Zooey's Gravel Dabbler – Endurance Road Bike
Zooey came to us because they wanted a fast road bike that would be comfortable for long long days in the saddle but stiff enough to really respond when they put the power down. Zooey planned on using this bike for their first ultra distance bike race – The Transatlantic Way – so this bike would have to perform as well on rough road as on smooth and not flinch at more than a little rain!
For the tubeset we went for a mix of Reynolds 853 and 953, utilising the extra strength of 953 on the down tube and chainstays where it would make the most difference. We also selected an ovalised top tube to stop any potential shimmy if Zooey does any loaded touring in the future, without adding weight penalty in the mean time. It also gives a useful little space around the seat tube to internally route the rear dynamo light cable. In ultra races riders rarely stop and spend days on the road, so a dynamo for charging lights and electronics is a must - we also ran the front cabled neatly up the carbon fork leg with bonded eyelets to eliminate the need for unsightly cable ties.
Zooey really is a prime candidate for a bespoke build. With an extremely long leg length compared to torso, Zooey needs a 64cm (equivalent) seat tube with a 57cm top tube! This threw up a few hurdles with the front end… Firstly Reynolds do not make a 44mm headtube long enough, so we had to get a True Temper one flown over from the US, and secondly we ran out of fork steerer in the original design. After a lot of fiddling with stem angles and spacers we managed to utilise the entire 300mm steerer and get the perfect handlebar drop – phew!
SRAM Force 22 with TRP cable pull disc brakes, make for a great all weather group and the Hope/Velocity wheelset decked in Schwalbe S-One tubeless rubber makes for a really comfortable ride with confident handling on road and gravel alike.
For the paint brief Zooey told me “I’m going to use this bike for ultra distance races, at the end of which I am going to look terrible, so I’ll need the bike to look good!”. Wanting to keep a stealthy feel to the build with hints of glamour we went for a metallic black with gunmetal flake over to create glittery fades up the fork legs, stays, stem and light. The pictures really don't do it justice.
Frame: - Endurance All Road Disc Bike, PMW stainless disc dropouts.
Tubing: - 44mm Headtube, Reynolds 953 Stainless Steel down tube and chainstays, with 853 seat tube, seat stays and ovalised top tube.
Forks: - Kinesis Tracer Carbon Disc Fork, with added
Groupset: - Sram Force22 with TRP Spyre cable pull disc brakes.
Finishing Kit: - Brooks Cambium C13 saddle, Chris King Mango Inset 7 headset, Thomson stem and seatpost, Deda bars, Cinelli Kaleido bartape. Son rear dynamo light and B&M front dynamo light with USB charger.
Paint: - Hand Spray paint by Hartley Cycles - metalic black with orange pearl and gunmatal flake custom painted accessories.
Details: - Hand cut solid silver details on top tube and solid silver headbadge.
Image Credit: Sebastien Klein
All Hartley Cycles custom frame builds and bespoke bicycles are handmade in London with great care and attention by frame builder Caren Hartley.