RAGBRAI LI Route Announced on Jan. 27!

What Bike Do You Have?

I’m very interested in seeing what kinds of bikes people ride, RAGBRAI or not. Please give specifics (type of bike, material, groupset, why you chose it, and other details).

59 Replies

Roy Trent, March 6, 2017 at 2:46 pm

This will be my first RAGBRAI but based on my homework regarding the route, I think any reasonable (non-department store) bike will be fine.
I am 52 and weigh 235 (not built for climbing:)) and ride a 2013 Trek Domane 5.2 with Shimano Ultegra Compact package and old 105 pedals. I do about 3000 mi each year.
Since I don’t race I did not go for electronic shifting, not needed.
The frame and forks are carbon and the bike is light enough for climbing. The frame and seat post have an “ISO” joint which really offers a smooth ride. No chatter fatigue even on a century ride.
Here in central Ohio, land is fairly flat(40 mi ride might be 1000 ft 3% typ) but I go to the hills and ride as well as do a lot of riding on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia(45 mi 5200 ft typ 6-8%). Descents of 40+ mph are smooth and steady, no shimmy or death wiggle.

I’m looking forward to the ride. However, with this easy route, I will need to remind myself to slow down and enjoy the trip.


KenH, March 6, 2017 at 4:29 pm

I ride a 2009 Fuji Absolute 1.0 with some modifications. It came with flat handlebars, fairly narrow road rims, and 105 gearing. I’ve got a Jones Loop H Bar on it now. I’ve got Velocity A23 rims and Vittoria Voyager Hyper 38mm tires now. I recently changed the rear derailleur to a long cage Deore with an 11-36 cassette. I changed the front rings to 24-39-42 to make it a half step plus granny gearing setup. I would not have needed the granny ring last year or for most of my local riding but some very steep but short local hills make good use of it and if there are sustained 10% grades in the driftless area on this year’s route I might be glad to have it along! Its an aluminum frame with a very large (by road bike standards) trunk bag and rack.

I’m not your typical road cyclist!!

In fact, very recently I have committed the Unpardonable Sin. Yes, I have ditched my clipless SPD pedals and gone with platforms. Now that there is no hope for me I may even buy some Five Ten mountain bike shoes….


stuckinmizzou, March 6, 2017 at 4:59 pm

Giant Defy2 and a Specialized CrossTrail (in case there are some trails to be had). Shimano SPD pedals on both (for my sandals :)) and Sella Anatomica saddles on both.


francoisvanzyl, March 6, 2017 at 5:26 pm

2004 Litespeed Tuscany Ti (curved stays) frame with Shimano Ultegra everything (9 speed), shortened (90 mm) stem, Brooks Flyer Special leather saddle, 25 mm tires, Look pedal system. Changing the cassette to 12-27 for those hills at the end of this year’s ride. I do not want a new or a different bike — my bike is exactly how/what I want it to be. Perfect old man’s distance/century ride. I am older now and like to sit a bit more upright.


Michrider !!!, March 6, 2017 at 6:07 pm

I have a brown bike, a blue/green bike and a custom made black bike!!! On Thursday, I’m heading out to buy a Red Catrike (for this year)!!!
BTW, RAGBRAI don’t care!!!


BillSpriggs, March 6, 2017 at 9:07 pm

Giant Defy Composite 1, Shimano Ultegra Compact, HED Belgium wheels. This will be my 4th RAGBRAI, I’ve got over 14,000 on this bike. My other bike is a Colnago Master Light, old Shimano SC600, still rides great!


W Fanning, March 7, 2017 at 6:32 am

I’ve always had a Cannondale bike.. right now I’ve got 2 a T700, that I bought in 1998. I’ve used for a variety of reasons.. touring, commuting, & for daily fitness rides. Wish I tracked all my Miles.. my best guess would be 25,000 miles.. Still rides great.. but I wanted a new toy.. In 2014 I bought a Cannondale CAAD10 with a SRAM set up, love it.. bought some hand built rims to go with it.. It’s a pleasure to ride this bike. I got about 4000 miles on this bike.. I’ll be bring this bike to Iowa. I do need new tires, which I’ll get for this ride, most likely a little bigger tire that roll fast.. so I can do both Gravel & Road…Looking forward to the ride.. RAGBRAI 2017


GORDON BROWN, March 7, 2017 at 9:50 am

2012 Cannondale Synapse with 2017 Shimano 105 group sitting on the shelf waiting for install. Last year I used a Selle Anatomica leather saddle that worked fairly well, might keep the saddle or move back to padded. That is my Ragbrai bike, I also have a 2016 Salsa Warbird with Tiagra.


Mark Hotle, March 7, 2017 at 11:14 am

Trek Domane 5.9; Ultegra groupset –new for this year……
Past rides; Giant OCR1, Trek Domane 6.2, & Cannondale CAADX 105.
The Domane is my favorite. Nice for a long ride like RAGRBRAI.


Bentongoing, March 7, 2017 at 11:31 am

Mich – you will LOVE the Catrike! Especially this year, being pretty flat!
Since it’s red, I suspect it’s an Expedition. I HIGHLY recommend upgrading the tires to Kojaks! Unless you do some unpaved rail trails.


Geoff Butland, March 7, 2017 at 11:52 am

Longbikes Slipstream. New to recumbents so I’m racking up miles on a trainer while I wait for the weather to warm up. Recumbent legs are definitely a thing – the muscles that are tired are not the same ones I used on my TREK 520! The little bit of road time I’ve had tells me a) it’s like riding in a Cadillac and b) it’s like pushing said Cadillac up hills. The bike is stock – components are primarily Shimano 105, with Disc brakes front and rear. Wave when you pass me on the uphills!


mrwonderful, March 7, 2017 at 2:05 pm

I have a few bikes but the bike I enjoy the most and take on long rides is a mid-eighties Nishiki Cresta GT touring bike with transplanted 105 double with downtube shifters. I recently took off the 700x23c tires that I had on there for twenty years and replaced them with 32c and that made for a whole new comfortable ride. Long wheelbase, steel frame, very nice ride. If your looking for a 63cm bicycle I have too many…


GeorgeKline, March 7, 2017 at 4:06 pm

Specialized Venge 105 group, camy so you will not see me, LOL! Choose it for the aero frame.Need to upgrade the motor, it holds the bike back!


Luv 2 Ski, March 7, 2017 at 4:23 pm

A custom ALU Meridian Tandem built in 2003, Shimano XT triple, DT Swiss Hubs with Velocity Dyad rims. Awesome tandem. I can ride this bike all day long with minimal fatigue. Handles like a Co Motion tandem as opposed to a Santana. Smooth but sporty. Also a 1998 Litespeed Vortex 6.4 TI bike. This was considered a race bike at the time but has a small head tube which makes it very smooth. It is rock solid in every category, speed, handling, climbing, and comfort. Full 9 Speed Dura Ace derailleurs, hubs, brakes and seat post. Recently had a fit overhaul and have a new bar and stem that added additional comfort tweeks. I have tested other bikes but still keep coming back to my old trusted Litespeed. Built by David Lynskey before he left Litespeed.


Luv 2 Ski, March 7, 2017 at 4:27 pm

I failed to mention I have ridden both of these on Ragbrai.


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