personally, I can't imagine riding anyplace hilly without the super low gearing, but do sometimes wish I had more gears on the top end too.

Try one out and see if it fits you, by all means!!
NadiaMac2011-03-11 03:39:03 +0000 #3
I'm not familiar with the Masi, but I am a little surprised that a touring bike has a double chain ring, as usually dedicated touring bikes are geared more like a mountain bike-- triple up front and very large cogs (well over 30 teeth) in the rear. I echo the comment of the earlier poster in saying that those gear ratios are very welcome when you are climbing with a load. Note that by "touring" bike, I mean a bike where you plan to carry a load.

That said, I did a loaded tour (~50 pounds of load, kind of overpacked) in the canadian rockies on a standard triple geared bike and it was fine. I was a bit overgeared on the climbs (which went up to 15%) and very envious of my riding friends who had touring bikes are were spinning up the hills. I saw others touring on the tricross, which is a well regarded bike and a popular choice as a commuter bike as well.

One thing to consider is how extensively you plan to tour and whether you think you will be in fairly remote areas or not. If you will be in remote areas, the bar end shifters are easier to maintain and fix yourself, which is why they are popular on hardcore touring bikes. If you will mostly be in hitchhiking range of a bike shop, the tricross should be fine.



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