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Trek Domane 2020

Old 09-30-19, 07:25 AM
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Trek Domane 2020

Anyone using the 2020 Trek Domane as a gravel bike? I know it is very new, but I love the way it looks and it can take some massive tires, I think would make a great 1-bike stable.
Interested on owners reviews. SL5 would be my choice.
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Old 09-30-19, 07:12 PM
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It is okay for a mass produced bike that just about anyone can own, but maybe compare it to an Open or a 3T or a Bombtrack for something really special..
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Old 09-30-19, 07:31 PM
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This is the one I would get if I were in the market for a bike today. Trek nailed it as a road/gravel bike.

Officially rated for 38mm tires (it can take 40mm) is good more than enough unless you're riding on really chunky gravel.
IsoSpeed really works
Nice low bottom bracket for stability
Still has the responsiveness and acceleration of a road bike
Steering is on the slower side which is lends well for gravel and long road rides

It may be mass produced, but what you get from a big manufacturer is the r&d and engineering capability that comes with that.
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Old 10-01-19, 05:20 AM
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I understand the appeal of a more exclusive bike, and I never had a chance to own one, but if it is anything like cars and motorcycles, you actually would want the mass produced one for reliability.
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Old 10-01-19, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by rafazx10
I understand the appeal of a more exclusive bike, and I never had a chance to own one, but if it is anything like cars and motorcycles, you actually would want the mass produced one for reliability.
$2900 is some good cash to pay out for a bike- I certainly wouldnt listen to anyone that dismisses a bike(especially at that price) simply because of the name on the downtube. That cuts both ways- I dont value the opinion of someone who dismisses a Diamondback because its 'cheap' or whatever, and I dont value the opinion of someone who dismisses a Trek because its 'common'.
Then you get into something I REALLY wouldnt listen to- suggesting other brands which are small, because they are 'special', but without listing why they are special.
An OpenUP frame costs the same as the Domane you are looking at. It isnt much of a realistic suggestion.

Having a small brand name just for the sake of having a small brand name is fine and all, but its hardly applicable to the masses. All my bikes are small/uncommon brands and I get them because I like the geometry, material(s), and story. If someone cant or isnt willing to say WHY they value one thing over another, then is that opinion really helpful?

For what its worth, a Bombtrack EXT Carbon frame is $1150-1300 online, so its certainly affordable if you buy into it being special(for whatever unknown reason(s) its special). The full build is 1x and $3600, which is way more than what you presumably want to spend and a totally different style drivetrain. Not really a comparable bike to the Domane you are looking at.

Also, I wouldnt think twice about the reliability of a small brand vs larger brand because large brands have shown they definitely dont always get everything right before convincing people to spend money buying new products.

The Domane has some really interesting tech that could eventually become new standards of design(that some smaller brands then copy). Or that tech could end up going nowhere. The Domane is a comfort road bike that will be able to capably connect segments of pavement with smooth gravel roads.


***I have ridden a Domane for a whopping 5 minutes and it was on a paved trail. Not an owner.***
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Old 10-01-19, 09:31 AM
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I was really close to pulling the trigger on a new Domane for my "gravel" bike. I already owned a carbon Trek FX6S flat bar road bike, so I know the brand well. While looking around, I ran across the Niner RLT 9 RDO with full ultegra build for under $3k and pulled the trigger. After putting over 1000 miles on the Niner, I'm really glad I didn't settle for the Domane. The Niner handles gravel so much better than the compromise I would have made going with the Trek.
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Old 10-02-19, 10:14 AM
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Niner vs Trek

Originally Posted by csrpenfab
I was really close to pulling the trigger on a new Domane for my "gravel" bike. I already owned a carbon Trek FX6S flat bar road bike, so I know the brand well. While looking around, I ran across the Niner RLT 9 RDO with full ultegra build for under $3k and pulled the trigger. After putting over 1000 miles on the Niner, I'm really glad I didn't settle for the Domane. The Niner handles gravel so much better than the compromise I would have made going with the Trek.
I see that the Niner you purchased has Ultegra versus 105, better tires setup tubeless right out of the gate, but what other "comprises" are you referring to? Were you specifically looking for something with a little longer reach, more cyclocross type feel with regard to geometry?
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Old 10-02-19, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Craptacular8
I see that the Niner you purchased has Ultegra versus 105, better tires setup tubeless right out of the gate, but what other "comprises" are you referring to? Were you specifically looking for something with a little longer reach, more cyclocross type feel with regard to geometry?
The Trek is a solid bike, but after riding both, the Niner just felt so much more planted on the gravel. The 56cm size fit me perfectly. For the component spec of the 4 star niner build I scored for $2800, I just couldn't even consider the Trek. Sure, the down tube storage gimmick is cool, but I really didn't see that as a selling point.

