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N+1

kjrunninkjrunnin Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, Level 2 Supporter
So this gravel riding craze... hasn’t really been an interest but this weekend I mentioned to the hub that maybe I should check it out (he was talking about getting a new bike so you know, me too). Then yesterday I learned Argon-18 has a new gravel bike and they’ve named it after my favourite beer. Obviously it’s a sign from the Universe. So @Matt I can’t find any pricing info - how much are these retailing for?
M_WareMattTad_M

Comments

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    Dark Matter pricing can be seen under the config tab: $4200 for force, $3200 for 105 in the US.
    Mattkjrunnin
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    EvanEvan Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member
    +1 for a cross bike. i have a focus mares with SRAM 1x. it's one of my favorite bikes to ride and in November/December in Texas, it's so fun. go do some cross races, you drink beer DURING the race, and it's just awesome
    kjrunninTad_MJohns622


    unofficial non-general counsel for TRS Racing and other TRS-related entities
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator
    Dark Matter is a gravel racer, not a cross bike. But holy crap it's fun to ride.

    Force 1X comes with a 42T crank, 11-42 cassette and 42mm tires.
    The 105 comes with a 50/34, 11-34 and 38mm tires.


    AaronWebsteykjrunnin
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    Tad_MTad_M Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, Level 2 Supporter
    SRAM 1x all the way. Like @Evan , I'm hooked. All my SRAM stuff is very quiet and smooth compared to my Shimano, and the 1x makes it over the top.
    I know it seems odd, but I spend the same amount of time cleaning and tuning both brands and always get SRAM to be smoother always.
    @Matt, is this logical, or coincidence?
    Evan

    #Sworry 2019 - See you there!
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    mbrekk44mbrekk44 Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member
    +1 on the sram force 1x. Gravel is lots of fun and will definitely make you stronger. Wondering why it comes with a 11-42 instead of the 10-42? The 10 is nice for tailwinds and descending.
    HSeeley14
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator
    Properly set-up, we've had no issues with either.
    Tad_M
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    RashRash Member
    So if I only want to add 1 bike (for now) for both gravel riding and occasional cross racing, which do I get - a cross bike or a gravel bike? Right now I use my mountain bike for both including GravelWorlds (the 75 miler) coming up soon.
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator
    Gravel vs Cross bikes it comes down to weight, geometry and tire width.

    also

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    idking90idking90 Member, Pro Triathlete
    @Rash
    Yes.
    This may surprise you, but people rode on dirt roads, light singletrack, poorly paved roads, you name it, before 5-6 years ago. Take a guess what bike that was on. There are certainly differences, but one maker’s “gravel” geometry might be closer to another’s “cyclocross” geometry, or it might look like a hardtail MTB geometry, or....
    They’re marketed as discrete choices, but it’s far from that at all. I ride my Ridley X-Night on most anything I want including non-rocky singletrack, with its primary limiter being only one set of bottle cage bolts. Yes the bottom bracket is higher than a “gravel” bike, but I’ve yet to tip over as a result of that.
    MattAaronWebstey
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    RashRash Member
    I realize it was done before, just like triathlons were around before aerobars and fully integrated bikes. I also understand there are differences across manufacturers. However there is a somewhat consistent general understanding (still developing) which places most bikes in either the gravel or cross category. My questions was generally, which one is more versatile for handling both. The choice is easier if your intention is to do one category more than the other, but in a hypothetical situation where time will be split 50/50 between cross/gravel - which one should you have. There likely is not a clear answer, but interesting to hear thoughts on it.
    Craig_DAaronWebsteyMatt
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    idking90idking90 Member, Pro Triathlete
    I’ll explain with my rationale, beyond my inherent skepticism of solutions looking for a problem (looking at you, Boost wheel standard)
    I’m gonna go with the basic oversimplification that, all things equal, a gravel bike is gonna be a more slack geometry, clearance for wider tires, and better ability for accessories...
    If you’re truly 50/50 and gravel grinding and racing cyclocross are equally important to you, I’d suggest a cyclocross frame with the widest tire clearance you can find and two bottle cage positions. It seems like most cross bikes can take up to 38 or 40, which is probably acceptable for most gravel grinding needs, but the slack, slightly less responsive geometry will hinder your cyclocross racing a lot more than not being able to run a 42mm tire in a gravel race/training ride, I would think. My experience is that the CX race geometry is only a little tippy at high, high speed loose descents at 40+ mph, and you adjust to it quickly enough. And you could certainly still run those wider tires even in cross racing if you’re not in a UCI race, but that’s kind of like playing basketball on an 8 foot rim. But yeah, CX frames with no bottle cages or only one make long dirt road training rides kind of a pain
    Rash
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    idking90 said:

    CX frames with no bottle cages or only one make long dirt road training rides kind of a pain

    You can always take a camelbak.

    My preference between the two comes down these factors: which is cheaper, and/or which one is sexier? The basic difference is similar to road bikes. Do you want a race bike or an endurance bike? Personally, I’d choose cross because it more closely matched my road bike. But then I also ride loose gravel and dirt on my roadie with 23’s at 100 psi. Any bike can be a gravel bike (sorry to rain on the marketing parade, @Matt).
    Rashidking90Matt
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    Tad_MTad_M Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, Level 2 Supporter
    Hey @idking90 , I've been riding nothing but dirt and gravel roads on my drop bar bike since I got my first 10 speed when I was 10 years old. It was a bitchin Schwinn. 1974 believe it or not. I spent one year living in California and rode the paved paths along the spillways. Ho hum.
    Of course, now that I have ridden all these geometries, I would have to say your explanation is spot on. Easy to shift your weight on the downhill to settle the race bike down a bit on loose gravel, but I'd absolutely go with the tricked out all gravel geometries unless I was doing a CX race. Probably wont do one. Having said that, the Michigan Coast to Coast race proved to me why 42mm tires are a minimum requrement for this sandy loose soil. If you have disc, it's easy to go 650b / 27.5 and put those 42-50mm tires on most cyclocross bikes right? So maybe that's an all in one solution for the part time racer????
    Rashidking90

    #Sworry 2019 - See you there!
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    Tad_MTad_M Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, Level 2 Supporter
    mbrekk44 said:

    +1 on the sram force 1x. Gravel is lots of fun and will definitely make you stronger. Wondering why it comes with a 11-42 instead of the 10-42? The 10 is nice for tailwinds and descending.

