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

Proteus Dan, March 7, 2017 at 6:12 pm

A 1976 Proteus Century. Campy (of course) nuovo record, Rally components with barend shifters and Brooks saddle.


powellpd, March 7, 2017 at 6:40 pm

I have a 2015 Trek Silque. Have a mountain cassette on it giving me more gears. I have tubeless tires which was a blessing last year as I passed so many rides having had a flat tire. I use a Garmin 520 computer and RWGPS on my phone.


Jboz, March 7, 2017 at 6:41 pm

Several bikes. For 2017 Ragbrai, I’m torn between my Soma Saga setup for touring (with Jones H Loop bar), and one of my recumbents specifically an ICE Sprint X tadpole trike. I’ve been back and forth on whether to go upright or laid back this year. But if Michrider is going the trike route, that’s good enough for me. ICE Sprint it is. Mich, with the Catrike you won’t really need kurbs…the trike will suffice, and is unique in that at the end of the day, your butt won’t be screaming to dismount. I’ve enjoyed many a cold beverage relaxing on my comfy trike seat.


SFC JKL 2, March 7, 2017 at 11:09 pm

For Ragbrai I have my trusty Trek 1000C. The only original parts left are the shifters. I replaced all the chrome with red parts until bottom headset ring decided to break last year and all they had to replace it with was chrome. I have a rear rack and outlaw mountain gears with a 52-40-26 in front with a 12-28 cassette. To round out my collection I have a Pinarello Prince, a Ridley Compact, a Gravity fat bike, and a Sun EZ-3 USX trike.


Nico ZZZ, March 8, 2017 at 7:55 am

I ride a 2013 Scott Metrix 10, a hybrid flatbar 20-speed ride. Most important mod was the saddle to an ism Typhoon. This saddle changed my life! During my first RAGBRAI in 2014 I of course had some bike envy when I saw the parade of sexy road bikes go by, but my Sexy Scott Metrix does the job. At my LBS I fall in love with all those lovely bikes, but… the annual trip from FL to Iowa costs enough without throwing down a few grand for another bike (sigh). So I will be returning to ride the corn with my Metrix 10 this year.


Ken Reed, March 8, 2017 at 8:17 am

2010 Specialized Roubaix Compact


KenH, March 8, 2017 at 8:40 am

Jboz: the trike will suffice, and is unique in that at the end of the day, your butt won’t be screaming to dismount.

gringonick: Most important mod was the saddle to an ism Typhoon. This saddle changed my life!

My bottom has had trouble off and on since I got back into cycling. It got intense during 2014’s ride across Iowa. I did not know why until one of my riding buddies asked from just behind me “do you know your saddle is tilted?” One of the support rails had snapped and I had been riding on my left cheek for several days!

I replaced that saddle with a Brooks but that actually made things worse. Not as bad as riding on one cheek, mind you, but consistently worse than the saddle it replaced on average. That is when I started to take my saddle choice seriously. I decided to try an SQ Lab saddle with their “active” feature. Something as different as possible as what I had used before. And that has indeed changed my cycling life for the better! Now, to be sure I am not certain this is due to any special feature of the SQ Labs saddle, active design or other. I rather suspect that the key difference is that this time, as SQ Labs strongly suggests, I did a sit bone measurement and bought a saddle with an appropriate width for my pelvic geometry. No matter what brand or type of bike or saddle you favor I strongly suggest that you do that the next time you buy a new saddle!

Now, one disrespects Brooks saddles online at great personal risk so let me tell you the rest of the story about that in the hopes of making peace with the “Brooks police”! I went to my favorite local shop and they wanted to sell me the B17 model that works best for most people. I decided on the Team Pro model because it was a little narrower and, although wider, closer to the width of the saddle it was replacing which had worked ok for me until it broke. I was still in the narrower is better camp at that point. After a year I realized I simply could not ride that Brooks for more than about 70 miles in a day without paying for it. Once I got the SQ Labs saddle I of course took the Brooks off the bike to replace it and happened to turn it over. There, staring me in the face, was this large stamped metal horseshoe on the bottom at the back of the saddle. In retrospect it makes sense, those lovely large rivets at the back of the saddle have to attach to something. I had just never been curious about what they attached to. And the width of that metal horseshoe? Exactly the same as my sit bone width!! So, I had been spending a lot of time sitting on a piece of metal …

The B17 might have been wide enough to have worked for me but I am not going back at this point.


stuckinmizzou, March 8, 2017 at 10:44 am

Powellpd: if you don’t mind me asking, what kind of investment do you have regarding the tubeless tires? New rims, etc.?


