Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Soylent Green

This bike is people

Made it a tiny bit farther with this build as well.  Got the rim tape needed to get my old road wheelset back in action as well as some Kenda Kwick's that Shaun bequeathed to me when they didn't fit on his Langster about 400 years ago.  They've been hanging in the shed waiting ever since....until now.

I also have a new front derailleur on order as well as the fork.  Went with the Surly Cross Check, decently cheap and I like Surly's rep for robustness and I have never had an issue with anything else Surly in the past.  Once those parts arrive, hopefully over Holiday break, I can have this ride all set and cabled (except for brakes).  I am really interested to see how the fit works out.  I think I am going to have to do some experimenting with the front end to see what feels the best...or who knows maybe my guess that it would be better to have this frame be a bit smaller was right and it will be perfect.  I did manage to guess on a perfect chainline when building Blue up SS, maybe I'm developing that unteachable bike wrench 'touch'.

I am still trying to decide what kind of canti brakes I'm going to go with.  I don't have much experience with canti's and I don't want to shell out too much $$ but at the same time I want something that will be manageable.  I have heard canti's can be a nightmare to get adjusted just right.  Gonna put my wrenching 'touch' to the test.


My latest parts order arrived yesterday so I was able to get a little more done on this ride.  Got the front end all fitted and installed as well as cabled up the derailleurs.  All it needs now are some brakes...that I still need to purchase, and it will be 100%.

So tonight I installed the new Surly fork, as well as the old cockpit setup from the monster cross.  Luckily I guessed right with the sizing of the frame and the old stem gave me a perfect riding position with just the one spacer with the cable stop for the canti brakes.  I was able to set the crown race on the new fork following some internet wisdom.  A legit crown race setting tool can run you $30-60 and for some reason I just don't feel like spending that much for that particular tool.  I have spent that much on bike tools that I don't use very often but this particular tool is basically a pipe you hit with a hammer...I'm not paying $60 for that.  Instead I bought a 10ft section of 1.5in PVC for $4 and cut off a 16in piece and hit it with a hammer.  Bingo. God bless the internet.

I ran into a very slight issue with the front derailleur.  I have come to realize that I really hate derailleurs...using them, installing them, cabling them, trying to buy the right one.  Top swing? Bottom pull? High clamp? Low Clamp?  My issue was created because I thought low clamp front derailleurs were only needed for new fangled FS frames that don't have a lot of room to mount the FD due to the linkage for the suspension.  And I have read that high clamp are 'better' due to better leverage, durability, etc.  So I thought high clamp should be good right? sure! trigger pulled.  Turns out not so much.

Ended up having to mount the FD just above the bottom cage bolt on the seat tube in order to get the thing positioned right.  Hilariously I found a cage that could still be mounted as long as I used a slightly longer bolt on the bottom.  Does it look stupid?  You betcha.  Does it work?  Yup.  Moving on.

I probably won't rock the three bottle cages all the time I just wanted to see it loaded to capacity.  It's just like the monster...but way more svelte.  Going to make it a bit easier to commute more consistently I'm sure as well as more efficient to take longer rides around the house.  It's also nice to have a legit tourer that if I actually bought racks for could really go to task.  I might even be able to do some cross races for fun on this bad boy.  We'll see, I still really don't feel like getting into the whole USA cycling thing and buying more licenses to race.


Just need some bar tape and I am riding Soylent Green!  And if I hadn't goofed while pulling the front brake cable back a bit to trim the housing I would be able to ride it now but I accidentally pulled it completely out of the housing and couldn't get it back in without removing the bar tape (and ruining it, never buying that kind of tape again...adhesive on it SUCKED) and removing the housing to thread it back in.

I had some issues with the brakes but not the issues I was anticipating.  I figured getting the canti's properly dialed was going to be a huge pain in the ass.  Surprisingly once all was said and done that was the easiest...although I probably just got a bit lucky.  The worst part was getting the damn things cabled and figuring out the right way to get the cable hangers set up properly.  The high rise stem in the front created a tight fit with the headset hanger.  But I got that one cabled decent after getting physical with it.  The hanger in the rear was another story.  I was trying all kinds of hilarious jerry rigging to get it just right and it was just not happening.  Turns out I was using the wrong ferrule cable stop.  I really lucked out and found the right one in my 'parts jug' (when I went to look for it it was sitting right on top, I didn't even have to dump it out).  Once I was using the correct part it actually cabled up relatively easily, go figure.  More lessons learned and another bike to the stable.

I kinda like the way the black of the raw bars looks with this ride so I may just end up getting black bar tape.  Not usually my style but I plan on riding this bike in all kinds of crap so black is probably the prudent choice.

1 comment:

  1. this bike looks like its gonna be pretty fun....sick back road commuter