Author Topic: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?  (Read 8618 times)

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Offline iwstamp

Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« on: December 15, 2013, 07:35:08 am »
I am thinking of purchasing a Salsa Fargo or CoMotion Divide as a part bad road part off road riding option. I was curious if either of these bikes has been used as a x-country (or other long tour) transport where the occasional (or more than occasional) dirt/gravel road was incorporated? It started me thinking - it's obvious that both of these bikes are perfect for an off-road tour (the Great Divide comes to mind) but how would they open up options for a tour across the country if dirt and gravel roads could be incorporated... and has anyone done that? Lastly, assuming that there would be days and days of standard road riding... what are the draw backs with either of these bikes?


Offline DaveB

Re: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2013, 09:15:37 am »
I'm not familiar with the Salsa but I looked up the Co-Motion Divide.  It certainly looks suitable for a long road trip as it is pretty much a "ruggedized" touring frame with all the needed rack mounts, etc., uses 700c wheels (aka 29") and has suitable gearing. They even let you choose rim brakes as a no-cost option if you don't want the standard discs and offer S&S couplers to make shipping or Airline travel easier. 

 The only drawback I can see for paved road use is the supplied tires are unnecessarily wide and heavy but that's easy to change to something more suitable.  If versatility is important and speed is secondary, it seems perfect.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2013, 09:19:32 am by DaveB »

Offline iwstamp

Re: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2013, 09:45:39 am »
Thanks Dave... the more I investigate the geometry of the Divide certainly looks more suitable to long distance touring. The nearest CoMotion dealer from me is two hours away. Worth the trip to be sure..for sure.

Offline DaveB

Re: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2013, 07:00:34 pm »
AFAIK, most Co-Motion "dealers" won't have much of anything on the shop floor so you better call before you drive there and see nearly nothing.  These bikes are specialty items, not mass market, and are usually ordered individually to your specifications.   

Co-Motion is very good about direct orders and you can specify what you want via their web site and either have it delivered directly to you or by way of a dealer.  They will do custom geometry if you wish at a moderate upcharge. I had a Co-Pilot Road I ordered as a frame and fork directly from them and built it up myself but I could have gone through a dealer too.

Offline waynemyer

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Re: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2014, 05:50:12 am »
I did a bunch of road touring on a Fargo 2 ( It was a great bike. I have nothing bad to say about the frame. My foremost complaints is that, in the smallest frame size, it doesn't fit two water bottles; I can carry only one 27oz water bottle. This complaint is easily mitigable. The Fargo carries the Salsa front and rear racks perfectly. The panniers in those pics are loaded with about two cases of wine plus all of my loaded touring gear. The frame handles all of that quite well through descents and hard corners. Fenders are a touch awkward, but not problematic. In descents, I was able to corner so sharply, I dragged both front panniers. Were it not for the panniers, I think there was more cornering angle available.

With a set of Panaracer Pasela tires, you can handle quite a bit of road conditions, including fire roads. Pea gravel is out unless you have a wider tire. I highly suggest the frame.

Bugaboos might be:
seatpost (Thudbuster on the Fargo 2)
brakes (BB7 are great, but now there are TRP hydraulics)
small triangle on the small frames  (user:waynemyer)

Offline EnduroDoug

Re: Mostly road tour with a Fargo or Divide?
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2014, 02:08:15 am »
My wife and I are both riding Salsa Fargos for the type of touring you speak of. Lots of pavement, some gravel paths, and some rocky roads and occasional doubletrack trails. We both love them. I built them both up with MTB components and ditched the drop bars for a more upright posture and set them up with 700x38 Marathon Plus tires. The bikes are a bit heavy, but oh-so-smooth, and exceptionally stable on high-speed descents. We did a shakedown tour this past fall in preparation for our upcoming RTW trip and they performed flawlessly.

Photo of the bikes in action along the Oregon coast: