Show "Bicycle"

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
I spent my afternoon cleaning and sorting the garage to make room for the new bike build. Amazing how much stuff can be thrown out when considered dispassionately. Our other two bikes are hanging on the wall to my right behind my wife's car. The afternoon was so nice I washed both vehicles, too. No bike riding this weekend, though; my posterior is still sore from Wednesday's 31 mile jaunt. :crying:

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Jonathan F/2

Top Veteran
Location
Los Angeles, USA
It's done! I have a used geared bike coming next week! I opted for the aluminum frame bike with Shimano GRX 400 groupset + FSA tempo crankset, Shimano hydraulic brakes and 700 x 40C WTB gravel tires. I wasn't too keen on the aluminum frame, but I figure the components were worth it over just getting a bike that looked the part, but with no-name components. I'll most likely sell my high geared single speed bike and just stick with a 2x bike collection. I also ordered a size down, mainly because I found with a smaller frame I have way more flexibility with stem length/height and I can go low and aero easily.
 

Aushiker

Hall of Famer
Location
Fremantle, Western Australia
Real Name
Andrew
A bit of input here. I have a Microshift dual lever shifter and 9sp derailleur on Big Red. I'll admit I am not a bike mechanic, but I've fiddled with the adjustments plenty, and the indexing stinks. I'm swapping the dual lever shifter for a friction thumb shifter.

As for mechanical disc brakes . . . meh. They work fine for easy bike path or park riding, but when I tried using them on a long, steep fire road that was a shorter version of Repack, they didn't do a very good job of keeping my speed from getting faster than I'd prefer. I'll be replacing at least the front brakes with hydraulics.
My Surly Long Haul Trucker has Shimano Ultrega bar-end shifters on it. The indexing went on them 1,000s of kilometres ago so now they are friction shifters. Works fine for me as this bike is really a touring bike. Hence I have no need for quick changes and to be honest, I like not having to worry about indexing on a tour.
 

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
Now there's a name from the past from when I was a kid 40 years ago riding my 10 speed racer. Are they still ruling the roost?
There are other component makers, but Shimano definitely is a major player, with components ranging from basic no-frills parts to groupsets costing well over $1,000 USD for a single bike. All 4 of our bikes have at least a few Shimano parts.
 
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tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
I took the SS Crossroads out for its first adventure outside of our neighborhood, a spin of just over 8 miles this morning around a nearby small river town. The 36:20 ratio was just a bit too easy on streets that were flat or slightly downhill, but about right on inclines or when I took it onto gravel paths. The weather was cold but sunny, and the streets were mostly quiet. There is not supposed to be water visible in that last image . . . lots of rain over the past few days.

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KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
Shimano is still dominant, yes. SRAM is close behind, but my local shop hates them. If I recall correctly, their gripe is something along the lines of "they undercut Shimano so manufcaturers will spec them on new bikes, but they're impossible to support, fix, work on, dial in correctly" etc. Meanwhile I have SRAM stuff on one of our bikes, and it works fine. Ditto a lot of folks we know. I think the shop just hates what it hates. :) Microshift is trying to get a bigger foothold, and they have some cool ideas, but the quality isn't up there yet.

If you guys wanna dive into something fascinating, check out the Pinion Gearbox systems made in Germany. That's some robust, maintenance-free stuff. But they only sell it with grip shifts, which I HAAAAATE. And you have to completely stop loading the pedals to shift, which can kill your momentum hitting a steep uphill. Nothing's perfect, I guess.
 

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
Shimano is still dominant, yes. SRAM is close behind, but my local shop hates them. If I recall correctly, their gripe is something along the lines of "they undercut Shimano so manufcaturers will spec them on new bikes, but they're impossible to support, fix, work on, dial in correctly" etc. Meanwhile I have SRAM stuff on one of our bikes, and it works fine. Ditto a lot of folks we know. I think the shop just hates what it hates. :) Microshift is trying to get a bigger foothold, and they have some cool ideas, but the quality isn't up there yet.

If you guys wanna dive into something fascinating, check out the Pinion Gearbox systems made in Germany. That's some robust, maintenance-free stuff. But they only sell it with grip shifts, which I HAAAAATE. And you have to completely stop loading the pedals to shift, which can kill your momentum hitting a steep uphill. Nothing's perfect, I guess.
Ryan Van Duzer on YT is a big proponent of Priority bicycles and their Gates Carbon belt drives. He says he worked with Priority to develop one of their bikes, just don't remember which one. The 600 is the expensive one with the pinion system: PRIORITY 600 - Priority Bicycles

And yes, Microshift has good ideas, but their 9-speed groupset has caused me all sorts of headaches. I'm about to rip it off Big Red and go SS on that one, too.
 
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Jonathan F/2

Top Veteran
Location
Los Angeles, USA
Ryan Van Duzer on YT is a big proponent of Priority bicycles and their Gates Carbon belt drives. He says he worked with Priority to develop one of their bikes, just don't remember which one. The 600 is the expensive one with the pinion system: PRIORITY 600 - Priority Bicycles

And yes, Microshift has good ideas, but their 9-speed groupset has caused me all sorts of headaches. I'm about to rip it off Big Red and go SS on that one, too.
I really like Priority's Apollo gravel bike running the Shimano Alfine 8-speed gear hub. That bike has single speed looks and weighs in around 24 pounds.
 

