By Matt Kasprzyk
So why is All-City’s new cyclocross bike getting some play in Bicycle Times? Well, it’s because most bicycle commuters will tell you that there’s some serious functional benefits to riding a CX bike as a commuting rig. All-City knows this, and I’m about to tell you why.
Cyclocross bikes are generally burly road bikes. There’s the benefit of multiple hand positions, wider tires, often fender mounts and sometimes rack mounts. However, they usually don’t have the relatively sluggish handling and ride characteristics of a touring bike. All-City has a history of making track bikes and the Nature Boy shares some of that geometry philosophy. It’s meant primarily as a race bike, but has some utility as a commuting bike.
The Nature Boy is a single speed 42x16t CX bike named after Minnesota professional wrestling legend Ric Flair. It has a 4130 ChroMoly steel frame and straight blade fork. The dropouts are custom and it sports a signature headbadge. There are hidden fender mounts on the inside of the seat stays and removable canti studs if you want to run it fixed without brakes. The frame and fork have room for 38c tires, and up to 35c with fenders. Racers and commuters can appreciate the internal cable routing too.
The numbers on paper seem a little steep for traditional ‘cross geometry and the bottom bracket may appear a little low if you’re used to cyclocross numbers. All-City says you’re never really riding over barriers in a race, so why not have a bike that corners better?
The Nature Boy looks pretty versatile, so I’ll take All-City’s advise: “race the crap out of it, ride singletrack, gravel, or commute until your heart’s content. “