The Domane SL5 falls into this price point at right around $2800. Besides only having a 105 group vs. full Ultegra RX80 on the Niner, I viewed the Stan's Grail wheelset on the Niner as an upgrade. I have the "iso-speed" decoupler on my Trek FS6S, and I find that the carbon seatpost on the Niner actually soaks up more bumps. Niner didn't skimp on any of the spec, including Shimano Ice Tech rotors. Lastly, the Niner comes in about 1.5 pounds lighter than the Domane.
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Old 10-02-19, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by csrpenfab



The Trek is a solid bike, but after riding both, the Niner just felt so much more planted on the gravel. The 56cm size fit me perfectly. For the component spec of the 4 star niner build I scored for $2800, I just couldn't even consider the Trek. Sure, the down tube storage gimmick is cool, but I really didn't see that as a selling point.

The Domane SL5 falls into this price point at right around $2800. Besides only having a 105 group vs. full Ultegra RX80 on the Niner, I viewed the Stan's Grail wheelset on the Niner as an upgrade. I have the "iso-speed" decoupler on my Trek FS6S, and I find that the carbon seatpost on the Niner actually soaks up more bumps. Niner didn't skimp on any of the spec, including Shimano Ice Tech rotors. Lastly, the Niner comes in about 1.5 pounds lighter than the Domane.

FYI your RD is not installed correctly, the direct link should be orientated as the pic below

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Old 10-02-19, 08:26 PM
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Not sure I follow you. The bike was built up by Excel Sports Boulder and it shifts perfectly. I’ll have to take a closer look at it.
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Old 10-02-19, 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Chi_Z
FYI your RD is not installed correctly, the direct link should be orientated as the pic below
For those of us who lack the ability to see black on black, could you specify what is wrong with the orientation on the purchased niner? Is it that the offsetting link is angled up instead of directly straight back?
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Old 10-02-19, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
For those of us who lack the ability to see black on black, could you specify what is wrong with the orientation on the purchased niner? Is it that the offsetting link is angled up instead of directly straight back?
the direct link should be horizontal with slight downward angle, that's where the stopper is located. With the link angled up, it is not stable and will slowly work itself loose.


Last edited by Chi_Z; 10-02-19 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 10-02-19, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot
That's funny I was just reading a thread on another forum where an Excel Sports Boulder built bike had a significant issue with improper rear derailleur installation. Pull the tech doc and check yourself, if I were you.
Thanks. Iíll get it up on the stand and take a look. I also have a Trek, but with 105, and the link looks to be in the same orientation as the Niner.
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Old 10-03-19, 02:21 AM
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It all depends what kind of gravel you want to ride. To some 38c clearance is all they want/need. Others want more. After riding my TCX in road mode with 28's for the last month or so I went out this morning with 45c WTB Riddlers and had an absolute riot floating around on single track. For me and the riding I do I looked for bikes with room for 45c's.

Assess your gravel needs, optimal tire size for those needs, then choose the bike that will fit said tires. There are a lot of choices out there for $2,900. Some aggressive some more relaxed.
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Old 10-03-19, 03:07 AM
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Originally Posted by rafazx10
I understand the appeal of a more exclusive bike, and I never had a chance to own one, but if it is anything like cars and motorcycles, you actually would want the mass produced one for reliability.
If this was true then Wal-mart bikes would rock.


btw, personal experience here, I really dislike Trek alpha aluminum. It rides really harsh and is dead.

on the flip side, the Niner RDO rode just like my supersix, except it was on 38 c tires.
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Old 10-03-19, 05:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Hmmm
It all depends what kind of gravel you want to ride. To some 38c clearance is all they want/need. Others want more. After riding my TCX in road mode with 28's for the last month or so I went out this morning with 45c WTB Riddlers and had an absolute riot floating around on single track. For me and the riding I do I looked for bikes with room for 45c's.

