Just in: Pinnacle Arkose 2

With hydraulic disc brakes, a 1x10 drivetrain and 35mm knobbly tyres, the Arkose 2 has been completely redesigned for 2014

by David Arthur   February 5, 2014  

Here’s an interesting bike. The Arkose 2 from Pinnacle is an alloy cyclo-cross bike with a 1x10 drivetrain and hydraulic disc brakes, with a full set of mudguard and rack mounts.

It’s a brand new offering from the house brand of Evans Cycles for 2014, and is the first time they’ve built a bike with this single ring configuration. Last year it had a more conventional drivetrain with a compact chainset. It's priced at £900, though the website currently has it discounted to £810, which makes it a pretty attractive prospect for someone looking for a really versatile all-rounder, whether it’s daily commuting or blasting through the woods and bridleways at the weekend.

The frame is made from 6061-T6 aluminium and it’s double butted to save a bit of weight. It’s a cleanly finished frame, complete with both rack and mudguard mounts. It’s disc-specific, with the rear brake and rear mech cable routed along the bottom of the down tube. The rear brake caliper is mounted inside the rear triangle, so no issue with fitting the mudguard nad rack. The fork is manufactured from carbon fibre and has a tapered steerer tube.

It comes fitted with fat Kenda Small Block 8 35mm tyres. It’s a fast rolling tyre especially if you pump them up hard, so they’ll handle the road just fine, but with plenty of grip for tackling everything from smooth gravel canal paths to muddy bridleways through the woods. With space for 35mm tyres, we could envisage this bike quite happily taking a pair of fat slicks, maybe a 28mm, for getting the road miles in. Fit some mudguards and it could make a very interesting winter bike choice. That’s something we plan to try during testing.

For the drivetrain Pinnacle has taken inspiration from the trend in mountain biking to ditch the front derailleur, and use what is commonly referred to as a 1x10 set up. It offers simplicity, you only need worry about the rear shifting, and it’s also light. A seat tube mounted guide helps to keep the chain in place, acting like a front mech.

The Truvativ E400 crankset is fitted with a 38t chainring and combined with a Shimano 105 rear mech and 11-32t cassette, should be a good spread of gears for flat roads and hills. Shifting is taken care of by a Microshift 10-speed bar end shifter.

It’s obviously a restricted gear range compared to say a 50/34 chainset, but the bike isn’t being pitched at big ring road warriors. A 38-11 combo gives a 94.2 inch gear, which if you’re pedalling at 100rpm is good for 27mph. Should be plenty fast enough for most people then.

Bringing the bike to stop is a set of Tektro Hylex hydraulic discs with TRP’s own matching brake levers. They’re partnered with 160mm rotors at both wheels. Talking of wheels, they're Alex Black Dragon rims with Joytech disc hubs, all laced together with 32 spokes in both wheels. Nice and solid like. 

The Arkose 2 is finished with a Pinnacle SL 110mm alloy stem and double butted alloy bars with a shallow 125mm drop and 70mm reach. They’re 44cm wide. It's a FEW RAce saddle and dual-density microfibre bar tape.

On the scales the size medium pictured weighs 10.3kg (22.70lb). This looks like the ideal bike for the storm lashed roads and country lanes, with the bigger tyres adding volume and plenty of traction on those roads that more resemble farm tracks. And for throwing it down and along bridleways, tow paths and through the woods, it should be quite the fun bike. We'll also try it with some large slick tyres as well and see if it cuts it as an alternative winter bike option. We'll let you know how we get on. 

Check out www.evanscycles.com for more info.

16 user comments

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Great price but wouldn't care for that front shifter at all

posted by jarredscycling [436 posts]
5th February 2014 - 15:57

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I was looking at this the other day in Evans. Thoughts: shifter is weird, the concave headset top cap will collect water, colour and finish look great, and I love the idea of a 1x10 commuter bike.

One other thing. That fork... if it wasn't for the mudguard eye on the outside, it is an absolute dead ringer for the one on my Boardman CX, even down to the angle of the dropouts and the ridge across the crown just under the headtube. So who has stolen whose mould?

Boardman CX Team '14 | Cannondale CAAD8 '12 (written off, SMIDSY) | Scott Sportster '08

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posted by Gizmo_ [765 posts]
5th February 2014 - 16:01

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Nice. N+1.

{pedant} Sheldon sez a 700-35@(100rpm+38-11)= 27.9MPH {/pedant}

Ahem.

If they'd thrown an XT 36/11 on the back they could have gone for a 40 ring, you'd get 29.4MPH out of the top end with an easier bailout gear for grinding the hills.

And the 36T-max Deore Shadow mech is the same price as the 105.

Jus'sayin.

I was told there would be Cake. Luckily there's http://TestValleyCC.org.uk

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posted by KiwiMike [438 posts]
5th February 2014 - 16:29

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Looks great. Very neat post mount brakes front and rear - no adapters used.

