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Poseidon Redwood - weird, short stack

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Poseidon Redwood - weird, short stack

Old 05-12-21, 10:03 AM
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JWK
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Poseidon Redwood - weird, short stack

I was going to put this in the gravel forum, but this really isn't about gravel riding at all. It's about stack and reach and how the bike fits for its purpose. I was thinking about picking up one of these framesets for all-purpose riding. According to their charts and almost all other geometry specs, I fall right in the middle of their "large", as I usually do. With Trek, Specialized, and almost all other bikes I fall right in the size "58", with the exception of Kona, in which I take a "56", but the geometry is the same (stack and reach).

So on the Redwood size Large, the stack is 577 and the reach is 391. This is so weird. On my Surly DT, the stack is 606 and the reach is 394. This stack is a bit low for this size for a touring style bike as most Surly owners know. The S&R on my size Kona is 618 and 390. My GT Grade alloy from 2015 is 627 and 383. As you would assume, taller stacks and sometimes shorter reach for the touring, gravel, all-road type of bike.

So I looked at typical performance oriented road bikes in my size. All the stack lengths in my size were between 590 and 595.

So I don't get it, and I don't know if there's something I just don't know. The Poseidon Redwood in size large has a stack that is between 30 and 40 mm shorter than almost all gravel bikes, and more than 20mm shorter than present day performance oriented road bikes.

The fork is aluminum including the steering tube. Going by my bikes that fit very well for me, I would need somewhere between 60mm and 70mm of spacers under the stem. The rep at Poseidon said this wouldn't be a problem since the steering tube is aluminum and not carbon fiber.

I have never had to stack so many spacers. I don't know if I've ever seen so many spacers on a bike. Aside from the horrible aesthetics (IMO), is there any problem with this? That seems like a lot of leverage for that stem and handlebar. Would this present any potential problems for the headset bearings?

The frameset looks like a great all-purpose "beater" bike project, but it's not going to be worth it if that long steering tube with spacers above the headset is going to cause problems. I do my own wrenching, but I'm no certified bike mechanic.

Thanks for any info or advice.
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Old 05-12-21, 12:55 PM
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Yes, it is a very odd design that flies in the face of the current trend and average for gravel bikes. It is very much an outlier.
But everyone is different, so it will work for someone.

...and since its a low cost option, maybe many who will buy it dont know or dont care that the geometry is so wonky compared to the current trend and average.

As for spacer stacking- you can stack as many as you want on a metal steerer.
Do look into derailleur hanger availability though, just as a safety plan. The company apparently has told multiple people that they dont have replacements and have not offered up help on how to buy a replacement.
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Old 05-12-21, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Yes, it is a very odd design that flies in the face of the current trend and average for gravel bikes. It is very much an outlier.
But everyone is different, so it will work for someone.

...and since its a low cost option, maybe many who will buy it dont know or dont care that the geometry is so wonky compared to the current trend and average.

As for spacer stacking- you can stack as many as you want on a metal steerer.
Do look into derailleur hanger availability though, just as a safety plan. The company apparently has told multiple people that they dont have replacements and have not offered up help on how to buy a replacement.
Thanks so much for the two pieces of info, especially the deal with the derailleur hanger. I never would have thought of that. That makes me take a step back and think on it a bit more.
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Old 05-12-21, 04:29 PM
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Without researching the product's specifics - sounds to me like you need a new angled upward stem instead of more spacers.

However, if a bike has a short stack, then usually, the head tube is shorter.
Given the same stem (which is likely an impossibility across brands) the shorter headtube results in a more aero position.

So one question is: what does the stem do for hand positioning? Relative to your other bike choices.

And, if you upsize for more stack, is the reach close to the same? ...or made close with a simple stem change?

There is often more than 1 frame size that achieves a fit that meets your needs. Given your wrenching ability to swap components.
Or.
Maybe start with a good fit on the bike, by an educated eye.

Last edited by Wildwood; 05-12-21 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 05-13-21, 03:19 AM
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Certain frames will suit your proportions better. No right or wrong, or missing anything here with this frameset.

Rather than a tall-angled stem and/or a bunch of spacers, there is the other option of a riser (flared) drop bar. But that (taller rise) is another aesthetic in itself**.
These range in rise from 10mm to 60mm and taller.

**e.g. Veno Borderless carbon. Dixna Cross Neither.

Last edited by tangerineowl; 05-13-21 at 03:21 AM. Reason: txt
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Old 05-13-21, 08:04 AM
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This bike and the Poseidon X was getting a lot of buzz when I started looking at gravel type bikes again a few months ago.

I almost pulled the trigger and bought into the so call hype . I was looking at a large , the reach looked good but the way low stack was one of the main reasons I said no way , as I like higher stack and a more upright riding position on my bicycles that are not my faster road bikes. And those days are over.