Brian Wallenburg, March 8, 2017 at 6:53 pm

A fat bike (See my picture), a skinny bike, Bianchi Carbon Intenso with 105’s, a Shimano FC-R565-L 50/34 Compact gear set with a few upgrades to the wheels, brakes and seat. Also have a bar hopper! Skinny will be with me on RAGBRAI because it’s light, responsive, comfortable and almost climbs hills by itself! A Garmin 810 moves to whichever bike I happen to be riding. Enjoy RAGBRAI!


Jack in VA, March 8, 2017 at 7:34 pm

I’ve got 5 hanging up in the garage, but my favorite will be going across Iowa with me; my ’06 MASI fixed gear. I’m running a 48/16 gear but will likely bring another gear for the last few days (17 or 18 – will also have to bring another chain too). I’ve got a 17 freewheel on the opposite side – sure is nice to stand up and stretch on the down-hills instead of pedaling like a mad bastard.
It’s taken me across the state several times since ’08, except for last year. I knew it was going to be way too hilly to mess around with one gear – so I brought my Klein Q’Carbon Race instead. LOT MORE GEARS ON IT!
It’ll be a lot flatter this year than it was last year.


powellpd, March 8, 2017 at 8:12 pm

Stuckinmizzou- I am very happy with the tubeless tires. I just had the tubeless tires and fluid to pay for so I do not believe I had to get new rims. I do remember I thought the tubeless tires were expensive when I paid for them, but can’t recall how much they were. I will be going to the shop in the next few days so I’ll ask them to look up my account and I’ll post the costs on this site for you. I can tell you that I saw many cyclists at the side of the road with flat tires. One rider had a total of 5 flats. The Air Force team was out in force stopping to help the riders who pulled over off the road. Mostly they were helping fix flats and broken chains. I had pulled off the road to rest for a minute and they stopped when they saw me. The young man spent time talking to me and asked me about my hydration. He wanted to make sure I was drinking enough fluids with electrolytes. I appreciated him checking on me. If you use tube tires, be sure to have what you need on your bike to fix a flat, I can’t stress that enough.


Rob Black, March 8, 2017 at 9:44 pm

My main road bike is a 2005 Cannondale Six 13 upgrade to 11 spd.Dura Ace shifters,DA 50/34 crank ,DA FD,Ultegra RD and 11/32 cassette,Easton EA 90 aero wheels with Cont.GP 4000 S 23 mm tires.Brooks Swift Ti saddle ,carbon bars ,shimano A520 peddles. Gravel bike …2016.Cannondale CAADX, full Ultegra 11 spd ,46/36 crank,11/32 cassette,hyd disc brakes ,35mm tires,and a must have Brooks Swift saddle,Shimano A520 peddles,carbon bars,Axiom rear rack and insulated trunk bag (holds 6 tall boys !) not many bars out on the gravel !! Love both bikes ,so different,but so nice ! Like pavement and gravel….Adventure Awaits !


Anonymous, March 9, 2017 at 9:03 am

Wow, thanks for the replies folks! My first RAGBRAI in 2016, I rode my VERY FIRST ROAD BIKE (Jamis Ventura Sport, 2013 model…had it for about 3.5 years) with all my gear. Then, I decided to try a day without all my gear, so I loaded that crap on the trailer… better with speed, obviously, but still did not know how disappointed I would be with my bike later that evening. Jamis (THANK YOU), had a tent set up to where you can try out their bikes for the day…HOLY SMOKES– I tried their Renegade Series (elite model) and was surprised at how light it was. First day on the bike was PURE JOY– smoking people left and right (or as I say, “roll ’em up and smoke ’em :) ) I know that RAGBRAI isn’t a racing event, but just blasting past people, especially the ones with the matching gear, riding single file was everything I wanted (and needed). So I ordered a SPECIALIZED SL4 TARMAC ELITE a week a ago and picked it up/rode it yesterday…FAST. Many say that it’s not the bike that makes you fast, it’s the user; in my case, it was the bike… I think :)


Brian Wallenburg, March 10, 2017 at 7:01 pm

I agree RAGBRAI isn’t a racing event, that being said, I usually cook right along between towns. Spend to much time in the saddle your butt starts hurting and no one needs that! ….and you have to be in the overnight town to find some good grub before it’s gone.


Michrider !!!, March 10, 2017 at 7:57 pm

brian wallenburg: I agree RAGBRAI isn’t a racing event, that being said, I usually cook right along between towns. Spend to much time in the saddle your butt starts hurting and no one needs that! ….and you have to be in the overnight town to find some good grub before it’s gone.

Brian has some good points! That’s why I never pass up a chance to eat, beef and/or pie!!!


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