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Thread: Salsa Vaya

  1. #1
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    Salsa Vaya

    Looks like I managed to get a 2014 Salsa Vaya frameset. Got word today that my order has been accepted and my frameset should get loaded on the truck later in the week.

    Got a blue CC 110 headset on the way, also. I wish some of the better mid priced headsets came in colors. A blue CC 40 would have been my first choice, probably.

    I have been thinking about doing some gravel rides on it. There is one in the spring here that sounds fun. You are given gps coordinates for some old cemeteries and have to choose your own route to collect them. The route can use singletrack or roads. I have been told that the top 10 this year was an even split between cross bikes and mtn bikes, and distance wound up around 65mi give or take.

    I think a 1x10 with dirt drops and 700x40 tires would be pretty well suited for the ride. Given the terrain, I might need a smaller chainring than I would use commuting.

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    Sound like it's going to be a great bike! All my rides have single chainrings now, either 1x1, 1x7, or 1x9. What ride is that you're thinking about doing in the spring?
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  3. #3
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    Salsa Vaya

    The Sub9 Gravel Grovel

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    I don't know if you're already planning on getting a narrow/wide chainring, but I just have to say that they're totally worth it. I ran an ss ring on my winterbike for the last few years, and it worked but in the back of my head there's always a worry about chaindrop. But I've had a narrow/wide on my hardtail all summer, and it's fantastic - fantastic enough that I bought one for my winter bike too.

    In another thread you'd mentioned you had a fork with 309mm axle to crown? I'd meant to ask if that was going on the vaya, because that seems super short?

  5. #5
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    Salsa Vaya

    The vaya is getting its own fork. I don't remember the a-c on the forks I have already.

    I do intend to get a narrow wide chainring eventually...once I decide on what size I want. I have 42t and 44t SS rings already that I will try before spending the bux on a WolfTooth (so far, the only one making 130BCD rings I know of). I suspect the 44t will be about right for riding around town. If I do the gravel grovel, I may put a mtb crankset on so I can go a lot smaller.

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    Yeah, for a gravelgrinder the narrow/wide probably isn't critical, but every winter I have a few chaindrops on my commuter and it's worth it to avoid them. I am just super-impressed with how well the narrow/wide rings work.

  7. #7
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    winter chaindrops have to suck. cold fingers trying to put a greasy chain back on the ring. ugh.

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    Don't forget the 2" thick gloves.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    I have 42t and 44t SS rings already that I will try before spending the bux on a WolfTooth (so far, the only one making 130BCD rings I know of). I suspect the 44t will be about right for riding around town. If I do the gravel grovel, I may put a mtb crankset on so I can go a lot smaller.
    I run a Surly stainless steel 44T ring on my commuter, and they also make them in 130BCD, just throwing that out there as another option. I will say that I'm intrigued by the WolfTooth rings, haven't seen those before. I run a little homemade chain guide to keep the chain from dropping, but I haven't tried the Surly ring without it, so I don't know whether the Surly ring needs it. The WolfTooth rings sound like they're exactly for that purpose though... pretty cool!
    '94 RSBikes Stampede (commuter), '05 Prophet, '09 Scattante XRL Team, '10 Slice 4
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  10. #10
    jrm
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    Im looking for a used vaya frame to move over the stuff from the CX bike. I plan on using my triple ultregra converted to 28/40/bash.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrm View Post
    Im looking for a used vaya frame to move over the stuff from the CX bike. I plan on using my triple ultregra converted to 28/40/bash.
    good luck. I tried looking and couldn't find a used one. That must mean it's a great bike and nobody wants to get rid of them, right?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dwayne View Post
    I run a Surly stainless steel 44T ring on my commuter, and they also make them in 130BCD, just throwing that out there as another option. I will say that I'm intrigued by the WolfTooth rings, haven't seen those before. I run a little homemade chain guide to keep the chain from dropping, but I haven't tried the Surly ring without it, so I don't know whether the Surly ring needs it. The WolfTooth rings sound like they're exactly for that purpose though... pretty cool!
    SRAM came out with the narrow-wide idea first...for its XX1 group. Race Face makes one now, too, but for mtb cranksets. WolfTooth makes some for cross bikes, so I think that's what I'll have to get. I've seen the SRAM ones in person. It's a killer idea. But as I said, I already have regular 42t and 44t SS rings I will use for the time being.

