10 methods to make your gravel bike extra snug

So you have purchased your gravel bike and you have deliberate your routes and began exploring a few of the rougher tracks you have been seeing for the previous few years. The bike has been nice and you have discovered your love for driving once more, whether or not it is on tough roads, bridges, or forest trails. The dearth of site visitors and the power to cover within the inexperienced has been useful, as you may have found.

However what if every part does not go as anticipated and your horse hasn’t given the consolation you had been hoping for. Assuming you have purchased the precise measurement bike and are not overly stretchy or tight, this guidelines will allow you to discover extra consolation on tough surfaces.

So in rising order of value, we’ll suggest a number of choices to enhance your consolation.

1) Tire stress – £0

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Let some air out of your tires! In the event you got here from a street bike the place 80-100-120psi is typical in your 25-28mm tire, you really want to push the highest of that Presta valve to make it go down. how mushy? Effectively, in case you’re nonetheless driving the tube (extra on that in a second) do not go loopy at first however take a look at the tire and browse what it says. The 650b tires are 45mm broad and high out to allow them to tread rather less than their 700c x 38mm siblings. 30-40psi is an efficient beginning information – 40 high is bizarre, truthfully.

The very best half is that it is free. Simply do not go too low or you’ll give your self a snake chew puncture.

2) Handlebar Relaxation

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A handlebar tape – £15 . From
Get a superb squeeze of your handlebar tape. Is it mushy and slimy? If it is inventory bar tape from new it is going to in all probability be a bit on the skinny facet and may positively be improved.

information for gravel bikes is to search for a tape that’s a minimum of 3mm thick and feels greasy or sticky when damp/moist. Most retailers promote one or two variations like this and in addition include gel pads at larger costs.

B. Handlebar Padding
It is best to suit padding once you’re becoming new tape, but when your current tape is not caught, is neat and re-usable, it could be value a glance earlier than shopping for new. Is. You should purchase particular under-tape pads or you possibly can go the DIY route and use an outdated inside tube wrapped on a bar throughout all the primary stress factors.


RedShift not solely makes pads to suit below your tape however in addition they make grips for the top of your drops known as Cruise Management Drop Bar Grips (fairly mouthful) that present extra assist and luxury than simply tape to your palm supply – from £37.


C. Double wrapping – £10 . From
Wrap the second tape straight over the primary. It’s possible you’ll discover that the brand new tape is not lengthy sufficient because the diameter will increase or {that a} very thick bar does not be just right for you, however some folks swear by this manner of including consolation.


Each double wrapping and under-tape padding have been used for years in brutal Paris-Roubaix races to provide professionals further consolation, and each are cheap choices.

Additionally, remember that you could be want longer tape to go round any further gel pads and grips as you match

D. Flat bar possibility – £20-35. From
In the event you’re operating a flat bar in your gravel bike then aftermarket grips will in all probability provide you with extra consolation than those that had been in your bike when it was new. Maybe essentially the most well-known grip producer is ODI which gives semi ergonomic grips from their Elite line. Supporter The model is certainly value a glance as Anna gave him a full 5/5 for consolation.


Look no additional for an much more ergonomic form of ergon Paddle formed grips that present consolation to the heel of your hand. Many variations supply an adjustable bar finish possibility that gives further handholds which are extraordinarily helpful on lengthy distance rides

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3) Going tubeless – £50 . From

Switching your wheels to a tubeless system helps you keep away from punctures, improve consolation and enhance the general driving expertise, so long as your rims and tires are ‘tubeless prepared’. Merely putting in them and operating your tires at a low stress (suppose 30psi or much less) with out the chance of snakebite gives you extra consolation and management.

Try Liam’s wonderful information on methods to convert your bike to tubeless Right here The right way to arrange your wheels tubeless.

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You are taking a look at round £50 for the valve, rim tape (could also be pre-installed), and sealant. Though you could want a superb observe pump to inflate the tire, it’s not at all times essential.

Sadly, in case your rims and tires aren’t tubeless-ready, it is a costlier resolution and extra of a wheel improve, however one which’s value it in the long term. In case your rims and/or tires will not be tubeless-ready you possibly can strive utilizing latex or TPU Tubes that can enhance your experience really feel and in some circumstances improve your puncture resistance – from £18.


4) Gloves – £20 . From


Gloves with gel pads could also be value a glance in stress areas of the palms. Not everybody will get together with padded gloves, I do not prefer to tape my padding, however they’re value a strive. like gloves Lusso’s Momentum Summer time Based on tester Stu, the glove has simply the correct quantity of padding, and prices solely £20.

On the different finish of the market are the Q36.5’s £56 Distinctive Gloves with inserts designed by Elastic Interface – the folks liable for a few of the finest chamois in shorts in order that they know methods to ship consolation. Learn Matt’s evaluate Right here,

Endura Strike II Palm

Have a look in case you like full finger gloves Endura’s Strike II Gloves Or for a winter possibility, try galibers barrier deep winter gloves.

