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Touring & Gravel (currently only road experience)

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Touring & Gravel (currently only road experience)

Old 05-19-19, 02:07 PM
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stepeasy
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Touring & Gravel (currently only road experience)

Hey All,

Found some great threads on here and decided to join. Had a Fuji Sportif 1.5D as my first road bike but was stolen some time ago. Currently in the market for a new bike and if you have time to offer any guidance it would be appreciated!

The Fuji Sportif was great, I know I do not want a more aggressive riding position than that. I felt a little stretched, but it was the correct size frame. It was smooth to ride but if I can keep vibrations down and comfort up that will put a smile on my face (I am not racing) Given some crappy roads in my area and just the potential for trying something new I am considering a gravel bike. Price point is a bit of a factor and I'd like to keep it under $1000. I have looked long enough and just want to get riding again.

Considerations are:

Fuj Jari 2.5, Fuji Touring, Raleigh Willard 2, Bombtrack Arise 2.

I am really eyeing one of the Fujis but placed the others there as it came up frequently in gravel searches and I don't want to be closed minded. Fuji has a lot of info on Geometry and I am curious if there is much of a difference in their "Adventure" vs "Touring" geometry? I am trying to maximize comfort and me wanting to be on the bike. I don't want to be straining to reach, Id like the ability to pedal around town but want to retain drop bars as an option. Not sure if the Fuji Touring will deliver a more upright situation the the Jari or is it pretty much the same?

Thank you for any and all pointers, I cannot post links yet so that will hurt with the price comparisons and specs for the bikes, but I am looking closer to the entry level side of things. All of these bikes I found for 900 or lower,
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Old 05-19-19, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by stepeasy View Post
Hey All,

Found some great threads on here and decided to join. Had a Fuji Sportif 1.5D as my first road bike but was stolen some time ago. Currently in the market for a new bike and if you have time to offer any guidance it would be appreciated!

The Fuji Sportif was great, I know I do not want a more aggressive riding position than that. I felt a little stretched, but it was the correct size frame. It was smooth to ride but if I can keep vibrations down and comfort up that will put a smile on my face (I am not racing) Given some crappy roads in my area and just the potential for trying something new I am considering a gravel bike. Price point is a bit of a factor and I'd like to keep it under $1000. I have looked long enough and just want to get riding again.

Considerations are:

Fuj Jari 2.5, Fuji Touring, Raleigh Willard 2, Bombtrack Arise 2.

I am really eyeing one of the Fujis but placed the others there as it came up frequently in gravel searches and I don't want to be closed minded. Fuji has a lot of info on Geometry and I am curious if there is much of a difference in their "Adventure" vs "Touring" geometry? I am trying to maximize comfort and me wanting to be on the bike. I don't want to be straining to reach, Id like the ability to pedal around town but want to retain drop bars as an option. Not sure if the Fuji Touring will deliver a more upright situation the the Jari or is it pretty much the same?

Thank you for any and all pointers, I cannot post links yet so that will hurt with the price comparisons and specs for the bikes, but I am looking closer to the entry level side of things. All of these bikes I found for 900 or lower,
I am looking into buying a second bike in a similar price range that is a drop bar bike. I also like the Gravel/Touring set up.. So.. I will share with you a about 4 bikes that are $1000 and under that I was looking at and considering.

Poseidon X $600 A great looking and equipped bike that is very customizeable and is decently light weight.. Internally routed cables, disc brakes and carbon fork an amazing buy at the price especially. I will be buying this one by the end of the year.. It seems to be the perfect balance of everything I want.

Aventon Kijote $600 Another great looking Bike at a good price, this one is geared High for road use with some gravel qualities.. I hear reviews that this one is very comfortable but a lil heavy.

Bikes Direct Gravel X3 $500 An awesome looking bike with so many damn mounting points for touring and very decently equipped for it's price.. Bikes Direct is the Off brand store that sells some bad ass Bikes..

Bikes Direct Omni Strada Comp $1000 Another Bike from this store that is a lil more High end.. It's gearing is more for road but can handle gravel..
Shimano 105 for most of it's drivetrain.. Has some mounting points for touring..
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Old 05-19-19, 02:38 PM
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I didn't list the Raleigh Willard because you had already mentioned it. I also looked at the Willard 2 and 4.. Both of them seem like Solid Choices.. That Willard 2 looks really classy.. I love the look of it..

Diamondback also has a good set up with their Haanjo Series of bikes.

Last edited by Juggy_Gales; 05-19-19 at 02:46 PM.
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Old 05-19-19, 04:40 PM
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There are many good hybrids that will serve as a dual role bike. i.e. road and gravel.
Myself, I am into bikepacking so my gravel bikes are mountain bikes but often set up a bit less stretched than my road bikes.
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Old 05-19-19, 07:34 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions, any thought on the Fuji Jari vs Fuji Touring concerning performance & geometry differences?
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Old 05-19-19, 10:56 PM
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Fuji Jari doesn't look bad..
I think the Touring seems like the best equipped between the two

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Old 05-19-19, 11:03 PM
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The Omni Strada Comp costs the same as the Fuji Touring but has much better parts on it.
And looks just as nice if not better.

