Friday, August 29, 2014

Soma Wolverine - Final thoughts

Lets go a little deeper and round up the information on the Soma Wolverine.
Boston for size.
I built this bike up with the purpose of a do it all road/touring bike. The list of parts for this bike will be at the bottom. Have had the chance to get a few decent rides on this bike. With rain and straight up getting bored of the local dirt trails I have been riding for almost 7 years(damn I have been here that long?), this weekend I got to spend some time riding around. The riding was awesome and I can officially say I love this bike.

Dirt search.

When you read that this frame can fit 700x45 tires and fenders, one would think that it would be a tight fit. That is not really the case. Found a set of WTB NineLine 2.0 tires at work that were unclaimed. Decided I would try and put them on this bike but thought they would rub the frame to some extent. Wrong, there is plenty of room. 29x2.0 tires only made this bike a bit more fun to ride. Road biking has always made me a little bored. Some attention problems and staring at a road makes my mind go crazy. So hitting some trails and connector paths is a relief from the pavement. The skinny tires, by skinny I mean 35c tires, got switched out for the 2" tires and may only go back on every now and then. Within the whole of the bicycle industry I think we can all agree that bigger tires are better. All categories are running bigger tires; BMX, road, cyclocross, mountain bikes, tandems, recumbent, and even fat bikes. Soma, you have done a great job with this frame. The versatility to do whatever you want on this goes above and beyond. There are so many ways this could get built up and it all comes down to the users needs.

First ride this weekend was about 2.5 hours long and who knows how many miles. No Garmins were used. Ever. I stand by that fairly firmly, unless I need direction in the back-country. Took a mixture of road and various park trails, access roads, and gravel paths. Got a little lost and had a great time.

How is the bike? It is stable and smooth. At higher speeds, the stability is great. Not twitchy or a confidence killer. Disc brakes are awesome on all bikes. Less of a hassle, stronger braking, and they work great when wet and muddy. Makes riding with drop bars on rough trail a whole lot easier. Only set back was purchasing the TRP brakes. They are nice, yes. But the pads rattle a whole lot within the brake calipers. Gets a little annoying and makes you feel like something is falling apart. Only downside I have seen is not having through mounts for mid mounts on the fork. Limits the racks that you can put up front, but not a deal breaker at all. 

On the trail, it is almost like riding a mountain bike. Had a few short sections of trail that were used to cut back and head home. Handles well on the rough and does not feel completely out of place riding on trail. 

At the end of the weekend I had been on the bike for ~5 hours. I know that I am officially a weird bike nerd who thoroughly enjoys having ridiculous bikes. It is awesome. Being on a bike should not be painful. If you do not enjoy it, do not do it. I do not like being on a road bike, which is why this is now far from a road bike. That is just me personally. If you get this frame, which I fully encourage, make it your own. Get out there. And ride.

Parts list:
Frame: 54cm Soma Wolverine
Wheels: XT hubs with DT TK450 Rims
Tires (currently): WTB NineLine2.0
Shifty Bits: Sram Apex 10spd
R Derail: Sram Rival
F Derail: Sram Rival 22 with chain keeper
Chain: KMC 10spd
Cassette: Sram PC something something
Crank: Sram Apex
Brakes: TRP Spyre
Headset: Cane Creek 110
Handlebars: Salsa Cowbell 42cm
H-bar tape: ESI!
Stem: need to change
Seatpost: super long cheap-o Kalloy
Saddle: Brooks Team Pro
H2O Cages: King Cage (the best)

Ride more. Care less. 





7 comments:

  1. Nice Bike!!! Will most likely be ordering one of these frames. For sizing purposes-how tall are you and what is your saddle height? Thanks!

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  2. Thanks for the review. I'm also curious of your height and inseam. Think I may pull the trigger on this frame as well!

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  3. Height and measurements would be good. I'm 5'9" and looking to get one. Feel like I'm between a 52&54. I also have no dealers in the area to try. Great build. Thanks for the review!

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  4. Sorry, did not get a notice on the comments.

    As far as sizing goes; I am 5'8", maybe 5'9", and I have a 30" inseam. I have really long arms though, with almost a 6'1" wingspan. So yeah, like a monkey. Feel like I was borderline 52/54 but with my long arms the 54 was a good choice. Would have felt a little cramped on the 52. Typically I ride 53cm-54cm and all mountian bikes medium frames, 17"-18".

    Hopefully that helps. Can get stand-over height with the 2.0" tires if it is desired.

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  5. What colour is the saddle - brown or honey?

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