Saturday, April 24, 2010

Possible new (light) gravel cruiser

Looking at a few options for a light(er) 700c gravel cruiser. My Karate Monkey is nice, but the big meats, and heavy frame are a little overkill for speedy gravel cruising. My LHT has been assigned to gravel duty in the past, but it's not ideal either. A while ago I started thinking about building up a gravel specific machine, and seeing if I could do it from the parts bin. While cleaning the garage today, an idea came.

Take the old faithful Antelope frame, the touring wheels from a Miyata 100LT I sold, and some Nitto mustache bars. I'm thinking about a 1X8 drivetrain. I don't need a huge gear range, but it would be nice to compensate for slight inclines/decline, and for the wind.

The 700c wheel actually fit well in the frame, although I don't think fenders will be an option. Not that I really want any for this specific build either. I've got some Shimano bar end shifters I could use, and some Shimano 600 brakes that are in pretty nice shape. I'll need a new stem, as this one puts the bars a bit too far forward. You'll also notice a stem extender in there. This frame is really too small for me, by a long shot. But, with the seat-post extension, and the stem extender, it's a pretty nice fit. Add those 700c wheels, and this thing has about an inch more BB clearance that the Karate Monkey. This might just turn into a really sweet, nice and fast gravel machine.


DerrickP said...

Looks great. I'm about to build an xtra out of my Antelope. Pics are looking great, by the way. Has riding been affected by the new biz?

Tex69 said...

like the gravel-machine idea. I put monstercross tires and 'stache bars on my Crosscheck and plan to modify the drivetrain as well for that exact reason. The monstercross tires are a little big for basic gravel, but of course I have other lying around.

Easton Heights Blogger said...

always good to have a knockaround bike around for, you know, knocking around. I used a late '90's Trek 820 (after they stopped using the 'antelope moniker), it was one of the ill-fated American made ones and it was orange. I still have the frameset. anyway, 700c wheels work great in it, and I ran my nitto moustaches on it also. fine bike, but too harsh w/ that steel unicrown fork and large diameter frame tubes. I was going to use it for a 26" wheel singlespeeder, but it doesn't have long dropouts. I got a older diamondback frame w/ long dropouts I'm planning on using now.

Jerome said...

Good to know! Thanks!