2020 Demo Day - Saturday 3rd October - Pedal A Bike Away - Forest Of Dean

Bivi bikes

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The Bivi BUNKER - By Jonah Jones - Feb-2020

BiVi Bikes is the brain child of Industry stalwart Fraser Barsby. After years of designing solid reliable Dirt Jump and Downhill Frames for 24Seven Bikes, Fraser decided it was time to go independent. Aspiring to manufacture a do it all Gravel, Road, Bike Packing, Commuting, XC and Adventure Bike, BiVi Bikes was born and the Bunker was released! 

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The Frame

The devil is in the detail with BiVi Bikes. A side from the sleek Japanese Sanko Chromoly Steel tubing, refined welds and extra gussets. There are some beautifully CNC’d dropouts, an excessive number of bottle/rack mounts and if that isn’t enough to give you that high end frame feeling, each one has a life time warranty and the frame number stamped on the head tube, giving personality and individuality to every owner.  

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Geometry

                      

-580mm Top Tube          -120mm Head Tube       -70° Head Tube Angle 

-395mm Reach              -73° Seat Tube Angle       -480mm Seat Tube 

-27.2 Seat Post              -558mm Stack                -1100mm Wheel Base 

-73mm Threaded BB       -12 x 142mm Axle                 -5.9lbs Weight 

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The Ride

I ploughed the miles on the Bunker testing it in three different scenarios (XC, Bike Packing and daily Commute) Not really being a drop bar fan I personally switched up the front with a Carbon Thompson Riser Bar and 75mm Stem, this gave the Bike the control and MTB feel that I like. That said it also preformed nicely with a flared drop bar if that’s the kind of kink you’re into. 

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 An Initial ride of Oxfordshire single track gave great grin factor. The Bike armed with 27.5 x 2.0 tyres handled well in the loose gravel and winter sludge, only stopping to drop the pressure on the rear tyre, to negate the wheel skip I was getting from over filling it earlier. Despite the Skinny stays the rear end felt stiff and responsive in the climb, likewise giving the feel of good acceleration on the flats. All in all, the bike felt planted and responsive at speed, reminding me of a modern version of my late 90s Rocky Mountain Hammer Race (which I still fondly own). As a gravel/XC bike the Bunker ticked all the boxes for me. Fast, Smooth and Lively, my only regret was I didn’t get chance to put some bounce on the front. Fraser assured me though that it works well with a 100mm Rockshox 30 TK, slackening the head angle to 67° 

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Bike Packing

After a month of naked single track (naked bike not naked human), I made some amendments to the build. A 90mm Stem, Ergon GP3 Grips, Surly ECR fork and a set of 29inch Stans wrapped in Vittoria 1.9 Gato TNT tyres made a grippier and better-balanced platform, ready for the Bunker to be loaded with camping kit and enough beer to last me 3 days in the Welsh mountains. It did not disappoint! Capable of carrying more kit than I had or needed, the Bunker is blatantly suited for a longer self-sufficient expedition. After 50hrs of wet cold riding it still left me wanting to do more! Even fully loaded it had a solid handling of the welsh trails, in what were extremely wet and miserable conditions it left me smiling on the descents and not breathing out of all holes on the climbs. It stayed true on rocky and rough terrain, producing little arm pump and giving an all-round enjoyable ride and bike pack experience. I genuinely would like to do the Trans Cambrian Way on one this year. 

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Commuting

Bike packing ticked off, I spent a further month using the Bunker as my daily commute and weekend canal bash. This really sold the Bunker to me, I now had one bike that I could use for work, training, XC trail rides and Bike Packing, all possible by changing my wheels/tyres and stem length. Soo impressed with the versatility of the Bunker, one of my work colleagues purchased one as his daily commute and has already logged more than 15 days Bike Packing in Scotland 

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Summary

 If you are after sleek tubing, smart detailing, a smooth yet lively ride when commuting or gravel bashing you won’t be disappointed. Likewise, if you want a cut back steel Adventure bike, with more accessory points than a tactical SWAT vest, the Bunker is for you. Luckily for me, Fraser has lent me a Bunker+ frame to build for a follow up feature over the next few months. Want to know more about the Bunker or BiVi Bikes?