Archive for April, 2014

This color is called Awesome

Monday, April 14th, 2014

This is Sabine’s lugged commuter/tourer. It’s one of my favorite bikes. Lovely long point lugs, exquisite candy, 11 speed Ultegra on King wheels… delicious.


P1000157 P1000159 P1000160

P1000163 P1000164 P1000165

P1000166 P1000167 P1000168

P1000169 P1000170 P1000172

P1000173 P1000177 P1000174

P1000161 P1000176 P1000171

And here are some shots of just the frame set:


IMG_8670 IMG_8672 IMG_8673

IMG_8676 IMG_8677 IMG_8671

IMG_8674 IMG_8678 IMG_8675

I also modified a Rivendell Atlantis for a Rohloff hub. David had been running the hub for years, but awkwardly; I cleaned up the install a bit, with long Campy dropouts to allow for chain tensioning, a tab on the chainstay for the Rohloff cable stop, new dropouts for the SON SL generator hub, and internal wiring. On a custom install we’d be able to avoid the torque arm with sliding dropouts, but we wanted to keep the Rivendell look so we compromised and moved the cable routing from the top tube/canti post to down tube/chainstay:


IMG_9089 IMG_9097 IMG_9098

IMG_9099 IMG_9100 IMG_9101

IMG_9102 IMG_9103 IMG_9104

IMG_9105 IMG_9107 IMG_9109

IMG_9110 IMG_9111 IMG_9112

I was also reminded why we love steel. You’d think it would be self evident – we spend lots of time restoring old bikes, from a 1895 Rudge to a 1950’s Thanet to any number of 70’s and 80’s Italian steeds – but riding at Battenkill last weekend, I got a stick in the derailleur:


Note the screen shots from my Gopro below; after wrestling the derailleur out of the wheel, you can see how the cage is nearly vertical, ABOVE the axle. Then, I muscled it considerably to make it more or less in plane with the cassette. The cage was so crushed that the idler pulleys were fouled, but it shifted a little in back and the front der shifted fine. I was most lucky in that the chain wasn’t compromised, and was able to make it the 4 miles back to our car. Even with a replaceable der hanger, on an AL or carbon bike I’d be walking.

But once back to the shop, a dummy axle and hanger alignment tool made it all better.

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 8.38.15 PM Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 8.45.06 PM Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 8.43.59 PM

Screen Shot 2014-04-06 at 8.44.33 PM IMG_9123 IMG_9121

A new derailleur and all is right with the world.

Superlight Club Racer with Stainless

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

Well this has been a fun one. We have a complicated relationship with stainless steel: we’ve always loved it for things like dropouts, where the paint is sure to get chipped anyway; and we love the all weather durability. But it’s expensive, and even from three suppliers there are a limited number of tube profiles available. Part of the benefit of a custom frame is that we have so many options to choose from in order to optimize performance and comfort.

So, for Myles’ club racer, we decided to use a mix of True Temper S3 and OX Platinum tubing, along with a KVA Stainless drive-side chainstay; and then we upped the ante by doing all the interfaces in stainless: rear dropouts, cable stops, H20 bosses, and brake bridge. A true all-weather steel bike, where it matters.


The frame comes in a tic over 3 lbs, and with some very nice components indeed (King/Enve wheels; Enve fork, cockpit, and seatpost; and Sram Red/Black group) the complete bikes is a svelte 15.75 lbs. Not bad for a durable and repairable heirloom!

I used the Enve 1.0 fork with a 50mm rake and a 72.5 HT angle – this setup is eerily comfortable over rough roads while still being whip-quick, and gives a little longer front center for a stable wheelbase with short chainstays – 41 cm with a 73.5 ST angle and 25c tires. ST center to center is 52.5 cm and effective TT length is 55, with a 10 degree slope.

But enough talk – first more pics of the complete bike, then some shots of the frame before building up.

P1000117 P1000122 P1000114

P1000128 P1000138 P1000107

P1000111 P1000131 P1000135

P1000125 P1000144 P1000120

P1000134 P1000137 P1000099

P1000059 P1000065 P1000064

P1000068 P1000069 P1000071

P1000073 P1000072 P1000075

P1000079 P1000080 P1000083

Jay also painted a 1895 Rudge Penny Farthing:


And I modified a Surly Ogre to accept belt drive with an 8 speed Alfine hub – they said it couldn’t be done, but after a little chainstay crimping and some fine tuning of the chain, er, belt-line, it’s an all-weather commuting monster:

IMG_8708 IMG_8709

And finally I repainted a very rusty old Serotta in the trademark fade:

IMG_8846 IMG_8849 IMG_8848

Next: Sabine’s lugged beauty!

Circle A Cycles   |   523 Charles Street   |   Providence, RI   |   401.831.5221
background: jared spinning on his circle a flatland frame. (reveal)

circle a