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The Cannondale Slate Rolls in with Pricing and Availability

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Slate Force CX1 - HERO

Representing a fresh take on the world of gravel, Cannondale’s Slate looks like an incredibly fun bike. Between the new Lefty Oliver suspension fork with 30 mm of travel, and the 650b wheels with 42mm tires, calling it a gravel bike might be a bit too restrictive. Built to go wherever the road, trail, or gravel takes you, the Slate seems like it will be up for the adventure.

We’ve covered the bike in detail, but at the time pricing and availability details were yet to be announced. Now Cannondale is shedding light on the three different models with pricing, spec, and availability details next…

Slate pricing

Offered in three different builds, pricing will range from just under $3000 for the 105 build, up to the $4,260 Slate Force CX1. All three bikes use the SmartFormed alloy frame and include the 30mm Lefty Oliver Carbon PBR fork. Obviously the Slate CX1 will include a wide range 1x drivetrain while the other two builds use a 2x setup. The inclusion of tubeless wheels on all models should be a welcomed feature. Available in October, the Slate will deliver just in time to be your next off-season training bike – or your year round adventure mobile. Your call.

Slate cx1

slate ultegra

slate 105

cannondale.com

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michael
michael
8 years ago

These are still stupid and weird. And I still really want one.

Pillz
Pillz
8 years ago

Why in the world did they use 650b wheels?

Dave
Dave
8 years ago

GT on the phone. They want their 1989 hybrid range back.

Josh
8 years ago

Mine is on order, I cant hardly wait! I ordered the CX-1.

Roy Hinkley
Roy Hinkley
8 years ago

put a deposit on the ultegra model. asked about the 650B wheels. interesting that a 650B wheel with a large carcass tire has basically the same outer diameter as a road/skinny wheel and tire.

so you get same rolling diameter, but softer/grip-ier ride.

already building a lefty hubbed set of road wheels for it.

Jeff
Jeff
8 years ago

I think the bikes are cool except for the 650b wheels. I like the wheel size for my mountain bikes, but they don’t seem to a good choice for this application.

craigsj
craigsj
8 years ago

“Why in the world did they use 650b wheels?”

Yes. If you could design an entire road bike from scratch, why would you:

1) Use 650B whose primary value is in preserving 700c diameters while using wider tires.

2) Put a suspension fork on it, then limit that to a comical 30mm of travel.

3) Choose a double crown fork that severely limits your head tube lengths.

4) Design it for comfort then put short chain stays on it.

(deleted) The idea is good, the execution is not.

Frank
Frank
8 years ago

They are actually a good choice for this application. Roy has it down, as do so many of my friends that do randos in the PNW. Still tight enough chainstay to feel nimble like a road bike, but a bit more forgiving. And enough tires to choose from, with many more on the way.

Niels
Niels
8 years ago

I agree with pilliz. Its a great bike bur why the 650b wheels? I would buy one, if it was in 28 inch. Perhaps next year

Cashman
Cashman
8 years ago

A Di2 option would be awesome. I used to use a CX bike with roadie set up, with Di2 Ultegra 53/39 and 25c tyres as a commuter it wasn’t the fastest but damn it was very comfy. The only reason I sold it was it didn’t have discs and cantilevers Were just bad

fraser
fraser
8 years ago

1. It’s so d*mn ugly.
2. Oh, god, my eyes are burning!
3. It is unbearably useless
4. But it will be so amazing to drive and lots of fun.

I want one!!

James S
James S
8 years ago

650B wheels are perfect for this application, but what I still object to is going to all that trouble to put a Lefty on there and only having 30mm of travel. It could easily handle 60mm of travel or more without negatively affecting geometry or handling.

Pillz
Pillz
8 years ago

I’d want 750c wheels if anything, being 6’4″. 29 and 700c are already too small. I still think the range of wheel sizes available today needs to look at going larger. But if it suits the market for this weird bike then whatever.

