Home
Verdict: 
Good quality singlespeed for winter training or fuss-free commuting on the flat
Weight: 
10,160g
Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed
8 10

The Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed is one of a very small number of disc brake-equipped singlespeed road bikes out there on the market, and it puts in a very good performance, proving amply capable of eating up winter training miles with the minimum of things to go wrong. It has predictable handling and decent brakes, and the unexceptional wheels and finishing kit keep the bike very affordable.

The singlespeed or fixed wheel bike has historically been the choice of the road man for the hard winter miles. With one gear there's not much to go wrong and the lack of ratios teaches you to pedal smoothly and effectively over a wider range of cadences. This being a disc-braked bike you don't get the option of flipping the hub over from singlespeed to fixed, so it's supplied as a singlespeed, with an 18-tooth freewheel. You could swap the freewheel for a fixed cog if you wanted, it's just not as simple as flipping the wheel over.

> Find your nearest Evans store here

The bike comes with a 46T Samox chainset and an 18T freewheel, giving a 67.5in gear on the 26mm tyres. That's a decent compromise gear that's low enough to get up some steep climbs without spinning out too quickly on the flat. If you live somewhere where hills aren't a big thing it'll probably be a bit low, but it's an easy swap.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drivetrain.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drivetrain.jpg

Singlespeed bikes need a mechanism to tension the chain, and in this case the Pinnacle's 6061-T6 double butted frame has an eccentric bottom bracket: the bottom bracket shell is located off-centre in an alloy cylinder that's then tightened into the frame. By loosening the bolts and rotating the cylinder, you can move the bottom bracket closer or further away from the rear sprocket to loosen or tighten the chain.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - bottom bracket.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - bottom bracket.jpg

Well executed, it's probably my favourite method of tensioning a chain. There's no need for a slot dropout of any kind and the wheel always stays in exactly the same place. In this case that's vital for the disc brakes to function properly, and realistically the only option. But it also means you don't have to worry about adjusting the position of mudguards if you change the gear ratio, and you don't have any problem removing the wheel when mudguards are fitted, which is an issue with rear-facing track dropouts.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drop out.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drop out.jpg

And is it well executed? Yes, pretty well. The Pinnacle uses a split shell and two hefty bolts to keep everything in the right place. Some eccentric bottom brackets use grub screws through the shell and I find that's less effective if you're a powerful (read: heavy) rider. I haven't had the bottom bracket slip once and I've fired the Pinnacle up some hills that required every watt I had to make it to the top. There's very little flex in the frame, although it was a bit prone to creaking before I cleaned it out and tightened it up with a bit of extra gusto. Stomp on the pedals, though – you'll have to to get up the steep stuff – and there's no worrying flex. The square taper chainset and bottom bracket aren't top dollar units but I didn't have any issues with them and sealed bottom brackets tend to run and run.

Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed - riding 2.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed - riding 2.jpg

The rest of the frame and fork is neatly made, with the alloy fork colour-matched to the frame. It would have been nice to see a carbon-bladed fork, but since the bike has space for 32mm tyres (or 28s with mudguards) to take the sting out of the ride, it's not a deal-breaker.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - tyre and rim.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - tyre and rim.jpg

It comes with 26mm Kenda Kontender tyres. Kenda tyres are rarely the highlight of a bike, and this is no exception: they're okay but feel a little bit dead, and the grip levels aren't stellar, leading to some scrabbling around on steeper, bumpier roads. Switching to better quality 28mm tyres is an easy and relatively cheap upgrade: you can run them a bit softer for extra comfort and grip.

The ride

The ride itself is firm, and the tyres and saddle don't help especially. That being said, I've been out on some fairly long (70-80km) rides on the Dolomite and it's generally been the legs rather than the contact points that have complained most: such is the nature of riding a singlespeed.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - saddle.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - saddle.jpg

Given time I'd swap the tyres, the bar tape (which is decent but could be improved) for something like Cannondale's Synapse tape, and the saddle for something I know works for me. But out of the box it doesn't present any real issues for longish training rides.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - bars.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - bars.jpg

The position is reasonably high – the stack-to-reach ratio of the XL bike I tested is 1.52 (619mm stack, 405mm reach – stack and reach being the vertical and horizontal measurements from the centre of the bottom bracket to the top of the head tube), putting it at the comfort-sportive end of the road bike spectrum. It also came with the stem in the rise orientation at the top of 30mm of spacers, which made it unnecessarily high. Some tinkering at the front has improved matters, and with one 10mm spacer underneath the flipped stem it now feels very comfortable in terms of position.

Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed - riding 3.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed - riding 3.jpg

It's not a strung-out, head-down racer but it's aggressive enough to keep up with the group ride without too much bother. So long as the group ride doesn't go too fast... 100rpm on the pedals is about the top of my sustainable range, and that equates to about 20mph on this bike with this gear. So I won't be trying the chain gang on it unless I swap out the freewheel for something less spinny.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drop out.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - drop out.jpg

The wheels on the Dolomite are fine. There aren't masses of budget singlespeed disc hubsets out there. The Pinnacle Dolomite uses Novatec hubs with sealed bearings and they're basic but gave me no issues at all. They're laced to Alex ATD490 rims and the resulting wheelset should see off plenty of smashing through winter potholes. They're heavy, and that's reflected in the bike's 10.1kg overall weight. But this is a simple winter trainer or flatland commuter: you want it to be reliable before you think about it being light.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - fork.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - fork.jpg

The brakes are TRP Spyre mechanical disc brakes. If you're going to have mechanical discs then these are the ones I'd pick; they don't maybe have the top-end power of some of the other options, but because they have two moving pads instead of one moving and one static, they're a whole lot simpler to set up and adjust. They don't have the power of hydraulics; they're more akin to using a decent calliper brake needing a firm tug for slowing down in a hurry, but they're more predictable in the wet and they don't wear your rims out. Because you don't need to worry about shifting gears it's an easy upgrade to TRP Hylex hydraulic discs if you want to throw a couple of hundred quid at better stopping.

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - rear disc.jpg

Pinnacle Dolomite SS - rear disc.jpg

I've mostly used the Pinnacle as a winter training bike because I've no great desire to ride a singlespeed down and then up a 3km climb every day: that's my commute in a nutshell. If you live in flatter parts then the Dolomite Singlespeed would make an excellent no-fuss, low-maintenance workaday bike if you added some mudguards and a rack, and the frame is ready for both. The position isn't so aggressive that it's too head-down for riding in traffic, and indeed it can be fairly upright with the spacer stack and the stem configured in the highest position.

> road.cc Commuting Bike of the Year 2016-17

Overall, the Dolomite Singlespeed is a solid choice for a no-fuss winter trainer or a low-maintenance work bike. You get a well-made frame and well-chosen components, and the ride, if a bit firm, is good with the position just about right. The £525 RRP isn't a huge amount to spend on a bike and at the moment it's only £470 on the Evans website, which makes it a good buy.

Verdict

Good quality singlespeed for winter training or fuss-free commuting on the flat

road.cc test report

Make and model: Pinnacle Dolomite Singlespeed

Size tested: XL

About the bike

State the frame and fork material and method of construction. List the components used to build up the bike.

Frame 6061-T6 heat treated aluminium, double butted

Fork Aluminium blade, Cr-Mo steerer

Number of Gears 1

Chain set Samox singlespeed, square taper

Chain rings 46t

Cassette 18t sprocket (spares + other sizes available online)

Chain KMC Z510, black

Brakeset Tektro Spyre, mechanical dual piston disc

Brake Levers Tektro RL340

Handlebars Pinnacle 6061 aluminium short drop bar. drop; 125mm, reach; 70mm, width; s/m 420mm, l/xl 440mm

Stem Pinnacle road ahead stem. length; s-80mm, m-90mm, l-100mm, xl-110mm

Headset Prestine Integrated 1 1/8"

Grips Soft microfiber tape with Vex Gel padding

Rims Alex ATD490

Front Hub Novatec sealed bearing

Rear Hub Novatec sealed bearing, with cassette type sprocket

Tyres Kenda Kontender 60tpi, 700 x 26c

Saddle Pinnacle race men's

Seatpost Pinnacle aluminium 350mm x 27.2mm

Extra Features Full length mudguard and pannier rack compatible. Clearance for 28c tyres with mudguards

Weight Approx. 10.1kg In Medium

Tell us what the bike is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about the bike?

Pinnacle says: "The Pinnacle Dolomite is our award winning road bike that's designed for UK road conditions, and for 2016 we have added in a single speed model to the family. All the things that make the Pinnacle Dolomite a test winner with the simplicity of one gear, so all you have to concentrate on is the ride. With space for 28c tyres with guards, or 32c without, it's a bike that can be adapted for all out speed or a little more comfort.

