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The most exciting gravel bike for 2020 is...

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Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

The most exciting gravel bike for 2020 is...

Old 07-10-19, 11:25 AM
  #51  
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I'm sure we'll see the 46/30 GRX stuff on most of the 2021 bikes that fall into the 105 price point. I see that the new BMC gravel bike announced today has two tiers spec'd with it (one Di2, one mech).
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Old 07-11-19, 08:57 PM
  #52  
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Has anyone mentioned the BMC URS?

https://www.bmc-switzerland.com/models/gravel/urs.html
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Old 07-12-19, 08:27 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by Trekathlete View Post
This is an interesting bike. I like how the cables route through the stem and head tube.

They aren't giving them away though.


-Tim-
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Old 07-12-19, 02:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Trekathlete View Post
URS, standing for UnReStricted. This is a perfect example of my earlier post on gravel bike gearing. The 1x drivetrain on this entire line, IMO would feel somewhat restricted on tarmac descents. The best top gearing on the URS line is 38 x 10 which gives you a 3.8:1 ratio. That will leave you wanting more if you ever venture off the gravel onto tarmac. And then there is the price
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Old 07-12-19, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by medic75 View Post
URS, standing for UnReStricted. This is a perfect example of my earlier post on gravel bike gearing. The 1x drivetrain on this entire line, IMO would feel somewhat restricted on tarmac descents. The best top gearing on the URS line is 38 x 10 which gives you a 3.8:1 ratio. That will leave you wanting more if you ever venture off the gravel onto tarmac. And then there is the price
I agree with this. I like how Cannondale went full two-ring on all of the new carbon Topstones, but just a little more compact that the standard Shimano compact cranksets.

But this again shows the split in what people want in a gravel bike, with many riding on well-groomed smoother gravel roads in the midwest and east coasts, and some people in the mountain west wanting something closer to an XC mountain bike (yes, those geographic generalizations are not always accurate). I personally prefer a gravel bike that is closer to a road bike.
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Old 07-12-19, 04:32 PM
  #56  
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BMC pricing is a mystery to me. I worked at a shop for 3+ years that sold BMC and while it's absolutely a boutique brand, I could never wrap my head around while someone was paying so much more for a BMC (we also sold Giant). At the end of the day, I sold them what they wanted, even if it didn't always align with my recommendations.

I know our warranty guys aren't big fans.

But I agree that a 50/34 with an 11-28 or 11-32 is odd for a gravel bike. Shimano was way late to the game, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that GRX is a big success for them. Then again, we've done pretty good with aftermarket crank solutions and we've solid more 11-36 cassettes this year than the two previous years.
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Old 07-12-19, 07:24 PM
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Unfortunately it looks like 2020 Specialized diverge will be very similar to current model - no big changes.
https://www.chainreaction.co.nz/prod...9709aa3a&_ss=r

So the last big question is what will Jamis do with its renegade series for 2020?

I think that we should also add to this thread a new pivot vault which is somehow similar to open wi.de. with its both chainstays dropped. It clears 700x47 tire while maintaining 420 mm chainstay length (again like open wi.de. ). And it has a patent pending seatpost inserts to improve comfort. But the PRICE - yet again just like wi.de. - is HUGE.

Last edited by sweetspot; 07-12-19 at 07:46 PM.
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Old 07-12-19, 07:35 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
I think for a “regular” gravel bike 46/36 with 11-34 cassette is just about ideal.
Originally Posted by softreset View Post
But I agree that a 50/34 with an 11-28 or 11-32 is odd for a gravel bike. Shimano was way late to the game, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that GRX is a big success for them. Then again, we've done pretty good with aftermarket crank solutions and we've solid more 11-36 cassettes this year than the two previous years.
Curious about this. It seems you get more range from a 50x34 than a 46x36. 34x34 would get you to 1to1 gearing. And a 50 x 11 gets you a little more speed on the downhills and maybe a touch faster on the tarmac for the ride back to the house.

Just wondering why 46/36 is popular with gravel.

-Sean

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Old 07-12-19, 07:41 PM
  #59  
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Ridley Kanzo (Not the electric version) looks like a winner with all the Bosses and 47mm clearance with an option for 650b.

Anyone seen this bike anywhere? Seems like a Unicorn?

Kanzo Gravel Bike

Seems a little bit more bike for the buck.

-Sean
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Old 07-12-19, 09:21 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by Wilmingtech View Post
Curious about this. It seems you get more range from a 50x34 than a 46x36. 34x34 would get you to 1to1 gearing. And a 50 x 11 gets you a little more speed on the downhills and maybe a touch faster on the tarmac for the ride back to the house.

Just wondering why 46/36 is popular with gravel.

