Adam’s gravel bike

Adam’s gravel bike

My teammate Adam has been riding a Salsa Warbird for gravel adventures, but found the handling not to be quite to his liking, and wanted to come up with a better solution. A bunch of discussions later and I felt like I had a good handle on what he wanted, and was able to come up with a design to match his needs.

The bike is designed around 45mm tires, with a REN GX1 fork. We went back and forth on fork options, but settled on this one as having the right clearance (for big tires and fenders), plus it has fender mounts and is decently lightweight. The front end geometry is such that with 32mm tires (for winter road use), the trail will be similar to a road bike, but with the 45mm gravel setup, it is increased so the handling is a touch slower for off-road stability.

A single-ring drivetrain simplified allowing for tire clearance, but some extra shaping of the chainstays was still required. To keep good mud clearance there is no chainstay bridge, with the fender instead attaching to a boss on the rear of the seattube. There is a T47 BB shell, which allows for internal routing of the Di2 wires along with a 30mm crank spindle. The rear dropouts use the Syntace X12 thru-axle system. Tubing in the front triangle all started out as round, but the downtube is ovalised where it meets the BB shell, and the toptube is has a taper ovalisation from the headtube to the seattube. Bosses are included for frame bags (custom ones are being made for it), and three bottle cages.

Shifting the 11-46 cassette is handled by an XT Di2 derailleur, controlled with either hand by Dura-ace shifters.

A double coat powder finish by Custom Powderworks should be gravel-durable, and the final weight is 20.5lbs complete and ready to ride.

*Photos added with the Kaibab Customs frame bags installed!

 

Leave a Comment