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All's not lost! We have gravel and touring bike options ready to build (Saco)

885 Portland Road

(google map)

bicycle frame material: steel
bicycle type: gravel
frame size: Various
wheel size: other/unknown

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Looking for a new gravel, adventure or touring bike for the remainder of 2021 or for the upcoming 2022 riding season and finding out that such unicorns don't and likely won't exist till next Summer/Fall?

All's not lost however as our little adventure bike focused shop (Maine Bike Works here in Saco, Maine) has over 50 framesets in stock in all sizes and additionally a smattering of fully built bikes as we planned for this derth of bikes at the beginning of the pandemic. That said, we expect that we'll have significant holes / gaps in this inventory before the Spring riding season hits, so if you're looking to ride something new in 2022, you'll have the most choice by reaching out now.

Specifically, here are our most popular gravel / touring / bikepacking framesets (frames and forks) and assuming your budget extends to around ~$3k or higher (and we still have your size), we can build them up and get you out riding pretty darn quick. These awesome custom builds have already been super popular and we've had a great 2021 putting folks on them so they could ride ASAP. From all accounts, 2022 will have even worse availability, so building up a custom frame is one of the only sure ways to get on a new bike - and as a bonus, you'll be riding in only a few weeks rather than waiting for a random email from a more traditional shop that can only backorder you a future bike and cross its fingers on a 2022 delivery.

Here's the heavy hitters we've had great success with - All steel frames, all awesome.


The first frameset we can help you with is from Salsa and is their Vaya gravel and light touring frame. It makes a great speedy comfy gravel bike, light tourer or even commuter. If I needed a bike that sits super upright (ie comfy) and wanted to ride a bike across the country, yet have a speedy bike to ride on the weekends unloaded with gear, you'd be hard pressed to beat the Vaya. The Bombtrack Hooks and Ritchey Outbacks may be sportier and potentially lighter, but they are also slightly more bent over (though no where as bent over as a traditional road or gravel bike - we simply don't carry bikes we can't get people comfy on).



The second frameset is also from Salsa and is their Marrakesh touring and adventure frame. Totally, go anywhere do anything bike. Hard to think of something you could throw at this bike that it couldn't do. Can run a Rohloff internally geared hub too which is something that 99.9% of the world's frames can't. Drop bars or alt bars (like the Jones Loop, Surly Moloko, or Velo Orange Crazy bars) - Saul Goodman.



The third frameset is the racy, yet still adventury steel Bombtrack Hook frameset with carbon fork. We're one of the few Bombtrack dealers in the country as they are slowly getting their foothold here stateside, but if you check them out, you'll see these German beauties have adventure and touring in their DNA as Bombtrack does nothing but bikes with an adventure bent.



For the fourth frameset is the Hook EXT if you're looking for a frameset with a bit more tire clearance. Can do everything that the Hook can, but with a bit more beef.



The fifth frameset we're able to put folks on right now is the Salsa Fargo. Handdown, nothing is more bikepacky than the Fargo. Touring and off road touring is in its name. Over the years, we've personally built up 6 or 7 Fargos which have ridden down the Great Divide Mountainbike Route which is about 3k miles of trail down the spine of the Rocky Mountains. A great bike to live off of if you have a big adventure ahead. That said, we've built up an equal number for folks who want a monster gravel bike that sits upright with skinny gravel tires opposed to bikepacking tires. I love em with 2x cranks to give the most versitlilty for those days you want to use it as a go fast road bike opposed to carrying the kitchen sink in the desert. Drop bars or flatter more upright alts like Jones, Molokos or Crazybars - Saul Goodman.


The raciest, lightest, yet still able to fully load and tour is the awesome Ritchey Logic Outback


Because of the crazy high end tubing and fork on this frameset, our builds start at circa $3,500 on up depending on how you want to flesh them out. We have the Guac y Creme (Green and Creme) color way in the shop, but can order the Sunset Fade if Ritchey still has them when you ask.


The Type A Wolverine in Blue which is a go anywhere, do anything full still beauty that can be built up into the ultimate gravel, tourer, or bikepacking bike. Set it up with either traditional chain and derailleur type drivetrains or with a Rohloff internal geared drivetrain - your choice. One of the few bikes which accepts a Rohloff internally geared hub (chain drive - for Gates Belt Drive see the Type B). It sits a bit more upright a bit more than the green Type B (got mo STACK, but that may not come into play since both bikes come with uncut fork steertubes so we can get your bars up to pretty much any position you want on either model). Sweet!



The green Type B can do everything that the blue type blue can but if you decide to put a Rohloff internal geared hub on it, the little gate/split on the seat stay means you can put a Gates Carbon Belt on it if you decide not to use a chain. The Type A, can only run a chain with Rohloff. Either is awesome and has advantages. Get in touch to flesh them out or test ride to see if you dig Rohloff enough to put on your next ride.



Kona DL gravel and adventure bikes. A lovely do anything all steel rig that can do pretty much everything short of rides on rocky and rooty mtb trails. So many ways to build up this awesome frame.


The Kona LTD can do everything that its less expensive DL sibling, but does it with a lightweight carbon fork and a super snappy double butted cromo frame.


I probably shouldn't jinx it, by talking about them before they hatch, but come November we'll be one of the few shops in the country who will be getting a handful of Tumbleweed Stargazer framesets. If you're looking for a dyed in the wool bleeding edge steel bikepacking bike from one of the most respected builders in the country, check it out. An all new model for them and one we really have high hopes for. Think of it as a purpose built Fargo or a custom bikepacking focused Kona ULTD. Our builds will probably be in the $4k-$4,500 range and we'll be getting one of each size.


These 10 custom builds have been super popular (the yet to be released Tumbleweed Stargazer notwithstanding) and form the basis of most of our custom builds this year, however we do work with other companies so if you have another brand in mind, let us know and we'll let you know how long it will take to get you on your dream Moots or dream Co-Motion for example. We've already built dozens of bikes for folks all around New England, many of whom have plans to ride across the country or get out and gravel grind on either this summer or next. The final prices of the build range from $3k to $5k depending on how many accessories etc you want us to hang on the bikes from day one. The Bombtrack Hook, Ritchey Outbacks, Salsa Fargo builds tend to start around $3,500 due to the more expensive nature of their framesets (and the Tumbleweed will punch circa $4k to $4,500+. Whatever your price range, we try to customize them as much as possible for our customers individual needs and within our customers budget.
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