Full carbon fork, or alloy steerer?

two wheels good; four wheels bad

posted by cat1commuter [1333 posts]
5th February 2014 - 17:07

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Looks lovely bike though for a rough road track, unless you spend all your time in the drops? Which is unlikely for this bike your going to have to shift hand positions to change gears, that I suspect is going to get tedious really quickly,

posted by rogermerriman [18 posts]
5th February 2014 - 17:39

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Nice bike. But the colour choice...?

posted by jacknorell [287 posts]
5th February 2014 - 18:05

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The fork's all carbon and may be the same as some others (who may use the carbon or Al steerer option, not sure), it's an open-mold fork. No secrets or thefts there )

An XT mech with a 36T would be nice but Shimano 10s MTB is a different pull ratio which means no bar-end shifter (Microshift don't have a 10S MTB bar/thumb shifter). SRAM would work but bumps the price up a fair bit and we didn't initially intend this as a bike used where fast shifts or wider ratios are important. More of a simpler all-round bike, just a different option. Feedback from off road use is good though and the bar-end is easier in use than many expect (I have a SS MTB and another with thumb shifters so I'm quite happy riding it off-road).

I think bikes that some people don't see the point in and others 'get' right away are great, so we thought we'd make a few to see how it went. It's also raised a few conversations that help us all think through how a bike can be used or specified.

posted by james-o [188 posts]
5th February 2014 - 18:44

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Can't see how this is an improvement over the 2013 model, or the reasoning for the changes. Given the choice, I'd plump for the 2013 model over the new version.

The 2013's Avid BB5s (replaced by hydraulics) gave plenty of consistent stopping power, and the conventional shifters worked well on and off road - I took mine out for commuting, bimbles on the TPT and blasts round a MTB course. Until some ingrate nicked it just before Christmas...

That bar-end shifter just looks and feels wrong. Cross top levers (now gone) were also useful in tight handling situations. Shifting from 2x10 to 1x10 looks to be more saving on cost to accommodate the hydraulics brakes.

To top it all off... switching from muted black/grey to lime green. Ew. After six hours in the saddle, I feel like vomiting anyway. With this, everyone would.

The fork is full carbon btw, on both 2013 and 2014 models.

posted by Argos74 [268 posts]
5th February 2014 - 18:50

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Some thoughtful touches here, such as the calliper mounts and the chain catcher; I like it.

I suspect the hand of James Olsen was involved in this radical re-design; he's the guy previously responsible for the huge success of Genesis Bikes and he could do a lot of good for Evans' reputation.

But yeah, that colour?

Mike

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posted by mike the bike [119 posts]
5th February 2014 - 18:55

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Argos 74, sorry to hear your bike was pinched. There's still the Arkose 1 with BB7/Sora and 3 with BB7 SL/105 in the 2014 range so there's most bases covered. The £100 gap between the 2 and 3 last year was so close that we decided to try this. Calling it the Arkose 2 was just down to price hierarchy.
The reason for the bar-end was that we wanted to offer full hydro brakes at a reasonable price, that meant we needed an alternative shifter. The idea for a simple 1x10 / single bar-end shifter fitted with the generally fit+forget hydro brakes and we then had a spec that we all liked (I'm saying 'we', I'm deflecting blame / sharing credit where due!). In future it may have a front mech, or 1x10 like this again.

The colour, I blame road.cc's pics or a lack of sunshine: ) it's a metallic green, looks great in natural light (or a dark room, to some)

posted by james-o [188 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:10

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I've got a Pinnacle MTB in a similar colour, looks ace in real life IMO!

posted by Chuck [358 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:38

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Have you seen this

http://brimages.bikeboardmedia.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10...

This would get rid of the bifter

posted by 60kg lean keen ... [56 posts]
5th February 2014 - 19:49

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It's a nice concept! Bar-end shifters and full hydraulic braking are both pretty hassle-free things. Hybrid disc brakes would allow for brifters, but would not be as low maintenance.
A ratcheting bar-end shifter might well work with the wider range Shimano MTB rear der/cassette, but perhaps the buying public is too hung up on indexed shifting for that idea to be viable...

The bike seems a bit heavy, especially considering the simplified components. (Perhaps part of the weight might have something to do with the chosen brakes, too, are mechanic disc brakes lighter?) But since the bike is more of a all-rounder than a CX race bike, it's still light enough. I like it.

Zombies don't ride bikes.

posted by Markus [34 posts]
5th February 2014 - 23:00

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Really liked this bike when it came into my work a few weeks ago. Would have loved to have seen this as a single-speed CX bike but probably would be pretty niche. I quite like the colour actually, well done James!

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posted by dazzman [2 posts]
6th February 2014 - 0:07

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Weird shifter? Has no one seen a bar end shifter before?

posted by MKultra [197 posts]
6th February 2014 - 12:24

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Similar shifter on the Genesis Day One Alfine. Anyone who thinks they might be put off should try it. It really isn't a problem at all, especially if the drops are of the shallow variety.

I find it completely instinctive now, often going for the friction shifter (that isn't there) on my more conventionally gear/shifter combination bikes until I remember what I'm riding Wink

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posted by dodgy [103 posts]
6th February 2014 - 20:10

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