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The Sklar Super Something Really is Something Super

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC full side shotPhoto c. R. Frazelle
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A few months ago I wrote a story about the collaboration of Montana’s Sklar Bikes, The Pro’s Closet (TPC), and The Radavist. The three had joined forces to release 25 limited edition Sklar Super Something complete bikes. It was a unique group of bikes available in 5 different builds from the top-tier model to the single-speed version, offering something for most.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC Radavist logo
Photo c. R. Frazelle

John Watson of the Radavist conjured up these different builds, and the paint schemes. Through the builds, he was able to not only highlight the versatility of the Sklar Super Something frameset, but I believe he was also reminding us that we all ride a little differently and that there is no “right” way to spec and ride a bike.

After the dust had settled, a few months went by and TPC reached out and asked if I’d like to review the Sklar Super Something with the Tier Two build… yeah, damn skippy I would! When it came time to get the bike to me, it turned out that the only one I could get to review was the Tier One version. Fine by me!

Sklar Bikes

Adam Sklar has been building bikes in Boseman, Montana since 2014. For 10 years Adam was making only custom frames, working with customers through a lengthy process to get the fit and feel just right. But, after really honing in on what his customer’s needs are, he’s decided that it would be better to provide highly designed, hand-made, small-batch production frames.

The frames he is building now are for riders that are seriously unserious about riding their bikes. They’re riding to have fun, or “performance without racing in mind”. Every frame is still made by Adam, one at a time, in steel or titanium.

The Sklar Super Something Frameset

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC post ride

The Super Something retails for $1599 for a frame and fork and is Sklar’s gravel/all-road/light touring frameset, that is ready for anything and built for everything. It has a lot of versatility built into it allowing the lucky owner to build it up in a myriad of different ways.

Adam’s design philosophy on the Super Something is; “Keep it simple. In our eyes, every “Gravel Bike” falls somewhere on the spectrum between a fat tired road bike on one side and a mountain bike on the other. The Super Something is about 40% of the way along that spectrum“.

He kept the geo a nice mix of a little new school MTB but kept the feel of riding a road bike in the dirt. According to the Skar website, the Super Something has a slightly long-ish reach and was designed around the Simworks Anne Lee Stem, and meant to be ridden with a 50-90mm length stem.

The frame comes with Rocker Dropouts so you can adjust chainstay length or/and can set it up to run as a single-speed… adding to its versatility and allowing the Super Something to grow and change with your riding style.

Super Something Frame Geometry

Sklar Super Something Geo Chart

Frame Tech Specs

  • Frame & fork Material: Double-butted heat-treated Chromoly Steel, designed in Boseman, Montana, and manufactured in Taiwan
  • 142x12mm rear, 100x12mm for the front spacing
  • 27.2mm Seat post
  • 160mm Post mount or flat mount rear (With Paragon Machineworks rocker dropout inserts), ISO front brake mount on steel fork.
  • The frame is also compatible with ENVE Adventure Fork (not included)
  • Clearance for 700×55 c or 27.5x 2.1”
  • 3 bottle cages, one under the Down tube
  • 68mm BSA Bottom bracket Shell
  • Compatible with EC34mm/44mm Headset, 1-1/8” steerer Steel fork
  • Clearance for up to a 44T single chainring
  • External Cable routing
  • Rocker Dropouts for adjustable chainstay length or single speed, use Paragon Machineworks Inserts

Superb Packaging by TPC

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC minimal but effective packaging
Minimal but effective packaging.

When the box showed up from TPC, it looked really big. When I opened it up, I was pleased to find the bike completely assembled, minus the front wheel to the fork. The packaging was pretty amazing. There was hardly any packaging but the bike was completely safe from unwanted shuffling that could cause damage.

I pulled the bike out of the box, loosened and pulled the seat post up, mounted it in the stand, and clipped off all of the zip ties. I then removed the spacer from between the brake pads, attached the front wheel, loosened and rotated the stem around to face the front, loosened and twisted the bars up into place, and Bob’s yer Uncle… that was it… the bike was assembled.

If this is any indication of how you receive a bike when you buy one from The Pro’s Closet, then a huge kudos to them for nailing the packaging.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC shake down ride
Shakedown ride…

To get the bike ready for me to ride, I removed the two spacers from on top of the stem to underneath to give me as much stack as possible, added my ancient, but amazing Shimano 747 pedals, and swapped the included Brooks C15 with my own C17 as the wider C17 fits my sit bones better.

The Limited Radavist Super Something Spec List

As mentioned earlier, the Super Something that was sent to me was the Tier One build of the limited Radavist Edition and retails for $5699. It is a beautiful build. And the color is very cool, with the speckles using so many different colors. John said that it was inspired by one of his favorite Swedish camping mugs while also using colors that are reminiscent of the soil of the Southwest

  • Enve Foundation Wheelset
  • Enve bar and stem
  • Force AXS Drivetrain
  • Enve Carbon seat post
  • Wolftooth Components headset
  • Brooks C15 saddle
  • Hope RX4 Brake Calipers
  • Ultradynamico Mars 29″ x 2.2″ tires

You can see all of the other Limited Edition builds and prices here.

