30 September 2016

Ventana Wolfram Plus-Tire Mountain Bike Packages

We worked with Ventana Mountain Bikes USA to create a new plus-sized trail hardtail called Wolfram. Available with 27.5"+ or 29"+ wheels, the geometry follows current trends of longer top tubes for use with shorter stems, slack head angle for better stability on technical terrain, and short chain stays for a more playful feel and to make picking your way through obstacles easier. The oversized plus tires provide amazing traction and give the back end a little squish. We like to call it an all mountain hardtail.  Some might call it an enduro hardtail.  One of our friends would call it a Funduro. Whatever you call it, it is a very capable bike that is tons of fun to ride.

Completely manufactured in-house at Ventana's factory in Northern California, the Cycle Monkey editions of the Wolfram 27.5+ and 29+ feature dedicated cable routing for the Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 and stealth dropper seatposts and are belt drive compatible through Ventana's clever adjustable dropout system for the most maintenance-free trail bike drivetrain available. Check out the packages below or call us to discuss a custom build.

Bikes packages are available in two build levels:
  • Signature: $7090
  • Standard: $6040
Both packages come with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 14-speed internal gear hub and Gates Carbon Drive belt system.
Contact us at info@cyclemonkey.com or 510-868-1777 for more information or to place an order.

Ventana Wolfram Build Kit Options

Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 Highlights

  • 14 gears with a 526% overall change in gear ratio offers the same range as most three by nine mountain bike derailleur systems.
  • Proven hub internals provide 100,000+ miles of reliable service.
  • Shifting mechanism is completely protected within the hubshell and sealed from the elements.
  • Shift reliably in sand, snow, mud, and other riding conditions that are harsh on traditional drivetrains.
  • Shift between gears at any time, even when coasting or while stopped.
  • Hub needs no maintenance other than an annual oil change.
  • Large diameter, symmetrical hub flanges build into strong, stiff wheels.

    29 September 2016

    Ventana Wolfram Pinion Bike Packages

    Ventana has expanded the drivetrain options available for their Wolfram trail bike.  After successfully launching the Wolfram model with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 internal gear hub and Gates Carbon Drive belt last fall, they are now offering a new version built around the Pinion gear box.  This version carries all the rest of the features of the original: modern trail geometry, large volume "plus"-sized tires, choice of 27.5+ or 29+ wheel size, and Gates Carbon Drive belt compatibility.

    Bikes packages are available in two build levels:

    • Signature: $7,790
    • Standard: $6,510

    Both packages include a 12-speed Pinion gearbox and Gates Carbon Drive belt system.  9- and 18-speed gearboxes are also available through the semi-customizable build kits options below.

    Please contact us at info@cyclemonkey.com or 510-868-1777 for additional information or to place an order.

    25 August 2016

    Cyclocross / Gravel Grinder: Traitor Cycles Crusade with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 and Gates Carbon Drive

    A Kent, Washington-based customer contacted us to talk about building a commuter/dirt road exploration bike with our signature Rohloff/Gates drivetrain. Already a Rohloff rider, he was excited about the simplicity, dependability, and longevity that the combination of the Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 internal gear hub and Gates Carbon Drive belt offers. He liked Traitor Cycles Crusade frame for it's cyclocross geometry, affordable price, adjustable dropouts, and ability to run a tapered carbon fork. He sent us his Rohloff wheel, and we built it into a cool new bike.

    Traitor Cycles is a Pacific Northwest-based company that produces a variety of affordable steel bikes. They make models for geared, single-speed, or fixed commuters, cyclocross racing and riding, mountain rides, and touring bikes. The Crusade is designed as a cross racing machine, but its geometry works well for other uses such as gravel, commuting, and bike packing. 

    Traitor uses a simple pivoting dropout design on the Crusade, which gives it a lot of setup flexibility. This feature is ideal for single-speed, Schlumpf 2-speed cranks, or Rohloff 14-speed internal gear hubs, as it provides a means of chain or belt tensioning without needing to add a separate tensioner. We added a tube splitter in the right seat stay to make it belt compatible and sent it out to our local powder coater for a bright green finish.

    While the frame was being modified with the belt-splitter, we got to work on building a custom front wheel to complement the customer-supplied Rohloff rear. We went with a Velocity Aileron rim and double butted Sapim Race spokes with brass nipples.  Both wheels received Schwalbe's puncture resistant Marathon Mondial tires.

    If you are interested in having a frame modified to ride with a Gates Carbon Drive or are interested in getting a dedicated build like this one, just give us a call.

    Build details

    • Frame: Traitor Cycles Crusade
    • Fork: ENVE Composites Cross Fork
    • Headset: Chris King InSet
    • Stem: Thomson X4
    • Shifter: Rohloff twist shifter 
    • Seat post: Thomson Elite
    • Saddle: WTB Rocket 
    • Front Hub: Chris King ISO 9mm QR
    • Rear hub: Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14
    • Spokes: Sapim Race
    • Nipples: Sapim Brass
    • Rims: DT Swiss TK 540/Velocity Aileron
    • Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Mondial
    • Cranks: Race Face NextSL
    • Bottom Bracket: Enduro XD-15 
    • Chain ring: Gates Carbon Drive
    • Rear Sprocket: Rohloff
    • Chain: Gates Carbon Drive Belt
    • Brakes & Levers: Magura MT4 
     Rotors: Magura 180mm / 160mm

    17 August 2016

    Salsa Mukluk Fat Bike with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 XL

    A couple in Maine contacted us to build up a his-and-hers set of fat bikes, both with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 XL internal gear hubs. Living on the East Coast, they deal with with lots of snow and wanted bikes ready to handle the winter riding conditions they face every year. Both wanted a comfortable ride that would need very little maintenance. He chose a Ventana El Gordo, and she picked this Salsa Mukluk, which is a great platform for building a Rohloff bike.