Jonathan F/2

Top Veteran
Location
Los Angeles, USA
I just got back from my ride on the Gabrielino Trail here in Los Angeles. Weather is perfect to a T in the mid-70s. I'm not looking forward to 100 degree temps come summertime! I adjusted my low gear gravel bike to be better suited for the trail. I swapped the stem to a 45mm MTB stem to allow for better maneuverability on the more technical trail sections. I also adjusted the bar angle to prioritize using my hoods mainly. I also wore waterproof socks and knee pads this time around due to the creek crossings on the trail and the rocky boulder areas. Lastly I installed a bell to alert other cyclists and hikers on the trail! I looked more like a mountain biker than a roadie! :D

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KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
I really like Priority's Apollo gravel bike running the Shimano Alfine 8-speed gear hub. That bike has single speed looks and weighs in around 24 pounds.
11 speed! And yes, they managed to make something really compelling there. I'd want to know specifics about the lowest gear inches available stock, because the hills here are SERIOUS. But I love it.
 

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
11 speed! And yes, they managed to make something really compelling there. I'd want to know specifics about the lowest gear inches available stock, because the hills here are SERIOUS. But I love it.
That really is a hot bike, and I don't even ride with drop bars. But I just finished yet another bike build. I don't need more than 3 . . . 3 is enough. Right?
 

KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
As many bikes as we have, I really don't have a "THE" bike bike. The only bikes that are "mine" in the garage (my size, my choices for bars etc) are the Gary Fish Mt. Tam from 2000, and one of the folding Bromptons. So really it's the Fisher all the time. It was converted to a 1x9 by the previous owner, one of my bosses, who used to commute around Portland on it. I swapped the 3 degree carbon sweep bars for a MUCH more swept bar, the Velo Orange "Postino." I have a rear rack on it, because it does a lot of grocery runs as well as taking me to and from work pre-Covid.

So it's great around town, on paths, singletrack, and is comfy for me more or less all day. But it doesn't have fenders, nor can it really with a front shock. And the shock... really isn't what I want on pavement or gravel. I've ridden it probably 30 miles in a day before, and I'm comfortable, it isn't SLOW slow, but it has a lot of tradeoffs when you aren't needing that shock.

If I had a magic wand, I would have a properly sized, aluminum framed, carbon forked, 700x45 ish (maybe 650B x 2, aka 27.5"), generator front hub with hardwired lights, handlebar bag, fenders, and a frame bag that I can attach when I want more storage. Hydraulic discs, really just an entire GRX setup from Shimano, though I'm not opposed to that Alfine 11 internal hub, I just don't love the weight and lack of low-end as it comes stock.
 

Jonathan F/2

Top Veteran
Location
Los Angeles, USA
As many bikes as we have, I really don't have a "THE" bike bike. The only bikes that are "mine" in the garage (my size, my choices for bars etc) are the Gary Fish Mt. Tam from 2000, and one of the folding Bromptons. So really it's the Fisher all the time. It was converted to a 1x9 by the previous owner, one of my bosses, who used to commute around Portland on it. I swapped the 3 degree carbon sweep bars for a MUCH more swept bar, the Velo Orange "Postino." I have a rear rack on it, because it does a lot of grocery runs as well as taking me to and from work pre-Covid.

So it's great around town, on paths, singletrack, and is comfy for me more or less all day. But it doesn't have fenders, nor can it really with a front shock. And the shock... really isn't what I want on pavement or gravel. I've ridden it probably 30 miles in a day before, and I'm comfortable, it isn't SLOW slow, but it has a lot of tradeoffs when you aren't needing that shock.

If I had a magic wand, I would have a properly sized, aluminum framed, carbon forked, 700x45 ish (maybe 650B x 2, aka 27.5"), generator front hub with hardwired lights, handlebar bag, fenders, and a frame bag that I can attach when I want more storage. Hydraulic discs, really just an entire GRX setup from Shimano, though I'm not opposed to that Alfine 11 internal hub, I just don't love the weight and lack of low-end as it comes stock.

Bikes are selling out crazy fast. Both the Poseidon and State bikes I was looking at sold out in less than a week after new stock arrived. I think just owning a useable bike right now is "THE" bike to own! :D

Here's another gravel bike I found with the Sora groupset for under $1K and lifetime frame warranty:

 

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
Never one to leave well enough alone, I've been tinkering again. I swapped the knobby Bontrager 27.5x2.1 tires I originally put on Big Red with a set of Specialized Pathfinder Pro 650Bx47c gravel tires. I've been wanting to get away from knobbies and extra wide tires, and the Pathfinders had good reviews. An added bonus was they snapped onto my non-tubeless rims and inflated on the first attempt. Neither I nor the LBS were ever able to get the TLR Bontrager tires to inflate tubelessly on those rims. I rode it around my neighborhood for a bit this afternoon, and I much prefer how the Specialized tires roll vs the knobbies. Fortunately, I got the Bontragers super cheap, so I'm not out much. My three bikes now have tires that are 50c, 47c, and 38c. No more fat or plus bikes for me.

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