  13. #13
    jrm
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    Never say "never". Im kinda of hoping the new model year may spur some folks to sell...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrm View Post
    Never say "never". Im kinda of hoping the new model year may spur some folks to sell...
    Maybe. That Smokey Blue Robinson color looks nice (what mine is). Which, coincidentally, was delivered today. Hopefully my headset arrives soon so I can install it before taking the frameset home.

  15. #15
    I dream on two wheels
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    I've got a 2010 Vaya, I think, its the brown with light blue decals. I saw the 2014 in a shop window the other day and the green one looked awesome. Anyway, the Vaya is a great bike. I've got about 16,000 commuting miles on mine and still love riding it. Enjoy it.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simonns View Post
    I've got a 2010 Vaya, I think, its the brown with light blue decals. I saw the 2014 in a shop window the other day and the green one looked awesome. Anyway, the Vaya is a great bike. I've got about 16,000 commuting miles on mine and still love riding it. Enjoy it.
    I saw a green one being built up at the shop the other day when I took my mtb wheels in for a true. The green one is sharp, too. I'm excited to get mine built up, though. It'll look sweet, too.

  17. #17
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    Paypal deposit cleared my bank today, and the Cane Creek 110 headset arrived today, so I headed to the shop to pick up my Vaya.

    I like the Smokey Blue Robinson color. The headset doesn't match the seat collar (I had my doubts when I ordered it), but it does match the dark blue graphics on the frame, so it might work out pretty well with the two colored blue ano stuff. That's pretty much going to be it for blue ano. I don't even think I'll put blue bar tape on the bike, for that matter.

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/9939106766/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya 2 Frameset by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3776/9939106766_c698cc5c24.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya 2 Frameset"></a>

    I didn't get the frame faced today. One of the mechanics suggested I take care of rustproofing first. Makes sense. I picked up a pair of downtube cable housing stops, but that's it. With the Brown County Breakdown mtb fest this weekend, and moving into my new place next week, it will be a little while before I have my new bike shop space in the basement set up for building this up.

    Frame's supposed to fit 38's with fenders. I'm not sure if my current fenders will fit or not, but I've got a pair of 38's sitting around that I'll probably throw on my wheelset instead of the 32's on them now. The shop had one on the floor that had 700x40's in it, and they even looked like there MIGHT be enough room for fenders.

    I'm doubtful that I'll have this bike 100% ready for this year's Gravel Grovel in Nov, but if I do, I might sign up for the 25 mile ride option instead of the metric century race.

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    <3 this bike. I've been thinking of ditching my CC and getting something with disc brakes since I've been riding some monster cross with it. I had been leaning towards the Straggler but was disappointed to lose the blue frame. This looks like it may be on my short list.

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    Dammit! My size has 26" wheels, not 700C.

  20. #20
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    Salsa Vaya

    The purple straggler is hawt, too. I considered that one, also. The odd dropouts and the seatstay mounted rear caliper pushed me away from it, though

  21. #21
    jrm
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    Nice. Ill bet some clement MSO explor 40c's would fit in there. How wide a rim are you on?

  22. #22
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    Salsa Vaya

    Velocity dyads, looks like 24mm outer width. I have my eye on those clements

  23. #23
    jrm
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    Im on the 35c USH's on the CX and theyre working out well.

  24. #24
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    40mm tires are no problem, nor are 43mm Rock N Roads.

    Loads of Vaya-related info/reviews on my site.
    GRAVELBIKE.COM - ride everything

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by MileHighMark View Post
    40mm tires are no problem, nor are 43mm Rock N Roads.

    Loads of Vaya-related info/reviews on my site.
    Interesting reading about your experiments with 650b and fatter tires on a Vaya. Good to know I can push tire width a bit. I am thinking that I want room for fenders, at least in upcoming seasons. I probably won't push tire width with fenders until I see how much room I've got with the 38mm tires I have. Even still, those tires are boxed up in my storage unit ATM, and I won't be unboxing them for awhile just yet. I'll probably get this bike rolling initially on a set of 32's I had on my last bike. Depends how long it takes for me to get the frame rustproofed and faced for building. I don't have a good spot to do the rustproofing until next week when I get into my new place.

