Surly Krampus Upgrades…

Time for some blue bling...

Time for some blue bling…

I completed a couple tweaks to my Surly Krampus last year that I haven’t documented yet. With bikepacking trips getting scheduled and nice weather heading this way I figured it was about time to blog about the changes.

Blackspire 34T...

Blackspire 34T…

First up swapping in a Blackspire 34T chaining for the 36T unit I had on there all summer.

Made here!

Made here!

Always nice to use parts made at home. πŸ™‚

Having a lower bottom gear will help occasionally, but the real benefit is that it moves my entire gear range lower and allows me to use the upper 8-14 gears more often. This range only engages one of the two planetary gears inside the Rohloff so they are more efficient.

Surly Tugnut and long QR...

Surly Tugnut and long QR…

I already had a Surly Tugnut on the driveside of the bike.

Close up...

Close up…

But, I needed a longer QR if I was going to use a second Tugnut on the other side. This is a front OMM QR that fits great on the rear of my Krampus without a rack to mount.

Tugnut #2...

Tugnut #2…

The theory goes you only need a tugnut on the driveside to resist pedaling forces, but in practice I have found that what is happening is since the driveside is fixed when I pedal hard I am pulling the rear of the cog closer to the front of the bike which makes the rear wheel pivot on the single tugnut moving the non-driveside end of the QR forward. Given the fat 3″ tire and the relatively tight clearance between the chainstays this is a bad thing.

I did try a high clamping force Shimano XT QR and removing the paint to rough up the clamping surface. Neither worked. Using the second tugnut has solved the problem while adding a second beer bottle opener! πŸ˜‰

Maybe the Reba next?

Maybe the Reba next?

My Krampus is getting very dialled. That’s great because I can grab it anytime I have some touring to get done and know I have a solid rig to carry me through the adventure. However, it is fun to tinker a bit so I do have a couple projects that may see the light of day in 2014:

  1. Get some Surly 2.75″ knobby Dirt Wizard tires.
  2. Mount up the RockShox Reba RLT I had on the On One Scandal 29er.

Knard tires work pretty well, but they can get overwhelmed in muddy and/loose conditions due the lack of any serious knobs. Surly is about to release a 29 x 2.75″ tire that has more aggressive knobs and is slightly smaller although still pretty darn big compared to “normal” 29er rubber. I figure it’s the worth the $$ to try a set and see how they perform.

The because the Dirt Wizards are a tad narrower I shouldn’t have to modify the arch of my Reba to allow them to fit. At least that’s the theory! πŸ˜‰

I don’t feel like a suspension fork is absolutely necessary on the Krampus, but it’s paid for so why not see what happens?


12 thoughts on “Surly Krampus Upgrades…

  1. Funny, went down to 34t some weeks ago as well – for the same reasons. I started with 38t because the manual said so back then as it was the smallest chainring allowed. The changed it to 34t somewhen (without saying) and I find this to be the perfect match for a 16t Rohloff.

    You can turn the OEM plate another step counter clockwise if you want. Then the EX box is perfectly aligned with the chainstay. OR is there a reason you did it like this?

  2. I live in the PNWet…pointing the external gear mechanism down ensures that no water collects inside it.

  3. Any word on when those dirt wizards are going to be released?

  4. vik, I’m converting my Pugsley to a Rohloff hub. Is there anything special I need to consider regarding the front chainring ?

    • You’ll want to get a nice straight chainline. That depends on all the different components so it’s a trial and error process. I’d throw the hub into the frame with a cog on it and you can just eyeball where the chain rings and which way it needs to move.

      The Phil Wood BB I had in the Pugs had about 5mm of adjustment laterally. Some BB’s can be adjusted with spacers.

      Enjoy the Rohloff! πŸ™‚

  5. Vik,

    What’s the blue front hub you’re running? Is that a Chris King?

    • @Matthew – Hope. I buy Hope whenever I’m after new hubs so all my hubs are standardized and I can share parts between bikes.

  6. Hi
    Another Tugnut issue for you: I have the same set-up but with only a Tugnut on the driveside and I’m getting some slippage of the wheel, causing some tyre rub on the driveside by the BB. My mechanic advised moving the Tugnut to the brake side in order to stop the strong braking forces moving the wheel, plus switch the skewer to the other side to get a better clamping force. I’m trying to stay with only 1 Tugnut to keep the weight down.
    What do you reckon?

    • @Daniel – Try it, but I think you’ll just end up with the axle slipping on the driveside. As long as it doesn’t cost anything why not try it.

      If you get slipping order up a 2nd Tugnut and your problems will be solved! πŸ˜‰

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