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I am looking at building my mom a commuter/get around town bike. Now her last bike (like 20 years ago) was a road bike and we live in Maine with unpredictable weather, rough roads and steep hills. So I want to build her a cross bike on a budget. Nashbar has a CX frame and fork that are disk compatible. I really like Trek's Portland commuter bike with the disk setup, and this is the direction I am thinking in. I'd get Tektro's Lyra brake set, but where do I find wheels?

Oh, and I am all for disks (or hydrualic rim brakes) on road or CX bikes, but I am 6' 2' and 220 lbs. Look, just because the Mt. Bike versions of those brakes are stupid powerful doesn't mean road and CX bikes will get the same brakes, or even should. That's what engineers are for. You can play with disk diameter, master and slave cylinder size (piston size) to get the appropriate braking force, modulation, and progression for the application. I read a review once of the Portland I think, that said the 140 rotors were very reasonable to use on the bike. But that's just me.

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velocity makes one of the few road bike disc-brake compatible wheelsets, the Fusion. You can always have a shop build something, just finding the 130mm rear disc brake hub is a challenge - although you can modify some mtb hubs to fit 130. Some models allows you to remove a few spacers on each side. A few cx frames have 135 mm spacing, but not sure which ones have disc tabs on them.

I believe American classic also has a disc-compatible road hub but didn't see it on their website.
OK, why a cross bike? Nashbar has a mountain frame as well. You could build that up with slicks and make it a very road worthy, weather defying ride. Going with a mountain frame may prove cheaper overall because of the increased availability of appropriate components.

If you want to go with a road frame, try your local Trek dealer and see if they can get you the Bontrager wheels that come on the Portland, but I'm thinking $300/set.
Ok, I'll bite. :D 1. Because, as I said, she is used to a road bike style. 2. A Mt bike would be over kill. She's not going to be hucking it around town. 3. The Cross frame is cheaper than any of the Mt frames in Nashbar. Not to mention the CX carbon fork is cheaper than the carbon Mt. fork. Sus forks are too expensive and unnecessary, and the steel rigid that is available would take her fillings out. 4. I have a Trek 820 SS commuter and it works for me, but, to me, Mt. Bikes have always felt sluggish on the road. 5. The CX bike would weigh significantly less. 6. The Nashbar CX frame comes with disc mounts, so the ONLY issue is scoring 130mm disc hubs. 7. Fashion. I like to think that all of the bikes I have build have a little "flair", a little something. And lastly 8. Because this is a CX forum we are on!

I will give the Trek dealership a call. Thanks.
Rich
I can agree with all your points. Just wanted to offer an alternative, I commute on both my cross, road and mountain bikes depending on everything from the season to my mood that day. The only reason I don't commute on the crosser more is it's a little too valuable to me to lock up outside the office. Good luck with the project!
Thanks! All opinions and alternative ideas are always welcome! I did not mean to seem rude. I write a little tongue-in-cheek and it doesn't always get taken that way. I also spelled stuff out for others that might read this thread later. So I hope you took no offence.

I haven't decided to start the project yet, but I am just gathering info. Of course being me this bike would have a Campy drivetrain. :D So far I have found that Vuelta, Velocity, and Bontrager all sell 700c disc brake wheelsets. Velocity does sell campy compatible, and Bontrager has a Campy conversion kit for their wheels. But right now you can't get any of them through dealers. I just called my local Trek dealer and they said couldn't get the Bontrager's right at the moment, but they were sure they were just out of stock for the moment. We'll see. I think Velocity is my best bet really.

So has anyone seen a Campy equipped CX with discs? Just wondering.
Thanks again,
Rich
There will be Campy compatible disc brake Novatec hubs on ebay soon. Or at least their Campy freehub. I just asked if he could get them, and the next thing I know I get an e-mail saying he's ordered them. Oh well.
So this conversation is out-of-date now, but I stumbled across it looking for something else and thought I'd throw in an opinion.

I used to have the bontrager 130mm disc wheels on my lemond, but wasn't particularly happy with them. The spoke count is low and, perhaps partly as a result, the rear wheel couldn't take what I served it. To be fair, I've used the bike on some fairly rough stuff. Still, I can't recommend them.

I replaced them by getting my bike cold set to 135mm and putting on 29er wheels. If I didn't get it re-spaced, I probably would've gone with the velocity hubs. But yeah, not a lot of good options out there for 130mm w/ disc. (BTW: i'm pretty sure the american classic website is correct and that there is no am classic 130 disc hub.. I called them asking that very question last summer).
Thanks for the info!

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