    @Matt , don't you have to go with the XD hub and cassette to achieve the 10 tooth sprocket? So that's a bit of an expensive tech upgrade I think? Maybe I have the name wrong.
    Matt

    #Sworry 2019 - See you there!
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    idking90idking90 Member, Pro Triathlete


    You can always take a camelbak.

    Please dear god, no. Unless I’m racing or prepping for Dirty Kanza or MI Coast 2 Coast where it’s a true necessity.
    I do it in training on my MTB quite often, though. But hydration pack on a roadish geometry is just not something I can get behind. It’s not a huge deal, as if I’m way out in the sticks that much that I will be more than ~90 minutes between even a gas station, I would likely rather be on my MTB because chances are any sort of forest service road, doubletrack, or whatever else I’m riding is going to be bumpy/Not maintained enough that having a suspension will make the ride far more enjoyable.

    But then I also ride loose gravel and dirt on my roadie with 23’s at 100 psi. Any bike can be a gravel bike (sorry to rain on the marketing parade, @Matt).

    Also this. My Venge probably has as many “dirt road miles” on it as my Ridley. But I am weak and ride 28s.
    Evan
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    dhrdhr Member
    Lovely shade of beige.

    Exactly what I’m looking for in a bike. Looks great with khakis.
    Tad_MMattsimonsen77
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    ItsShugItsShug Member, Administrator, TRS/Baucco Team Member
    edited August 9
    idking90 said:



    Please dear god, no. Unless I’m racing or prepping for Dirty Kanza or MI Coast 2 Coast where it’s a true necessity.

    You coming to town next year?
    Demotivational Speaker
    Master of the Absurd - King of all Polls
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    M_WareM_Ware Member, Level 2 Supporter
    idking90 said:

    having a suspension will make the ride far more enjoyable.

    Truth. I live on a gravel road so have been mostly riding on gravel since long before it was cool. My next new bike will have suspension.

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    Dark_markDark_mark Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, TRS/Baucco Officers
    i feel like i should buy this bike since it has my name in it
    Dark_markMattidking90kjrunninAaronWebsteyKenElPescadoPeladoHSeeley14
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator
    Similar to the 'regular' and a 'Pro' versions of our Road models, Marketing has already shut me out from naming the next version the "Darker Matter" and/or "Darkest Matter"
    idking90Dark_markTad_MkjrunninAaronWebsteyMartinKenElPescadoPelado
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    Tad_MTad_M Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, Level 2 Supporter
    Dark_mark said:

    i feel like i should buy this bike since it has my name in it

    was named after you...... and you didn't get a free one?

    #Sworry 2019 - See you there!
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator

    mbrekk44 said:

    +1 on the sram force 1x. Gravel is lots of fun and will definitely make you stronger. Wondering why it comes with a 11-42 instead of the 10-42? The 10 is nice for tailwinds and descending.

    @Matt , don't you have to go with the XD hub and cassette to achieve the 10 tooth sprocket? So that's a bit of an expensive tech upgrade I think? Maybe I have the name wrong.
    Ignoring the hub requirement, the XG-1180 Mini Cluster Cassette retails for $308 USD, while the PG-1130 11-42 retails for $70 and had more compatibility with non-XD Drivers, and 10-speed hubs.



    MartinTad_M
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    Dark_markDark_mark Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member, TRS/Baucco Officers

    Dark_mark said:

    i feel like i should buy this bike since it has my name in it

    was named after you...... and you didn't get a free one?
    Nevermind that, this looks really good. On my shortlist as I am seriously considering DK200 next year.
    M_WarekjrunninMattMartinAaronWebsteyItsShugTad_M
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    MartinMartin Member
    Matt said:

    Dark Matter is a gravel racer, not a cross bike. But holy crap it's fun to ride.

    Force 1X comes with a 42T crank, 11-42 cassette and 42mm tires.
    The 105 comes with a 50/34, 11-34 and 38mm tires.


    MSRP?
    AaronWebstey
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    MattMatt Member, Administrator
    Martin said:

    MSRP?

    Option (USD/CAD)
    Frameset ($2200/$2750)
    105 ($3200/$4000)
    Force ($4200/$5250)
    MartinAaronWebsteyTad_M
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    HSeeley14HSeeley14 Member, TRS/Baucco Team Member
    Talk to Scott when he picks up the Zipps, that you and Andrew so graciously took back to the lower mainland for us. Scott is VERY knowledgable. Not that people here aren't but he is also your neighbour and works for Norco and oh yeah, is a Commonwealth Games bronze medalist - no big deal. He has been in the cycling world for a long time and could help you maneuver the world of gravel/cross/whateverthefuck bikes. I LOVE my cyclocross bike, but have yet to ride a cyclocross event - it's pretty awesome for gravel riding too so like mentioned above, a lot to be said for the name branding - just do your research and buy what you like.
    kjrunnin

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