Hi Jim,

I'm sending a few photos of the Litespeed Appalachian cross bike that I'd mentioned. The bike is a 53cm frame, which is about my normal road size. But I wanted a comfortable fit, and I'm really not planning to do much technical stuff with it.

I bought the frame on eBay a couple of weeks ago, and built it up with some classic and modern parts, as you can see. The frame has a steel fork with a 1 inch threadless steerer. I'd guess that it's a 2000 model. Litespeed has discontinued this frame, and is now offering a compact geometry sport touring model in its place. I feel fortunate to have found this one.

I used a few of my standard tricks to build this bike. It has a compact wide-ratio double drivetrain with 28/42 chainrings and the guard from my Quickbeam mounted on the outer chainring plateau of a 110/74 BCD Shimano Deore XT crankset. This spins on a Shimano 113mm cartridge bottom bracket with a 3mm spacer under the fixed cup for a low Q factor and a correct chainline. The cassette is 11-28 8 speed, and the chainline has the big ring in the middle of the cassette where the 4th and 5th cogs give 63 and 71 gear inches, perfect for cruising. In top gear I have 103 gear inches, and the 28 ring and 28 cog combination gets me down to 27 gear inches.

Like that other bike you've seen, I set this up to ride in the 42 most of the time, with the 28 for steep and slow sections. The Sachs Quartz front derailleur and Shimano long cage rear work flawlessly with the 8 speed barcons. I mixed a low profile rear and high profile front set of Deore XT brakes, and I'm using Tektro CX levers with Shimano RX-100 aero levers. The bar is a 44cm Ritchey Biomax Pro secured with a Ritchey WCS stem. Pedals are Shimano M-540 SPD.

I just installed the Michelin Jet CX tires on these Matrix/105 wheels, and I think they'll work just fine for the mixed surfaces that I intend to ride. I might build up a set of tubulars for it just for kicks! The bike feels quite fast, and everything works really well. It all tips the scales at 22 pounds, and I think that it'll be durable in the long term. The Titanium frame and steel fork give a very compliant ride on those 30mm tires, too.

Regards, Ed


Litespeed Appalachian CX

Litespeed Appalachian CX - crankset
Litespeed Appalachian CX - headtube area
Litespeed Appalachian CX - nondrive side
Litespeed Appalachian CX - rear wheel


Current Classics Photo Gallery - Cross Bike Photo Gallery
Single Speed Garage Photo Gallery - Working Bikes & Practical Hardware

  Submit a CX Bicycle Photo