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Do I need a gravel bike?

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Do I need a gravel bike?

Old 01-04-17, 10:47 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
It's a Vroomen 3T bike - the Exploro (cheesy name, sweet bike).
Looked almost like the Rodeo TrailDonkey 2.0 until I looked closer

Except with zero braze on points on the front/rear forks....less tire clearance (same old CX cap at 40mm in 700C)...and really short chainstays (415mm???). And being 3T it of course costs more
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Old 01-05-17, 12:12 AM
  #77  
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Since everyone is posting their gravel bike glamour shots, here's mine. I just got my ibis a month ago and I've stopped riding my mountain and road bikes. It's such a fun bike. I'm running tubeless 40's on front, 35's on back at 25 psi. It's been fast on the road and some easy singletrack.
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Old 01-05-17, 07:09 AM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
Looked almost like the Rodeo TrailDonkey 2.0 until I looked closer

Except with zero braze on points on the front/rear forks....less tire clearance (same old CX cap at 40mm in 700C)...and really short chainstays (415mm???). And being 3T it of course costs more
It's more purpose-built for speed. They wanted to keep the chainstays short for nimble handling, hence the limit to 40s. If you want fatter, the frame can be run with 650s.

The Exploro Team frameset is $3k. At ~$2600, the TD2.0 isn't exactly welcoming the huddled masses with open arms, in comparison.
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Old 01-05-17, 08:41 AM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Very cool that you recognized it. This gravel road connects to the Colorado Trail and a few hundred miles of it actually. It's a gem of an area. There are mountain lions in the area beyond the gravel road but they only become active in the evening. Don't ask me how I know. I don't do solo late evening mtn bike rides there anymore.
Is this just south of Chatfield Res? I live in central Denver so by the time I can drive out there, I could have been MTB riding on the number of parks from Golden to Evergreen (Three Sisters, Apex, Lair, White Ranch etc) in less driving time. If I rode out there, I would have 75-80 miles on the bike committed round trip before I even hit gravel. I can see it being awesome living in Ken Caryl for it though.
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Old 01-05-17, 09:23 AM
  #80  
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Originally Posted by topslop1 View Post
I don't know what that is, but I like it.
That would be the new bike by 3T. Now they make frames as well as wheels and forks, etc. That bike is supposed to be an aero gravel bike. Design is by Gerard Vroomen who was the co-founder of Cervelo.
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Old 01-05-17, 10:03 AM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by jitteringjr View Post
Is this just south of Chatfield Res? I live in central Denver so by the time I can drive out there, I could have been MTB riding on the number of parks from Golden to Evergreen (Three Sisters, Apex, Lair, White Ranch etc) in less driving time. If I rode out there, I would have 75-80 miles on the bike committed round trip before I even hit gravel. I can see it being awesome living in Ken Caryl for it though.
Yes, it is just south of Chatfield, and connected to it by a gravel road. There are also a string of trails all over Chatfield. When we were buying our house back in 2009, that was the primary criteria...really good access to road and mtn biking right from the house, low traffic, and no ghetto or crowded neighborhoods. So there was Roxborough, Ken Caryl, and Golden. We decided on Ken Caryl, and I have never regretted it, though I'd live in Boulder too.
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Old 01-05-17, 10:21 AM
  #82  
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Originally Posted by wallrat View Post
Since everyone is posting their gravel bike glamour shots, here's mine. I just got my ibis a month ago and I've stopped riding my mountain and road bikes. It's such a fun bike. I'm running tubeless 40's on front, 35's on back at 25 psi. It's been fast on the road and some easy singletrack.
Great picture...where is that? I find myself riding the cross bike more but still prefer the road bikes if just on pavement and the cross bike is no good on our real MTB trails or the backcountry MTB trails. I'll seek out some long gravel rides this year though. I know of some fire roads that go into the mountainous backcountry pretty far. I prob need to put on tubeless 38s or so. My low-tread tubeless 33s are great right now but those roads can be looser and tougher than my gravel roads here where I live.
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Old 01-05-17, 10:35 AM
  #83  
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post


That's an ugly frame, but from what I've heard it rides real nice.
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Old 01-05-17, 11:45 AM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by dalava View Post
Yes indeed, we have no shortage of challenging gravel roads. I am in Loudoun, and here is a database of gravel roads in our area (Gravel Road Maps and Biking Routes - Gravelmap). People don't normally assume NoVA to be very hilly, but it's in fact a quite rolling terrain. I am in a suburb near Leesburg, and I can easily get 3000ft of climbing in a 50mi road ride door to door.
@dalava - I love the gravel riding around Leesburg. Recently, however, I've gotten hooked on Frederick gravel. There's less of it, but what there is is steeper, chunkier, and stouter. More of an adventure. If you're ever looking for a partner to ride with, on either side of the Potomac, hit me up.

Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
Actually funny thing...I email Rodeo (just this morning after seeing your linky), Curve, Foundry and a few other outfits in the last 48 hours with Qs. First and only company to get back to me was Rodeo so far. And their answer made me quite happy (they also told me some info that isn't public yet while they were at it).
@Marcus_Ti - I've been corresponding with Rodeo lately as well and have also found them very responsive and helpful. Trigger on the Trail Donkey almost pulled...
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Old 01-05-17, 01:13 PM
  #85  
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YES.
And a TT bike, tri bike, road bike, CX bike, Fat bike 27incher, 26 incher, 29 incher, rigid, full suspension, SS mtb, SS road, flat bar SS, drop bar SS, fixer and Tandem.
Answer is always YES.
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Old 01-05-17, 02:21 PM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
YES.
And a TT bike, tri bike, road bike, CX bike, Fat bike 27incher, 26 incher, 29 incher, rigid, full suspension, SS mtb, SS road, flat bar SS, drop bar SS, fixer and Tandem.
Answer is always YES.
this.

n+1
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Old 01-05-17, 02:25 PM
  #87  
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Originally Posted by wallrat View Post
Since everyone is posting their gravel bike glamour shots, here's mine. I just got my ibis a month ago and I've stopped riding my mountain and road bikes. It's such a fun bike. I'm running tubeless 40's on front, 35's on back at 25 psi. It's been fast on the road and some easy singletrack.

Love the pic!
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Old 01-05-17, 02:25 PM
  #88  
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Originally Posted by blazin View Post
@dalava - I love the gravel riding around Leesburg. Recently, however, I've gotten hooked on Frederick gravel. There's less of it, but what there is is steeper, chunkier, and stouter. More of an adventure. If you're ever looking for a partner to ride with, on either side of the Potomac, hit me up.



@Marcus_Ti - I've been corresponding with Rodeo lately as well and have also found them very responsive and helpful. Trigger on the Trail Donkey almost pulled...

Nice. I'm thinking on getting a Flaanimal when they go out based on what I've learned in email.
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Old 01-05-17, 05:16 PM
  #89  
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My Charge Plug 4 should be arriving in the next day and I can't wait to do some gravel riding in the Seattle area.

Forrest, any recommendations on local rides departing from the city?
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Old 01-05-17, 05:21 PM
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Departing from the city? Not really. I know there are some bike trails nearby in St Edwards State Park, which can be part of the Lake Washington Loop. You don't even have to do the whole thing, coming home on I-90 is a nice ride.

Can you drive the bike for some gravel riding? If so, how far are you willing to go? I'll be happy to recommend the best stuff I know about.

But I gotta run for the moment. I'll check back later.
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Old 01-05-17, 11:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Love the pic!
Thanks. It's in Marin County, a little north of San Francisco. I can get to this spot out my front door in 45 min up a fire road and some single track. It's views like this that makes me appreciate being fit, living in Marin, and just being outside.
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Old 01-05-17, 11:29 PM
  #92  
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You don't need a "gravel" bike. You can always have a fun project by building up an old steel frame as your off roader. I built this from a bare frame long before "gravel bikes" were a thing among the big manufacturers and put in hundreds of miles on dirt roads / fire roads with it. 35mm tires. I never found a need for knobbies unless I went out into muddy trails, but even then I got through by just gearing down and pedaling it out. This pic is the bike with a commuter outfit.



Here is another that I rode to completed a 100 mile out-and-back that contained a 40 mile fire road section through a national forest.


Or get crazy with a drop bar mountain bike

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Old 01-05-17, 11:53 PM
  #93  
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Do I "need" a gravel grinder? (I prefer the term gravel grinder to gravel bike).

