24 October, 2013

Testing the Camargue, Part Deux

by Igor

Chris tasked me with giving the 29er Camargue a good thrashing at Rosaryville State Park. I’ve ridden those trails many times with my single speed hardtail and full squish. This bike can be characterized in one word: addicting.

Its full rigid nature means that you have a much stronger connection to the ride and terrain. No pedal bob means that you can negotiate obstacles with more confidence and choose your lines deliberately, as opposed to just rolling over and losing speed. Choosing your lines makes you a better and faster rider, especially when negotiating obstacles and climbing varied terrain. The 56mm mid-trail design makes for an ultra stable and confident ride when going around curves: no diving or understeer.

The Alfine 8 was a very cool experience. Shifting without pedaling was great even though I had to click several times to increase tension, as opposed to how other Shimano trigger shifters perform. There are a few downsides. The 8-speed, 20T sprocket mated to a 34T front ring gave enough range for a lightweight ride, but not enough, as Casey mentioned, for a loaded rig. An 11-speed or a Rohloff would be a better fit for bikepacking with an IGH.

Enough geek speak, onto the pictures!


Wes Ewell said...

I have a bunch of components piling up waiting for Camargue. I'll take a 62cm frame as soon as it's available.

Your comment on the shifter is a common problem. I solved it with the Jtek bar end shifter, which allows shifting multiple gears with a single movement.

Unknown said...

So when are these going to be available?

AdrianQ said...

Those bars... must. Have. Those. Bars... Did you guys decide to produce them? If so, before the end of the year? :)

A said...

The bars are great. Would using a bar like the nitto noodle negatively impact the dirt/gravel experience? I intend to ride this bike long distances on mixed road / trail, mostly trail. I can't make up my mind about which bars to use though.

VeloOrange said...

That does sound like a perfect fix, Wes.

@Adam and AdrianQ,
Frames should be available late Winter/Early Spring. The first batch of bars will be here around early Dec.

The noodles, or any drop bar, wouldn't detract from the gravel/dirt road experience, although you may not be allowed on some of the cooler trails without our crazy bars ;) MTB riding would be harder with drops because you wouldn't have the ability to turn very quickly. This is due to the position of your body over the front end and less leverage due to a narrower bar.

Anonymous said...

It looks like the clearance in the front is tight, what would be the largest tire that you could fit with a full fender?

VeloOrange said...

The production Camargue is designed to take take 2.1" tires with fenders.

Anonymous said...

Has the final geometry of this frameset been posted yet? I'm interested in seat/head tube angle, BB drop, chainstay length & eff. top tube.