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Thread: Oramm 2014

  1. #1
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    Oramm 2014

    General question about the type of equipment people are using. Looking at the many videos available, and seeing many of the posts on ORAMM, I haven't seen people talk about what type of bike is better. Videos show people on full suspension, hard tails and I see the posts about people on SS. For someone riding this the first time, what would be the best advice? I have a 29er hardtail, and a CF full suspension at my disposal.

    I have ridden all of these trails at some time or another on the full suspension bike, but am curious if the weight penalty would make the hard tail a better option for 60+ miles.

    One other thing, what tires are people running? I usually use the WTB Weirwolfs, but they are heavy and are going to suck big time on the climbs. Would something like the Conti x-king be a better pick?

  2. #2
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    Yes
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Full rigid steel Fargo with drop bars? Oh, and ride to the race, do the race, and ride back home.


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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    ... your idea of technical may be much different than other peoples idea of technical.

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    Yes, I know that mofo.

    It takes a special kind of crazy to add 50 miles to 60 mile race.

    I have a passion for cycling but Joe takes it to a whole new level.
    Almost sounds like something Tom would do to.

    Ok OP, to answer your question in a serious way.
    There are reasons you see all sorts of bikes and that is because there is all sorts of riding. At some points you are going to wish you had a full suspension long travel bike and others a drop bar road bike and at times everything in between. So basically you pick your poison and go with it.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Run whatcha brung!
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    OP: What's your goal? To compete for a top 10% finish or rock out the fun factor?

    This race is absolutely won/lost on the climbs. So, if those are your goals, which bike is best for you for gravel road hammering?

    ORAMM also features three incredibly fast descents with some of the best technical XC riding anywhere. So, if your goal is to finish and have fun, which bike would best suit that goal?
    Last edited by Mike Brown; 03-10-2014 at 09:24 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Brown View Post
    OP: What's your goal? To compete for a top 10% finish or rock out the fun factor?

    This race is absolutely won/lost on the climbs. So, if those are your goals, which bike is best for you for gravel road hammering?

    ORAMM also features three incredibly fast descents with some of the best technical XC riding anywhere. So, if your goal is to finish and have fun, which bike would best suit that goal?
    My goal is not to race, I do enough of that on the road. I would like to finish in 8 hours or less, and have fun at the same time (though the time will all be relative depending on the conditions). I will be with a group of four others from Florida, who would have ultimately the same questions and same level of fitness and ability. I climb better on the hard tail, but descending is definitely more fun on the full suspension. Grinding out gravel roads on either will hurt, but is entirely doable with the lock out on the full suspension. Having done both Heartbreak and Kitsuma on the full suspension, it's definitely a plus for the full suspension.

    There is only a two lb difference between the two bikes, so other than efficiency between two bikes I'm leaning more towards the full suspension now. Tires are going to be my conundrum now.

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    Why does everyone get hung up on the weight of the bike?
    Unless you plan on carrying the bike the whole time, 2 lbs isn't going to matter enough to worry about it (unless that 2 lbs is in the wheels or driveline of course).
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    Why does everyone get hung up on the weight of the bike?
    Unless you plan on carrying the bike the whole time, 2 lbs isn't going to matter enough to worry about it (unless that 2 lbs is in the wheels or driveline of course).
    Two lbs matters a lot, because it is dead weight you are carrying up. It is weight that over the course of 65 miles means a lot. Having completed 6 Gap and The Assault on Mt. Mitchell, 2 lbs means a lot of wasted energy carrying weight that has no benefit to the rider. Carried a camelbak on my first and second 6 Gap, and finished respectably. On my third with no camelbak and everything else being identical I finished 45 minutes earlier. That's what 2 lbs means.

    The efficiency of the hard tail on the long climbs will probably be a wash when compared to the efficiency and comfort of the full suspension on the downhills.