No I can't really say I have a need. I do know many people are using this new breed of bike as a year-round commuter though. But I am retired.

I already own a Rain bike... which I also call my winter bike and/or foul weather bike. But it really is just an older bike I bought new which doesn't fit or ride as well as my other road bikes. It has no special abilities or added features that could allow me to get extra bike-time with it... as opposed to any other road bike in my stable.

But I just bought a Gravel Bike (will pick it up this weekend). It has some technology I haven't tried yet (disc brakes and tubeless tires). And those fat tires might just let me get a few more winter miles in.
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Old 01-06-17, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by UnfilteredDregs View Post
The gearing I'm doing for my bike is something I've been calling "Two by One."

Meaning double chainrings up front, in my case 42/32 and I'm doing the SRAM xx1 10-42 cassette.

I'm doing Di2 XTR derailleurs and Dura-Ace 9100 Di2 hydro levers.
@UnfilteredDregs - how are you getting an XTR FD to work on your bike? My understanding is that there are issues getting them to shift onto road cranksets and that MTB cranksets don't work with road bike bottom bracket widths and chainlines. Am I missing something?

I largely came to the same conclusions as you about need for wide range (including top end) and a clutched derailleur, but thinking that using an XTR FD wasn't going to work I have decided to go with XTR RD, DA 9170 levers, and the TRSr 9 - 46 cassette with a 38 up front.
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Old 01-06-17, 03:18 PM
  #95  
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I like the idea of a 42/32 or a 50/34. I have a 46/36 now and once in a while, I feel worn down and feel like spinning up steep dirt climbs. It's no fun on a 46/36, though at least doable. A 32 front would be nice.
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Old 01-06-17, 08:15 PM
  #96  
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Originally Posted by blazin View Post
@UnfilteredDregs - how are you getting an XTR FD to work on your bike? My understanding is that there are issues getting them to shift onto road cranksets and that MTB cranksets don't work with road bike bottom bracket widths and chainlines. Am I missing something?

I largely came to the same conclusions as you about need for wide range (including top end) and a clutched derailleur, but thinking that using an XTR FD wasn't going to work I have decided to go with XTR RD, DA 9170 levers, and the TRSr 9 - 46 cassette with a 38 up front.
(Di2 btw...maybe some form factor differences with pure mechanical...not sure but, I doubt it...)

My builder builds mtb, bmx, road, cx...he also rides, used to ride competitively, skatepunk, restores old cafe racers, (Used to race motorcycles ...) does a lot of custom fabrication in that realm as well....and is a Mechanical Maven. Every component going on the bike is in the CAD design, so if it fits there, obviously as per manufacturer's tolerances, it will fit.

Max tooth gap for XT FD derailleurs is 10. SGS chain wrap is 45. Chainline is chainline, ergo mtb BB versus Road don't matter... So, as long as you're within chain capacity and FD tooth count you're good.

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Old 01-06-17, 09:15 PM
  #97  
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YES


Its really nice to have one bike setup with better brakes and fatter tires & another bike(roadie) setup for more road percentages type rides. Don't get me wrong, the roadie on dirt can handle allot, but braking, tires and gearing plays a huge role into longer middle of no where rides

I have a fuji Altamira disc w/ full force and about 3-4 different tires pending mood and weekend loops.
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Old 01-07-17, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
YES.
And a TT bike, tri bike, road bike, CX bike, Fat bike 27incher, 26 incher, 29 incher, rigid, full suspension, SS mtb, SS road, flat bar SS, drop bar SS, fixer and Tandem.
Answer is always YES.
But that's more like n+1+1+...
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Old 01-07-17, 01:17 PM
  #99  
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Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
YES


Its really nice to have one bike setup with better brakes and fatter tires & another bike(roadie) setup for more road percentages type rides. Don't get me wrong, the roadie on dirt can handle allot, but braking, tires and gearing plays a huge role into longer middle of no where rides

I have a fuji Altamira disc w/ full force and about 3-4 different tires pending mood and weekend loops.
Nice looking bike. How big a tire can the Fuji handle?
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Old 01-07-17, 03:50 PM
  #100  
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I haven't tried anything larger than 35s, didn't pay attention to the chain stays canhandle more.
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