"The sealed bearing hubs and cassette type freehub offer great weather resistance, alongside an easy change of sprocket dependant on your gearing choice (spares available online). The Tektro RL340 levers are paired with TRP Spyre brakes for all-round stopping power in any weather, thanks to their dual piston design and simple pad adjustment. Chain tensioning is handled by a proven clamp-shell eccentric BB, which allows easy wheel removal if you have mudguards fitted. This bike has been designed with simplicity and durability in mind, so it's a great winter bike, city thrasher or a perfect +1."

Frame and fork

Overall rating for frame and fork
 
8/10

Tell us about the build quality and finish of the frame and fork?

Neat welds and finish.

Tell us about the materials used in the frame and fork?

Frame: 6061-T6 heat treated aluminium, double butted

Fork: Aluminium blade, Cr-Mo steerer

Tell us about the geometry of the frame and fork?

XL bike: 619mm stack, 405mm reach, 73.5° seat tube, 72° head tube, 590mm effective top tube.

How was the bike in terms of height and reach? How did it compare to other bikes of the same stated size?

Good after a bit of mucking about with the stem and spacers.

Riding the bike

Was the bike comfortable to ride? Tell us how you felt about the ride quality.

Ride is firm but well within what's acceptable for an alloy frame/fork.

Did the bike feel stiff in the right places? Did any part of the bike feel too stiff or too flexible?

Yes, no issues with stiffness.

How did the bike transfer power? Did it feel efficient?

Yes, it felt efficient.

Was there any toe-clip overlap with the front wheel? If so, was it a problem?

No issues.

How would you describe the steering? Was it lively, neutral or unresponsive? Neutral.

Tell us some more about the handling. How did the bike feel overall? Did it do particular things well or badly?

It's a very stable bike, steering feels reasonably precise.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's comfort? would you recommend any changes?

Tyres are the first swap.

Rate the bike for efficiency of power transfer:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for acceleration:
 
7/10
Rate the bike for sprinting:
 
6/10
Rate the bike for high speed stability:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for cruising speed stability:
 
9/10
Rate the bike for low speed stability:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for flat cornering:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for cornering on descents:
 
7/10
Rate the bike for climbing:
 
7/10

The drivetrain

Rate the drivetrain for performance:
 
9/10
Rate the drivetrain for durability:
 
9/10
Rate the drivetrain for weight:
 
7/10
Rate the drivetrain for value:
 
7/10

Wheels and tyres

Rate the wheels for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the wheels for durability:
 
9/10
Rate the wheels for weight:
 
5/10
Rate the wheels for comfort:
 
6/10
Rate the wheels for value:
 
7/10
Rate the tyres for performance:
 
6/10
Rate the tyres for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the tyres for weight:
 
6/10
Rate the tyres for comfort:
 
6/10
Rate the tyres for value:
 
7/10

Controls

Rate the controls for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the controls for durability:
 
9/10
Rate the controls for weight:
 
6/10
Rate the controls for comfort:
 
6/10
Rate the controls for value:
 
7/10

Your summary

Did you enjoy riding the bike? Yes

Would you consider buying the bike? Yes

Would you recommend the bike to a friend? Yes

Rate the bike overall for performance:
 
7/10
Rate the bike overall for value:
 
8/10

Use this box to explain your score

Good value, no-frills singlespeed. You get a well-considered bike for the money, and it's fun to ride.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 43  Height: 189cm  Weight: 92kg

I usually ride: whatever I'm testing...  My best bike is: Kinesis Tripster ATR, Kinesis Aithein

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking, Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling, track

Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.

8 comments

Avatar
alotronic [506 posts] 4 months ago
3 likes

Hi Dave

Liked the look of these in the shop and good to see a new 'single' from Evans. The thing that made me a bit 'meh' was that as far as I could see you couldn't just bang a fixed sprocket on it and be done as the freewheel is in the hub (ie not a screw-on freewheel). Is that right? If so you can't just throw an an old fixie wheel in it as it is both 130mm (135?) spacing and disc brake meaning you'd have to get a wheel built which then starts to negate the price benefits.... suddenly you're adding £100-£150 to the price before you add guards etc.

Just what the world needs though, disc-braked singles. It's a niche within a segment, but a good one! People I know have been adapting Genesis Day Ones to fixed, or buying CX Disc singles and getting wheels built for them. Strangely, I know a lot of people taking up fixie riding now that 'peak fixie hipster' has passed. I can only recommend single speed comutting in London, you save so much on chains and sprockets for your 'good' bike - and then discover that you're riding your crappy single pretty much all the time....

