After I spent quite some time testing/’racing’ a Travers ‘Fat Race’ in the early summer I couldn’t quite get the idea of owning a Travers fatty out of my head.
Fast-forward a few months and a conversation was had, haggling was errr…..haggled, threats and promises were both promised and threatened and before I knew it…..voila!
Yesterday I put the finishing components on the shiniest and bling-est bike I’ve ever owned and today I took her out into the Italian mountains for her maiden voyage.
And…..here she is:
So…..how does it ride, I hear you ask???
In a word; sublime!
In more words; it really is a stunning piece of engineering loveliness.
The frame does everything a really good quality Ti frame should. It looks the dogs b*llocks, weighs nothing, gives when/where it should but otherwise holds it’s line and does what it’s told.
The build quality is like nothing I’ve ever seen. It feels like a little magic elf with OCD spent months worrying about every little feature, weld and curve in order to make this frame the best thing he/she had ever created!
This is a little more complicated as, whilst I want to love the Lauf forks, I am approaching this long-term test with a healthy skepticism about their performance under real-world conditions.
I’m going to live with them for a while before I make any proclamations about them but for now I’ll say that they’re bouncy, light and something of a room divider in terms of their design aesthetics (I personally think that they look stunning).
With a smattering of lovely carbon trickery, some pilfered parts from other bikes and some budget saving sensible choices I think I got the parts just about perfect for this build.
Light where it matters and/or is affordable, strong and reliable for all moving parts and tried and tested regulars for all of the points of contact. That should do it.
On the trail it felt lively, responsive and even made me think that I might not be in as bad condition as I know I am which is a good sign!
It climbed really well and I’m already glad of the 26t chainring.
I’ll ride it a lot more and let you all know what it’s like to live with after a few months of cohabitation.
In the meantime, for those of the nerdy persuasion here is a full component breakdown.
- Frame: Travers brand new ‘Bat Fastard’ (5″ tyre ready) Titanium frame (in Large).
- Lauf ‘Carbonara’ fork.
- Nextie ‘Wild Dragon’ 90mm carbon rims.
- Hope hubs.
- Surly ‘Bud and Lou’ (4.8″) tyres.
- Raceface ‘Turbine’ bottom bracket.
- XT ‘M8000’ 11sp (1 x 11) drivetrain (with 11-42t cassette).
- Absolute Black 26t oval chainring.
- KCNC headset and seatpost clamp.
- FSA carbon (80mm) stem.
- Easton ‘EC70’ carbon bars.
- Pro-lite carbon seatpost.
- Charge ‘Spoon’ saddle (soon to be replaced by a lovely new Brookes ‘Cambium’ beauty).
- XT front and Avid ‘BB7’ rear brakes (the Lauf fork wouldn’t take a BB7 on the front so I bastardised another bike for a front brake)
For more information take a look on the Travers site: traversbikes.com/bat-fastard.html