Man, where does the time fly?? I have been working and working and still feel like I will be going nuts up til the moment the van pulls out for Denver and I board a plane the next day to head to NAHBS.
Today I am welding Sally's titanium road bike which is getting the new Dura Ace 11sp. that bike getting done allows the fixture to be free to finally piece together the insane tandem project for Mark. That bike has been in the works for ever and it is finally time to get it all looking like a tandem. Then after that I have two more bikes to try and get done. It will be close but I think I can get it all done. Ed's bike is going to Todd today and then the tandem will follow. It is somewhat a organized chaos.
Not the warmest day in the shop but the heat always keeps it over 50 degrees which is nice. Next winter the ceiling will get fully insulated which will be a huge upgrade. Then I might be able to ditch the space heaters and work only with the ceiling mounted hot water heaters.
Sally's bike is getting the Firefly drop outs which is kind of cool for a few reasons. One is my new disc drop outs are being made by the same people that make them (Cantabrigian Mechanics) and were also designed by the same person (Peter Verdone). It is going to compliment the bikes in the both that have the new drop outs as well.
Here are some pictures of Sally's bike in the fixture. As I right this the stuff is in the ultrasonic cleaner getting prepped to be welded.
Got a delivery of titanium for making the chain stays of the mtb's. Custom drawn to my spec so the bikes have no compromises.
Thanks for reading and being patient while I lack the updates. After this NAHBS push I will get back on a better schedule.
So this past weekend the folks at Lone Wolf Cycling (a start up clothing company) had an event that proved to be a rather large happening. I received a call early last week from a buddy asking if he could borrow my bike. I figured since I am lame and barely have time to ride no better way to become part of the action than lending a bike!
I also received a few ride reports from others and felt a need to blog about them. It is nothing short of a cut and paste but here are two reports and some photos to match:
Report one- "The trails were pretty soft and felt a little bad about going thru Pennypack though it wasnt much and it was early. I caught the main part of the group at the first beer stop. PBR...figures. From there it was on the road till some industrial shit, rail corridor with gravel and eventually atv trails. Thats when the mud started, peanut butter style. I manage to keep really decent balance for not being used to that bike. It felt great and everything worked flawlessly, that Shimano group is bad ass.
I ended up in a group that was cranking and we hit some train tracks thinking we were supposed to ride them...We werent.. they were live tracks we figured it out about 1mi or so in but not before i found ice to fall through with water that was about 10in deep. We reversed path and went thru some more trails, gravel roads and pavement.
From there it was biz as usual but riding down train tracks sucks. The course was pretty fun but seemed like it was designed to annoy at points.Got lost a couple more times didnt mind.
The final part of the course was gravel climbs opposite of the Pine Rd. lot finishing with a decent that was gravel and then grass with a 90deg right turn at the bottom. This is where I wrecked your bike awesomely with everyone watching trying to take the turn full blast. Both the bike and I made it through fine.
I attached a pic of the aftermath. Thanks for letting me borrow it. Its a really nice bike and changed my mind on Ti. It climbs like a beast. I could probably get used to the smaller tires even...you can whip it around things without even thinking. "
Report two: "I rode the Crazy Train ride this weekend. The bike kicked ass. I rode in the larger gear combo - I switched to it in the parking lot right before the ride started - it's a snap to do. After performing a single speed conversion in the field for a Bicycle Therapy rider (Angela) with a ripped off rear derailleur, and hearing about many more field SS conversions on the ride, I have even more appreciation for the commitment to single speed riding. The 38-16 combination is just about perfect, unless the trail gets so steep or muddy or technical - but then running it is totally a fine option. No technical issues whatsoever - the brakes braked, the drivetrain drove. It was icy and muddy and relentless slop that would dry on the road sections and just gunk up the works. People were chainsucking and seizing up all over the place. Not me! The tubeless tires were super important, especially riding on the railroad tie railbeds - they took a pounding for about 20 straight minutes of riding the railbed ties and, although it felt like I bottomed out the rim a coupe of times, no problems. Two of my biggest problems ... solved. Now I can ride more aggressively, faster and with more power knowing that I don't have to approach things so gingerly. I was able to clean ridiculous log overs and rock piles with all of the clearance and the brakes that actually braked permitted me to set up the technical stuff in a pack of riders that were bailing and clogging up the trails.
You built a good bike and I am finally realizing how good it is. My goal this year is to do an Iron Cross race and the SSCXWC race, at least.
I really appreciate all feedback but these type of e-mails always make for a nice week and start to a year.
Thanks to everyone for all the support.
I am having an open house December 14th (that is a Friday). The plan is to have people start showing up around 4:30pm and then stay til I feel the need to ask all to go home (quietly). All joking aside I would love to get an idea of who is interested in coming so I have a rough head count.
If all goes well we will have a keg of Eric Morgan's home brew (which is always worth having) and some pizza and other snack like items. The bulk of the shop is heated but there are also non heated areas so if the weather gets nasty please be prepared to keep your jacket on.
Thanks for reading and I look forward to all that will attend.
After many hours of thinking, drawing, talking, computing, calling and who knows what else the new drop out is finally here. These are the steel version which were sent so I can proof them and see if there are any issues before getting a run of titanium ones made. Big huge props to both Peter Verdone and Ricky at Cantabridgian Mechanics. Peter did a killer job with the design work and Ricky and the folks in his shop did a great job with the machine work. OK enough talking here they are.
This is a bike I am making to see which way I want to construct the steel bikes. I might opt to build them with constant diameter stays the same as a titanium bike. It was designed and optimized for ti and the tapered stays will require a bit of material removal to get the look to flow.
The curved top tube was by chance. This rider needs more stand over to run 100mm of travel. I think it helps add to the bridge like look.
Last but not least here is the start of the tandem I will build in 2012. All I can say is it is a crazy cool bike and everyone should come to NAHBS in Denver to see what it is all about.
One more note. The plan is to have the open house on December 14th. That is a Friday. Next post will have more info on that.