stories • happenings • adventures

Revelate Designs
April 30, 2014

Sweetrolls and drop bars

Posted by Revelate Designs

A frequent question we get is how or if the Sweetroll works with drop bars. This post will help to explain the setup.

First some basics, with drop’s you are limited in width and not so much in tire clearance. This is the opposite of mountain bike flat bars where width is basically limitless but clearance can be an issue. With that in mind the size large Sweetroll works best with drops as you take advantage of the most volume in the narrow space. The large size is used in all the photos below to show maximum storage space, the smaller sizes will work similarly just be… smaller!

First – conventioal road drops with STI levers:

A few things become clear – the offset mount of the sweetroll gives more room than you’d think at the lever hoods.

The key to all this is keeping the packed width of the sweetroll to a managable size so it does not mess with your shifting. These next photos shows the STI lever swing-in. The small one is fine but the larger does brush bag when pushed all the way for a front ring upshift. Works fine with appropiate packing.

The second thing to keep in mind with sweetroll & drop bars is the end access. As the bag is designed for flat bars the dual end opening is a bit less than ideal for drops. It’s here again that the size large trumps the medium & small bags as the opening is bigger and overall lower than the smaller sizes. You don’t have a straight line for your arm to shove when trying to while it’s mounted to the bike. This is only really an issue if you are trying to access the bag during the ride. Simply popping the one or both of the top 2 mounting buckles enables the bag to swing free from the drops and you’re good to go.

Next are a few photos showing the large Sweetroll again (with LG Pocket) on the Salsa Woodchipper bars. This setup uses bar end shifters so the lever swing-in is not an issue.

Tons of hand clearance on top:

Overall, it’s a system originally designed for flat bars, but works well with various drop bars, you just need to be mindfull of the packed width. The drops interefering with on the bike loading may or may not be much of a concern depening on personal preference on loading. If sleeping gear is stored then it’s a non-issue. If used for clothing layer changes during the day while on the bike then the side access is not as good as with flat bars.

Hope that helps.

Revelate Designs
April 28, 2014

Sweetroll’s and Jones Loop bars

Posted by Revelate Designs

Jones Loop bars are awesome bikepacking handle bars. Jeff graciously sent me a pair to play with this past winter. I promptly put them on my Ogre and they toured around with my 3 year old in Guatemala. Since then they’ve been on my fatbike providing the sort of all day comfort I love.

To play nice with the Loop bars, we tweaked the design of the Sweetroll for this spring, adding attachment points to mount the bag to 4 points on the bars. This gives bomber stability seperates the bag entirely from the frame / fork area.

Here is a shot of the bag on Loop bars using standard mounting.

Now these use the Jones kit to add spacer blocks and straps to the added mount points. You’ll notice the bag sits farther foreword, access to the front pocket is better and there is nothing attached to the rest of the bike. You need to remove the lower steerer tube strap from the Sweetroll when doing this.

If you are using the size large Sweetroll, or have a lot of weight, it’s probably best to use the standard mounting since the load is more centered and handling will be less effected. However for most bikepacking loads & riding technical trails – going with the the 4 point mount is recommended.

Revelate Designs
March 31, 2014

Fatbike-aneering season is here!

Posted by Revelate Designs

Spring.. the sun has returned in full force. Trails are firm and snow stability is high. Time to get after it.

Anchorage has amazing backcountry ski terrain right outside of town everything from mellow corn runs to steep test piece chutes. Last spring Billy and I headed out and accessed the Eklutna Glacier using fatbikes for the approach. Sunday afternoon was more of a quick hit squeezed between lunch and dinner. Door to door in 5 hrs.

To ease the slog up powerline valley Billy rode a borrowed Fatback, I was on my Pugslander.

Good riding bac to the Ptarmagin S Couloir..

Bikes ditched in the bushes, boards on for the skin to the base.

Billy and I have both climbed this thing countless times, it’s the closest steep terrain to town, like you round a corner and everything mellow dissapears and you are faced with shear cliffs and steep climbing. I had never snowboarded it however so was stoked. Conditions looked good.

looking down the apron 1/3 of the way up.

On the Chugash Stairmaster, on the upper slopes past the S part.

Traversing the top face, looking back at the powerline valley and Anchorage.

Ptarmagin is one of the colder corners of the front range, the blaring sun in town luered both of us to leave our puff jackets at home. Our time at the notch was breif as we skee-daddled from climb to descent and hightailed it down.

Back at the bikes!

yes I’m a splitboarder who’s stopped calling it snowboarding a long time since “skiing” is just easier to explain.. I get picked on enough as it is.

The Alaska range – Foraker, Hunter & Denali just barely visable off in the distance.

More of this to come!

Ptarmigan – Fat Bike Ski Mountainerering from William Finley on Vimeo.