Surly Long Haul Trucker

It all started after my Laos and Vietnam adventure when I knew I had to get something that was designed specifically for touring. I have to admit meeting the 2 Kiwis, Peter and Andrew, when I was in Vang Vieng did sway my decision to look seriously at a Surly LHT. Even my young friend Tzuo Hann, who cycled 29000km from US to Malaysia after he graduated, was a Surly fan. Surely his Surly must have been a great ride.

And so, after some research, I found out that the nearest dealer was in Singapore — a shop called TR Bikes. Well, nothing else to do but take a drive down to kiasu-land. And I did just that. In and out in a day. Together with the frame, I added a pair of fenders, a trekking bar, and a really neat (but heavy) Pletcher stand. I haven’t got round to using that, though. I’d probably need to shorten it a wee bit before I use it.

The initial setup — trekking bar, XT shifters and derailluers, light plastic fenders, 11-34 9-speed cogset, Ortlieb handlbar bag with a matching pair of Ortlieb Packer Plus panniers, Selle Italia Flite Titanium saddle and cheapo rear rack.

That’s what LHT stands for.
Notice anything different now?
Trekking bars are great but they’re not for fast riding. So I decided that for short rides, and for keeping myself in touring shape, I’d use a flat bar with bar-ends instead. I also installed an extra handlebar stem to exclusively hold the Ortlieb handlebar-bag. This would then free up the handlebar for the cyclo-computer and my GPS.
A ‘light’ fork…something I learned from the Surly owners’ group forum — just attach 2 headset caps together and bolt them into one of the front rack braze-ons

Thanks to my friend Yin who was on a shopping spree in Hong Kong, I’m now torturing my butt on this lovely honey-coloured Brooks B17 for the next 500kms or so… until it conforms to my butt’s seat-bones.

I just love that little touch of Surliness on the seat-tube clamp
It’s not referring to tourers who are generously proportioned — it’s about tyres.
What a Brooks saddle looks like from the rear … since the last 100 years or so.
The cockpit…complete with a neat little Zefal rear-view mirror.

10 thoughts on “Surly Long Haul Trucker

  1. i have been dreaming of a toruing bike for the past month and had been looking at Surly, Trek, Giant, Jamis etc…Surly had been my main focus. After reading your story, I do think Surly would be perfect for my needs and my dream of a long haul trucker touring. Thanks for sharing. Simon.

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