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What is a Gravel or Road bike?
Road bikes are specifically designed to ride around roads, bikeways and in competitive road cycling events. They are among the most efficient bicycles on the market today and offer a huge range of price points to start with. Gravel bikes are a fast growing segment in the cycling industry. The main difference between dedicated road cycles and gravel cycles is that gravel bikes accept larger sized tires and are generally a little bit more rugged. The benefits of the bigger tires and rugged frame is that they are designed to ride dirt and gravel roads more efficiently than any other kind of bike. They are very popular with long distance dirt road cyclists, road cyclists who want to ride away from traffic, and also bike touring enthusiasts who want an efficient and comfortable bike that is capable of handling any kind of road condition.
The industry standard for road bikes is a carbon frame with matching lightweight components. The main goal for road bikes is that they are very lightweight and rigid which promotes a very efficient and quick pedaling experience. Gravel bikes generally have more frame material options. The gold standard for gravel bikes is a carbon frame but they can also be found with aluminum, titanium, and steel frames as well. While road cycles are designed for utmost pedaling efficiency, gravel bikes are designed with a greater emphasis on comfort and reliability.
The technology included in premium road and gravel bikes can vary depending on specific use. Some important technology you want to look for in a road bike is: a handmade carbon frame, electronic shifting or high quality drivetrain, lightweight components, aerodynamic profile, integrated cable routing, tubeless ready wheelset, and a color scheme you love! Gravel bike components are more or less the same but differ in materials. Many gravel riders prefer a titanium or steel frame just because they are maintenance free especially if you are far from home.
Road cycles are for the person who is looking to ride fast on pavement and not be held back by unnecessary pounds to slow them down. Gravel bikes are similar to the road bike uses but differ in the fact that they’re more rugged and off road worthy.
Brands? Some of the fine road brands we carry are BMC, Orbea, Guerciotti, Cinelli, Bianchi, and Tomasinni to name a few. The gravel brands we carry are BMC, Orbea, Salsa, Moots, Santa Cruz, Pivot, Cinelli to name a few.
A worthwhile road cycle generally will start around $1500 and go up as far as you want. Gravel cycles can start around $1000 and will go well within the $10,000+ range depending on frame material, desired use, components etc.
The most important thing to consider when buying a road bike is that it fits you perfect by the time you leave the shop. We take great care to ensure the bike works with your body proportions and has a geometry that is conducive to your preferred riding style. A road bike will fit the same as a gravel bike besides minor variations (standover height, BB height, wheel size, etc)
Who is this for?
Road bikes are for the individual who wants to delve into the purest form of cycling. Gravel bikes are for those who want a road cycling experience but away from cars and in a natural setting.