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    Or you could have just been having a better day or maybe you became a stronger rider.
    But if you want to believe that 2 lbs is going to save you 45 minutes in ORAM, then go right ahead. However there are a lot more things that will come in to play than 2 lbs .
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Assuming the bike fits you well for the long distance and you have good skills down steep, tight, twisty, rocky, rooty terrain at the end of a very long ride , I'd say either go with a nice carbon or titanium hard tail with very light wheels and somewhat beefy tires. If your skills and body are not up to the beating, then go full suspension (perhaps 100mm max), carbon/al with light wheels and somewhat light tubeless compatible tires (low rolling resistance). I doubt anything needs to be mentioned about wheel size for this event. Oh yeah... dropper seat posts are the bomb on Kitzuma and Heartbreak.

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    IoC
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    Quote Originally Posted by fuel98rider View Post
    I have ridden all of these trails at some time or another on the full suspension bike
    That'll probably answer your question right there. If you're either good enough on the DH with the hardtail or timid enough on either where the full suspension isn't much of a time saver, use the hardtail if it's lighter enough to make a difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by fuel98rider View Post
    One other thing, what tires are people running? I usually use the WTB Weirwolfs, but they are heavy and are going to suck big time on the climbs. Would something like the Conti x-king be a better pick?
    I've usually used a light/fast rear (like WTB Nano) and something that's not going to be terrifying on the DH up front (Ardent, Specialized Captain, etc.).

    I might just use Specialized Fast Traks front -and- back. I've been testing them in damper stuff this Spring and they're surprisingly grippy and roll like mad on gravel/road....of which there's a lot on ORAMM.


    Quote Originally Posted by jerry68 View Post
    Full rigid steel Fargo with drop bars? Oh, and ride to the race, do the race, and ride back home.
    That was a long day.

    I'm not doing ORAMM this year, but I'm thinking of riding up the parkway or some of the trails to take pictures. If you see a guy beside the trail with a ti rigid Salsa Fargo and drop bars, say "Hi." (I'm selling the steel...)

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    Quote Originally Posted by IoC View Post


    That was a long day.
    What was it, a little over 100 miles of mixed riding with a race a in the middle? lol

    100 miles on the road bike on pavement only would be a long day for me. You're just nuts. haha
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    What was it, a little over 100 miles of mixed riding with a race a in the middle? lol

    100 miles on the road bike on pavement only would be a long day for me. You're just nuts. haha
    104 or something like that. Full story at Unweight: Joe Rinehart on Bikes and Code: 2013 ORAMM - 106mi on a rigid drop-bar Salsa Fargo

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    FWIW
    I'm an average (by ORAMM standards - I'll aim to finish below 8 hours) rider and I am familiar with the course. I'll be on my Niner AIR 9 with an 80 mm front fork 1x9 with a 32 front/11-34 rear. I also have a Santa Cruz Butcher and a Surly KM single speed that I ride, depending on my mood and conditions, and I have ridden all parts of the course on my FS as well.

    I prefer to use the Niner for this distance, and it suits me better for the long climbs and relatively short and not super tough tech stuff. Plus I'm 46 and flying downhill is not my thing anymore since stuff hurts more for much longer. Needless to say, I am not at all concerned about my Enduro time - I just don't want to fly off the ridge. Also, I would prefer not to be hauling a Camelback in July, and this frame holds 2 water bottles while my FS does not.

    For tires - Geaux Saguaro rear and Gato front tubeless at 25-28 psi or maybe up to 30 due again to the relativly small amounts of tech. I like rolling a less aggressive rear tire, and it doesn't drag as much on the climbs. I'm not light though - by mid summer I'll be at around 175.

    So the best answer (from my perspective) is: If you want to bust the climbs and enjoy a fun ride down, go hardtail. If you don't mind a bit more suffering on the climbs and want to bust the downhills and maybe compete for time on the Enduro, grab the FS. If you want to suffer for all 60+ miles, grab a single speed.

    Your results may vary.
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    Start off with dual suspension. Have someone meet you at rest stop 2 with a road bike that has heavy duty tires. Ride that until you turn off of the BRP. Then switch back for HBR and Kitsuma. Piece of cake.

    I am just hoping that Kitsuma is not a slop fest this year like it was the 2nd time down last year.
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    If you're riding ORAMM for "fun" and anticipate an 8 hour time, I suggest riding the most comfortable, fun and safe bike you've got (full bounce). The ht is likely faster, overall, but what difference does 10-15 minutes make if you're finishing mid pack? Heartbreak is a punishing descent and while Kitsuma isn't as rough, it can hurt that many hours in. I have a 23lbs full bounce and a 20lbs ht; I have done ORAMM 5 times (4/5 on the fs) and still obsess over the decision. I am shooting for 5:40 or less, so I may go ht and pray my body holds up at the end. As for tires, if it's dry, go fast rolling front and rear with a strong casing in the back. If it's wet and/or you have mediocre technical skills, run a trail tire up front and something fast in the rear. Tubeless, low pressure of course. Good luck!
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    Question: How far is it via trail from the railroad bed to the left turn onto Curtis Creek pavement? That's the only part I have not pre ridden, and it kills me not knowing that part.

    Or is that what I rode in Jerdon Mountain last year and the year before?

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRobIII View Post
    Question: How far is it via trail from the railroad bed to the left turn onto Curtis Creek pavement? That's the only part I have not pre ridden, and it kills me not knowing that part.

    Or is that what I rode in Jerdon Mountain last year and the year before?
    That it part of the JMC course. I think it is about 10 miles.
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    IoC
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeridesabike View Post
    That it part of the JMC course. I think it is about 10 miles.
    Yeah, it's something like 11 overall miles from the turn off of the road (before the tracks) to Curtis Creek.

    The first 1.5 are a nearly 800-foot climb up Star Gap. After the tracks and a creek crossing, get ready for hike-a-bike then to have to walk up something like 16-17 switchbacks. When you get to the exposed one where it's sunny and the trail turns into a rocky drainage chute, it's time to start pedaling again.

    After you get to the top, it's a switchbacky descent to the road. Stay sharp, a few sneak up on you: I wound up in the woods a few years ago because of a sudden u-turn.

    Once you hit the gravel road, it's rolling up and down before a looooong gravel descent to CC road. Again, watch where you're going, last year's rains caused some damage to the road that'd be nasty to hit at 30mph.

  21. #21
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    Hello all... I'll be in the area from 6/9 to 6/14. I was wondering if any locals would be willing to join me and a buddy for a ride in the area. We are registered for ORAMM but have never ridden the area. We'd be arriving Monday from South Florida. Getting a taste of whats to come in July would be great. It doesnt have to be the entire course, but just to get an idea of conditions and terrain.

    any group rides or info would be much appreciated.
    Thanks!
    ~every end is a new beginning...

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    I'm 1.5 hours from Old Fort, and have ridden there a lot. While I'm not local, I'm closer than FL, and I'd like to join you and know the course very well.

    Where in S FL? I'm from Naples way back....

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    That would be awesome. I'm free all week. Staying in Black Mtn area. I'm from Miami, so I'm looking forward to riding up there again. I go up at least once a year but never in the Old Fort area. I'll pm you my number and look forward to the ride!
    Post ride beer on me!
    Any others plan on riding anywhere in WNC please let me know.


    Quote Originally Posted by GRobIII View Post
    I'm 1.5 hours from Old Fort, and have ridden there a lot. While I'm not local, I'm closer than FL, and I'd like to join you and know the course very well.

    Where in S FL? I'm from Naples way back....
    ~every end is a new beginning...

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    Re: Oramm 2014

    There was a dude from Miami battling it out with me for 343rd place last year. I was riding up CCR and he was pushing lots of it, but we were going about the same speed. This guy was huge - not fat huge but linebacker huge. The last I saw of him, he was pulled over on the BRP calling his wife to come get him. Big props to anybody who drives that far with minimal mountain training and even attempts something like ORAMM. And he had to drive all the way back home and be at work on Monday.

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    Heading up this weekend from GSO if anyone is interested in pre-riding. Looking for 35-40mi...most of the course but not the roads i nand out of town and Kitsuma only once.

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