  26. #26
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    If you're doing winter riding, and don't want to worry (too much) about flats, check out the SOMA New Xpress tires. I ran the 32mm version last winter (in some pretty bad weather) with good results.
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  27. #27
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    Salsa Vaya

    Quote Originally Posted by MileHighMark View Post
    If you're doing winter riding, and don't want to worry (too much) about flats, check out the SOMA New Xpress tires. I ran the 32mm version last winter (in some pretty bad weather) with good results.
    Winter riding here involves some amount of ice and snow which varies from year to year which is more prevalent. Snow was more prevalent last year but I really only rode my mtb.

    I have been debating a set of winter studs. But it depends how much I actually ride this winter in the ice. There is the occasional warm winter with very little frozen water, too. The 38's I have already should cover most other situations well enough, and enough puncture protection to get me through the cold, dark months with relatively few issues.

  28. #28
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    I used studs for the first time last year. Great on black/sheet ice, and pretty underwhelming on everything else. You can find the review here.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by MileHighMark View Post
    I used studs for the first time last year. Great on black/sheet ice, and pretty underwhelming on everything else. You can find the review here.
    Yeah, I've been fine on most winter conditions with regular tires in the past. I did have some winter studs for my SS mtb when I lived in Michigan several years ago, too. The crumbly refrozen slush is quite secure with regular tires that have some tread. I am concerned more with sheet ice and black ice. Mostly the highly compressed snow that becomes sheet ice, but being that the terrain is pretty flat here, there are commonly places where runoff from sun-melted snow pools and then freezes overnight.

    One thing I don't know is how bike lanes are maintained in the winter here. Not sure if they are depository zones for snow plowed from auto traffic lanes, or whether they get the same consideration.

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    Scored some new gear during the Brown County Breakdown. Got a set of Kona Wah-Wah pedals in the raffle after the ride. My previous commute bike had $15 plastic platforms on it. For now, I'm going to put them on the Vaya. Been thinking about throwing some good platforms on my mtb for awhile and now that I have them, I just need shoes. I MIGHT be able to make my current mtb shoes last through the end of the season (I just had to reglue the soles for the second time of the season last week) and when I replace them, I have my eye on a pair of Pearl Izumi X-Alp shoes. At that point, I'll probably toss the Konas on the mtb and reevaluate pedals on the Vaya to decide if I want a second set of pinned plaforms, or whether I want something else.

  31. #31
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    Finally got unpacked enough at the new place to get my frame and fork rustproofed and the shift cable adjusters installed (with tons of grease). Maybe on Sunday, I'll get over to the shop to have the BB, HT, crown race seat, and disc tabs faced, and get the headset installed so I can get this bike built up. Going to run fully sealed shift cables on it.

  32. #32
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    Something I've been meaning to ask; did you consider the Fargo, if so why did you decide to get the Vaya? I would be torn between the two of them.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by nemhed View Post
    Something I've been meaning to ask; did you consider the Fargo, if so why did you decide to get the Vaya? I would be torn between the two of them.
    I did consider the Fargo. Man, what a hard choice. I spent weeks going back and forth on that one. In the end, I went with the Vaya because I wanted a purpose-built road/city commute bike. The Fargo, for all intents, is a mtb. I wanted something different than another mtb, albeit one more friendly to a road commute.

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    I'm facing the same dilemma: fargo Ti vs vaya travel... I see clearly see the differences, but I cannot decide between the two.
    I would go with the fargo as it looks more versatile but at the same time it looks more intended for dirty tracks and more sluggish on paved roads. On the other hand, Vaya Travel is a better choice as a general purpose bike (it can take light dirty roads) and has the great advantage of a s&s couplers frame. What's your view on this?

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    After Rodar's fly in and ride tours, that Vaya with couplers looks like a good idea if I want to tour. Need some test runs with The Duchess locally to see if it is as much fun in person. That would justify decent panniers, too! Maybe in a year I can eat pastries and drink regular beer without consequences again.That opens up eating options a lot and eases things on the road.

  36. #36
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    So far I'm liking the Vaya. Spent most of yesterday getting it built up. Fit was off when I took it for its maiden voyage last night, but it was too dark to fuss with it too much then. I'll fiddle with the fit some more today and take it for some more test riding. Too bad my trainer isn't unpacked yet. Would make the fit process go a little easier. I could make adjustments in the basement where my shop is before I take it out for a ride.

