Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Trips, adventures, bikes, equipment, etc.
reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 8:50am

I can't find a geometry table on C/dale's site,and the seatube angle looks steep :? .
The Lefty fork(and frame) provide no mudguard fittings and IMHO is too niche,front sus unnecessary IMO for such a bike.
Hydro STI's in a fall on dirt/gravel/mud will result in a costly replacement
The PRICE :shock: NOOOOOooooooo

As a do it all bike it's sadly lacking in so many areas
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reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 9:11am

elPedro666 wrote:http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/bikes/road/product/review-cannondale-slate-force-cx1-50005/

Not completely won over by the concept, but I absolutely love Cannondale for making something like this. The price probably kills it in this instance though, sadly.

I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my wobbly using hovercraft full of eels.


The one featured in that review is a 1x11, £3K for an 11sp alu frame bike,that's lacking in so many areas as posted previously IMO is nothing short of a rip off.C/dale are IMO selling form over function by a large margin.

Your Whyte CC looks a more capable bike than the C/dale TBH,but even that is compromised with a double c/set,a triple would make it even more versatile.
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Si
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby Si » 22 Jun 2016, 10:29am

Did they run out of bits when they came to the hubs, stem and cranks? Suddenly transported back to the early '90s!

reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 11:34am

Si wrote:Did they run out of bits when they came to the hubs, stem and cranks? Suddenly transported back to the early '90s!


It's the new black,or in this case Slate :)
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garibeet
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby garibeet » 22 Jun 2016, 12:49pm

Not everyone wants mudguards(I know, right!) and as for racks, it's not made for riding on terrain that racks would be best suited, soft luggage and all that..... :roll:

reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 12:54pm

garibeet wrote:Not everyone wants mudguards(I know, right!) and as for racks, it's not made for riding on terrain that racks would be best suited, soft luggage and all that..... :roll:


That's true,but limitations need pointing out sometimes,right :roll:
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bisikletci
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby bisikletci » 22 Jun 2016, 1:02pm

Thanks all for the latest replies. I'm going to try to get a test ride or at least sit on the Salsa Vaya, Kona Sutra and Specialized AWOL - though I think getting hold of a Vaya to test may be difficult.

Without having ridden them, and if money were no object, I like the look of the Vaya best, except for the fact that the current iteration has a double rather than triple chainset. Still, if I could get it at the price it's sold in the US I'd probably go straight for it, subject to a successful test ride.

However it's really expensive in continental Europe where I live - while the difference between the AWOL and the Vaya basic models seems to be around $200 in the US, I could get the AWOL for around 500 euros less than the Vaya here (and probably more if I wait until shops starts discounting the 2016 model when the 2017 one comes out). Which is a lot of money for what seems like a similar bike. I'd be open to the option of getting a Vaya frame and building it up more cheaply, but I'm not sure how easy it is to get one in Europe, and they also seem expensive compared to the US.

The AWOL appeals the least to me (albeit mostly for fairly superficial reasons), but it's much the cheapest, probably the easiest to get hold of/test different sizes etc, and also takes the widest tires, which appeals (my forest riding is fairly tame but on the other side of the forest are some farm tracks etc that could use the cushioning). People who have them generally seem to like them, though it doesn't seem to inspire as much loyalty as the Vaya.

Thanks for people's thoughts on the Sutra. I'm interested to see how it compares - a lot of people online including a few posters here seem to think it's much more of a pure (and heavy and somewhat dull) tourer than the Vaya, but on paper (and based on my extremely poor understanding of bikes) I struggle to see how it's massively different, and a few others have said it would work as a do-it-all/adventure bike. I think it's a nicer looking bike than the AWOL. It has the smallest tire clearance though, and is a couple of hundred euros more expensive (though that does include a Brooks B17, which I was thinking of buying anyway...).

Decisions...

Will post impressions if/when I manage to have a go on them.

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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 22 Jun 2016, 1:19pm

Owners' loyalty to the Vaya might well be because Salsa is more of a 'cult' brand than Specialized, which is essentially (viewed as) interchangeable with Trek, Giant etc. To some extent the same would apply to the Kona Sutra. Just as (grossly exaggerated comparison alert!) a Reliant Robin inspires more loyalty than a Ford Focus...

On the subject of adventure bikes generally, a day or two ago I was in LBS and he had a fatbike (Surly Pugsley) in there. He remarked he has one personally which he'd fitted out for touring because it has so many braze ons and mounting points (four on each fork leg just to begin with). Now, I'm not suggesting you get a fat bike! And he does have twelve other bikes to choose from at home... But I mentioned gravel bikes as tourers and he said "Get an audax bike. It'll be far more fun." Which kind of brings us back to the beginning...

In immediate practical terms for you, I think you should see if you can get a test ride on each of the three bikes you're interested in. Don't neglect looks, they are important, if highly subjective.

