Vassago Debuts TKO Gravel Road Bike, VerHauen Fat Bike, Optimus Ti 29+ & More!


Vassago was set up at the Whiskey Offroad with a few new models, covering most of the current trends – gravel, fat and 29+.

The titanium TKO is a new gravel road bike with clearance for 40c tires. This one’s Vassago owner Tom Ament’s personal bike. It’s built with a 44mm headtube to allow tapered forks, and uses a 27.2 seatpost to make it a bit more comfy. They can make it with sliding dropouts for single speed, or with thru axles with 12×142 spacing. The extra width is all in the dropout, so chain line and heel clearance is exactly the same as with 135mm QR.

Grind past the break for more…


Stock frames come as shown. In addition to the drivetrain options, they can add rack mounts and other small changes if requested.


Frame retail starts at $1,999. They’re able to do all the customization because their titanium frames are made to order in house in Pheonix, AZ. Shipping time is about 4-5 weeks from order date.



The Verhauen fat bike is brand spankin’ new, this first one having just arrived a couple days before the event. It’s based on the steel Verhauen 29er we reviewed. It’s a U.S.-made True Temper OX Platinum steel frame with 170mm rear spacing and 100mm BB. That adds up to clearance for 4″ tires.


Tom says the geometry is a bit more aggressive than a standard “snow” fat bike, making it more ready for trail shredding.



Retail’s $1,049 for the frame, no completes available yet but are coming. They just haven’t figured out the spec yet. It’s being made in Portland by Zen Fabrications.


The titanium Optimus Ti 29er mountain bike has been available for a bit, but the new 29+ option adds an 83mm BB shell and stays that are bent out wider to clear a 3″ tire.


This one is 20lb 10oz without pedals and 18″ frame.


A steel version that’ll be available as a regular 29er or 29+ is coming, but no timeframe is set yet.


As accidents sometimes go, this fortunate mistake in coloring ended up looking so good they’re adding it (and a couple others) as an option. The painter used the wrong hue in their translucent powder coat, giving this steel VerHauen a gold tint while still showing the welds.



17 thoughts on “Vassago Debuts TKO Gravel Road Bike, VerHauen Fat Bike, Optimus Ti 29+ & More!

  1. I am really impressed with the new Vassago, Except for those sliding dropouts, having 4 screws hold the rear end of the bike together just seems like the wrong way to go.

  2. Pargon dropouts are a proven design, and have been around for years. I would rather have Paragon dropouts than an EBB.

  3. Quinn, for what it’s worth, those are Paragon Machine Works dropouts and are very standard across all high-end bikes with sliding dropouts. They are quite simply, the best. It is not the wrong way to go and for folks looking for that kind of thing, it’s a selling point.

  4. Soo……yet another gravel road bike……an outdated fat bike with minimal tire clearance and a 29+ bike that will have terrible chainline due to the 83mm shell.

    Why is this exciting? Am I missing something?

  5. Great job Vassago – copying a bunch of QBP brand stuff, and accomplishing it by purchasing more QBP stuff from QBP.

    This must have taken lots of brainpower to accomplish.

  6. At this price, it may be wise to check out a local frame maker…we have two nearby, one makes frames for $1600 and one at $1300, both before add-ons. This looks like a nice frame but to have a custom made to your spec and to support a local is righteous!! Worth looking into! Check out Joe Graham at Graham Cycles and Frank the Welder, Joe’s in southern NH and Frank is in southern VT! Ride Hard!

  7. Hey Bill… thanks for the links on the custom frames – very sweet and awesome builders, but after you do the same add ons the vassagos have the price jumps to almost double… do you know anyone that makes a frame like the vassago at a price that is closer so I can support the local dudes?

  8. Love my VerHauen!!! If I ever went Fatbike, this would be the way to go! I don’t know, or care, about what’s cutting edge or ripped off from other designs; all I know is that I love the way mine rides and once you have that, what else matters? Unless you’re the guy standing around at the trailhead doing more judging of other peoples rigs than riding. I guess that’s important to a few useless members of our community.

  9. I don’t care what you guys think, I’ve been riding Vassago for years. Its one of the best riding hardtails out there. It may not be local to everybody, buts it USA based. Tom has done a great job bringing it back. USA built Ti and steel frames, excellence.

  10. New OptimusTi, Whisky #9, Knard/Hope/rabbit hole up front, standard Flow/Maxxis-flavor-oftheDay on back, bars, seat, chain, a gear and brakes. My local trails include Frederick Watershed (map in my head included).

    ~80 hours on it so far and have hit a lot of my standard trails (inaugural ride was a midnight ride making first tracks in 6″ of snow–crazy East coast winter). By FAR the best bike I have ever ridden—hard tail or squish. And not only me, but there are three orders from team members in the queue and one more after today’s ride. Everyone is trying out my bike and going, “Holy ***!”. And these are people with multiple $$$$ bikes under their asses….

    Kudos Vassago. Well deserved.

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