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Thefox1825
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am starting my search for a great gravel bike to ride my local fire roads, I would like your expert opinions on what I should look for and take into consideration?

I am 6'3 and 225 lbs, I have to take that into account when purchasing a bike.
 

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Bikesexual
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7,568 Posts
Material?

Yeah, more details will help. I can brag how much I love steel but that's very personal.

With that budget any particular drivetrain preferences?

To start suggestions All City Gorilla Monsoon or Surly Midnight Special.

The Cannondale Topstone gets lots of luv around here.

Salsa has a nice line up as well.

A lot depends on what you want out of the bike.
 

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asshole roadie
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204 Posts
6'3", 35" inseam, 230 lbs. I love my Cutthroat. I put on some Rene Herse Snoqualmie tires and it's a magic carpet ride. The XL fit me perfectly out of the box. It is at the top of your budget, though.

My backup choice (XL Cutthroats were sparse back in March, LBS pulled some strings, no idea what the current availability is) was a Raleigh Tamland. More traditional road/gravel vs. the drop-bar 29er thing the Cutthroat has going on. 631 steel, Rival (hydro) on the top spec, decent wheels. Claimed 40mm max tire size, if that matters to you. Raleigh 60cm road frames also fit me out of the box with no modifications (have an RXC, had an RXS).
 

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Registered
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35 Posts
My husband is riding a Trek Checkpoint, which he likes very much. He doesn't like to ride anything particularly squirrely, nor do a ton of climbing, and a regular compact crank (50/34) was really important to him. He hovers around 215, although he's not as tall as you, and has not had any trouble with the bike carrying his weight.

Personally, I changed out the cyclocross crankset on my Cannondale CAADX for an adventure crank (46/30), and love the gearing range and how small the gaps between gears are.

If I were going to buy a new one, I'd look hard at a Specialized Diverge - that was where I was headed before I realised it made more sense to swap out the crank on the otherwise perfectly fine bike I already have. I liked the geometry, and the Futureshock is a nice feature to minimize fatigue.

Whether or not you want carbon or aluminium, a 1X or 2X (or heck, even 3X) drivetrain.... those are mostly personal preferences and may be related to the type of riding you're going to be doing. "Gravel" covers a multitude of sins and riding conditions!
 

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Thefox1825
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My husband is riding a Trek Checkpoint, which he likes very much. He doesn't like to ride anything particularly squirrely, nor do a ton of climbing, and a regular compact crank (50/34) was really important to him. He hovers around 215, although he's not as tall as you, and has not had any trouble with the bike carrying his weight.

Personally, I changed out the cyclocross crankset on my Cannondale CAADX for an adventure crank (46/30), and love the gearing range and how small the gaps between gears are.

If I were going to buy a new one, I'd look hard at a Specialized Diverge - that was where I was headed before I realised it made more sense to swap out the crank on the otherwise perfectly fine bike I already have. I liked the geometry, and the Futureshock is a nice feature to minimize fatigue.

Whether or not you want carbon or aluminium, a 1X or 2X (or heck, even 3X) drivetrain.... those are mostly personal preferences and may be related to the type of riding you're going to be doing. "Gravel" covers a multitude of sins and riding conditions!
Thank you!!!
 

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Thefox1825
Joined
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
6'3", 35" inseam, 230 lbs. I love my Cutthroat. I put on some Rene Herse Snoqualmie tires and it's a magic carpet ride. The XL fit me perfectly out of the box. It is at the top of your budget, though.

My backup choice (XL Cutthroats were sparse back in March, LBS pulled some strings, no idea what the current availability is) was a Raleigh Tamland. More traditional road/gravel vs. the drop-bar 29er thing the Cutthroat has going on. 631 steel, Rival (hydro) on the top spec, decent wheels. Claimed 40mm max tire size, if that matters to you. Raleigh 60cm road frames also fit me out of the box with no modifications (have an RXC, had an RXS).
Thank you, I will have chekc out these bikes.
 

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Thefox1825
Joined
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
6'3", 35" inseam, 230 lbs. I love my Cutthroat. I put on some Rene Herse Snoqualmie tires and it's a magic carpet ride. The XL fit me perfectly out of the box. It is at the top of your budget, though.

My backup choice (XL Cutthroats were sparse back in March, LBS pulled some strings, no idea what the current availability is) was a Raleigh Tamland. More traditional road/gravel vs. the drop-bar 29er thing the Cutthroat has going on. 631 steel, Rival (hydro) on the top spec, decent wheels. Claimed 40mm max tire size, if that matters to you. Raleigh 60cm road frames also fit me out of the box with no modifications (have an RXC, had an RXS).
I think I like the Raleigh better with thinner tires. The Cutthroat is a good looking bike but the tires are as big as my current mtb. I am looking to get a lighter biker, less tire drag, so I can rip on road and fire roads. Thanks for the suggestions.
 

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Registered
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477 Posts
Here's my drive-by rambling post...

Giant Revolt is a hard package to beat.

You want carbon... you really want carbon. (and I say this as someone who appreciates the ride of a good steel bike).

Advice... if this is an all-arounder (meaning you want to be able to go fast in road-trim sometimes) get a bike with a 2x drivetrain, it'll be more versatile. If you already have a road bike and this bike will be mostly ridden in dirt and at less than 20 mph, then 1x is nice.

In your price range, SRAM Apex is fine... love the hoods. 105 is probably better performance, but I hate the hoods.
 

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209 Posts
I'd be looking at the steel RLT, Salsa Warbird or Journeyman or Surly Midnight Special. So many choices available for gravel bikes now. Just need to narrow down what your looking for and go from there. Hard to beat a steel gravel bike!
 
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