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When Open Cycle launched the UP, an acronym for "Unbeaten Path", in early 2015, it was still something of an anomaly. Disc brakes and drop bars were just beginning to sink in, with some manufacturers and custom builders venturing into murky waters, offering bikes with road-ish geometry and clearance for fatter tires, or cyclocross bikes with slightly more road-going geometry. Then, the UP hit the scene, and perceptions were shattered. Designed by Cervélo's former head engineer and co-founder, Gerard Vroomen, the UP broke the mold by creating a new one. With massive amounts of tire clearance, drop bars, and a nod towards modern mountain bike geometry, the UP defies categorization. Half road racing machine, half trailbike, it's as close as we've come to the "one bike" solution, offering what we can only describe as a sheer sense of freedom to go anywhere we want on long rides. With the ability to swallow over a 40mm tire on a 700c rim, and a 2.1" mountain bike tire on a 27.5 wheel, one would assume the UP is a jack of all trades and master of none. Fortunately, Vroomen is one step ahead, designing the UP with a dropped driveside chainstay, allowing the frame to run a perilously-short 42cm stay length and maintaining nimble handling characteristics that are so often lost in the name of tire clearance. Relatively low, almost road racing geometry keeps the bike sharp underfoot, and the 1100g carbon frameset is lithe and responsive while still smooth over braking bumps and pavement chatter alike.
Versatility is an understatement with the UP, and its ability to run both 700c and 27.5" wheels lends it a wide swath of applications when paired with both. A set of 32mm slicks on the 700c wheels and 2.1" knobbies on the 27.5" set essentially turns it into two bikes in one. The slack seattube angle is designed around a zero-offset seatpost for proper setback, and the Open UP is capable of running both 2x and 1x drivetrain setups, though we tend to tilt towards SRAM's Force 1x11 setup. The UP is also dropper seatpost compatible, and one of our favored setups uses a 1x drivetrain with 2x shifters, using the left-hand SRAM trigger to actuate the dropper mechanism.
A true weapon in the hands of any experienced rider, the UP has rapidly (and somewhat unexpectedly) become one of the house favorites, capable of conquering almost anything we've thrown at it.