The Omni Strada Comp gets you a Carbon fork a nice FSA Crank and the rest is all Shimano 105
and it's a 2x11 speed
For the price it would be very hard to beat.. $1000 for all of what it offers

Last edited by Juggy_Gales; 05-19-19 at 11:07 PM.
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Old 05-20-19, 07:19 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by Juggy_Gales View Post
The Omni Strada Comp
And looks just as nice if not better.
If one is doing fully loaded touring somewhere other than over flat terrain one would likely be replacing drivetrain parts on a new bike.

For those of you who haven't toured, you need to consider gearing carefully.

BTW...Claiming a low gear of 28x32 when the smaller of the two chainrings is a 34 makes no sense. I also don't see any front rack brazeons on the fork.

Last edited by indyfabz; 05-20-19 at 07:23 AM.
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Old 05-20-19, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
If one is doing fully loaded touring somewhere other than over flat terrain one would likely be replacing drivetrain parts on a new bike.

For those of you who haven't toured, you need to consider gearing carefully.

BTW...Claiming a low gear of 28x32 when the smaller of the two chainrings is a 34 makes no sense. I also don't see any front rack brazeons on the fork.
For fully loaded, the need for the front braze-on is obvious, good catch.

For those of us unversed in touring, are you suggesting that a newcomer should probably be looking at a triple if they're going to encounter hills and ride dirt with full loads? I'm reading between the lines on your post, and you seem to be suggesting there's no good substitute for a granny gear up front. That makes sense to me, but I'm just making sure I didn't make that up in my own head.
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Old 05-20-19, 08:01 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
For fully loaded, the need for the front braze-on is obvious, good catch.

For those of us unversed in touring, are you suggesting that a newcomer should probably be looking at a triple if they're going to encounter hills and ride dirt with full loads? I'm reading between the lines on your post, and you seem to be suggesting there's no good substitute for a granny gear up front. That makes sense to me, but I'm just making sure I didn't make that up in my own head.
Almost. It's really the achievement of proper gearing, regardless of how you get there. I don't pay attention to the latest thing, which is 1x gearing, so I don't want to eliminate it. It very well may be that one can get low enough gears with some 1x setups. Personally, I have no interest in the subject because, next to not having low enough gears, the worst thing is having steps between gears that are too large.

That Motobecane isn't gear much lower than my much lighter ti road bike, which has DA9000 with a low gear of 34x28.
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Old 05-20-19, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Juggy_Gales View Post
The Omni Strada Comp costs the same as the Fuji Touring but has much better parts on it.
And looks just as nice if not better.

The Omni Strada Comp gets you a Carbon fork a nice FSA Crank and the rest is all Shimano 105
and it's a 2x11 speed
For the price it would be very hard to beat.. $1000 for all of what it offers
? I struggle to understand how the Omni Strada Comp has better components.

The Omni Strada has relatively short chainstays, no front rack mounts, only 2 bottle mounts, and a woefully underwhelming and overgeared drivetrain for loaded touring. Its a completely different bike than the Fuji Touring, so comparing them is absurd. Just because they both cost the same doesnt mean they are comparable.
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Old 05-20-19, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by stepeasy View Post
Hey All,

Found some great threads on here and decided to join. Had a Fuji Sportif 1.5D as my first road bike but was stolen some time ago. Currently in the market for a new bike and if you have time to offer any guidance it would be appreciated!

The Fuji Sportif was great, I know I do not want a more aggressive riding position than that. I felt a little stretched, but it was the correct size frame. It was smooth to ride but if I can keep vibrations down and comfort up that will put a smile on my face (I am not racing) Given some crappy roads in my area and just the potential for trying something new I am considering a gravel bike. Price point is a bit of a factor and I'd like to keep it under $1000. I have looked long enough and just want to get riding again.

Considerations are:

Fuj Jari 2.5, Fuji Touring, Raleigh Willard 2, Bombtrack Arise 2.

I am really eyeing one of the Fujis but placed the others there as it came up frequently in gravel searches and I don't want to be closed minded. Fuji has a lot of info on Geometry and I am curious if there is much of a difference in their "Adventure" vs "Touring" geometry? I am trying to maximize comfort and me wanting to be on the bike. I don't want to be straining to reach, Id like the ability to pedal around town but want to retain drop bars as an option. Not sure if the Fuji Touring will deliver a more upright situation the the Jari or is it pretty much the same?

