Thursday, August 29, 2013

2014 Fargo & Vaya Overview

The 2014's Salsa Cycles Vaya and Fargo models are in and built up at Europa Cycle & Ski now. Let's take a look at the shiny new goodness and see just what Salsa Cycles has packaged into these venerable adventure cycling machines.........

Salsa Cycles 2014 Vaya 2 model.
The first rig up is the 2014 Vaya 2. The Vaya series has been about exploring your roads, be they paved, gravel, or dirt. The Vaya 2 for 2014 refines the idea of adventure cycling further with great spec and a killer look.

The new look includes refreshed, subtler graphics, nice, now key component accents and a nice touch of anodization to give the bike some pop. Overall, I believe this is the best looking Vaya graphics package we've seen yet. 

The heart of any bike is the drive train, and Salsa spec'ed a great choice here with the triple crank 105 gruppo with Avid BB7 brakes in a special all black livery. 10 speed STI levers do the initiating of gear changes with the long cage 105 derailleur and triple compatible front derailleur finishing off the job. It's a smart, durable, reliable spec.

The gearing range is super for fast paced road riding all the way through to grinding up a gravel road climb or to making that loaded down Vaya go up that mountain pass. Triples may be passe' these days, but they still are the best for wide range gearing and keeping your momentum up when you are loaded down touring. Take note RAGBRAI folks- the Vaya is the perfect bike for RAGBRAI. Steel frame, disc brakes that stop you in wet or dry conditions, and stable handling to keep you out of trouble in the pack.

The Vaya comes shod with excellent Schwalbe touring tires with reflective stripes for safety. These tires also have Schwalbe's highest level of puncture protection for peace of mind while you while away the miles.

Wheels are made up of Salsa by Formula hubs in a complimentary blue ano and these are laced to Sun Ringle' Inferno 23 rims. Solid wheels for touring.

The Vaya fork has mid-blade eyelets for low rider mounts, further enhancing its touring capabilities. Of course there are rack mounts, and fenders are also possible with the Vaya's fender eyelets.

Salsa Cycles Vaya 3 for 2014
We also are carrying the Salsa Cycles Vaya 3, which features the same frame and fork but with a more price conscious spec. Here we have the new Shimano Sora 9 speed STI group. The new Sora levers drop the stubby thumb lever for true STI paddles and the hood shape is reminiscent of last year's Tiagra levers. So you get familiar shifting with a wide ranging triple crank, wide range cassette, and Shimano's easy shifting feel. 

Salsa Cycles 2014 Fargo 3
The Fargo is the ultimate touring machine for off road and with a swap to smoother rubber, it can also be a heavy duty loaded touring companion. Or set it up with frame bags and do "rackless" adventuring. Or use it as your primary mountain bike. You can even use a 100mm front suspension fork. Sounds like a bike that can do a lot, no? Well, there's still more!

The Alternator Drop Out
Now Salsa Cycles has added the Alternator Drop Out to the Fargo, which allows for using an internal hub gear, (like the excellent Rohloff 14 speed hub), or you could go single speed.

I like the Alternator because one of the main points behind the Fargo from my point of view is its ability to "bushwhack" through deer trails, backcountry, and the like. Whenever you do that, you run the risk of whacking your rear derailleur. (I've seen it done on a Fargo, and had it happen to me.)

So the Alternator may be your savior. It allows for a field conversion to single speed to bail your self out of a failed derailleur episode. I once had to help push a fellow Fargo rider 8 miles back to the cars once when we couldn't convert his crippled Fargo to a single speed. Sure wish we would have had Alternator drop outs then!

Up front we have the new from last year's model, 44mm head tube, which allows for a tapered steer tube fork, if desired, or a straight 1 1/8th steer tube fork, as shown here. The Fargo 3 comes with the new Fargo steel fork which is longer to account for 100mm suspension forks. (Last year's was only 80mm suspension corrected.) You can also see the new, forward facing braze ons for water bottle cages or Salsa Cycles Anything Cages, (which require 3 mounts a piece.) The new forward facing mounts are said to better withstand impact forces to the front wheel and creates a sturdier way to carry water bottles or light gear. By the way, you can still easily reach a water bottle from a front mounted cage, so that is not a concern whatsoever.

The Fargo 3 is spec'ed with a SRAM Apex brifter, SRAM X-7 rear derailleur, and a 2X 10 drivetrain for great off road performance. Schwalbe Rapid Rob's, (the original Racing Ralph tread pattern, by the way), and Sun Inferno 25 rims with sealed bearing hubs make for a sturdy and high performing wheel set.

We'll have fat bikes arriving late September/early October, so stay tuned for those, but come in now to see these fine adventuring bikes which are super versatile, high performing bicycles unlike anything else out there.

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