888787998
888787998
8 years ago

I like it ok except for the 30mm of travel. That just doesn’t make sense for the weight penalty.

WHilgenb
WHilgenb
8 years ago

Purple components eh?

Roy Hinkley
Roy Hinkley
8 years ago

i was all hot and bothered to buy the cx1 until i found out that purple/black was only option.

had to go with the ultegra for a color scheme that wasnt embarrassing.

as for the 30mm of travel- its not meant to be rock crawler.

put a zip tie around your fork. slide it all the way up against the slider. now, roll down a dirt road. i’ll guarantee you that fork doesnt travel any more than 30mm (unless, of course your spring rate/pressure is too low and you’re a lard-a$$)

craigsj
craigsj
8 years ago

700C has far more tires for this application than 650B does and its liabilities can be mitigated when you build a custom frame and fork for the job as Cannonale has. The only advantage left is for smaller riders.

If 650B is perfect for this application then 700C is perfecter. I agree with Pillz, a bigger wheel would be even better. There isn’t anything magical about a 670mm wheel diameter despite what Jan Heine claims. 650B is for retrofits, not new bike designs.

8887879981
8887879981
8 years ago

Just seems silly for the weight. But then again, if it had a carbon fork it would just be a weird 650b disc cross/gravel bike.

craigsj
craigsj
8 years ago

“put a zip tie around your fork. slide it all the way up against the slider. now, roll down a dirt road. i’ll guarantee you that fork doesnt travel any more than 30mm (unless, of course your spring rate/pressure is too low and you’re a lard-a$$)”

This is laughably untrue. My commuter has a suspension fork set to 60mm travel when on the road and it uses more than 30mm of travel routinely. Roy, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

lukee
lukee
8 years ago

for those who are confused-

650b on a road bike is not new. Lots of touring riders use 650b because it allows them to maintain a road geometry but run a big tire with fenders and racks. It is a common thing in European touring bikes. Look at the chain stays they are 405mm. There is no bike design out there that would allow you to run a tire bigger than 23mm with that length. So this has chain stays as short as a supersix or any other race bike but comes with a 42mm tire. instead of a tractor sized monster cross or gravel bike, this will fit like a synapse- awesome

The lefty being 30mm is o.k.- it comes with a lockout but I had a cannondale guy tell me that with 30mm the front end doesn’t bob out of the saddle with the lockout off so everyone who rode the bike felt that the travel was enough but they never felt the need to lockout the fork.-awesome

one huge problem though- velocity makes purple rims but there is not much else in purple that I can put on mine when it gets here- that sucks

The Ox
The Ox
8 years ago

This is pretty much my perfect winter firetrail ripper except…….

…I seriously want that CX1 crank/spider combo but purple cranks….. euuurgh ..

…Tyres tyres tyres tyres where are we going to get 650b cross type winter tyres??

John
John
8 years ago

650b disc wheels allow 700c road disc wheels to be swapped in.

Uh, except for that whole Lefty thing…

Frippolini
Frippolini
8 years ago

@ Cashman +1 Keep up the spending. 🙂

Otherwise, what’s up with the 30mm travel? 30mm is slightly more than an inch. WTF would I opt for a heavy fork to get 30mm, why didn’t they make it 90mm instead to get some real travel with a smart suspension setup that wouldn’t jump around unless really needed?
Another question, why would this bike be more “fun” to ride than most other CX or hardtail mountain bikes. Seriously, putting the marketing and mass hypnosis and group-think to the side, just what makes this bike more “fun”? What’s the “more fun” part in it that I can’t get with my current CX bike?
As for the anodized purple parts… let’s see if I can’t make a fortune now on eBay selling my old stuff from the 90’s. LOL. 🙂

dean
dean
8 years ago

are those 105 shifters a joke?

ifbikes
ifbikes
8 years ago

Dean, I agree, what’s so odd about those 105 shifters? look like sora?

