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Orginally posted February 24th, 2010

I held off showing my bike with no name last week for a number of reasons.  Well, today is the day.  Sit back and enjoy the photos and the story that goes along with it.

*NOTE* – It is important to understand that I built this bike for MY needs.   This is not a Salsa project even though the down tube says “Salsa” on it.   I put Salsa on the DT because I am employed by Salsa.   So….Here goes.

I started this bike as my Dirty Kanza bike.  I ended up with something capable of the DK, but also a bit more than just a gravel bike.  Funny how things evolve.   Maybe it ended up this way because I already have my Fargo, a perfect bike for the DK.   Maybe it ended up this way because I have other aspirations for this bike?   I don’t really know why, but I know I ended up with a bike that meets my initial criteria and just a bit more.

Due to my shoulder injury last August, I set out to build a bike that allowed me to carry as much as I could “on the bike” as opposed to “on me”.   I need to get the weight off of me as I still struggle and feel pain when riding with a back pack.   As such, I put 3 water bottle mounts on the main frame, 2 of which have what I expect to be a new standard someday, 3 mounting points.   This isn’t a new idea and I take no credit for this idea.   Nope.   Many have done this before me, but the 3 mounts give you versatility to mount standard water bottle cages in different positions, but also will allow future cages/racks of sorts for larger water bottles and/or gear.

Some of you may notice immediately that the brake routing, disc routing and rack mounting are very different than my current Salsa Fargo.   That is correct.   I never have the intention of running a traditional rack system on this bike.   This bike is intended for the new mini rack prototypes showed by Salsa this past weekend at Frostbike.   I positioned mounting points specifically for the mini racks.   I also will run frame and seatpost bags when and where appropriate.

This bike is built with a cockpit and geometry for drop bars and front suspension.    Notice the longish head tube and the curved downtube (to clear a suspension fork crown)   I have two forks for this, 3 if you count the prototype Enabler.   All 3 forks swap back and forth seamlessly.    I did this because at some point, I want to tackle more than just the rough gravel of Kansas with this bike.   My initial set up is with a suspension corrected rigid 29er fork.

Note, every one of those 11 braze ons for racks and water bottles is welded in place.  No rivnuts.   That kind of detail costs a bit more, but is worth it to me in piece of mind.

Here is a built up shot taken last week on a morning ride.  I wanted to reveal the bike with the mini rack set up, but I’ve just been too busy.

It rides amazingly well.   It’s quick and agile.   By quick I mean it’s shorter and snappier than my Fargo.   It’s almost cross bike quick but fits 2.1’s.  Right now, I think it is the perfect compliment to my rock solid Fargo.
I don’t really plan to go into details of my geometry.   I’m sorry folks.  I know some of you tech folks want to know.   Maybe someday.

Hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did writing and sharing it.   I’m heading out for a ride.

Enjoy your day!

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