The small print at the top of the seat tube decal says, "AN EPOCH-MAKING COUNTRY BIKE". In a minor way, I suppose it is already true. I've admired the look of their bikes and the general philosophy of the folks at Rivendell Bicycle Works for several years. After trying many of Grant's suggestions and finding them useful, I now own a Rivendell bicycle.
Living on the gently rolling plains in rural Denton County, Texas and riding on low-traffic county roads of the paved and unpaved variety, a Rivendell designed specifically to be a "country bike" seemed like a good idea. Unloaded, it is reasonably light and nimble, but it can easily be fitted with racks and carry stuff for the occasional S24O or tour. Most days, it will simply have a small bag of some kind to carry a few items for a day's outing. The 650B tires provide ample volume for rough, rarely maintained roads and the frequent stretches of gravel encountered. A. Homer Hilsen here seems to have promise.
As evident above, I botched the bar tape installation and am waiting for more to arrive so I can finish the task properly. Apparently, I like more overlap than the average cyclist. Even lacking bar tape, I finally had a few minutes today for a shake-down ride. Initial impressions are smooth, quiet, and comfortable.
I'll fix the bar tape and provide a more detailed review (and photos) soon. Then we'll see if Homer will live up to his "epoch-making" promise.