Thank you for any and all pointers, I cannot post links yet so that will hurt with the price comparisons and specs for the bikes, but I am looking closer to the entry level side of things. All of these bikes I found for 900 or lower,
Rather than worry about what a style of geometry is called, just compare the geometry of both.
The first pic is the Fuji Touring and the second pic is the Fuji Jari 2.5. Just compare the stack and reach frame measurements for your size. Stack is how high up the handlebars feel. Reach is how far out the handlebars are. These measurements are frame based, so they exclude variables like spacers or different seem lengths and allow you to compare 2 bikes on the part that cant be changed- the frame. Handlebars, stems, and spacers can always be adjusted to make a bike fit better, but the bones cant change.
In general, it looks like the Touring model has a higher stack and shorter reach than the Jari 2.5 so it would effectively ride more upright. But thats comparing stated size of one to stated size of another. Perhaps one model in size M is best while the other model in size L is best. This is the benefit of stack and reach- it normalizes differences in seat tube and head tube angles as well as other measurements to give a more easily comparable setup.





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Old 05-20-19, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
no front rack mounts
I use frame bags for my touring/gravel bikes. My first bikepacking bike had a suspension fork on it but the next one has a Lauf. On the front fork, I tywrap 2 water bottles on each fork. I have a custom EPDM tongue looking thing that keeps the bottles secured. In this early iteration, I was still using hose clamps. There are always options and one size does not fit all.

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Old 05-20-19, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by bakerjw View Post
I use frame bags for my touring/gravel bikes. My first bikepacking bike had a suspension fork on it but the next one has a Lauf. On the front fork, I tywrap 2 water bottles on each fork. I have a custom EPDM tongue looking thing that keeps the bottles secured. In this early iteration, I was still using hose clamps. There are always options and one size does not fit all.
For sure- there is no official proper setup for a touring bike. Totally agree.
I was simply listing the obvious ways in which the two bikes are different- and the lack of front rack mounts is a big one for traditional loaded touring...which the Fuji Touring is designed for.

As said- they are different bikes and shouldnt be compared.
Your style of touring is also different from traditional loaded touring.
None of the setups are right or wrong, they are all just different.
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Old 05-20-19, 09:13 AM
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Not to derail the thread. My touring is on environments like the Tour Divide. Anything from pavement to gravel road, to rutted jeep trails to horrid single track. It is also very minimal as the load out is concerned with a target bike and gear weight of around 45#. This is a full loadout sans water bottles on the forks.

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Old 05-20-19, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
? I struggle to understand how the Omni Strada Comp has better components.

The Omni Strada has relatively short chainstays, no front rack mounts, only 2 bottle mounts, and a woefully underwhelming and overgeared drivetrain for loaded touring. Its a completely different bike than the Fuji Touring, so comparing them is absurd. Just because they both cost the same doesnt mean they are comparable.
meh.. you may be right I grabbed the wrong Omni Strada anyway haha The one that I was looking at before looked similar but had more bottle mounts and a front rack mount for the front.. the Motobecane Gravel X3 has a crazy amount of mounts..

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Old 05-21-19, 07:27 PM
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Thank you all for this lively discussion! Appreciate the dimensions breakdown. I have been fitted on a machine at the Trek store when I had been in search for the Fuji that got stolen.. Consistently there and even at the store I bought my last bike they all reverted back to saying 56cm was just too small. I am too much a novice to be able to discern small increments unless it got uncomfortable, so I am just running with 58cm based on that. Looks like the Fuji touring has a higher stack and a longer reach? In reality Id probably love either bike and either would meet my needs, I just don't want to be reaching too far..
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Old 05-22-19, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by stepeasy View Post
Thank you all for this lively discussion! Appreciate the dimensions breakdown. I have been fitted on a machine at the Trek store when I had been in search for the Fuji that got stolen.. Consistently there and even at the store I bought my last bike they all reverted back to saying 56cm was just too small. I am too much a novice to be able to discern small increments unless it got uncomfortable, so I am just running with 58cm based on that. Looks like the Fuji touring has a higher stack and a longer reach? In reality Id probably love either bike and either would meet my needs, I just don't want to be reaching too far..
If you look at the 58 in both sizes(there is an argument that you shouldnt, but whatever) then the reach is 3mm bigger on the Touring bike. That difference is so insignificant it almost isnt worth considering. A stem swap will reduce the effective bike reach by 10mm. Handlebar reach varies by more than that much between models, so you could make up the difference with different bars too.

Basically, 3mm is so small i wouldnt give it much consideration.
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Old 05-22-19, 11:43 AM
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Consider a Jari 1.5

you can find them for around 1100 ish
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Old 05-27-19, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
If you look at the 58 in both sizes(there is an argument that you shouldnt, but whatever) then the reach is 3mm bigger on the Touring bike. That difference is so insignificant it almost isnt worth considering. A stem swap will reduce the effective bike reach by 10mm. Handlebar reach varies by more than that much between models, so you could make up the difference with different bars too.

Basically, 3mm is so small i wouldnt give it much consideration.

Thank you, the differences in dimensions often seems so small it's hard to determine what the actual impact on overall fit is. It is hard not being able to get to a store that has numerous models available to try out locally but I appreciate the help here.
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Old 05-29-19, 04:06 AM
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Marin Four Corners - standard. $1,000. Steel frame with a more upright position, especially if you flip the stem. Itís specíd for specifically for adventure, touring and gravel.

Last edited by Dr.Lou; 05-29-19 at 07:16 AM.
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