Chapter2 bikes have long offered a beautiful range of finishes on their All-Road, Aero or Race frames, but have now released a new Limited Edition to their Gravel offering, the Chapter2 AO.
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The full roster of Chapter2 framesets take inspiration from New Zealand and the Maori heritage which has a long standing connection to the stunning landscape, this inspiration is utilised in not only the naming of their bikes but also the graphics and attention to detail visible across models in their range.
The AO, meaning Earth in Maori is an out and out gravel racing and adventure bike designed with clearance for a 42mm tyre when running a 700c wheel and then upwards to a 47mm if you choose to run a 650b set of wheels, for some riders that may not tick the monster rubber box but it is certainly sufficient to see you enjoying proper gravel at pace wherever you may come across it.
Not only does the tyre clearance offered keep most parties happy the frameset is also compatible with fenders, and lets you bolt on (if you’re really thirsty! up to 5 bottle cages) With triple mounts on the topside of the downtube, and two bolts on the toptube, coined the bento box for a bolt on toptube bag to minimise the sway and keep the aesthetics high.
Included with the frame are Chapter2 bikes own Stem and Seatpost, the latter sized at 31.6mm; an excellent choice as the option of a dropper post is there without the drama of too much hunting around for awkward seatpost diameters and restrictive drops when running something thinner like 27.2 (i know the pain all too well)
The striking appearance of the AO is a testament to the well considered use of carbon throughout the frame, and some distinctive features off the bat are the asymmetric chainstays which look pretty special especially when paired up with the new Earth Tones (Rangipo) colourway.
“The Limited edition colourway is restricted to 150-200 units and once they are gone, they are gone.”
The asymmetric chain stays are just the tip of the iceberg for the rear end; included with the frame are set of rather clever modular chips to allow for adjustments to be made to the effective wheelbase, with three settings on offer. The standard offering of 420mm can be adjusted to get nice and tucked to 412.5mm or stretch things out to 427.5mm for a more stable and comfortable ride.
Further adding to a comfortable ride the geometry of the bike takes influence from both endurance road norms and also slightly older mountain bike configurations, across the range there are two different fork offset offerings depending on what size frame is bought, at the bigger end of things the Large and X- Large frames make use of a 50mm offset fork while the smaller sizes use a longer 55m option.
“Making use of longer fork offsets are hugely beneficial in reducing the dreaded Toe-verlap”
The aesthetics of the frames also go far beyond the nice finishes and fancy paint jobs, the internal routing options provided make for an excellent clean looking bike with neat options to arrange your cabling and hosing through the large entry point near the toptube, and to further help with integrating your shifting systems the triple mounting plate further back on the downtube also can double up as mounting point for a Di2 battery.
Whilst earlier it was mentioned that the frame features pannier mounts, these are infact provided as a bolt on extra, by way of a smart bracket that can be installed on the seatstays, another tidy design feature which keeps the bike looking clean and ‘fast’ while its just standing around.
When considering setups and how to make a bike from the frameset and post and stem provided there are a variety of ways you can choose to go, the kit does in fact include a headset and both through axles, whats more its compatible with either a 1x or 2x drivetrain depending on your preference.
The bottom bracket is a BSA threaded shell which mean no scary press fit bearings or hitting your nice new frame with a wooden block or soft hammer.
Flat mount discs front and back mean the options are plentiful for stopping in modulation with confidence or getting rowdy and skidding to a stop in a cloud of cool and gravel chips.
ADVNTR contributor Mark Downie has just bought himself an AO in another of the limited edition colours; Silver and is looking to run his on some 700m scope wheels, and erring on the side of ‘wildman’ is going to start things off with some 44cm WTB Raddlers, a bold move and once he is up and rolling we will certainly do a bike check to see how he is getting on with them and the inevitable mud soon to be gracing all of our local trails.
Beyond pushing the limits of the AO’s tyre clearance the rest of Mark’s setup is all well considered to make for an excellent Gravel bike that will be both lively and responsive out on the miles of Gravel not far from home.
Seemingly opting for a hybrid arrangement of both Sram and Shimano with Force 1 x 11 double tap shifters up on his Coefficient RR with the Chapter2’s own bar tape (in aqua!) and pairing these with a Thomson stem he is then making use of Shimano SLX cranks paired with a 38tooth Wolftooth chainring an some XT pedals for a nice table base.
The last contact points on the bike come in the form of a Giant Approach saddle mounted to the provided Chapter2 Carbon setback seatpost.
N.B – The Chapter 2 Bikes – AO Rangipo is currently available to pre-order now (and if done so before 16th November 2021) with an offer to bundle up with ‘Mana’ Carbon integrated Bar-Stem Combo for free.
Last modified: 4th November 2021