Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Gravel Stuff On The Brain

Lately I have been doing a lot of thinking and planning in my head concerning gravel riding. Some of it is gear based, some ride based. Here's a quick run down of things bouncing around in my noggin' of late.

Velocity A-23 Wheels: First up are the Velocity A-23 wheels, which I've brought up before here. I want to do a few more longer rides on them, but my initial feelings are that these are some nice wheels that may be a great choice for gravel grinding. The cool thing is that Velocity U.S.A. can lace these a few different way, but you can also get rims and roll yer own.

I like the wheels so far quite a bit. They roll well, have good spin up, and seem to hold a line very well for a big ol' feller like me. I've hit big, chunky gravel, "hero gravel", and everything in between, plus done a fair bit of curb hopping during commutes, all with zero effect on these wheels so far. My favorite thing right now? The ultra-smooth, even braking surface. I didn't know my brakes could work that well!

Orange Crush: I've got much to say about this rig. I want to do a full blown review of the frame/fork, for one thing, and also do another full blown post on just the set up and why I chose each thing. This was to be the DK 200 rig, and I am sure that I am 99% there as far as that would have gone, but be that as it may, it's staying together like this. I have grown to really appreciate each and every aspect of the bike so far, with a couple minor gripes. If I do go with the proposed custom gravel rig, (and that's still on the table), I will base it off this bike.

Luxy Bar: I've got to do a final review on these bars, and also do my comparo on all the off road drops yet. I still need to get a WTB Drp Bar, but that should happen this summer yet.


That includes the Gary II bars on my Fargo too. This bike will also be getting a set of new 1.9" GEAX tires soon that should be great for commuters/gravel grinders. Stay tuned for that soon....

Stage Race Idea: This is still bouncing around in my head, but I've stuck the idea into neutral until I perhaps get some input from some other riders at my GTDRI ride, or some other gravel grinder event where I can pick a few brains and see where this might go. Speaking of GTDRI.....

Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitational: (Read: Fancy name for a "no rider left behind" fun gravel ride of 100 plus miles) I've got to sew up some route details here, and recon some unknown roads, but this is certainly a go for me at the end of July. Anybody can come, or if no one does, that's okay too. I'm going to ride it regardless. Since I can't do the Dirty Kanza 200, and I spaced off sending a card in for Gravel Worlds, I guess this will be my one big summer gravel dealio. That's cool with me.

And that's a wrap on my gravel exploits, dreams, and schemes.

5 comments:

Courtney said...

I'll be coming to the death ride! I'll be doing part of the Ragbrai but will stop in Grinnel for an extra night and then ride the death ride.

Guitar Ted said...

@Courtney: That's awesome. Hope it all works out for you to show up. It'll be a gravelly-good time!

blackmountaincycles said...

I really like the A23 rims and have built them up for all kinds of road and cross applications with hubs from Deore up to King. Good combination of weight and cost.

Cornbread said...

We're still taking postcards for Gravel Worlds.....

Guitar Ted said...

@Cornbread: Oh really?........:>)