Good to review real world bikes too, excellent!

 

Avatar
Christopher TR1 [117 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes

I like it.

Would be nice to see a high-spec version with better wheels, components and carbon forks to shed some of that weight. If it was nearer 8.5kg I would have one (& be willing to pay more, obviously).

Avatar
Schweiz [35 posts] 4 months ago
1 like
Christopher TR1 wrote:

I like it.

Would be nice to see a high-spec version with better wheels, components and carbon forks to shed some of that weight. If it was nearer 8.5kg I would have one (& be willing to pay more, obviously).

 

ROFL yes and some gears to!

Avatar
alotronic [506 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes
Christopher TR1 wrote:

I like it.

Would be nice to see a high-spec version with better wheels, components and carbon forks to shed some of that weight. If it was nearer 8.5kg I would have one (& be willing to pay more, obviously).

Agree! It's not like pinnacle don't have a carbon CX fork in their range, and 250-400g off those wheels wouldn't be that hard.  They are pricing it against the day one I guess.  Actually because it's Evans they probably see it as a loss-leader so they can upsell lights, guards, fitting etc for new commuters  1

Avatar
antonio [1156 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes

This I like, as a fixed gear fan I see this as a possible must have.  Great idea having the eccentric bottom bracket, a real problem solver with chain and mudguard issues, repeat, I like it.

Avatar
Luv2ride [81 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

I have the single speed Arkose adventure bike by Pinnacle.  Benefits from hydro disc brakes (TRP Hylex, which are superb), and a full carbon fork and steerer (think the new version has alloy steerer).  Clearance for 40mm tyres too.  Can't recommend it enough, though it is more money.  Oh, and as for wheels I just bought a SS converter kit from Velosolo and used some Kinesis CXD wheels given the bike has "normal" disc spacing.  Very happy.  I change out the chainring and or rear sprocket depending on the terrain I'm riding, as it'll pretty much go anywhere - the only real limitations are my knees!

Avatar
Christopher TR1 [117 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes
Luv2ride wrote:

I have the single speed Arkose adventure bike by Pinnacle.  Benefits from hydro disc brakes (TRP Hylex, which are superb), and a full carbon fork and steerer (think the new version has alloy steerer).  Clearance for 40mm tyres too.  Can't recommend it enough, though it is more money.  Oh, and as for wheels I just bought a SS converter kit from Velosolo and used some Kinesis CXD wheels given the bike has "normal" disc spacing.  Very happy.  I change out the chainring and or rear sprocket depending on the terrain I'm riding, as it'll pretty much go anywhere - the only real limitations are my knees!

I was looking at the Arkose SS. Most of the riding I do doesn't warant the big nobbly tyres or the tiny chain ring but, as you say, a couple of mods & it looks to have some advantages over the Dolomite SS. What size chainring have you fitted? Would a 48 fit, or would it foul against the chainstay?

Avatar
Luv2ride [81 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes
Christopher TR1 wrote:
Luv2ride wrote:

I have the single speed Arkose adventure bike by Pinnacle.  Benefits from hydro disc brakes (TRP Hylex, which are superb), and a full carbon fork and steerer (think the new version has alloy steerer).  Clearance for 40mm tyres too.  Can't recommend it enough, though it is more money.  Oh, and as for wheels I just bought a SS converter kit from Velosolo and used some Kinesis CXD wheels given the bike has "normal" disc spacing.  Very happy.  I change out the chainring and or rear sprocket depending on the terrain I'm riding, as it'll pretty much go anywhere - the only real limitations are my knees!

I was looking at the Arkose SS. Most of the riding I do doesn't warant the big nobbly tyres or the tiny chain ring but, as you say, a couple of mods & it looks to have some advantages over the Dolomite SS. What size chainring have you fitted? Would a 48 fit, or would it foul against the chainstay?

I stuck a 39t on it (OE was a 38t), and was looking at possibly going to a 42t. Just looked at the chainstay clearance and i think a 48t wouldn't be a problem.  I also have 16, 17 and 18t sprockets (PX do their Groove Armada sprockets for a tenner from time to time).  I also run 38mm Hyper Voyager tyres on the road due to the large frame clearance and they ride really well.  For offroad I have 40mm WTB Nano's running tubeless, at 30 psi they soak up the rough stuff.