Andy
Andy
8 years ago

This looks like ludicrous fun. I’m imagining a right-side Lefty extension that is basically a prong that comes out perpendicular to the stanchions on the right side for pannier bags, which would turn this into a gravel touring bike with front suspension. Ah, one can dream.

Phatfree
8 years ago

I would like it if Cannondale made it an option to get a regular, rigid fork. I like everything but the fork.

Matt
Matt
8 years ago

This is 650C, not B….

650B = 584mm
650C = 571mm

comment image

Someone needs to do his homework’s there…

Alex
Alex
8 years ago

Hm, purple SI cranks. Nice.
Will be watching ebay for the owners of the CX-1 selling their cranks…

heywood
heywood
8 years ago

For those of you wondering about the usefulness of 30mm of travel, Miguel Martinez used to win World Cup mountain bike races on a Sunn equipped with an “Obsys” carbon suspension fork with about the same amount of travel. It’ll be quite useful, especially when your forearms are concerned. That said, I’d wait for the CAAD 12 disc, and build a 650B “rough stuff” wheelset. I’m sure Chris Kostman would approve…

RSN
RSN
8 years ago

I don’t know, I get that this is a new concept and there’s a lot about it that’s pushing the envelope, but $3,000 for an aluminum bike with 105 seems…a bit dear.

Mr_OCD
Mr_OCD
8 years ago

Put some flat bars on it and it would be an excellent XC race bike for mild terrain and small-medium sized riders. But only if it could run 2.2″ tires. Argh, so close… but I guess I still have to go to a custom frame for total niche nirvana. Thanks to Cannondale for the fork that will make that possible tho.

a
a
8 years ago

the cx1 price is weird. just a price bump for the color or smth

greg
greg
8 years ago

@Matt,
WTF are you talking about? This bike has 650b wheels n tires, NOT 650c. 650b, like randonneur bikes often have, not 650c like tiny road bikes and some old tri bikes. Nobody here is confused except you.
Unless you were joking or trolling, in which case good job.

Crisco
Crisco
8 years ago

No Carbon frame options?! Not even the top end model?

wintage townie
wintage townie
8 years ago

– He is correct that the image linked to has listed the incorrect wheel diameter. The bike is 650B (584mm), but the image says “650B WHEEL – 571MM ISO WHEEL DIAMETER”. So Cannondale doesn’t even know what they’re talking about.

The correct wheel since is 650B/584MM.

Vintage Townie
Vintage Townie
8 years ago

– Someone at Cannondale confused 650b (584mm) with 650c (571mm), when making the particular piece of press which he linked to.

Chris L
Chris L
8 years ago

To the why 650b crowd all I can say is do you not understand geometry? If you want fatter tires you have two choices:
1) smaller rim diameter
2) longer chainstays

Going with a smaller rim and fatter tire allows more normal length chainstays. If you put on 700×42 tire you’d have to substantially stretch the stays.

As for the Lefty fork, I personally think it’s overkill. Not only that but it makes it impossible to securely mount a full length front fender which is a really good thing to have if you’re riding on wet dirt roads and want your drivetrain to survive.

@Crisco: why would a carbon frame be better? Just because something is carbon doesn’t always make it better. There is a reason Shimano stopped making carbon DuraAce cranks. The amount of weight you would save would be trivial and the cost would be considerable.

Gary
Gary
8 years ago

What’s with the amputee look? Seriously, is this about saving weight? I can’t abide the aesthetics, and it just can’t be as safe and durable as a normal fork.

phil
phil
8 years ago

650B… Why?

Niels
Niels
8 years ago

To chris. Who are you kidding with your story? If we all ride 29 mountainbikes even downhillers these days, why would a gravel grinder be 650b? I agree 650b makes sence for small people but not for 6 footers (or beyond)

Chris
Chris
8 years ago

My CX bike has 700 wheels with 42 tires, there’s no reason you couldn’t do it on this bike. I just wondered if cannonballs didn’t want to invest in a 700 lefty wheel when they already had a 650 developed? This is a mountain bike with a drop bar… hardly seems worth the price.

