Surly Krampus Build…

16 04 2013
Krampus in action...

Krampus in action…

I’ll hold off on a full blown review of this bike until the end of the summer so I can do it justice. Here is the build list for my Krampus for those who enjoy geeking out on such things.

Surly Krampus

  • medium frame [ST = 16.75″ Eff TT = 24″] & Krampus fork
  • sparkly bass boat green
  • Race Face Evolve 100m 6 deg stem
  • Race Face Atlas AM bar [730mm 6 deg rise 9 deg sweep]
  • FSA Orbit Z headset
  • Ergon grips
  • Alfine 11 shifter
  • Shimano SLX brakes [180mm/160mm]
  • Thompson Elite seatpost
  • Brooks B17 saddle
  • Shimano Deore cranks w/ 32T Race Face chainring
  • NRG Slabalanche pedals
  • SRAM 9 speed chain
  • Stan’s Flows rim + Hope Pro2 hub
  • Stan’s Flow rim = Alfine 11 IGH
  • Surly Knard 120 tpi tires + 29 x 1.75″/2.5″ tubes
  • weight = 31.5lbs

The medium framed Krampus has a long TT and short ST. That makes swinging a leg over the bike easy, but limits the size of framebag you can fit inside. I’m used to MTBs with less standover clearance [like my Pugsley] and I’ve never injured my man bits. 😉 I debated getting the large frame and using an 80mm stem to get a bigger frame triangle, but I decided the trade off of a longer wheelbase wasn’t worth it for our tight forest trails.

Click for Surly Krampus info page...

Click for Surly Krampus info page…

This is essentially the build kit from my On One Scandal 29er MTB transplanted to the Krampus. Surly very wisely didn’t go off the deep end with an obscure frame standard that would require parts nobody had on hand. Instead they made sure that if you have a 29er MTB you can swap your parts over to a Krampus and get rolling.

Ready for building up...

Ready for building up…

The main changes for the Krampus were a wider set of 710mm Race Face bars and a longer stem to dial in the fit. Even though the 650mm bars I used on the Scandal felt fine on it as soon as I sat on the Krampus I knew I wanted wider bars on this bike. The 730mm wide bars feel perfect.

The Stan’s Flow rims have an internal width of 22.5mm. They aren’t an ideal match for Surly’s 3.0″ wide Knard tire, but they are paid for and in my garage so I’m going to use them. So far they’ve been fine. I’m running tubes for now, but will switch to tubeless down the road when I move to some wider Rabbit Hole rims.

Enjoying the ride...

Enjoying the ride…

Click here for more Krampus photos.



15 responses

16 04 2013

Nice. Definitely curious about the review! … Includes comparison to Scandal and Pugs?

16 04 2013
Mike Lodewyk

Nice!! I wondered when you were going to show your faithful readers this! I’ve seen a mention of it on MTBR, so I’ll be interested to know how you like it, and how it works for you. Cheers!

16 04 2013
Micheal Blue

Man, you’re on the roll with the bikes. I’ve seen this bike at the Toronto international bike show in March. The cost made my eyes pop out – it was close to three thousand bucks. To be honest, I don’t get the point of having MTBs with unsuspended forks. Even a fat tire with lowish pressure cannot be as good as a good air suspension. So why?

16 04 2013

@Micheal – I put the parts from my previous 29er MTB so I just bought a frame/fork + tires. The Krampus complete is selling for ~$1850 in the US so I would expect the CDN cost to be $2000-$2100.

Suspension bikes and hardtails or rigid bikes are different. Not necessarily better or worse.

There is no suspension setup/maitenance on a rigid bike. They climb awesome as long as the terrain isn’t super chunky. Less stuff to fail on you far from help. They are cheaper and lighter than a compareable FS bike.

For bikepacking most FS bikes don’t have room inside the frame for a framebag which is where I would carry most of my heavy items on a tour.

Now if you tell me we are going to a place with lots of highspeed rough chunky terrain [ie. Moab] and we are going to stay in a hotel. I’m grabbing my 6″ travel FS bike.

