View Poll Results: Which would you choose?

Voters
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  • Foundry Auger

    7 28.00%
  • Niner RLT 9

    11 44.00%
  • Surly Straggler

    4 16.00%
  • Kona Rove

    3 12.00%
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
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    Bike decision time!

    Hey all, I'm considering buying a bike that's a little more road oriented. Something with drop bars, but that can handle rough pavement and gravel rides. I'm lucky enough to live a half mile from the erie canal path, which gives me access to all sorts of gravel goodness (hundreds of miles of it, in fact). I probably won't end up racing with whatever bike I get, so I apologize if I'm posting this in the wrong forum, but it looked like the most applicable one on MTBR. I plan on doing gravel rides, maybe commuting and around town stuff. I could probably get away with a lot less bike for my intended riding, but what the hell, life is short, right? Somehow I dont feel like I have to justify these things on here

    I feel like I've narrowed my choices down, which one would you choose, and why? What are some of the positives and negatives that I haven't thought of for any particular one of these bikes?

    Foundry Auger B3 The Foundry Auger - Cross Utility - Disc Brake | Foundry Cycles

    Niner RLT 9 2 Star RLT 9

    Surly Straggler Straggler | Bikes | Surly Bikes

    Kona Rove KONA BIKES | 2014 BIKES | ROAD: FREERANGE | ROVE

    On the surface, it seems like all of these bikes are built with similar uses in mind, but executed with different frame and fork materials, brakes, and drivetrains. They're all close enough in price as well.

    Am I missing a bike that you think I should absolutely consider? Let me know, and thanks for the input!

  2. #2
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    The Rove and the Straggler are going to be a good bit heavier than the other two, though that probably doesn't matter much.

    I would rule out the Straggler just based on geometry, but some people must like the geometry (which it more or less shares with the Cross Check). It will stretch you out more and put you lower than the other three unless you use a huge stack of spacers. Some people are willing to live with the spacers to get the classic look of a horizontal top tube.

    The Auger and the RLT are both very hot. They both use internal cable routing, which is cool but can also be a pain. Both have fender eyelets, so I'm guess they must have some hidden way to attach a fender to the back of the fork. It doesn't look like either one is designed to have a rack mounted on, though there are always ways to do that if you really wanted to. They both have tapered head tubes, which is a nice feature.

    For sporty gravel grinding and possibly a CX race or two, I'd go with either the Auger or the RLT. Whether you'd rather have aluminum or carbon probably dictates the choice -- or possibly which shop you prefer.

    If you're looking for a more utility-oriented beast of burden, then go with the Rove.

  3. #3
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    I think that those bikes are very different, in many ways, including price and weight. Please don't take this the wrong way, but not sure how you ended up with that final list. And perhaps you missed the Raleigh Tamland which is a dedicated gravel bike.

    The geometry of the Rove and Niner are very similar, while the Auger is a bit different. I really don't get the Straggler dimensions.

    For your gravel and around town needs, the Rove might be the better option for you. It is not a gravel bike, but it is not limited to payment by any means. I have ridden my 2014 Rove on gravel, nasty single track, and wooden technical features. It is holding up rather well. Very sturdy, very heavy. Lately I have been riding it like a fully rigid, geared 29er, yet very mindful of the 35c tires, which are coming off soon for some 40c.

  4. #4
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    The Kona and Niner have geometries better suited gravel with slacker head tube angles.
    The Kona has a higher trail figure, offset of the fork of the Niner unknown to calculate. This means more stability on Gravel.

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  5. #5
    Slower than you...
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    I've gotta say I'm lovin' my Raleigh Tamland 2. $2200 for full Ultegra is awfully hard to beat. I've used it for everything from Saturday club rides to moderate singletrack, but it really shines on rides where I can ignore convention & just ride wherever looks interesting.

    I have only 2 issues, since fixed:

    1. The stock big ring (52T) was waaaaay too high for my old legs. I've replaced the big ring with the Ultegra 46T, but it's a spendy f*cker.
    2. Personal preferences aside, the stock bars are utter shite for mixed-terrain riding. Since replaced with a 46cm Cowbell. Much mo'bettah.
    Start slow, then taper off.

  6. #6
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    Of the bikes you have listed I would take the Auger. I would say a good one to consider is the Kona Jake the Snake as it is the same price as the Rove. I own a 2014 version myself and I think it handles gravel roads, single track and root trails quite well. It also does regular road quite well.
    Flotilla or Buffet.

  7. #7
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    I have a harrow and I love how foundry builds bikes. Really fit nicely and ride extremely well. The frames are top notch. Warrantee is like 10 years!

  8. #8
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    Bike decision time!

    I bought a Rove a few weeks ago for very similar riding needs. I'm loving it so far. Its been great on gravel, paved paths, tame singletrack, etc.

  9. #9
    Clueless Bastard
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    As said previously, these 4 bikes are very different. Did you pick just on cost? How did you decide these? Which ones did you ride? If none then why waste time dicking around until you've done some preliminary homework?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by WA-CO View Post
    As said previously, these 4 bikes are very different. Did you pick just on cost? How did you decide these? Which ones did you ride? If none then why waste time dicking around until you've done some preliminary homework?
    Totally agree. This is a very flawed method of selecting a bike. You should NEVER rely on this format - EVER. Get out there and find these bikes, ride them and others. Find what works and then make an informed decision. Only you will know if you are happy with a CX race based bike that will be twitchy on gravel or a more touring style bike that is stable on gravel. We cannot make that call on your behalf, so get on your bike and try some out!!!

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  11. #11
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    I would avoid anything aluminum because they will beat you to death. Of your choices, I'd go with the Foundry Auger, while not the lightest for a carbon bike, it should be more comfortable, as a race bike comfort goes, while the steel bikes will provide the most comfort of your choices, the geo's of the Surly is a little more relaxed and less race orientated than the others, so it really comes down to what exactly you want since your choices are all pretty different.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hurricane Jeff View Post
    I would avoid anything aluminum because they will beat you to death. Of your choices, I'd go with the Foundry Auger, while not the lightest for a carbon bike, it should be more comfortable, as a race bike comfort goes, while the steel bikes will provide the most comfort of your choices, the geo's of the Surly is a little more relaxed and less race orientated than the others, so it really comes down to what exactly you want since your choices are all pretty different.
    Thanks for the feedback. To the people who are telling me these are different bikes - that is the whole point. I want opinions on these different types of bikes, instead of just listing 4 of essentially the same bike and asking which color I should get it in.

    Also, it's not really feasible for me to demo or test ride all of these, as much as I would like to do so. So, I'm somewhat dependent upon internet research and your experience to help guide my decision.

    Thanks to everybody who has responded.

  13. #13
    just some guy
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    Bailey Bikes makes a pretty sweet cross frame, you might find that interesting.

    BAILEY | Race bikes designed by bike racers |

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