Dominicadl
8 years ago

Sorry it doesn’t accomadate tall people! Pretty much everything else in the industry does. being 5’5″ I can’t find A half decent bike in stock at a bike shop. Where I work we have all 54-60m road in stock and medium and up in Mtb. We don’t stock small in high end Mtb or 50-52cm road.

8887879981
8887879981
8 years ago

@ heywood

Tomac, Overend and the like used to win mountain bikes races on rigid bikes. I’m not saying that it wouldn’t help with fatigue etc. (hell, anything technically could help), I just don’t think it’s worth the weight penalty. The last post about this bike said the weight was about 22 lbs. I would guess with a good carbon fork you could drop 2 pounds off. Otherwise the bike is fine, i would have preferred 80mm travel for the weight. I just can’t see this selling that well except for people who think the lefty looks cool on a drop bar bike, which is fine.

shirley kroscyk
shirley kroscyk
8 years ago

my surly crosscheck already does all of this. and….@gary….welcome to the year 2000.

Lennart
Lennart
8 years ago

to niels. i think it has to do with the geometry. Putting in a 29 er wheel will change the stack of the bike a lot. This bike is to be used simular to a road bike. On the mtb you are sitting pretty upright, so its not a huge issue, but in a road bike where you want to sit reasonably aggressive, increasing the tire diameter that much might is an issue.

lukee
lukee
8 years ago

here are some facts about this bike-

the lefty oliver weighs some where in the vicinity of 1400g and cost around $1000 by itself- that is nothing for a suspension fork in terms of weight- yes its 30mm but this is a gravel bike, if you want more than you want a mountain bike not a gravel bike.

@gary- are you serious? The lefty fork has been around for over 10 years. I have one with 160mm travel on a enduro bike-it is stiffer and better built than most suspension forks. It travels on roller bearings not bushings like most forks. Single sided forks exist in motorcycles and plenty of other applications. Technically your car runs on at least 2 single sided forks in suspension terms, especially if your car is macphearson strut

it being aluminum- cannondale has to start somewhere. This is a new concept in the industry, this year aluminum next year we will see some carbon models. My gravel bike gets destroyed in rough stuff. I went ti for this year because I was sick of all the chips,nicks and scratches. Alloy is relatively cheap and simple.

here is a geometry breakdown-A typical gravel bike like a salsa warbird has chain stays that are 430mm long and wheelbase of 1030mm. That is a tractor not a road bike. Short chain stays make the bike quick feeling, a short wheelbase makes it nimble. A large slate has 405mm stays and a 1018mm wheelbase- that is a big difference. A super six has the same stay length but a shorter front center making its wheelbase 990mm. This bike has a modern longer front center like mountain bikes are going to, but the wheelbase and stays of a premium racing road bike. It is a super six that begs to be taken off-road.

in the grand scheme of things. If a road bike is a Porsche 911, and a mountain bike is a ford raptor, this is a group b rally car. If you don’t know what that means- you just don’t know.

Skidsy
Skidsy
8 years ago

650B ’cause:

584mm rim diameter+80mm in tire height (40mmx2)=664mm total diameter

622mm rim Dimeter +46mm in tire height (23mmx2)=668mm total diameter

Similar roll out distance between the two options so you can run chunky tires or skinny w/o affecting gearing or handling. This is like buying a car that comes pre-equipped with steel rims and winter tires. You can always buy alloys with all-conditions at a later date.

chris
chris
8 years ago

This is the same idea as 75.5+ on mountain bikes. Smaller wheels, but bigger tires = same as bigger wheels and smaller tires. interesting…

chris
chris
8 years ago

LOL 27.5+ 🙂

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