If we are going bike camping some place that’s less rough, we aren’t going to bomb trails at mach 5 and we want easy to maintain bikes. I’d grab a rigid bike like the Krampus.

The compromise is a hardtail with a suspension fork that is the middle ground.

19 04 2013

Awesome bike! The Krampus looks like it was built for this type of adventure. Well done!

7 05 2013

Hello mate, nice subject, ie. Krampus build. I wonder if you can expand later as to your preference of Shimano or Rolhoff gear hub please? There seems to be a lot of demand for the Krampus, at least here in the UK they are extremely rare. It is appealing as a frame that can carry 3″ fats or stock 29er wheels as per your example and therefore act as a multi tasking bike for all seasons or reasons.
Good luck.

7 05 2013

Rohloff is the superior product if you can afford it. The Alfine 8 is quite nice for the price. I haven’t tested the A11 enough to make a solid recommendation.

21 06 2013

Hey, you used to have a pugsley for bike packing! And you said a lot of good things about it! Do you think this will be that much better? Was the weight of the pug too much? I am looking at getting a second hand pug, and want to know if I should just go for a krampus? Looking for a bike peaking rig!


23 06 2013
Chris Major

Hi there,

thanks for sharing this preview of your new build. I am about to put together a new build myself and it is a toss up between the Krampus and a Jones with diamond frame and truss forks. If you have anything to share that could help me with my decision I would appreciate it greatly.

Thanks again for the great content


25 06 2013

@Craig – I still have the Pugs and use it for bikepacking as well as soft conditions riding.

You can build a Pugs with 29+ wheels/tires. I had a 29er with parts I could use so the Krampus made more sense than the Pugs as the Pugs needs custom wheels.

The Krampus has a different geo than the Pugs. I wanted to try out that geo which I felt would be better for BC MTBing than the Pugs.

25 06 2013

@Chris – I had a 29er I could steal parts from and wanted to be able to run 29 x 3″ wide tires. That meant a Krampus was the logical choice. It’s also possible I could put a suspension fork on the Krampus. I’m not sure about that, but the frame has room for one.

I think Jeff Jones will build a 29+ frame at some point, but for now you are limited to the custom front wheel and skinny rubber in the back.

I’ve seen the Jones and the Krampus close up. They are both great bikes.

5 10 2013

Hi Vik

my friend is considering buying krampus size M
he already have troll 18″ and 18″ pugsley necro
I suggest him to buy medium Krampus but then I found your comment on MTBR (ECR thread) . you said that M is not the best choice for you.
he is 174cm and 83cm inseam if I’m not wrong it’s close to you?
What do you think about sizing krampus and ECR comparing to Pugsley.

5 10 2013

@Adam – first off most people will fit fine on 2 Surly frame sizes so as long as you get into the correct range you’ll be able to get it sorted.

I fit fine on a medium [Pugs, Krampus, Big Dummy, etc…].

I fit fine onto a large [Pugs, Krampus, etc…].

My reasons for considering a large Krampus aren’t because the medium doesn’t fit. It’s because the bigger frame triangle is beneficial for a larger frame bag and the longer wheelbase is nice for stability.

If I was mountain biking with my Krampus more than touring I’d prefer a smaller frame size for manoeuvrability and stand over.

I would get your friend to look at the effective TT on the frames he owns and the effective TT on the Krampus geo charts and pick based on that.

5 10 2013

You right, I found my self on 22″ or 20″ Pugsley. My preference vary on conditions and riding style.
But when I put rabbit holes on my 22″ Pugsley it feels much much bigger 🙂
I guess because of higher BB
fought it might be the same with Krampus or ECR they ar not typical 29ers.
Just for comparison, can I ask how tall are you and what is your inseam?
I think it’s somewhere on the blog but I can’t find that info.

5 10 2013

@Adam – I’m 5’11” tall with 33″ pants inseam. I generally don’t worry about stand over as a priority. My MTBs have mostly had limited SO clearance and I have never injured “the boyz”.

Ya I would expect a Pugs to be affected by 29+ wheels in a way the Krampus/ECR isn’t because they were designed for them.

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