    It looks really good. The blue on the frame, seat collar, and headset offsets nicely with the silver crankset and stem and the black components elsewhere (wheels, derailleur, handlebars, pedals, rack, seatpost and seat) and little red details from my last build (spoke nipples, chainring bolts, cable stop on shifter). I will worry about fitting the fenders once I get the fit dialed.

    My reasons for changing frames were well justified. So much happier with how easy brake and drivetrain setup was over the slotted drops and rear disc mount on the Pompetamine. That bike was so fiddly, it was driving me bonkers. Setup on this one was such a breeze.

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    NateHawk: did you exclude the fargo as it looked to you more limited as a general purpose bike or what else?

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by dantem View Post
    NateHawk: did you exclude the fargo as it looked to you more limited as a general purpose bike or what else?
    No. I excluded it because it's basically a mountain bike. I want a general purpose bike more for pavement riding and more speed than a mtb is capable of. Any dirt I'd ride it on around here is hardpack clay...hardly requiring tire clearance like the Fargo has. The Vaya has sufficient tire clearance for my needs. I can easily find a set of winter studs to fit in it, even with fenders. That was basically my requirement.

  39. #39
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    Here are some pictures, as promised. I wanted to take it for a longer ride today (probably head out and visit the nearby MUP, and make a loop to get a growler filled with something yummy, with a return via the bike lane that runs in front of the house), but I wanted to do it in regular clothes. It's raining today, and I looked at fitting the fenders from the Pompetamine, but either I need to make some significant mods to make them fit, or I just need to start with a new set of fenders - I'm leaning on starting with a new set.

    So no ride today. Just some basement tweaks to the fit. Raised the saddle some more. Slightly tweaked the angle of the handlebars. Steerer is a bit long so I can play with handlebar position some more. Thinking of moving them down a little more, but need a longer ride on them now to decide if that's where I want to go.

    Here's the whole bike in 1x10 glory.

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/10298988003/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya Build by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3750/10298988003_a551c54787.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya Build"></a>

    Here's a drivetrain close-up. 9spd SLX rear derailleur, XT 11-36 cassette, and XT chain.

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/10298782544/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya Build by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7380/10298782544_5a45a6099b.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya Build"></a>

    Unbranded Shimano crankset, Sugino 44t chainring (I have a 42t if I feel like I want lower gearing), Kona Wah-Wah pedals (freebie in the gear raffle at the Brown County Breakdown a couple weeks ago).

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/10298863075/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya Build by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7447/10298863075_a92f47a0d5.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya Build"></a>

    Retroshift CX1V 10spd levers, On-One Midge handlebars

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/10298990333/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya Build by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7437/10298990333_9959156be8.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya Build"></a>

    Front view

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/8007861@N04/10298864535/" title="2014 Salsa Vaya Build by mtbikernate, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5540/10298864535_df5d15c584.jpg" width="281" height="500" alt="2014 Salsa Vaya Build"></a>

  40. #40
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    Finally, pictures! That retroshift looks pretty nice. And what bar are you using (I'm too lazy to dig back through the thread)?

    Edited to add: duh, you're using a Midge just like me. I was going to marvel as how wide it was.

  41. #41
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    I like the Midge bars so far. They feel quite a bit wider than the Mungos I was using before, even though they actually aren't much wider. Guess it's all in the shape.

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    I've been using them for about 3 weeks now, and am quite liking them. I'm cheating on the setup, though:



    A long 29er toptube means I need to rotate them as close to me as possible, so the ends are pretty parallel to the ground. I think you're running them closer to what is intended. I end up in the hooks instead of on the drops...but the drops are pretty short for a handhold anyway so that's okay.

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    I noticed that the rain had let up, leaving only some damp roads. No pooled water. I can handle that without fenders. I took the bike out for a short loop. I'll get my growler filled up later.

    On the Pennsy rail trail, less than a mile from the house, mostly by bike lane.



    Same pic, with a flash, highlighting the reflective sidewalls of my tires and (much less so) my rims.



    This furthers my opinion that the reflective surface of Velocity's rims is far less effective than reflective sidewalls on tires. These are CST Crucibles (the tires that were on my Pompetamine for most of its 2 years of service with me). The tire sidewalls simply out-shine the rims, even under a fairly wimpy P&S camera flash.

