As I stated on the Out Of The Box post, I would be back with a view and run down on the completed build of the Gryphon from Singular Cycles. I will also point out a few specifics on the drop bar set up to help with understanding these peculiar rigs.

Gryphon2010 009

Before I go any further, I’ll give the run down on the complete build:

Frame/Fork: Singular Cycles Gryphon, size large
Wheels; Industry 9 single speed hubs laced to DT Swiss TK 7.1 disc rims
Tires: Front- Geax Saguaro TNT/ Rear WTB Vulpine- both set up tubeless.
Crankset: White Industries ENO w/34T ring
Cog: Surly 17T with Surly spacer kit/lockring
Bottom Bracket: Shimano cartridge, 115mm spindle/ Phil Wood EBB insert.
Pedals: Shimano
Chain: SRAM PC-951
Brakes: Avid BB-7 mechanical disc brakes/ Avid Clean Sweep rotors. 185mm front/160mm rear
Stem: Thomson 100mm
Handlebar: Salsa Woodchipper 46cm
Brake Levers: Tektro RL 520
Tape: Double wrapped. Outer layer Deda.
Seatpost: Thompson
Saddle: Brooks Special B-17
Cables/Housing: Standard road brake cables w/Jagwire housing.

Gryphon2010 005Gryphon2010 006
The build of a drop bar specific rig differs a bit in terms of set up from standard 29″ers and from drop bar conversions. Here the taller head tube allows for a set up that uses very few spacers and a standard stem. The caveat is that you will have a frame with a severely sloping top tube. (Otherwise the set up would require a severely sloping stem!) With a rigid fork layout and a lower than most bottom bracket, the Gryphon sets up nicely with the Woodchippers. I was able to easily match my desired saddle to grip area drop. The Gryphon is set up, as most off road drop bar rigs should be, with the primary hand position being the drops. (Note: I didn’t say you “never” use other positions. It is just that during most rough, technical riding, you’ll want to be in the most advantageous position- that being the drops.) Because the drop section is where you’ll be spending most of your time, you’ll want to make sure you can operate the brakes from the drops. Take a look at the following image to see how that looks.

Gryphon2010 010

Notice how the levers are positioned downward. This allows me to reach out my index finger while I grip the hook and easily grab the tip of the Tektro lever to operate the brakes. If the lever was higher, I would have to cock my wrist upwards, which would be very awkward and uncomfortable. Because the levers are positioned the way they are, you won’t have a super convenient hoods position, but as I said, it doesn’t matter, since you’ll be riding off road and in the drops most of the time. Not that you can’t cruise around on the hoods, or use the tops, because you can. It just isn’t the point of an off road drop set up, which we pointed out in our drop bars for off roading post here. I’ll post more on the off road drop bar subject coming up this week.

Gryphon2010 011

My impressions of the bike now are that it is very similar to the Fargo by Salsa Cycles. The important points where it varies from that drop bar specific rig is that the Singular can be set up as a single speed and the Singular is not a bike that bristles with braze ons like the Fargo does. No, the Singular makes do with only the two bottle mounts. There are subtle differences in the frame and fork from the Fargo though that I will detail in a later post. The frame seems to have decent clearance with the 2.1 inch Vulpine in back and plenty of room up front around the Geax Saguaro. The rest of the bike is pretty straight forward. Now it will be on to the handling department, and a First Impressions post will come in a couple of weeks.

Note: This product was provided to Twenty Nine Inches at no charge for reviewing. We are not being paid or bribed for this review. We will give our honest opinion or thoughts through out.