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Crossberg Disc

Review: Crossberg Disc

scottmares's picture

Right Out of the Box

5

The door bell rings and its the UPS guy with a deliver for us. The Box is a frame box and it has the Lion of Flanders on it and the name of RITTE above this coveted majestic beast of the muddy mother land. This job never gets old as its like Christmas every week. Pulling the frame set out we really didn't know what to expect as these were some of the first ones to land. The paint job on this frame set is not as flashy as the other ones in its line. If you are looking for subtle then you just might like this paint job. The light mocha color hides a hint on the type of terrain that this bike s suppose to be ridden in. Upon further inspection of the frame revealed some really interesting things. The head tube is shaped and bigger at the bottom making it a 11/8 X 11/2. We also noticed that all of the cables were routed up on the top tube. Finally! Some one took that front derailleur cable off the down tube and routed up top and out of the way. If you ever see me please don't ask me about what I think about cables routed on the down tube. You will set me off for the next 15 minutes... I hate that.. Next was the Press fit BB30. "Interesting" I thought to myself. I guess that I'm use to seeing a threaded bb shell. Moving on to the rear triangle Ritte had given the seat and chain stays and nice curve to them.. Over all the frame set looked like some one had taken some time and thought about what should go into it.

Road Test Ride

5

This bike is a little different than you will find on the Ritte website in that we got the frame and then had FSA trick it out with its latest stuff. Out on the road the bike is snappy and stable. We can take our hands off the bars and ride all day with out any problems. the fork is especially beefy and needs to be with the TRP hydraulic brakes that we put all the way around it. So stopping power is not an issue and with the fork being as beefy there should be no fork shutter. So out on the road we went. We mixed our road rides up with daily commutes to work and back and then some training rides as well. So what is the Crossberg like. Its quick and efficient. Input is almost instant in either steering or accelerating. So could you race this bike on the road? yep however you may want to choose a different set up for that. Running a single chain ring is not really the ideal setup for that. We took it out to Mt. Tabor for some repeats to see how it felt on the short climbs with some quick non technical descents.

We haven't gotten any fork chatter with the bike.

Dirt Test Ride

4

Again out on our favorite tracks at Powel bute park gives us a good place to test bikes. The course is the same each time and offers a variety of situation that you may find in just about any cyclocross course. The bike handles really well. After further inspection of the geometry it seems that the guys at Ritte may have gotten the geometry just right. I have been on a lot of bike and some have really low bb and some have high bottom brackets and it is also all of the other things that go along with it. make it too high and the bike is really twitchy and difficult to handle in quick situations. This can lead to over steering and then that is a very short road to crashing. Repeat after me: Crashing Bad... Back to the Crossberg, the bb is not low but not too high and with the rest of the geometry it works really well with maintaining the over all balance and handling characteristics of the bike. So bottom line the Crossberg was at home on the Fire roads, single track and the switchbacks that are all out at the Bute. I also think that the TRP hydraulic brakes also had something to do with it as well. Braking is like geometry on a bike. Too slow and the bike responds slowly, too fast and that s when you get into over braking... Again, leads to crashing. In the case of brakes that means skidding, high siding and flipping... All of which (except for control skidding) are what I call B.A.D. the TRP hydraulic brakes are badass and gave me a new level of control. All they do is allow you to refine your speed control.

We Liked

Here is a list of all of the big and little things that we liked about the Ritte Crossberg.

  • Shaped tubing
  • Cable routing at the top
  • Hydraulic brakes
  • Cool Logos
  • Shaped head tube
  • Badass carbon fork
  • A bottom bracket that does not feel too high

We Didn't Like

The is a lot of things to like about this frame set and only a couple of things that I would change on it. I think the first place to start is the brace at the bottom bracket. Now, I'm not saying that the bike does not need the brace there. But, I would like a little more thought and effort to go into this little detail. That is an area that collects mud and can cause drag on the tire. So the brace should have a shape or profile that does not allow it to hold mud while still having structural rigidity. So I would think that a Diamond shaped brace would allow this. Or even a thin Aluminum plate slightly angle back would still resist torsional forces and allow mud to run off it. Currently this brace is the only perfectly round tube on the bike. I Know that some would like the paint scene on the Crossberg. And to a point I do too. Currently the frame set is offered in one color scheme and I think that a little more offerings is in order for this great steed with a Belgium Philosophy.

Upgrades

None

The Final Say

Ritte is a company based out of the good old USA. They are growing the company slowly and I have known about their beautiful bikes for some time now. Even back in the days of when I ran SIBEX. They are a small operation compared to the big dogs of TREK and Specialized and so on. Ritte is going mainstream with the new Crossberg. Ritte has made cyclocross bikes in the past but they were very limited on their production and so they have had some time to refine their product to what you see today. It is one of the first bikes that I have had the pleasure of riding that had a higher bottom bracket. That's right I said pleasure. Usually when a company decides to have a higher bottom bracket they don't adjust for everything else and raise it up a little too much. So my final thoughts on the Crossberg are this. The Crossberg Disc from Ritte is a Gucci aluminum racing machine that is made for the working man cross racer that wants a high performance race machine that won't break the bank and put himself into more debt than he already has. The Crossberg Disc excels in every situation and with the right group can hold it's own with all of the other Uber cross bikes on the market. With that thought we would like to see the bottom bracket brace upgraded to something more than a round tube. This is probably the only tube that is totally round and uniformity symmetrical from end to end on the bike. The other thing I would like to see if a couple more paint options offered on this Bog Trotter. A minimum of 2 if not 3 should be offered. Other wise its a wolf in sheep's clothing

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