Monday, March 23, 2020

So I Named it Miele

It all began in January with research for a new clothes dryer to replace my Miele that runs with only questionable reliability and can no longer be repaired. (The initial thoughts of a new frame date back further, but that's a different story.) My laundry care research was interrupted by an email from Rivendell announcing a pre-sale on a shipment of expected Joe Appaloosa frames. One of the few benefits of my new solo living situation - unanimous consent in approving the purchase of bike in place of a new dryer.

Justifying a tighter than I'd like budget with rational that I could get by for another year with my drying rack and clothesline.  I thought "build it up with excess parts and scavenging parts of another donor in the fleet temporarily..."

It didn't take too long until the new parts started rolling in 😀 I'd thought I would build it up fixed gear with a White Industries ENO 
Killing time before frame delivery found me in the basement shop sanding and polishing the already shiny White Industries cog. You can see the new Sim-Works fenders in the background (how could I resist?)

I all-but hugged the UPS driver when the frame arrived - excitedly unboxed for a nervous living room stand-over test fit for size. Note to self: trust Rivendell on size recommendation
It was a late night in the basement shop on delivery day. Preparing frame and test fitting different parts to see what might work.I settled on this mock up before going to bed. Fenders stuffed with packing material to evaluate fender fit

The next day was a swap of saddle, chain, and a quick but chilly debut roll through the neighborhood as a brakeless fixed gear.

In light of a quickly unfolding world crisis and uninspired by the way things were coming together progress stalled until the last of my parts orders arrived on Thursday night. I'd prepared for potential build options by ordering an extra rim and White Industries geared hub from Rivendell.

Final assembly and a few shake down rides over the weekend served as a welcome distraction from the news.  The time alone also spurred a couple of creative solutions for real problems that didn't exist.

This is my hack solution for a rack mounted tail light. In the past, I've t. My solution to cut the side tabs off the Planet Bike rack mount in the past worked, but the single hole meant the light could rotate.  I shaped, drilled, and tapped a bit of aluminum stock I'd previously purchased at the hardware store to bolt onto the Nitto rack and prevent rotation.

My final hack was inspired when finishing up the wiring for the headlight
I noticed that the vent holes on the fork seemed larger than I'd noticed on other bikes. Eyeballed my 4mm tap and the fit seemed almost perfect. Quick trip to the garage for a little brazing, filing, and a final polish to create a little something to hold the wire.

This final build was a mix of old and new parts from inventory and a few discretionary purchases (most notably wheel components.)
  • Phil Wood BB and NOS Suntour Superbe Pro crank & 42t chainring
  • White Industries M15 rear hub, SONdelux and Edelux II headlight
  • H Plus Son TB14 rims
  • Dura Ace 7700 HG50 14x25 9 speed cassette
  • Nitto racks and handlebars
  • Dia-Compe 980 cantilevers
  • Sim-Works fenders
  • Brooks B67 saddle & plump grips
There are a few things that I still need to add: kickstand, cup holder, bell, and lip balm holder of course!  Pretty certain that the configuration will change and evolve over time. For now, looking forward to improving weather and mental health/anxiety relieving riding

Full gallery of images hosted on Flikr page here:

Monday, November 23, 2015

Soul Searching

It has been a long time since posting anything here which is unfortunate.  Selfishly, more unfortunate for me than anyone else because I seriously suffer with an affliction I call CRS, (Cannot Remember Shit.)  I do a lot of thinking, and was out for a ride with a very good friend yesterday when he countered my thought with an interesting perspective.

I started this whole writing thing for me, not the reader.  I used to write as a mechanism for ME to help sort out my thoughts and record ideas.  That fell apart years ago when I found that I could no longer write.  I lost the ability to form clear thoughts, to figure it out, to remember what I was thinking and work through to a finish and actually solve a problem.  Complicating life even more is that the sudden onset of trouble thinking brought with it several additional physical problems that I have not been able to figure out.

Being honest with myself and with an alternate and fresh perspective courtesy of my friend, perhaps I can muster up enough courage to be satisfied with my disjointed thinking, loss in train of thought to publish something.  I throw this all out there to tell myself that this is for me, maybe I can remember when or where I wrote it, go back and look to maybe pick up on where I left off.

2010 was the last time that I got a new bike.  I am pretty happy with the bikes that I DO have, but have been itching for a new project.  This is not something new, I think I am ALWAYS interested in a new bike project... but the way thoughts work, in some ways saves me a lot of money.  I start thinking about what I want, forget what I was thinking, forget who I was going to contact about ordering, forget to call, misplace notes where I may have written something down, whatever.

Two weeks ago, I started and in a rare moment actually finished filling in the order form for something new.  Whether I missed answering some of the questions or not, well... I cannot tell you for sure, but most likely omitted providing something important.

Just before mailing the order off with a deposit, I took all of my road bikes out for a ride in the same day:
Two weeks ago on a Sunday afternoon, I took a series of 4 different rides to confirm what it was that I was planning on ordering.  While I did figure out that what I had filled in on the order form is in fact what I would order, Monday and Tuesday were not particularly good days... which is exactly the struggle of the last several years.  After suffering physically on Monday and Tuesday with back pain and muscle spasms, I questioned the sense of ordering a new bike when I had such trouble enjoying what I own and I eventually tore up the order form in a fit of frustration and rage.

Hopefully in my next few posts, I might remind myself what it is that I like/don't like about each of my existing bikes and get around to filling out that order form again.

The Atlantis:
Missing from the ride, but not up for question of its place and purpose.  It fits the widest tires and serves well as my go to bike for touring.  It has S&S couplers which makes traveling with it an option, so I have it at the office for the company I work for in Seattle.

Blog Archive