Our Reader’s Rig of the week comes from Martin in Munich, who shares the Sobre Versatile V3 he built up as an all-rounder for everything from commuting to loaded multi-day tours. Find a thoughtful overview of his rig and more about Martin here…

Words and photos by Martin Selmansberger (@pedalpony.cc)

Hi, I’m Martin from Munich, Germany. Being a big fan of the Readers’ Rigs articles, I’m excited to humbly show off my number one bike within this series today. Et voilà, my Sobre Versatile flat-bar-go-everywhere build.

Sobre Versatile V3

I got the French-designed, Taiwanese-welded, 520 steel tubing frame after a long search for the “longest-reach/front center gravel frame” on the market in 2017, intending to throw on a flat bar and MTB parts, aiming at a bike for everyday use, from commuting to multi-day touring. I wanted it to be (officially) not a mountain bike but tough and comfortable enough to venture off-road without hesitation whenever possible. Overall, I’d say the frame’s geometry is rather on the endurance/off-road side due to the sloping top tube and 71° head tube angle.

The rolling chassis was completed by a trail-worthy Rodeo Labs Spork 1.2 fork and a solid wheelset built with DT Swiss 350 hubs and R500 rims. The rest is pieced together from parts I trust, like Shimano hydraulic MTB brakes, SRAM mechanical MTB shifting, and bits like the SQLab 611 (old version) saddle, 310 handlebar, ESI grips, a Newmen carbon seatpost, and together with the Vittora Terreno Dry 40-622 tires, help to mitigate unwanted trail and road feedback. The taped bar ends, installed on the inside of the grips (I swear I was not aware of SQlab Inner bar ends at that time and thought of it as a revolutionary idea) on a flat bar with 16° back sweep and its moderate mustache shape allow for multiple hand positions and easy brake and trigger access.

  • Sobre Versatile V3
  • Sobre Versatile V3

This bike has reliably traveled well over 20,000 kilometres and is by far the most ridden bike and the undisputed chief in an ever-changing collection of bicycles, living in my living room (where else?) that, slowly but steadily, got converted into a bike shop over the last couple of years. While I ride bicycles pretty much every day of the year, I also enjoy wrenching around and geeking out on the tech side of the cycling world.

Yes, I try hard not to bother everyone with this exciting topic, I promise! Despite the fact that trying out new (to me) components and toying around with various combinations has become a fun, time-consuming, and sometimes costly hobby, I did not dare to change this build since I completed it four years ago. Although I was tempted to convert it to drop bars more than once, I have to admit. Luckily, I still enjoy this bike a lot, and it has never ceased to delight me with its qualities, especially its ruggedness and ride characteristics on technical terrain.

  • Sobre Versatile V3
  • Sobre Versatile V3
  • Sobre Versatile V3

To me—and probably many of you—my cycling cosmos nicely combines my needs to execute manual work, physical exercise, and of course adventure, which aren’t fully satisfied through my profession with an engineering/scientific background and too much time in front of computers. Over the past few years, I put together a number of bikes for friends and family and anyone interested.

  • Frame Sobre Versatile V3
  • Fork RodeoLabs Spork 1.2
  • Rims DT Swiss R500 (700c)
  • Hubs DT Swiss 350 DBCL road (24/28 hole) + 36T ratchet
  • Tires Vittoria Terreno Dry (40-622)
  • Handlebars SQlab 310 + ESI extra chunky + taped PRO bar ends
  • Headset First Components DS
  • Crankset SRAM Force 1 + Absolute Black 36T oval
  • Pedals Funn Mamba (clip-in mech removed)
  • Cassette SRAM XG-1150/75 (10-42) or PG-1170 (11-36)
  • Derailleur SRAM GX 2×11 Type 3
  • Brakes Shimano SLX M7000 levers + XTR 9020 caliper (front)
  • Shifter(s) Sram GX 11-speed trigger
  • Saddle SQlab 611 active
  • Seatpost Newmen Advanced Carbon or PNW Pine 110 mm dropper
  • Stem Easton Haven 100mm
  • Front bags Nitto M18 rack + Road Runner Bags, Front Runner
  • Frame bags STABILE Bicycle Bags custom full-frame bag
  • Rear bags Tubus Vega rack + Arkle DryLites
  • Accessory bags STABILE Bicycle Bags + Tim Tas/Reck
  • Lights Velogical Rim Dynamo + B&M Cyo (front) + B&M Mü (rear)
  • Other accessories Garmin Edge 520 + 2x King Cage Iris

Please visit my website and have a look at the beautiful photographs taken by my friend and brother-in-law, who, together with my dear sister, realized the web appearance of PedalPony.cc. While riding through beautiful scenery and inspiring landscapes on silent singletracks and mountainous routes, leaving major roads and car traffic behind, is certainly one of the biggest excitements life has to offer at the moment, I also enjoy the social component and “connective potential” of cycling. For example, I recently got to know my neighbor, a cyclist and fine human who is an undoubtedly skilled tailor and maker of the incredibly frame bag (@stabile_bicyclebags) that now adorns my ride. Many thanks to bikepacking.com and to you for reading. Ride on!

Sobre Versatile V3

See more from Martin on Instagram @pedalpony.cc and at PedalPony.cc.

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