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New to Gravel...

Brew_TriBrew_Tri Member, Rooster Endurance Member
Alright, I'm signed up for the belgian waffle(wafer) ride here in San Diego(Whales vagina). I am enacting N+1 to get some new wheels. What do I need to know before buying a gravel bike? Can I wear road shoes? I was going to go with 2x11? Disc brakes? What kind of tires do I ride? Am I overthinking this?

This bike will probably come with me to michigan in June, so @Tad_M better have some insight!
M_WareJennifer PostCraig_D
Yay Sports! :#

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    Tad_MTad_M Member, Rooster Endurance Member, Level 2 Supporter, POTM
    edited January 14
    Carbon Sprecialized Diverge (has the future shock which obliterates all other bike features for gravel).
    There is zero debate if you ride any moderately rough gravel more than 1 hour.

    It has discs, so you get the right stuff. 2x11 or 1x is a toss up, both have pluses/minuses. Dont worry about tires, the stock will be fine, and you will find so many compelling, equally good options for different surfaces later that you will loose your job obsessing over minutiae.
    Brew_TriCraig_D
    visit Michigan July 16th to 20th - The Sworry Trials and Ode to Laz
    https://www.facebook.com/sworrytrials/
    https://www.facebook.com/OdetoLaz/
  • Options
    Tad_MTad_M Member, Rooster Endurance Member, Level 2 Supporter, POTM
    Also, I used road shoes for 10buears on gravel, and the first MI coast to coast race. Switched to a MTB shoe last year. I think I'm going back to road. I have had one occaision where mud is a problem on the roadie stuff, so if it will be a muddy day, I'll say MTB setup for sure. Otherwise, I like the long duration benefits of the roadie shoes and cleats.
    Thia is probably gravel heresy, but I was riding gravel for 10 years before it got a name, so they can stuff it. I also rode my Sears 10 speed on dirt trails in grade school...
    Brew_Tri
    visit Michigan July 16th to 20th - The Sworry Trials and Ode to Laz
    https://www.facebook.com/sworrytrials/
    https://www.facebook.com/OdetoLaz/
  • Options
    RashRash Member
    on the road shoes v mtn bike shoes - mud is something to consider, but for me it comes down to how much potential is there for having to hike a bike. some races like to include sections that are unrideable or the conditions on the day won't allow for it. I hate walking in road shoes - hate it even more when it's off road/off camber conditions.

    The other consideration is technical terrain. if you think you might be pulling your foot a lot due to sketchy sections or tight, crowded turns, that is usually easier in mtn bike shoes - not to mention they provide better traction when you actually touch down. Most gravel rides won't really present these conditions, but something to consider.
    AaronWebsteyBrew_Tri
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    Tad_MTad_M Member, Rooster Endurance Member, Level 2 Supporter, POTM
    Best consideration of all @Rash!

    I never have to cyclocross it, so that hadn't even registered.
    This is why the Roost is great. Other places, I would have been forced to change my forum name.
    AaronWebsteyJennifer PostBrew_Tri
    visit Michigan July 16th to 20th - The Sworry Trials and Ode to Laz
    https://www.facebook.com/sworrytrials/
    https://www.facebook.com/OdetoLaz/
  • Options
    Jennifer PostJennifer Post Member, Rooster Endurance Member, Level 2 Supporter
    If interested in gravel videos, check out Ansel Dickey’s company. They do good work. https://www.vermontsocial.media/content
    Brew_Tri

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