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Rodeo Adventure Labs turns a steel (or Ti) gravel road mountain bike Flaanimal loose

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2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

Building off the funky do-it-all nature of their Trail Donkey 2.0, the updated Flaanimal 3.0 puts that versatile package into a steel frame that’ll work for just about any type wheel, tire or handlebar you wanna throw on it.

The bike can be set up as a chained or belted singlespeed, or fully geared with a single or double chainring up front. What makes this versatility possible is specific hardware for any drivetrain option. This keeps the frame clean no matter what setup you have, with no extraneous bits hanging off the bike.

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

The blue drop-bar bike shown here is actually a v2.0 model late stage prototype (and belongs to RAL founder Stephen), but represents the versatility of the bike.

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

There’s a peg for a full size frame pump, and a threaded bottom bracket keeps things simple and durable. Sliding dropouts in the back, along with a frame brake on the seatstay, let you run a singlespeed and adjust chainstay length to suit your riding style and purpose. Oh, and they’re claiming these are the first thru axle, flat mount, sliding dropouts on the market.

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

On board are five water bottle mounts, including two on the fork legs. Above and below those are reinforced rack mounts at the dropout and crown. Other than those inserts, the Spork fork is full carbon, steerer and all.

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

The Flaanimal is equipped to hold a 650Bx48 or even a 700×48 tire, letting you run oversized tires with both wheel sizes. And just when you thought you’d seen every possible spot for a bottle opener…

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

Color options include the Bleaux (blue) shown at top, Black and Copper…

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

…and Celeste, shown above on an older 1.0 frameset.

So, why all these not-quite-final models on display to promote a new bike? Because final production hasn’t started yet, but they wanted to show the paint options. Rodeo Labs is running a crowdfunding campaign to launch it, but not through one of the usual platforms. To keep it simple and as affordable as possible, the bikes can be pre-ordered on their website, and when they hit their target minimum, things get rolling. But wait, there’s more!

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal titanium adventure gravel road mountain bike

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal titanium adventure gravel road mountain bike

There’s also a titanium Flaanimal on offer!

Frameset pricing is $1,300 to $1,400 for the Reynolds 725 custom butted chromoly steel frame, depending on paint. The 3/2.5 titanium frameset is $2,460, and both include the latest Spork fork with all of the integrated mounting points. Complete (steel) bikes range from $2,350 to $4,250. Frame sizes are 48/50/52/54/56/68/61, geometry is:

2017 Rodeo Adventure Labs Flaanimal steel adventure gravel road mountain bike

Keep tabs on the roll out or pencil in your support on their website.

Rodeo-Labs.com

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22 Comments
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PabloE432
PabloE432
5 years ago

I almost ordered one of these this morning, but then I noticed the 65mm BB drop. Why would they do this? Ruined it for me. That blue/teal is so good too.

Dinger
Dinger
5 years ago
Reply to  PabloE432

“a steel frame that’ll work for just about any type wheel, tire”

Without knowing what tire diameter the geometry was penned around it’s hard to be sure, but I think the BB drop is a little higher to allow for a reasonable height with smaller tires, like 32c road tires, as shown on the bike on the left/top.

Steve
5 years ago
Reply to  PabloE432

Howdy! We did it because it works quite well. BB drop is discussed endlessly as an abstract and some people really zero in on their favorite numbers, but we’ve ridden these bikes relentlessly over the course of 24 months and the BB drop we chose is versatile for a do-it-all bike.

PabloE432
PabloE432
5 years ago
Reply to  Steve

I don’t doubt that it rides fine, but if I’m spending $1300 on a Reynolds 725 frame the geo needs to be modern and stay up to date for a while. You guys have some pretty strange numbers floating around here.

arp
arp
5 years ago

What’s your issue with a 65mm bb drop? That’s a common drop for current geometry ‘cross bikes, which overall their geometry mimics. It works well for an all purpose bike; it’s not that high.

PabloE432
PabloE432
5 years ago
Reply to  arp

Yeah, it’s common geometry, but I wouldn’t say it’s “current.” Many manufacturers are pushing CX bikes with 68-69mm drops, with gravel bikes coming in between 68-78mm. This bike is marketed as a “do it all,” for that I don’t want to have old-style CX geometry. I want something between 70-75mm of drop. We are going to see less and less _tall_ CX bikes in the coming years. Hell, even Lynskey has a low gravel frame now.

Steve
5 years ago
Reply to  PabloE432

Pablo you seem like you have strong opinions and know what you are looking for. If you can discern 5mm difference in bottom bracket drop and that difference makes you a better bike rider then more power to you. Stay passionate!