PH
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby PH » 22 Jun 2016, 1:20pm

bisikletci wrote:However it's really expensive in continental Europe where I live - while the difference between the AWOL and the Vaya basic models seems to be around $200 in the US, I could get the AWOL for around 500 euros less than the Vaya here (and probably more if I wait until shops starts discounting the 2016 model when the 2017 one comes out). Which is a lot of money for what seems like a similar bike. I'd be open to the option of getting a Vaya frame and building it up more cheaply, but I'm not sure how easy it is to get one in Europe, and they also seem expensive compared to the US.

The AWOL appeals the least to me (albeit mostly for fairly superficial reasons), but it's much the cheapest, probably the easiest to get hold of/test different sizes etc, and also takes the widest tires, which appeals (my forest riding is fairly tame but on the other side of the forest are some farm tracks etc that could use the cushioning). People who have them generally seem to like them, though it doesn't seem to inspire as much loyalty as the Vaya.

Bit of sideways thinking - I bought a SOMA frameset untried direct from the US because of the massive price difference, knowing that if I didn't like it I would at the least get my money back and more likely make a little profit. Could that be an option with a Vaya?

garibeet
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby garibeet » 22 Jun 2016, 1:21pm

Well, for context, they're your limitations not mine. I don't want rack mounts or mudguard mounts, so wheres the limitation from my point of view?

reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 1:35pm

garibeet wrote:Well, for context, they're your limitations not mine. I don't want rack mounts or mudguard mounts, so wheres the limitation from my point of view?


And as I posted,I agreed with you.
But we weren't discussing your requirements,had you been the OP the responses may have been different,but for the OP and most others riding where the sun doesn't continually shine,and some stuff needs carrying m/guards and a rear rack can be handy.
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reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 2:00pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:Owners' loyalty to the Vaya might well be because Salsa is more of a 'cult' brand than Specialized, which is essentially (viewed as) interchangeable with Trek, Giant etc. To some extent the same would apply to the Kona Sutra.

IMO,as a bit of a cult(sp?),the Vaya has a few redeeming features compared to the AWOL,which are mainly around geometry,slack angles,low BB,not too heavy @ 12kgs(my own without a rack but with m/g's fitted)and not built up with what could be described as light kit either.
The AWOL is a long bike for a drop barred machine and which gives a low stack height for a given TT length,the build kit isn't inspiring either IMO.
I reckon the Sutra comes out well,spec and geometry wise IMO.

Just as (grossly exaggerated comparison alert!) a Reliant Robin inspires more loyalty than a Ford Focus...

Which is more about being able to drive the Reliant on a motorcycle licence than anything else :wink: .

....But I mentioned gravel bikes as tourers and he said "Get an audax bike. It'll be far more fun." Which kind of brings us back to the beginning...

Generally Audax bikes aren't as rugged as tourers/Gravel/Faux CX bikes and have very limited clearances,which in itself is extremely limiting,add quicker steering and limited load carrying and it ain't looking god for the OP's remit

In immediate practical terms for you, I think you should see if you can get a test ride on each of the three bikes you're interested in. Don't neglect looks, they are important, if highly subjective.

I agree though ultimately it's the ride that matters most for me personally,as in the Reliant v Focus scenario,I've driven both,no contest :wink:
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elPedro666
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby elPedro666 » 22 Jun 2016, 11:32pm

Just to drop another one into the mix; I was helping a friend choose a bike-to-work-scheme bike recently (a possibility for you?) and the Boardman CX Team (I think Team - the mid-spec ~£600 version) is phenomenal value, with some really well thought out details. The rear disc/mudguard/rack mounts were enough to win me over on their own. Light and good to go straight out of the box, possibly with the addition of some chunkier tyres.

Which reminds me - unless you're twiddling serious luggage weight up serious hills, I really don't see the need for a heavy, fugly triple, not now that we have 34t compacts and 32 or even 34t cassettes. Doubles can be set up so much sharper and more satisfyingly than triples. Did I mention fugly...?

I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my wobbly using hovercraft full of eels.

reohn2
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Jun 2016, 11:53pm

elPedro666 wrote:
Which reminds me - unless you're twiddling serious luggage weight up serious hills, I really don't see the need for a heavy, fugly triple, not now that we have 34t compacts and 32 or even 34t cassettes. Doubles can be set up so much sharper and more satisfyingly than triples. Did I mention fugly...?

I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my wobbly using hovercraft full of eels.

So what's the difference between a compact double say 34/46or48 and a 'fugly' 26/34/46or48 that makes the triple 'fugly'?
Answer:-Nothing.But the triple(which is a compact with an extra inner ring)gets a lot lower gears and if you want to you can fit a close ratio cassette and still have low enough gearing to get up 20% climbs without busting a gut :wink:

One of the constant questions asked on this forum is,how can I get lower gearing?
But never,how can I get higher gearing or less of them?
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MikeDee
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Re: Gravel/adventure bike or MTB?

Postby MikeDee » 23 Jun 2016, 3:51am

elPedro666 wrote:http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/bikes/road/product/review-cannondale-slate-force-cx1-50005/

Not completely won over by the concept, but I absolutely love Cannondale for making something like this. The price probably kills it in this instance though, sadly.

I'm a trendy consumer. Just look at my wobbly using hovercraft full of eels.


I take back what I said. 30mm of fork travel seems hardly worth the effort.