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I am fan of Kona's road lineup. The Sutra is very stable and solid feeling. It is on the heavier side compared to many touring bikes because of the disc brake setup and hubs. Depending on the climate and how much gear you're loading up, the disc may be overkill if your payload is light and the weathe is dry.

Kona frames can often be found for great prices because they are niche products that don't sell very well compared to their mountain bike lineup.

I know of a shop that has the blue Sutra and the bronze color ones for $400 frame/fork if you need a source. Size 54 or 60 left.

There aren't too many Kona riders here on roadbikereview. If you want solid feedback from riders, do a search on Flickr. There are several members over there that have posted touring photos and bike photos of their Sutra adventures. They can give you more feedback.

Try this flickr member:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tags/sutra/clusters/kona-touring-bike/
 

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Between these two models, the Kona has superior components. For touring, the included F/R racks are a nice touch too. Finally, I'm personally a fan of disc brakes for touring bikes. Not only will you have superior braking power during inclement weather, but there will also be less wear and tear on your rims. Having said all this, I'm assuming the Sutra is more $$$ though.

BTW, I noticed both your choices are brands popular in Canada. Assuming you reside there, another company to consider is Brodie. They have several solid choices in the "do-it-all" road bike segment. In particular, check out these two steel framed models:

ELAN https://www.brodiebikes.com/2009/bikes/elan.php


RONIN https://www.brodiebikes.com/2009/bikes/ronin.php

Hope this helps and good luck! :thumbsup:

-Paul
 

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The Surly Long Haul Trucker might also be worth consideration too at $1,100 USD complete.

Paul's comment about the positive aspects of disc brakes is worth noting. It is much easier in the long run to maintain because swapping out disc rotors is a snap compared to replacing a rim on wheel. The stopping power is unmatched.
 
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