Here’s 5mm for reference:

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We found clearance quite useful out on the trail. Similarly, if you can feel 1-3 degrees of head angle difference and it ruins your ride then definitely get on a bike that makes you feel safe. What makes us feel safe is never rubbing our toes on the front tire no matter how tight the turn.

We don’t pull our numbers from trends or what is “current”, we pull them from rider feedback and hard, real world riding. Its a great methodology for staying true to ourselves and contributing to the conversation of what is going on in bikes instead of chasing after ever-shifting trends. It’s in the fabric of our company to TRY things, break some eggs, and share our favorite results. This bike is that.

As a side note, our geometry is extremely serviceable in gravel races with 2015 and 2016 podiums (and a category win) at DK in the last two years. We’ve also won and podiumed in plenty of cross races AND even an endurance MTB race on this exact geometry. Our bikes and geometry work.

It’s not a cross bike, it’s not a gravel bike, it’s not a road bike, it’s not an mountain bike, it’s a Flaanimal, it goes wherever you ride it and it’s meant for having fun. Never forget that we’re all just having fun.

Woody
Woody
5 years ago

Nevermind the BB drop, what’s going on with those HT angles?!

Steve
5 years ago
Reply to  Woody

The HT angles are all about eliminating toe overlap. There are plenty of brands that pay this no attention, but we ride on trails constantly and when the handling gets tight we never want to worry about touching our toes and bailing. We’ve ridden them to make sure they feel good out in the real world. HT angles are just like BB drop and chainstay length: Opinions and preferences change like fashion trends and are argued religiously. For those interested in traditional angles (on smaller size frames) there are plenty of other options out on the market, but we aim to establish our own priorities and design around them.

Woody
Woody
5 years ago
Reply to  Steve

What does the trail span from 48-61cm for a given tire diameter? Most manufacturers do it with a longer rake fork on the smaller sizes to try and keep consistent handling traits between sizes.

PabloE432
PabloE432
5 years ago
Reply to  Woody

Wow, I didn’t even notice that. Total dealkiller. These frames are going to handle like a Cadillac.

JBikes
JBikes
5 years ago

I’ll bite –
It’s intriguing and the marketing photos makes it seem like fun, but in reality is it a good road bike? A good mtb? Mountain bikes and road bike have very different geometry for a reason.
I mean I can essentially make my Surly LHT into what this bike is. But in reality, it is neither a good road bike or good mountain bike.

Steve
5 years ago
Reply to  JBikes

This bike doesn’t promise to be pure at everything. It promises to be fun and capable. A pure mountain biker needs and probably has a pure MTB, or five. Same with a pure road biker. But most people are led to believe that they need the most Nth degree bike to have fun. Our bikes say “no, you can have a ton of fun on an adaptable bike, and if you get bored or want to change it up, this bike will evolve with your tastes.” Your Surly can probably do the similar (if not identical) things. It’s a great bike too. Everybody gets to decide which bike they love, that’s one of the great things about our sport.

JBikes
JBikes
5 years ago
Reply to  Steve

I can’t disagree with any of this in the slightest, and I’ll never go against more choices.

Cowtowncyclist
Cowtowncyclist
5 years ago

They are nice to look at but that is really pricey for Asian made frames. Lynskey has a few ti frames on for a lot cheaper than this right now. And there are a lot steel frames that can be had for less than this.

Steve
5 years ago
Reply to  Cowtowncyclist

Lynksey bikes are great, and there are many suitable cheaper steel options but they are a higher volume established bike brands with more conventional offerings. Perhaps as we grow our volume will go up and costs will come down, but until then we seek to appeal to people who enjoy niched products with unique designs and a creative expression. That in itself is a type of value all its own.

Alex H
Alex H
5 years ago
Reply to  Steve

I’d actually say that Lynskey bikes are not great. My friend cracked the weld joining the top tube and head tube on his Lynskey 29er after only a couple months riding it, and he was just pulling on the handlebar while climbing, not even doing anything stupid. Not very optimistic on their build quality after that incident…

I’d rather go with a nice sturdy reynolds tubeset 🙂

ELEVEN_g
5 years ago

I love reading people arguing about ‘model’ vs ‘old school’ numbers…..

ELEVEN_g
5 years ago
Reply to  ELEVEN_g

‘model’?? I mean ‘MODERN’ (gotta turn off the wretched predictive text)

Austin
Austin
5 years ago

HT angles in the smaller sizes are crazy. Why not give them all 73 deg and use smaller wheels in the smaller sizes to reduce toe overlap?

Eric
Eric
5 years ago

So what is the verdict on this bike after 10 months on one?

Web
Web
5 years ago

Can’t wait for the Ti version! I was just looking for the next rig and thinking a versatible bike would rock! Moots Routt or Open Cycles Up or Upper….a ti flaanimal sounds like a winner!

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