So, How’d it Ride?

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC gravel

No fluff here, I really loved the way this bike rode. Like love, loved the way it rode. I let my pal Dave ride it around a bit, and when he returned he said, “What’s the deal with the geo? It handles so well!”

There is something about the geometry that just works so damn well. It’s not groundbreaking by any stretch of the imagination, but man, it just handled beautifully. It was very point-and-shoot when it came to the few technical descents I rode it on.

I like to keep a review bike for a little longer than a month and a half or so. But, TPC needed the bike back, so I had a hard return date. Plus I had just moved when the bike arrived and my shop/office was in chaos… it took me a few weeks to destress, get my bearings and get organized.

But, I believe I made good time with the Super Something in the short-ish time we shared together. When I had it, I rode it a lot on the pavement, on groomed pea gravel, buffed and not-so-buffed singletrack, and a few techy descents.

I received a 58cm bike, and the Super Something’s signature arching top tube made the bike feel big, but in reality, the 58cm fit me perfectly. I would’ve swapped in a shorter stem by 10mm, but other than that, the bike fit me well.

The extra volume and cushiness of the Ultradynamico Mars 2.2 tires ate up all the chonk. Combine that with the carbon bars, stem, and seat post, and the bike felt very vibration-free, even on the rougher stuff. Some of that would be the compliance of the steel frame and fork as well.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC tire rubbing

On one of the last rides on the bike, I noticed that the tire was ever-so-slightly rubbing on the chainstay at 32psi. It looked like it had been doing so for a while. Moving the rear dropout may fix that, but the dropout was already most of the way back.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC rocking rear drop out
Rocking rear dropout and Hope RX1 Disc Brake Calipers

I think the choice of tire size was a bit ambitious. Tires measuring 29 x 2.0″, or 29 x 2.1″ would probably feel the same and would eliminate the rubbing.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC hero

I found the bike climbed very well, was comfortable while seated, and when out of the saddle on harder efforts, the bike felt confident. Super Something’s geometry felt neutral and didn’t need a lot of babysitting on the long sweeping corners and slow climbs, while still feeling very nimble and spry on my favorite fast, tight singletrack run.

SRAM’s AXS XPLR group was impressive – this was my first time running the AXS XPLR group, and I can see the appeal. It’s pretty intuitive and smooth.

The Frame Bag

Let’s talk about the frame bag. It’s a custom half-frame bag that was handmade exclusively for this project by Marin, California’s VRNCLR. These bags are coyote tan, with lavender lacing and accents. VRNCLR’s bag was purpose-built for this bike and this project with the lace mounting method, and hugged the Super Something’s unique arched top tube perfectly.

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC VRNCLR pocket
Big pocket side, holding the camera perfectly.

It uses one large pocket on the drive side that safely held my camera for photo shoots and a shallow pocket on the non-drive side for smaller items like your phone or wallet, and seems to be a really well-built bag.

In Conclusion

Sklar Super Something x Radavist x TPC down tube logo

Adam Sklar clearly knows what he’s doing. This bike’s geometry is the story here. Not because it’s some Earth-shaking new idea that throws caution to the wind, and bucks all conventional ways of thinking. It’s the real story here because it’s not that. It’s not something trendy or fly-by-night. It’s not a geometry idea that needs to be “sold” to you. It’s just good, solid, proven bike geometry with Adam’s Super Something twist to it.

For the short-ish time that I had the Super Something, it felt great. It had me wishing that I had one of my own. I found myself wishing that my current gravel bike, had some of the Super Something’s geometry attributes.

I will probably be ordering a Super Something of my own in the near future. It moved me. It’s a really unique-looking, beautifully crafted, great riding frame, and at $1599 for a unique and well-designed steel frameset, I feel it’s a great deal. If bikes like the Super Something are your jam, I would suggest you look into it.

SklarBikes.com

TheProsCloset.com

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13 Comments
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Dan
Dan
2 months ago

Isn’t this bike made overseas, not by Adam in Montana?

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  Dan

it is. quite expensive for a standard frame from the hipster brand. nice lines though.

Mr Pink
Mr Pink
2 months ago

These aren’t made by Adam they’re made in Taiwan.

K.M.
K.M.
2 months ago
Reply to  Ron Frazelle

I still can’t find any mention of Taiwan in the body text

Oomgawa
Oomgawa
2 months ago

Reminds me of a Coconino!

Last edited 2 months ago by Oomgawa
Alto
Alto
2 months ago

Does anyone know what handle bar tape they put on? And if you can buy it separately.

Alto
Alto
2 months ago
Reply to  Ron Frazelle

Thanks!

Casey
Casey
2 months ago

How was the feel and performance of the Hope brake calipers? Are they the RX4+ model?

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