Hi, I am thinking about buying a used LHT that I would not be able to see or try before buying it. It seems to be a decent deal but I have some questions. I've heard for years that they are great bikes but have not ridden one myself. I am looking for a good quality road bike that will be comfortable for distance touring. So if you ride a Surly Long Haul Trucker, could you please mention what you like about it? Do you find it heavy? And if you ride the 52cm size, how tall are you?
Thanks, George. I appreciate your response and I had already checked the Surly website regarding the specs on wheels. I just felt like it might be a little personal to ask people to share their pubic bone height in a public forum. :)
What year is it? The components and colors other than black change every now and then. They're heavy, have a long wheelbase and don't have lightning handling. It can hustle if you have the energy and gearing - I've seen one of the lakefront crowd pretending to do a criterion on a Big Dummy with a six year old on the back - and you can attach fenders and racks to make it a good year round commuter. Most parts are Shimano bits that are easy to source and replace and there are plenty of chain rings and cassettes that can get you any gearing you want. It's sturdy and simple and cheap to run.
Loaded down for a trip it's very comfortable. It actually feels more like driving car with the extra weight. You won't be trying to go fast at that point and you can spend hours on it without being fatigued unless you're climbing a mountain or something. I've taken my 07 up to the campground at Illinois Beach, to Madison a few times (three day trips) and once from Pittsburgh to DC over the GAP/C&O trails in five days. Otherwise it's a slow-ish commuter but one I can ride in wet weather and carry everything in a pannier or two.
As with any bike the size makes a big difference. Go to a shop and take a look at an actual 52 to see if the one for sale would fit. With a list over $1,000 it's more than I'd pay for a new one, so hopefully it turns out to be a good used purchase for you.
I've been riding mine for years. I love it! Everyone I know who has one loves it! It's heavy and it's not fast but if you want to ride far and/or carry lots of stuff comfortably, it is great.
Thanks for the advice, you guys! I decided not to purchase that particular bike (or any bike I can’t try myself) but will look at the LHT when I do go to my local bike shop!