-Sean
Because it was an off the shelf solution with known characteristics and a developed product chain due to cyclocross racing. This made it popular with manufacturers. It works well for gravel because the 46 ring is big enough for a lot of riders to stay in for most rolling terrain, the 36 small enough for most long climbs and the 10t chainring jump allows 1 click double clutch to step down into the lower range while keeping close to the same cadence.

16 teeth is too big of a jump and both the 50t and the 34t ring are the wrong sizes for riding by themselves in most terrain. Cadence gets all blown to hell trying to drop to the little ring and then downshift twice to get to the next lowest gear and also the lower range. To say nothing of most riders being unable to get much additional performance out of greater than 90 gear inches.



1x marketing made everything think overlap was a bad thing when it's actually very good and makes for smoother shifting on inconsistent rolling terrain or terrain with significantly difference power requirements based on road surface - a fair amount of gravel in most areas.

Regardless, I think gearing is a fine science that has been under appreciated since the widespread popularity of integrated shifters. The difference in cog choice in the rear can have a significant effect on both enjoyment and performance for a lot of riders. And to a smaller extent the front as well. Gravel has really brought the focus back to choosing specific gearing options for rider preference, riding style, tire/wheel size and terrain.
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Old 07-13-19, 12:31 AM
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Spoon covered all the bases (thanks for the visual as well). For the type of riding I do and my level of fitness, I've never ridden in my 50/11. Heck, I don't know if I've even gone down to my 50/13. Often times I'm still recovering from whatever misery I just experienced going up said hill to get a decent to warrant such a gear. I'll free spin to relieve some lactic burn but I'm usually ambivalent on setting downhill speed records. I'm a bigger dude so I've got gravity going and whatever free momentum I'll get on the next roller by such a high speed is usually scrubbed by my own physical exhaustion.

I live where it's real flat but I have some real grinders within 20 miles of riding and as a result I can usually do 90% of my usual rides in the 46 ring with the occasional dip down to the 34. To continue on spoon's point the transition is less jarring, it's just a convenience factor.
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Old 07-13-19, 05:02 AM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by Wilmingtech View Post
Just wondering why 46/36 is popular with gravel.
46/36 was the go-to setup for cyclocross bikes. Having never raced cyclocross, I have no experience with how well it worked. When gravel bikes started to become a thing, bike manufacturers took what was available and used it. My bike came with 46/36 and an 11-32 cassette. It was not ideal at all. My LBS managed to find a 32t inner chainring for me that got me down to 1:1 gearing. This was an improvement, but still left me wanting more on some larger climbs. RD capacity also comes into play here. The release of 46/30 subcompact cranks will max out the 37T capacity of an ultegra RD. The release of the GRX groupset, with a 40T capacity, is very welcoming.
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Old 07-13-19, 06:31 AM
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Originally Posted by medic75 View Post
46/36 was the go-to setup for cyclocross bikes. Having never raced cyclocross, I have no experience with how well it worked. When gravel bikes started to become a thing, bike manufacturers took what was available and used it. My bike came with 46/36 and an 11-32 cassette. It was not ideal at all. My LBS managed to find a 32t inner chainring for me that got me down to 1:1 gearing. This was an improvement, but still left me wanting more on some larger climbs. RD capacity also comes into play here. The release of 46/30 subcompact cranks will max out the 37T capacity of an ultegra RD. The release of the GRX groupset, with a 40T capacity, is very welcoming.
If you needed a lower gear than a 36T in CX....you were always best served by dismounting and running up. Either due to the gradient, or due to mud and lacking traction.


A CX race is all of 45 minutes to an hour with a few laps, at basically your redline. Not a gravel grinder that is 6 to 12 hours long.
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Old 07-13-19, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by sweetspot View Post


Cool. Can you tell me how comfortable this bike is on rough surfaces? And how do you evaluate tire clearance? Do you think that there is a possibility to put 700c 50 tire? The 425 dropped chainstay is very similar to G1 from walmart and their bike takes even 51c...
Comfort is hard to evaluate. Built-in compliance without elastomers/micro suspension can only go so far. Is it better than others in the same class? Maybe, but if so only incrementally.

Legit 50mm tires? Fork, maybe. Rear? I doubt it.
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Old 07-15-19, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by softreset View Post
I've never ridden in my 50/11.
See, I use my 50x11 every second to third ride. Michigan is generally somewhere between fairly to really flat, but there are some hilly spots and where I live we have plenty of short to medium rollers and there are some great drops. The dirt roads can get pretty steep in places and whenever I see a 8% or so descent I can't help myself and the legs nearly always have one good fast descent in them. The 50x11 is needed to break 40mph because while I can spin higher, my power is falling off at 110 cadence and I pick up speed when I move from the 12 to the 11T. Whatever tiny bit of extra weight I'm carrying in the 11T is 1,000% worth it for those downhills.


Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
16 teeth is too big of a jump and both the 50t and the 34t ring are the wrong sizes for riding by themselves in most terrain. Cadence gets all blown to hell trying to drop to the little ring and then downshift twice to get to the next lowest gear and also the lower range. To say nothing of most riders being unable to get much additional performance out of greater than 90 gear inches.
To each his own I guess. With the constraint of a 50x11 top gear (see above), I "live with" a 16T chainring jump. There is still PLENTY of overlap in the gearing even then. To me, it's pretty practiced when moving up the chainring to push both shifters at the same time, going up 2-3 cogs, or to tap both shifters simultaneously, followed by 1 or 2 more taps on the right when moving to the small ring. Any cadence disruption is limited to one pedal stroke.
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Old 07-15-19, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Wilmingtech View Post
Curious about this. It seems you get more range from a 50x34 than a 46x36. 34x34 would get you to 1to1 gearing. And a 50 x 11 gets you a little more speed on the downhills and maybe a touch faster on the tarmac for the ride back to the house.

Just wondering why 46/36 is popular with gravel.

-Sean
My Revolt came with 48/32, 11-34, and it's been pretty much perfect for what I do around here. No problem keeping up with fast groups on the pavement, and plenty of gear for the climbs I've encountered so far.
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Old 07-15-19, 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Caliper View Post
To each his own I guess. With the constraint of a 50x11 top gear (see above), I "live with" a 16T chainring jump. There is still PLENTY of overlap in the gearing even then. To me, it's pretty practiced when moving up the chainring to push both shifters at the same time, going up 2-3 cogs, or to tap both shifters simultaneously, followed by 1 or 2 more taps on the right when moving to the small ring. Any cadence disruption is limited to one pedal stroke.
I don't believe there's a set-up that can accommodate that many shifts within one pedal stroke, unless you're slow rolling at 40 rpm or something. That's a stretch even for Di2 with a new chain.
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Old 07-15-19, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
I don't believe there's a set-up that can accommodate that many shifts within one pedal stroke, unless you're slow rolling at 40 rpm or something. That's a stretch even for Di2 with a new chain.
It's all done as one shift, not separate ones. Again I said cadence disruption, I'm not sure how long the entire shift takes but there's only one disrupted pedal stroke.

Going up push both paddles in simultaneously. The chain is around the gears in a half turn of the crank and a half turn of the wheel. Since you've moved both at the same time the cadence either stays even or moves as much as a typical single cog change.

Going to the small ring it's 2-3 clicks on the right with the left going at the same time as the first rear shift. Three fast clicks of the shifter takes less than a second and again the chain is where it's going very quickly. There's a touch of freewheeling in the middle of the shift as the derailleur catches the chain tension up but that's it.
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Old 07-16-19, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Because it was an off the shelf solution with known characteristics and a developed product chain due to cyclocross racing. This made it popular with manufacturers. It works well for gravel because the 46 ring is big enough for a lot of riders to stay in for most rolling terrain, the 36 small enough for most long climbs and the 10t chainring jump allows 1 click double clutch to step down into the lower range while keeping close to the same cadence.

This makes sense... keeping the GI closer for a fast paced multi-surface race with challenging terrain.

16 teeth is too big of a jump and both the 50t and the 34t ring are the wrong sizes for riding by themselves in most terrain. Cadence gets all blown to hell trying to drop to the little ring and then downshift twice to get to the next lowest gear and also the lower range. To say nothing of most riders being unable to get much additional performance out of greater than 90 gear inches.

True on the gravel and the cyclocross track, but 95% of us are riding on paved surfaces as well. Throw in some downhills on the paved surface and we all spin out.

1x marketing made everything think overlap was a bad thing when it's actually very good and makes for smoother shifting on inconsistent rolling terrain or terrain with significantly difference power requirements based on road surface - a fair amount of gravel in most areas.

Agree overlap in a smaller range keeps the GI closer and on a slippery gravel surface it's much easier to keep the bike under you if your cadence when you drop to the small ring isn't going from pushing to spinning.

Regardless, I think gearing is a fine science that has been under appreciated since the widespread popularity of integrated shifters. The difference in cog choice in the rear can have a significant effect on both enjoyment and performance for a lot of riders. And to a smaller extent the front as well. Gravel has really brought the focus back to choosing specific gearing options for rider preference, riding style, tire/wheel size and terrain.
I think the thing we over look here is that 1x is a thing when you get off the tarmac. I totally see the benefits of a 1x setup when navigating mountainous terrain, not having to shift the front nor think about the chain dropping.

When I got my gravel bike it came with a 46/36 up front and an 11-28 in the rear and it really made me scratch my head thinking about gearing. (I truly enjoy the science of gearing)

As I worked through the options I started to think about what gearing I would go for in the terrain I ride if I had a 1x setup. Ultimately I think a 38x12/40 would be the sweet spot where I live (in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest). On the 700c wheels it would range from 90gi on the top end and 25gi at the bottom.