5) Shorts with padded insert – £45 . From

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It might come as a shock to a few of you {that a} actually good pad between you and your saddle could make the experience extra snug. Shorts, like gloves, are a tough product to suggest as a result of everyone seems to be made somewhat in another way however one thing value making an attempt if you have not executed so earlier than. This will help ease ache in your sit bones and decrease again. These 7Mesh Basis Boxers Fantastically snug. Have a look in case you like bib kind shorts DHB Mode And blocky Mountains.

6) Suspension handlebar stem – £170 . From


This can be a comparatively current return to an outdated thought and Redshift’s Shockstop Suspension Stem And Kinect Suspension Stem The market itself appears to have sufficed.

We really rated the Redshift Stem, which is 200g lighter and £20 cheaper than the Kinette, however they’re each good and supply 20mm of journey on the hood, which makes an enormous distinction to the sharp edges on tough surfaces can put. Each are adjustable to the rider’s weight and style and can be utilized on each drop bars and flats. They weigh somewhat greater than a typical stem (within the case of Redshift) however the advantages far outweigh the burden penalty, particularly on raked gravel.

7) Flared handlebars – £45 . From


Extensive flared handlebars with shallow drops and flatter tops can enhance your consolation over the extra conventional spherical deep drop street bar. The angle of flare and width appears to extend yearly with many choices over 50cm broad. see John’s article Right here For the eldest of them. In fact, rising the width by 2-4cm with a shallow drop will assist enhance your dealing with and luxury on gravel – even higher if they’ve flatter high sections. one thing, like genetic DrieserProvides all the above and is raised 20mm above the stem, providing a better and extra snug place.

8) Shock absorbing handlebars – £100 . From

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The Lough & Spank’s handlebars supply soaking properties of their development, relying on the floor you are driving on. lauf Makes use of military-grade fiberglass blended with its carbon to offer shock absorption, whereas Spank Path makes use of patented VibraCore foam inside its bar to soak up vibration.

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Matt might positively really feel spank vibracore The bars are working in her take a look at set and we at present have the loaf smoothie on take a look at so please verify again to see what we consider them

9) Shock absorbing seatpost – £120 . From


There are a great deal of completely different choices in the marketplace that intention to scale back the affect on the ruts and roots hitting the underside of your rear wheel. These vary from cleverly designed carbon posts with flex constructed into their construct just like the Canon VCLS, to inline posts like USE’s Final Wybe, to elastomer parallelogram-style seat posts like Cane Creek. ST G4 And e silk And Redshift’s Shockstop,

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Then there are Redshift’s Suspension Shockdrop, PNW Coast Suspension Dropper and Rock Shocks Reverb XLR which let you depart your saddle for technical lessons and supply some quantity of suspension on the identical time. Highway.cc. Try our round-up Right here,

10) Suspension forks – from £890

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“Issues begin to get difficult with suspension forks as a result of their axle-to-crown size is longer than the exhausting fork you would possibly discover in your gravel bike, so you must preserve that in thoughts when contemplating this improve. An extended fork head Will decelerate the angle and make dealing with really feel much less direct, nevertheless it’s important to set the sag on any suspended forks appropriately, and doing so will scale back any ensuing affect on the listed axle-to-crown lengths and geometry ” It’s possible you’ll not discover a distinction or, however, it could actually have a big effect on the best way your bike feels. It might definitely add numerous weight right here with 4 out of 5 choices.


In the intervening time solely a small choice of suspension forks can be found for gravel bikes. all of them Lough Grit SL, fox ax, MRP Baxter, Cannondale Lefty OliverAnd this Rock Shox Rudy XPLR, Apart from the Lough, there are different telescopic suspension forks that appear like a lot smaller variations of their mountain bike brethren.


Luff is completely different. It depends solely on flakes from its glass-fiber plates to offer moisture. It is not adjustable in any method and it is not as laterally stiff as the opposite 4 forks, but it surely’s the lightest at 850 grams—about 350 grams greater than most carbon gravel forks—so it is probably that you will drop pounds. Will not see a lot. Not like seems which are very divided.

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The opposite three forks are 1300-1600g, providing 30-60mm of journey, and measuring 427-456mm from axle to crown. We’ve not examined the brand new Baxter or Rudy XLR, however the AX and the unique Baxter did a superb job whatever the limitations in becoming your bike. Lefty Oliver additionally requires that you just use their unique ‘Lefty Hub’ which may deconstruct it for you.


What’s left?


You’ll be able to at all times substitute your body with a suspension or one with a shock-absorbing materials coated in carbon. Cannondale’s Carbon Topstone is a good instance of a motorcycle that does all of it, however the costs aren’t low cost and it is probably not an improve—a brand new bike.

Hopefully, there’s one thing on the market for all budgets and it has given you loads of concepts for what to strive once you’re in search of higher consolation in your gravel bike. In the event you missed any please give a shout within the feedback under.

Discover the UK’s different gravel routes with Komoot:

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