- Regarding Geometry: Otso claims that the Waheela S is not so much going after an mtb-like set up, (while their marketing on their site seems to say this), but that they are being progressive in pushing the boundaries of “gravel geometry” a bit. Specifically, they said, “We have made the reach a bit longer and some other changes for the same reason that modern XC bikes are coming with longer reach, etc. We are not at all implying that the geometry is the same as an XC bike (modern or old school), rather that we have made subtle changes for the same reasons. The reach is not abnormally long either but if you look at some geometry tables, you will see that our reach is among the longest of current gravel bikes and a bit longer than most.” Having the luxury of having a few gravel road specific bikes around, I took the tape measure and went to measuring everything I could. What I found was that the Otso Waheela S is smack dab right in the middle of what I would term as “current gravel geometry”. Nothing out of the ordinary at all. Which is probably a good thing.
- Regarding The Fox AX: Otso suggested that volume spacers could be employed for the purpose of keeping the fork from bottoming out, which I experienced a few times. While that is a viable solution, it does not address the fact that if you have suspension, you should bottom it out on every ride, or you aren’t taking advantage of full travel. Granted, it’s only 40mm, so when you do bottom it out, it might be violent and surprising because, well, it is only 40mm we have to work with here! Physics are something that is hard to hide, and with so little headroom for big hits, you probably are going to find the fork is not going to be very adaptable to chunky, rough terrain unless you sacrifice higher frequency chatter. Tune it to whatever it is you need suspension for and just know that the rest will be outside this fork’s limitations.
- Drivetrain Issues: In my last “Checkpoint” post I mentioned that the drivetrain wasn’t functioning properly. It turned out that this was due to a combination of set up being improper and the derailleur hangar and cage being bent. Both issues were rectified with the assistance of SRAM rep Dan Jennings so that the bike ended up shifting just fine. Of course, this has nothing to do with Otso and the Waheela S review findings, but I wanted to clear that up.
You are here: Home > Otso Cycles Waheela S: At The Finish