If I started with a 34x11/30 I wouldnt have to change the derailleur. I already have the 36t chainring that came with the bike and if I changed out the derailleur cage I could throw an 11/36 on the back get close to my 90 on the high end and have a 1/1 or close to 27gi on the high end. One step away from the ultimate goal of 38x40.

This is all while keeping the big ring on the bike. So now I got options for the Tarmac getting to and from the gravel rides and still being able to pace with guys I ride road with as well, at least for the shorter 30-40 mile rides.

So its the best of both worlds. On the gravel I ride 1x and on the tarmac I can put the hammer down with plenty of options for climbing.

I also think riding gravel (Think Dirty Kanza) and racing cx call for 2 completely different setups. Gravel being the topic here is geared (Haha, I crack myself up) more towards longer off road rides at a slower pace than cx with a lower frequency of shifts.


Originally Posted by Rides4Beer View Post
My Revolt came with 48/32, 11-34, and it's been pretty much perfect for what I do around here. No problem keeping up with fast groups on the pavement, and plenty of gear for the climbs I've encountered so far.
This to me makes a little more sense to the masses than a 46/36, 11/28 or 30. Slightly wider range and better to pull those squirrely loose gravel climbs with.

You'll run out on the downhills in a 32x11 though, even in offroad dirt or gravel

Originally Posted by Caliper View Post
It's all done as one shift, not separate ones. Again I said cadence disruption, I'm not sure how long the entire shift takes but there's only one disrupted pedal stroke.
The point he is making is the gear inches. The gear inches between shifts are much tighter. When you hit a hill you can just drop to the little ring and when the incline ramps right up, you dont even have to shift the rear. It keeps you from over spinning as well as having to make shifts to both front and rear.

And I get what you are saying about doing it all in a single revolution, I do this as well when I ride but in racing it just isnt ideal on an all out pedal mashing hitting a hill and crunching the chain hoping it doesnt slack or slip.

-Sean
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Old 07-17-19, 07:39 AM
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I've never run a 46/36, and as someone who needs lower gearing that you can "officially" get from a 50-34 (i.e. 1:1), I used to dismiss it out of hand due to the larger small ring. But as I think about it, it does make some sense:

1) Can easily adapt just about any compact crankset to this gearing, unlike 46/30
2) Smaller jump between chainrings means better front shifting and less jarring cadence shifts for the rider

and, for low gearing fans, this is the counter-intuitive part:

3) Can take that extra 6T of capacity that you saved on the front, and apply it to the rear. So, using the same RD, possibly with the help of a RoadLink, you can now run at least an 11-40 cassette and still not exceed the official chain wrap capacity of the RD. Or you could push it a little and go 46/34. Even lower gearing and one less new chainring to buy.

Like I said, I've never tried it, and now that 46/30 cranks are becoming more mainstream I may never, but I do like the idea of a smaller chainring shift in the front, more like a compact triple (except I can't use a triple with my Di2!). I also don't have the facility with gearing science that some here do, so maybe there are other weaknesses in the shift progression that I haven't thought about.
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Old 07-17-19, 09:02 AM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by Metaluna View Post
I've never run a 46/36, and as someone who needs lower gearing that you can "officially" get from a 50-34 (i.e. 1:1), I used to dismiss it out of hand due to the larger small ring. But as I think about it, it does make some sense:
Bonus- you can change the 36t ring to an Ultegra 34t ring for about $12 off ebay.
So you get a bit smaller ring in the front, you retain the quick shifts of the tight ring difference, and you can get away with a slightly smaller cassette if possible(depends on the user, obviously).
46/34 is what I use and love it for the fast shifts(among other things).
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Old 07-19-19, 12:55 AM
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New Specialized
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Old 07-19-19, 04:13 AM
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Originally Posted by bianchibike View Post
New Specialized
maybe I should add: most exciting for a mere mortal

But indeed new Electric spec is fantastic!
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Old 07-19-19, 06:46 AM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by sweetspot View Post
maybe I should add: most exciting for a mere mortal

But indeed new Electric spec is fantastic!
Oops, I think you meant to post this here- https://www.bikeforums.net/electric-bikes/
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Old 07-19-19, 07:05 AM
  #75  
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Posts: 14,784

Bikes: 2018 Rodriguez Custom Fixed Gear, 2017 Niner RLT 9 RDO, 2015 Bianchi Pista, 2002 Fuji Robaix

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The Cervelo Aspero has generated some excitement.

For me it is the Niner MCR. I would like to see how this thing actually rides in the wild. No plans to buy one but I'd like to test ride one for sure.
TimothyH is offline  

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