    Definitely need to drop the handlebars, though. Not that this position is uncomfortable (it's not, at least for a 4 1/2 mile ride), but that it's too upright for riding into the wind. I catch the wind BAD with this riding position. The drops help some, but with the Retroshift levers, you can't really shift from the drops. Fine on the MUP, but not so great on the streets dealing with traffic lights. These levers pretty much keep you on the hoods most of the time.

    The route I took was actually pretty nice. The bike lanes haven't been fully built out here, and this section of the Pennsy is less than 2mi long (it will be getting connected to a longer section of the same trail in the next couple of years, which will give it more useful mileage and allow me to hit most stores by bike that I'd ever need to visit), but even in the evening busy traffic (a little past rush hour), drivers handled me mostly pretty well. I got passed by a pickup with an exhaust problem, which sucked. But even on the short sections without a bike lane or path (less than 1/4 mile for each segment), drivers were pretty courteous. I was running my lights, as it was dusk and overcast, so my visibility should have been pretty good. Without the fenders and large areas of reflective tape I put on them, I could be still more visible. I was also wearing a neon green long-sleeved shirt, so I'm sure that was a major factor. One driver was WAY over-cautious around me, plodding along in my back pocket in spite of the fact that the lane I was in was EXTRA wide (the lane had sharrows, and was wide enough probably for one car to pass another without crossing the centerline, though it wasn't a full two lanes wide). I had to wave that car by because they absolutely refused to pass. I think the cars behind that guy were starting to get frustrated. Hopefully not at me. Nobody showed frustration towards me, at least.

  44. #44
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    Nice pic. I wondered about how the Velocity reflective rims did versus reflective tire stripes. I think my unpolished aluminum Deep Vees would show up better in headlights than that, and the polished ones cost the same as the reflective ones and should be even more impressive than this cell phone flash in daylight shot:



    (Duchess previous to latest updates/paint.)

    I will be retesting the new rim tape with UV flashlights to activate them. If I pull the fenders, I might just be able to slip on a pair of 700-35 Michelin City tires I have that have the stripe to see how they stack up, as long as I don't corner too hard and peel them off the skinny rims.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    These are CST Crucibles (the tires that were on my Pompetamine for most of its 2 years of service with me). The tire sidewalls simply out-shine the rims...
    My bigapples are about 2 years old, and the reflective sidewalls are always filthy and probably not very reflective. And that bike has rim brakes, so I even clean the rims and tires occasionally. Did you clean yours up when you swapped frames, or do they always look that good?

  46. #46
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    Oh man, that's a pretty bike. I want one.

  47. #47
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    Salsa Vaya

    Nope, didn't clean them. Fwiw, these tires did most of their commute duty in dry TX. Any commuting done in IN was mostly dry and definitely warm (no winter grime rides for these tires).

    To give an indication of wear, the rear had begun to develop a flat spot so I rotated the tires.

  48. #48
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    Salsa Vaya

    Quote Originally Posted by BrianMc View Post
    I will be retesting the new rim tape with UV flashlights to activate them. If I pull the fenders, I might just be able to slip on a pair of 700-35 Michelin City tires I have that have the stripe to see how they stack up, as long as I don't corner too hard and peel them off the skinny rims.
    That pic was a total accident. It was sorta dusk and the camera wanted to use the flash, which really highlighted the reflective surfaces.

    I have been thinking about some kind of reflective tape to increase the reflective surface on the wheels. Possibly in a bright color as opposed to white, esp for the times I am using tires without a reflective stripe

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    I have been thinking about some kind of reflective tape to increase the reflective surface on the wheels. Possibly in a bright color as opposed to white, esp for the times I am using tires without a reflective stripe
    If you look closely at the pic I posted above showing my 35deg stem, the rim (a velocity p35) has reflective tape between every second set of spokes. I realized I don't have a great pic showing how reflective they are - this is probably the best I've got.

  50. #50
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    Great setup! I've been enjoying my 2014 Vaya for about a month now. 410 miles and counting on the commuting thus far! I buckled when a 20% coupon to Performance Bike came in the mail and I picked up a Brooks B17 in black to top off the build. It's not shown here but it was the best thing I've ever purchased and the previous saddles wan't even uncomfortable.


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