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  1. #1
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    New Gravel Grinding Bike

    I'm looking for help on my decision to buy a new Gravel Bike to race on,I've been riding a 26 mtb for years and finished the DK200 on it last year but it's time for a cyclocross bike...Giant,Trek or Homegrown model made specific for Gravel.

  2. #2
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    So Many Choices, I would always say homegrown if that is an option. Start with something like a salsa warbird frame and go from there.

    Other option is buy a cross bike and just start modding I have a Rocky Mountain CXR, but had to change gearing (puta 34/46 crank on), brakes, evenually upgraded to shimano shifter rear/deraileurs. Basically it has been a constant source of change and I dont have the time I always want to work on it so it sits often.

    Things to consider

    Cost - Always number one for me!
    Material - Alu, Steel, Ti, Carbon
    Brakes - Disc or not
    What Size tire do you want to run?
    Racks or fenders would you ever use them?

    These are all things I should have thought more on when I bought my Cross Bike to use for gravel.

    Hope this helps.
    XC, Road, XXC, Endurance, Mtn, All-Mtn, Cross, Gravel, just go have fun on 2 wheels!

  3. #3
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    New Gravel Grinding Bike

    New Gravel Grinding Bike-imageuploadedbytapatalk1369354727.730115.jpg

    I built my Lynskey ProCross specifically for gravel and have been happy with it.

    Force front and rear Der. and shifters
    SRAM Red Black compact crank
    Red 11-28 cassette
    Ashima 160mm rotors
    Stan's IronCross wheels
    FSA SLK Compact bars
    FSA SLK seatpost
    Enve fork
    BB7 brakes
    Fizik bar gel
    Clement LAS set up tubeless
    K-edge change catcher and garmin mount
    Selle Italia SLR XC flow
    Chris King headset
    Chris King ceramic BB
    King Ti cages

    Made improvements over the last 2 years. I love riding this bike.

  4. #4
    Expert Crasher
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    New Gravel Grinding Bike

    I'm pretty happy with my Soma Double Cross. A the time I got he frame, they were out of black forks so I picked up an All City steel fork, which rides pretty well. Classic steel frame and fork with Velocity Major Toms and an EC90 seat post. SRAM Rival drivetrain, 1x10.

    Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances. Benjamin Franklin

  5. #5
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    Soulcraft has a gravel specific bike and it is BADARSE!!! It's the Dirtbomb.. Ck it out on their website.. If I lived somewhere that had tons of farm dirt roads, I'd be all over that thing!!

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys ! I have a Redline Pro Cross frame sitting here,maybe I'll build it up...But I do like the looks of the Salsa.

  7. #7
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    i just built up a Specialized Crux with the Zertz inserts on it. Has the Zertz in the fork and in the back. Not sure if thats what it was but the bike was super cush during Almanzo last week. I also got some of that gel padding for underneath my lizard skin bar tape. Gel seat and it was perfect.
    Carbon frame on mine, but I heard TI is awesome on gravel. Have fun with the build

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mosovich View Post
    Soulcraft has a gravel specific bike and it is BADARSE!!! It's the Dirtbomb.. Ck it out on their website.. If I lived somewhere that had tons of farm dirt roads, I'd be all over that thing!!
    The Dirtbomb looks sweet! More than I would need around my area, but a really cool bike.

    I have ridden as much as 40c (Schwalbe Marathon Extreme and Also Kenda Happy Medium) with mine and it does ride nice. The Clement LAS is a 'big' 33c, but perfect for Southeast Michigan Gravel.

  9. #9
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    Black Mountain Cycles has a nice 'cross' frame that works great for a dedicated gravel grinder build. Really well designed, tire clearance for 45mm tires, and it's STEEL.

    blackmtncycles.com

  10. #10
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    Check out the Surly Crosscheck.

    also Giant is about to release the Anyroad here in the USA.

    Salsa stuff is sweet too!

    Personally my gravel bike right now is a Surly Steamroller set up specifically for nailing gravel miles. Works great for me. I used to have a Redline Conquest Team. It worked, but the geometry never grooved with me.

    32mm tire minimum.

  11. #11
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    I had to look up that Giant:

    Giant Anyroad Making Its North American Debut, this Fall

    This thing looks really nice. If I didn't already have a CX bike, I'd be waiting for this one.

  12. #12
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    The "swirly" geometry is pretty sweet looking. and the price point on it is awesome for people looking for a gravel bike that is the secondary for their mtb

  13. #13
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    You can buy FOUR Black Mountain Cycles 'cross frames for the price of one Dirtbomb. Five Crosschecks. Not that you'd ever need that many, since they last forever.