And wish it was not only DTC bike as I would like to test ride one and see how it fits and rides.
Looking at just the bigger sizes , as I usually fit on anything from a 56cm to about a 60cm depending on the manufacturer . But I always go by the bike manufacturers geometry tables . And if I like the stats , I'll go test ride the bike or maybe even gamble and buy a DTC bike.

Lots of riders seem to enjoy this bike , it looks like the smaller sizes might fit better over the larger sizes.
This is not really a gravel bike , even though it seems it is built for mostly off road riding. Same can be said about some other brands. Maybe more of touring bike with low stack? Would like to hear from some owners how it handles going down hill on some loose gravel or dirt.

Might call it a gravel bike with geometry more gear towards riding flat on and off road?
The short HT , in most cases is going to put the stem further away from frame , making the bike especially more unstable going downhill on loose gravel or dirt. The the WB and trail look very good,

This stack might work for some riders. But you do not want to be adding a bunch of spacers , flip stem etc. to get the best front end handling stable off road bicycle.
And Poseidon is not the only so call gravel bike that has a less than ideal stack for some riders.

Last edited by Joeyseven; 05-13-21 at 08:56 AM. Reason: I'm going to clean this post up more later , when I have the time
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Old 05-13-21, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by tangerineowl View Post
Certain frames will suit your proportions better. No right or wrong, or missing anything here with this frameset.

Rather than a tall-angled stem and/or a bunch of spacers, there is the other option of a riser (flared) drop bar. But that (taller rise) is another aesthetic in itself**.
These range in rise from 10mm to 60mm and taller.

**e.g. Veno Borderless carbon. Dixna Cross Neither.
You're correct; no right or wrong here, but after looking into it even further I'll say it's the weirdest stack/reach ratio I've seen on any bike, regardless of the type of bike it is. I thought about the handlebar-with-rise solution (like the Surly Truckstop), but I really want a good handlbar bag. It doesn't work very well for that. Also, it makes the handlebars more or less proprietary for that particular bike.

Originally Posted by Joeyseven View Post
This bike and the Poseidon X was getting a lot of buzz when I started looking at gravel type bikes again a few months ago.

I almost pulled the trigger and bought into the so call hype . I was looking at a large , the reach looked good but the way low stack was one of the main reasons I said no way , as I like higher stack and a more upright riding position on my bicycles that are not my ride fast bikes. And those days are over.

And wish it was not only DTC bike as I would like to test ride one and see how it fits and rides.
Looking at just the bigger sizes , as I usually fit on anything from a 56cm to about a 60cm depending on the manufacturer . But I always go by the bike manufacturers geometry tables . And if I like the stats , I'll go test ride the bike or maybe even gamble and buy a DTC bike.

Lots of riders seem to enjoy this bike , it looks like the smaller sizes might fit better over the larger sizes.
This is not really a gravel bike , even though it seems it is built for mostly off road riding. Same can be said about some other brands. Maybe more of touring bike with low stack? Would like to hear from some owners how it handles going down hill on some loose gravel or dirt.

Might call it a gravel bike with geometry more gear towards riding flat on and off road?
The short HT , in most cases is going to put the stem further away from frame , making the bike especially more unstable going downhill on loose gravel or dirt. The the WB and trail look very good,

This stack might work for some riders. But you do not want to be adding a bunch of spacers , flip stem etc. to get the best front end stable bicycle.
And Poseidon is not the only so call gravel bike that has a less than ideal stack for some riders.
I share your thinking and approach. I bought a GT Grade 6 or 7 years ago sight unseen from jensen.usa because I knew geometry well enough at that point. I was right. The bike fit me like a glove. However, there were other things aside from fit I was ignorant about, so it didn't turn out to be the right bike for me. I've learned from that.

Now my approach is to check out the geometry, tire and fender clearances, and ability to carry racks and luggage. I try to determine how compliant and/or stiff the frame might be. Easy example: Kona Rove and Kona Sutra. Kona states right there on the website the tubing on the Sutra is thicker than the Rove. I now totally ignore how the manufacturer is classifying the bike, what they're calling it, how they're marketing it's use, etc. I only consider my own plans and purposes and do my best to weigh the trade-offs from all of that.

Pointing out the front end instability resulting from handlebars being too far from the frame is extremely helpful. I'm looking for a bike for long rides on very broken pavement, and gravel/dirt roads that go from very rocky jeep trails to gravel that is smoother than a lot of the asphalt roads. And yes, some of those very rough roads and jeep trails go up and down very steep hills.

You are also correct about the smaller sizes. I took another look at all the other sizes, The stack/reach ratio gets smaller as you go up in each size. One of my good friends just received a Redwood yesterday and sent me a pic. He takes a size small. He assembled the bike, adjusted the seat height and set back for himself, and put all 40mm of available spacers under his stock stem. As such, the handlebars are just a little below his seat. He said it feels just like a non-suspension mtb from the 90s with a little longer reach. He likes it. That is definitely not how a large would be for me with the stock 40mm of spacers under the stem.

In any case, the rear derailleur hanger issue that mstateglfr pointed out and the very short stack are deal breakers for me.
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