Assess your gravel needs, optimal tire size for those needs, then choose the bike that will fit said tires. There are a lot of choices out there for $2,900. Some aggressive some more relaxed.
My gravel needs arent too extreme right now. I have a Cannondale Slate rigid and it is more than enough for what I need. I actually have been doing some more road riding than gravel (its getting dark earlier with the winter and I dont have time after work to get to the gravel).
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Old 10-03-19, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Metieval
If this was true then Wal-mart bikes would rock.


btw, personal experience here, I really dislike Trek alpha aluminum. It rides really harsh and is dead.

on the flip side, the Niner RDO rode just like my supersix, except it was on 38 c tires.
The domane SL in a carbon frame not aluminum.
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Old 10-03-19, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by rafazx10
My gravel needs arent too extreme right now. I have a Cannondale Slate rigid and it is more than enough for what I need. I actually have been doing some more road riding than gravel (its getting dark earlier with the winter and I dont have time after work to get to the gravel).
With this new insight, yeah get the Domane as your road machine. Leave the Slate for really bumpy days. I use my TCX for both road and gravel duties. I would go one of two ways, first, buy a modern road bike with decent clearance, or two, buy a classic older frame and put modern parts on it. Think updated CAAD5 .

So yeah go with the Domane, that would fit well in a stable next to your Slate.
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Old 10-03-19, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Chi_Z
the direct link should be horizontal with slight downward angle, that's where the stopper is located. With the link angled up, it is not stable and will slowly work itself loose.

thanks, it's what I figured, but couldn't fully tell from the black on black picture.
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Old 10-03-19, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Metieval
If this was true then Wal-mart bikes would rock.


btw, personal experience here, I really dislike Trek alpha aluminum. It rides really harsh and is dead.

on the flip side, the Niner RDO rode just like my supersix, except it was on 38 c tires.
There is an obvious difference between big box retail bikes and LBS bikes, even if both are 'mass produced', relative to boutique brands.

I am certain everyone in this thread(except you, I guess?) recognize there is an obvious limit to the idea that mass produced bikes will be more reliable.
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Old 10-04-19, 08:56 PM
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Iím currently in the process of trying to pick a new bike. I keep leaning towards the Domane SL5 but for 1k cheaper I can get the Cannondale top stone and put 28 or 32mm tires. Such a hard decision
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Old 10-04-19, 09:11 PM
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If I was in the market for a new gravel bike I would sure look at this.

https://www.bikeradar.com/reviews/bi...on-pro-review/

As for now, I still love my "Old Turnpike"

Edit: thats the review for Carbon, they also make an aluminum for much less $

Last edited by Reynolds 531; 10-04-19 at 09:31 PM.
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Old 10-07-19, 03:46 AM
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Originally Posted by cma379
Iím currently in the process of trying to pick a new bike. I keep leaning towards the Domane SL5 but for 1k cheaper I can get the Cannondale top stone and put 28 or 32mm tires. Such a hard decision
What and where will you be riding this bike? Do you want a more on road oriented bike or a more off-road oriented bike. Top Stone is more relaxed off-road geo, Domane to me looks more on road. Do you need more tire clearance? Go with the Topstone, less? Domane.


Topstone and Domane are two very different bikes.
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Old 02-04-20, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by rafazx10
Anyone using the 2020 Trek Domane as a gravel bike? I know it is very new, but I love the way it looks and it can take some massive tires, I think would make a great 1-bike stable.
Interested on owners reviews. SL5 would be my choice.
I built a 2020 Domane for gravel. New to this forum so it won't let me post links. FFS.
Look in this forum section under "2020 Domane gravel build"
and also
ridinggravel.com forum under "bikes", same thread title for pictures
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Old 02-04-20, 06:16 PM
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Simply for your consideration, the SL6 has a better drivetrain and better wheels. I see the retail price difference is about $900 but I bet a good LBS could whittle that down to the out the door price difference of $500 or less.

Oh, and to your original question, the new Domane is rapidly gaining popularity as a road bike/gravel bike hybrid for those that like to do both.

Last edited by BengalCat; 02-10-20 at 03:50 PM. Reason: clarity
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