  14. #14
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    I used my single speed cross bike for a few 60+ mile gravel rides while my mtb was down, and I hated it. While it was fast, our gravel must be much rougher than most. If they're not miserably washboarded, they're super loose/sandy. On top of all of that, sometimes they get covered with crap like crushed bricks which are murder on smaller tires IME. FOR ME I'm willing to trade a little speed/efficiency for comfort and confidence. Which, again, FOR ME, results in long term speed and endurance, as well as piece of mind.
    Registered pedalphile.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rusheleven View Post
    The "swirly" geometry is pretty sweet looking. and the price point on it is awesome for people looking for a gravel bike that is the secondary for their mtb
    Huh? Swirly geometry?

  16. #16
    Rex R
    Reputation: machwon's Avatar
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    Here is my new gravel rig. Taken it all over now- finished 117 mile race a month ago- felt great!

    Ridley X-Fire running Stans Iron Cross with Panaracer T-Serv tires @~35-40 psi (34c)

    New Gravel Grinding Bike-ridley_zps65dc5088.jpg
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails New Gravel Grinding Bike-ridley.jpg  


  17. #17
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    Like the look of the Giant Anyroads...Wonder how big a tire it will take.Thanks for the help guys !

  18. #18
    Feral Roadie
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    You may be interested in this bike.

    Viaje XL Ultegra | Volagi

    I've ridden the carbon version and it's a really nice bike. The big difference between this and say any recent Cross bike with disk brakes will be the geometry. Volagi bikes are really comfortable for very long rides on either road or dirt. Cross bikes are setup to be quick "sprinters" and fast handlers for relatively short events.

    My current gravel bike is my attempt to duplicate a Volagi with the frame I currently have. I put 650b wheels and a disk brake fork on an 2007 Specialized Sequoia.


  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldencalf View Post
    I used my single speed cross bike for a few 60+ mile gravel rides while my mtb was down, and I hated it. While it was fast, our gravel must be much rougher than most. If they're not miserably washboarded, they're super loose/sandy. On top of all of that, sometimes they get covered with crap like crushed bricks which are murder on smaller tires IME. FOR ME I'm willing to trade a little speed/efficiency for comfort and confidence. Which, again, FOR ME, results in long term speed and endurance, as well as piece of mind.
    Put 650b wheels on a Disk brake Cross bike and you get a good compromise for both speed and having a fat tire. I think the sweet spot is somewhere around 40mm, relatively light and not a lot of tread. Most 700c tires in that size are heavy and stiff commuter tires. Cross racing has a tire size limit ( 32mm I think ) so many cross bikes
    can't fit a really fat tire.

    Probably the place to start with all this is pick the tires you want to run and build the bike that works with those tires. For me the second thing would be brakes, for dirt, I think at least a front disk brake is well worth the trouble.

  20. #20
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    I am building a new dirt road bike right now. Redline Conquest Disc frame/fork. Triple crank 48/38/26. 11-28 cassette. BB7 brakes. Right now I run Clement MSO 40s. We have a lot of steep sections of USFS roads around here and this will be low enough gearing to get my 195lbs up them. I am going to get a 2nd wheelset and mount up fat road tires 28-32c for mostly pavement rides.

    I am riding a Kona Unit with gears right now, rigid, with the MSOs and it works good but I want a drop bar setup. We have ridiculous wind here all the time and getting more aero makes a big difference over hours out in it.

  21. #21
    Dude, got any schwag?
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    I have a Mountain Cycle Stumptown circa 2005 that's a perfect gravel grinder and cross bike. When she succumbs to fatigue I'll be transplanting the parts to a Hakkalugi.
    Billy

    Speed is sweet, it's like an avenue to
    ... Shredtopia!

  22. #22
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    New Gravel Grinding Bike-1015433_10101658474545544_1690119026_o.jpg
    Speaking of a Viaje gravel grinder, here is mine. I backed the kickstarter last year.

    Quote Originally Posted by bbense View Post
    You may be interested in this bike.

    Viaje XL Ultegra | Volagi

    I've ridden the carbon version and it's a really nice bike. The big difference between this and say any recent Cross bike with disk brakes will be the geometry. Volagi bikes are really comfortable for very long rides on either road or dirt. Cross bikes are setup to be quick "sprinters" and fast handlers for relatively short events.

    My current gravel bike is my attempt to duplicate a Volagi with the frame I currently have. I put 650b wheels and a disk brake fork on an 2007 Specialized Sequoia.


  23. #23
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    my soma double cross has to be one of the smoothest frames i have ridden on. its my gravel grinding machine and will be forever. i have some 42's i put on it and rock some trails with it. its a blast to ride.

  24. #24
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    I linked this over in the DK200 thread, but figured you guys would get some good info out of a gravel-specific forum: Riding Gravel Forum

  25. #25
    Ride Everything
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    Over the past couple of years, I've ridden bikes from All-City, Black Mountain Cycles, Salsa, SOMA, and Volagi on dirt/gravel. They're all very different, but all quite capable.
    GRAVELBIKE.COM - ride everything

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