Gravel Riding - Any impact or benefit for riding on the road in the spring?

If you add the wolftooth extender, and another 2 links to your chain, I’d bet you can increase the size of your cassette by 2-4 cogs.

Try it and see. You can always return the cassette if it doesn’t work.

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I have yet to get buzzed by a tractor while riding gravel. But I have twice come across bears while riding in western Montana

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Along the same lines as Chad’s suggestion, an alternate that may be marginally cheaper than the GRX rd (but more expensive than the RoadLink obviously) is the Ultegra RX800 derailleur. It’s a clutched rd like the GRX that I run that with a 50/34 Ultegra crankset and an XT 11-40 cassette on my Trek Checkpoint with no trouble (not to mention no adjustment required swapping to my road wheelset with the stock 11-34 cassette).

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I do 99% of rides outside and have been hitting it relatively hard for decades. Due to the pandemic I rode 50% or so of my rides on the g bike which is about 100% more than 2019. I theorized that gravel riding helped my attain a 20 minute PR this past spring. My thinking is simply due to the fact the tires force you to keep power on the pedals more than a road bike. But, this is just me. I’d ride 10-20 miles of road to get to dirt then do a couple hours and 10-20 back. Pedaling over the top takes more force/effort sort of like a dumb trainer…

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mmm. so you can fit 11-40 on this ?

No, that is a regular Ultegra RD.

He was talking about this one, the RX800:

This is still limited on range and not as good as the GRX I shared. But it’s better than the regular Ultegra since the RX includes a clutch (just like the GRX), which the regular Ult lacks.

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Correct - limited in stated range, but well documented to be effective at least up to a 40t low gear.

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I run 50x34 and 11-40 on the di2 version of this RD with no roadlink. I bought one just in case but didn’t need it. With a 116 link chain I can do big/big. Your mileage may vary with a different hanger and chain stay length.

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Aspero solves all

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+1. The lack of the fatter and grippy rubber of mountain bikes, breaking traction is a quick way to send you off a cliff or more commonly flopping over and landing your hip on a rock.

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Yes, that is another thing I noticed gravel vs road. You can’t use momentum as much, you have to keep the power on when pedaling.

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Today I learned…

Hmmm… need to figure out if I can fit a new bike into my carbon wheel budget for next spring… hmmmm

A set of enve’s is almost the same price as an aspero with apex. Amazing how much wheels are

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It’s crazy, right?

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