Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Bike Fever - Oye Como Vaya

Since my Conquest Sport junior cyclocross bike came with disc mounts and hubs, not to mention the world's worst cantilever brakes, I've always thought of upgrading to disc brakes.  What would make it even better would be to put a 2X10 drivetrain on it like my real cyclocross bike has.  I'm pretty much over triple cranks, don't use the small one hardly ever, and with the Sram Apex you can get the bike set up with about the same range of gears with a double as a triple (or so they say).  For riding to work and back and around town, I might just prefer a single up front but there's those occasions like hauling up to 5-Mile or the South Hill or charity rides when I might need a wider gear range than a single would provide.

I've thought about going the custom route, but I don't feel I know enough about what I want or need in a bike frame so I've put that thought on hold.  I'm a little partial to Redline and they're coming out with the Conquest Disc with Shimano Tiagra 2 x 10 which caught my eye. (update: just saw the new Metro Classic with discs and triple crank). Then I was innocently looking at bikes on either Universal Cycles' or Salsa's website when I stumbled across the Salsa Vaya. Might've seen it before, but this time it jumped out at me.  Disc brakes, Sram Apex 2X10, nice bright orange paint - just what I want.  Plenty of room for tires & fenders. Perfect for town, city, gravel, road, dirt. Steel, so it might be a little heavy hauling up and down our stairs (I really need to get the second remote for our garage door opener working).  Too bad Bicycling magazine featured it in their Sept issue, now everybody will want one.

I did some calculating. Ok it'd be cheaper to upgrade the Sport but the impulse part of my brain says it'd be easier to just get the Vaya.  I think I could do some wheeling and dealing and come up with the do-re-mi. If I could find one to try. I did find one online in what might be my size on the other side of the continent, but should probably wait for the new models to come out. Salsa's website lists Steve's on Cannon as a dealer, I'll have to check with them.  I also read online from an old post that non-dealer bike shops can order them, but it's iffy what's available after the dealers place their orders.

But then I picked up my blue Redline from the shop after it was in for a tuneup, and boy it rides smooth. Really seems to fit me. A couple people have complimented the bike lately, too so I feel bad thinking of abandoning it or hanging it in the garage to ride occasionally. My new bike fever has gone down a bit, but I'm still anticipating/waiting to see what the 2013 Salsa lineup will bring. 

Shoot what's that? Surly is coming out with the Krampus, a 29er+ with 3" tires. Totally different direction, but wonder how that'd work...


  1. What size Vaya would you like to try? I have a 58 that you are welcome to take for a spin. Holy Cats I like that bike. Salsa really nailed it with the Vaya, at least for the kind of riding I am using it for.


  2. thanks for the offer - I probably need more like a 54

  3. Steve's on Cannon had a Vaya in stock when I was in there a while ago, and they seem to stock a few different Salsa bikes. The one they had was probably a 56 or 54.
    - Ventura