    Salsa bills the Mukluk as their "exploration fatbike." It is a multi-purpose bike that can be built with a suspension fork for more trail-focused use or with their rigid Bearpaw fork with three-pack braze-ons for added carrying capacity and a more bike-packing focus. Three sets of bottle cage bosses provide ample water-carrying capacity. Salsa's adjustable Alternator dropouts make single speed or geared setups possible and allow the frame to be set-up with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 without a chain tensioner.

    Every build starts in our wheel house while the frame and parts are being sourced. In this case Surly Rolling Darryl rims were laced to a Hope Pro 2 Fatsno hub in the front and a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 XL in the rear using Sapim Race spokes and brass nipples. Both wheels received 3.8" Surly Knard tires.

    In keeping with our focus on function and comfort, we selected a Jeff Jones Loop H-Bar with ESI latex foam grips and Terry Butterfly saddle mounted to a Cane Creek Thudbuster suspension seatpost.

    This couple came to us wanting a bike to fit each of their individual needs as riders, but wanted the bikes to be compatible and capable of keeping them together on the trail. This Salsa Mukluk with Rohloff SPEEDHUB XL with stand up to everything they plan to encounter and the rest of the build will keep her comfortable and able to pack what she needs for their rides.  
    If you are looking for a bike that is ready to take on adventure with you, give us a call and we can help you make it happen.    
    Build details

    • Frame: Salsa Mukluk
    • Fork: Salsa Bearpaw
    • Headset: Hope

    • Stem: Thomson X4
    • Handlebar: Jeff Jones Loop H-Bar
    • Shifter: Rohloff twist
    • Grips: ESI
    • Seat post: Crane Creek Thudbuster
    • Saddle: Terry Butterfly
    • Seat Clamp: Salsa
    • Front Hub: Hope Pro 2 Fatsno
    • Rear hub: Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 XL
    • Spokes: Sapim Race
    • Nipples: Sapim Brass
    • Rims: Surly Rolling Darryl Rim
    • Tires: Sury Knard
    • Cranks: Race Face Turbine
    • Pedals: Shimano XT
    • Bottom Bracket: Hope
    • Chain ring: Profile Racing MTB
    • Rear Sprocket: Rohloff
    • Chain: Wipperman 7R8 IGH
    • Brakes: Avid BB7

    • Brake Levers:TRP
    • Rotors: Magura 180mm / 160mm

    11 August 2016

    Super Commuter / Adventure Road: Calfee Designs Luna with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 and Gates Carbon Drive

    This custom carbon fiber Calfee Design Luna went to a customer in Juneau, Alaska. He was looking for a bike that he could use for his 15 mile daily commute as well as some weekend gravel road rides. He wanted it to be lightweight, versatile, dependable, and built-up with all the bells and whistles available for a great commuter.

    He and his wife have been very happily riding on a carbon fiber Calfee tandem with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 internal gear hub and Gates Carbon Drive belt drivetrain for several years, and he wanted the same reliability on his new commuter. He liked the idea of having Calfee build him another frame and ultimately decided on the Luna model. We worked with him to outfit the bike with dynamo hub-powered front and rear lighting, hydraulic disk brakes, fenders, and a rear rack/pannier system for a properly outfitted commuter.

    Calfee makes their frames in-house in their shop outside Santa Cruz, CA and has been a major pioneer in carbon fiber technologies. They offer a wide variety of custom options and have been making frames to accommodate the Rohloff SPEEDHUB and Gates Carbon Drive belt for many years. 

    Calfee's experience makes it easy to work with them to provide high quality dedicated builds to meet our customer's needs. The Luna model is their most affordable and among most durable models, making it a perfect commuter option.

    While the frame was being hand crafted in Santa Cruz, our Wheel House built up a set of custom wheels. We spec'd Velocity Dyad rims for their strength and mid-range weight laced them with double-butted Sapim Race spokes and Sapim brass nipples. Up front, a Schmidt SON28 dynamo hub will power front and rear lights. 

    In the back, Rohloff's SPEEEDHUB 500/14 provides reliable shifting in all weather conditions.

    This Calfee Luna adventure road bike was built to be the ultimate commuter and give our customer the option of heading off road to explore. He wanted it to be light weight and run the ultimate drivetrain, and with Calfee, we were able to deliver.  The rest of the build was selected to make his rides hassle-free and dependable.

    If you are looking for a top shelf commuter that's ready to hit the road every time you head out the door, give us a call.  We are here to help make your dream bike a reality.  

    Build details

    • Frame: Calfee Luna
    • Fork: Spot CX (painted to match frame)
    • Headset: Chris King NoThreadSet
    • Stem: Thomson X4
    • Handlebar: Ritchey WCS Carbon Curve
    • Shifter: Co-Motion
    • Bar Tape: Lizard Skins DSP 
    • Seat post: Thomson Elite
    • Saddle: Selle Anatomica Titanico
    • Front Hub: Schmidt SON28
    • Rear hub: Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14
    • Spokes: Sapim Race
    • Nipples: Sapim Brass
    • Rims: Velocity Dyad
    • Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Supreme
    • Cranks: Race Face Turbine Cinch 
    • Bottom Bracket: Hope 
    • Chain ring: Gates Carbon Drive
    • Rear Sprocket: Rohloff
    • Chain: Gates Carbon Drive Belt
    • Brakes & Levers: TRP Hylex 
     Rotors: Magura Storm 
    • Rear Rack: Tubus Minimal QL3 Pannier Rack
    • Front Light: Schmidt Edelux II
    • Rear Light: Busch & Mueller Seculite Plus 
    • Fenders: SKS P45