I would like use a MTB frame to build an adventure bike, for the following reasons:

  • Use disc brakes

  • use wider tyres

  • avoid a using a gravel/cyclocross bike/frame because doesn't allow wide tyres and they are expensive

I am worried about the fact that a MTB frame is quite longer than a road bike and a cyclocross bike, and so the top tube will be long and with stem and dropbars will be too stretched and so uncomfortable over a long day on the saddle.

Would these factors make an adventure bike on a MTB frame too long, and so too difficult to ride over long distances? Or are there other considerations?

  • 2
    Rephrased the question so it wasn't solely opinion based.
    – DWGKNZ
    Oct 10, 2016 at 19:21
  • 1
    Also known as a monster cross bike.
    – DWGKNZ
    Oct 10, 2016 at 19:23
  • 1
    Are you looking at drop bars, rather than butterfly bars or equivalent? The reason cross and road bikes have shorter top tubes is because the stem+bars stretch further forward than the straight bars mountain bikes normally have. So yes, drop bars on a flat-bar frame will generally stretch you out.
    – Móż
    Oct 11, 2016 at 1:18
  • 2
    This has been flagged as too broad and primarily opinion-based, but I'm voting to leave it open for now.
    – andy256
    Oct 11, 2016 at 1:32
  • I know is a very broad question, and the main goal is to collect people experiences. Sometimes people find the solution to everybody's question. Oct 11, 2016 at 5:57

4 Answers 4


How long is a piece of string?

Any bicycle is possible, which is the beauty of a bicycle in general. Bicycles can be anything really - roadies, MTB, single-speed, recumbents, even giant A-frame types that have steps to get to the saddle! Your question is very theoretical and will require a proper re-write because you're not being specific to a particular bicycle or size that we could say ok.. here's what you need.

As an "answer", all I can say now is that you take your frame and your new build to a competent bike fitter and get fitted for the bike! You may find all that geometry might have to be thrown out the window for the sake of your posture, back and skeletal health.

Good luck!

  • So your answer is "yes, its possible to build the bike described" ? Also, I've never heard the phrase "a-frame" with respect to bicycles - you probably mean "penny farthing" or "ordinary" would be the normal phrases for such a frame.
    – Criggie
    Oct 11, 2016 at 6:33
  • @Criggie No, I meant A-Frame...outsideconnection.com/gallant/hpv/tall
    – Fandango68
    Oct 13, 2016 at 1:44
  • Exactly - a tall bike. Even that page calls it a tall bike. "a frame" appears only in a sentence "... made from a frame that's..." The nearest google knows is "a-bike" which does look like an A, but its a brand name for a folding frame with tiny wheels.
    – Criggie
    Oct 13, 2016 at 4:19
  • Oh well @Criggie, if we're going to argue the shapes of bicycles and their proper labelled names, then we're going to have to start a new thread. Let sleeping dogs lie
    – Fandango68
    Oct 13, 2016 at 5:41
  • Besides @Criggie, I simply googled "A-frame bicycles" and the above link came up tops. So call them what ever you want.
    – Fandango68
    Oct 13, 2016 at 5:42

We don't do product recommendations, but there are a few examples where manufacturers are already producing drop bar MTB's designed for events like the Tour Divide. In at least one case, it features useful features like extra bottle mounts that make it ideal for adventuring.

In addition with the rise of gravel bikes, and riders of these bikes looking for ever wider tyres, there are now a few frames available that will accept multiple wheel sizes. 27.5(650b) x 2.1 is a possibility here.

You could of course use an existing frame, but it may lead to an overly long reach. You could combat this with a shorter stem (as long as its not a very modern frame already designed with a short stem in mind).


Yes, sure. If this fits your riding style and especially on longer rides the drop bars are more comfortable. There are special frames for that kind of bike, mostly steel frames. But it should work with and usual frame too.

For inspiration look at this instagram account from J. B. Romanceür https://www.instagram.com/ultraromance/

This is what I understand under MonsterCross. MTB Frames with drop bars, tick tires and a rigid fork.


Another consideration is hauling gear. Mountain rarely has rack eyelets. Front suspension does not take rack and is inefficient.

You could get a slight shorter mountain it still lacks many features of an adventure bike.

You are going to pay like $300 for drop bars and good fixed fork to take a rack.

This is just one model

I find them used for less than $1000 every once in a while. Someone thinks they are going to ride across the country and never get around to it.

You can install touring tires and use it as touring bike. Also great for shopping.

  • Not arguing with the down vote but part of the question is "Or are there other considerations?"
    – paparazzo
    Mar 20, 2017 at 12:37
  • I guess there are many answers to your description and potentially to the down vote. Mar 21, 2017 at 12:42
  • Yes, there are many 27.5+ or 29+ specific frames nowadays, but they are quite expensive, selling at around 700/800 euro the frame only; rarely I have seen any sold 2nd hand, as well because they are a "thing" of last years. Mar 21, 2017 at 13:10
  • @PaoloGoatspeed Not sure what "many answers to your description" means. You asked for other considerations and I provided some.
    – paparazzo
    Mar 21, 2017 at 15:09
  • yes you did, nobody is complaining about it. I am just saying that the + bikes, bike packing,... have a lot of options. Good to hear from people what is their experience (check the other opinions above). Mar 21, 2017 at 17:36

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