illskittlz
What do you guys think of the new Felt VR? It's not necessarily a gravel bike, but more of an adventure bike. Apparently has clearance for 35mm tires and comes with a 46/30 sub-compact crankset and an 11-32 cassette. 

http://www.feltbicycles.com/USA/2016/Bikes/road/endurance/VR/VR2.aspx
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pauley
I like that the bike comes with a subcompact crankset as most bikes in this category could use lower gearing than what comes stock.
The geometry is odd. The reach and stack are about what you find on most gravel bikes, but the chain stays are short resulting in a short wheel base as well. That is probably why it doesn't come with eyelets for a rack if that matters to you.

Then there is this from the site:
"Recognizing the trend for wider tires and rims, Felt engineers designed the VR to accommodate the vast majority of high-performance road bike tires on the market today. Its frame boasts a 42mm tire clearance circle (total space between the frame’s chain stays). This allows for the use of a wider tire than many comparable road bikes available now and in the past. In the case of the VR and similar road bikes, ISO standards call for 6mm of clearance on either side of the tire, resulting in an original equipment tire specification of 30mm width or narrower."

All of that says, I guess, that you could squeeze a 38mm tire in the back but notice it doesn't say anything about fork clearance. Maybe it does someplace else but I wish it just gave one simple recommendation for max tire clearance.

Beyond that, the components on the bike are certainly quality.
Without riding the bike it seems to be a mixed message: A relaxed riding position with low gearing but with the short stays and WB and not all that much room for tire clearance it would probably ride hard on rough roads, especially in the aluminum version.
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illskittlz
Are those sub-compact cranksets available for purchase nowadays? I see them on FSA's site, but I don't know if they are available for sale. I asked bike shops and doesn't look like they can get them. 
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pauley
illskittlz wrote:
Are those sub-compact cranksets available for purchase nowadays? I see them on FSA's site, but I don't know if they are available for sale. I asked bike shops and doesn't look like they can get them. 


You might see more available by this coming spring.
For now you can google White Industries, Sugino, or Velo Orange. These are specialty companies and tend to be a little pricey compared to FSA but they have more than the standard 34/50 or 39/53 crankset offerings.
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illskittlz
You're right probably we'll see more of these in the next coming months as companies are adapting to the demand of lower gearing for adventure or gravel riding. On the next to the top Felt VR in the line up, there is a 46/30 Rotor crankset. 
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joeysikorski
Love the new VR's! Only been able to ride a few around, but they're pretty sweet machines.
They feel like a fast gravel machine and could double up as a light adventure/overnight bike. I would
probably use frame and rear bag, but Felt has an option with Blackburn for a RR TA rack that works great.

I would pick this over a few other bikes in this category because of clearance. It destroys the Specialized Diverge in that side of things. They also have more price/build options.
I think it's a sweet bike.
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shecrankscrane
HI there,
I am new to this formum but found this discussion on the Felt Vr- I have the Felt VR2 and have since April. I will start with the great stuff- then the "other" so its one heck of a climber, I have nailed a number of stages with this over the spring to now.  Mine is fitted with a power meter, so I lost one gear, but I am taking baby steps to cut the cord with power and just ride.   I also have ridden this bike on rides varied from 20 miles to mulitple 120-145 mile days- and it is comfortable for the long haul.  I hit the gravel in early spring and most recently 100 miles at the Kearsarge Klassic- so it a comfortable ride, great gearing, the through axle and ability for different width tires is great. The DI shifting is sweet once it is adjusted and tuned.  Then there is the brakes------ hmmmmm the rear brake with the hydraulic system has some major flaws- the tolerance where the cable enters the bike is tight- and that causes pinching- hydraulic lines cannot get pinched or you have NO brakes-  we have tried lengthening the cable, and still its the tolerance at the frame entry. I have better breaking on my traditional brakes- and this has quite honestly been a big enough issue that this bike cannot go out in rain or  where I plan to head to steeps- or go too fast-   I have a warranty replacement coming for the whole hydraulic brake system for the 5th try- but I am doubtful that will fix it.  I have just sent a letter into Felt regarding this issue and hope to hear something soom.  the full built bike was 7600$ all said and done- it was a major thing for my to save and get this bike- so as you can imagine I want this fixed- anyone else finding the issue- any resolves?
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