Monday, February 3, 2014

A new bike, and, uh, another, and wait, one more!

It's been a busy and destructive month for my bike fund. As I mentioned in the last post, a few weeks back I picked up a Trek 620 on our local Craigslist:

It's in pretty good shape for a 30 year old bike. I figure I'll update the wheels, bars, and pedals, and have a drop barred, geared road bike again with nice, flexible tubing and a relatively low trail front end, for not much dough.

The rear derailer isn't original, but I don't really care about stuff like that. It has a nice looking crank with half step gearing (I think):

Decent clearances all around:

After these pictures were taken, I replaced the wheels with my 700c pair, and some Performance 35mm (actually about 32mm) tires, and there's still good room for a fender.

The saddle will have to go, the bars are too narrow, and the stem is too low and short, but it's nice to have a threaded stem again for easy adjustment:

I'm going to keep the brake levers--I like the looks of the non-aero cables after seeing modern cockpits for so long.

While I've done a bit of work on the Trek, I haven't been able to put any miles on it... curse the polar vortex! In the meantime, I've been hemming and hawing about my next bike. I'd thought about a Chinese carbon frame, liked the Krampus when I test rode it, but then tried to scratch that itch with my Niner with a Knard up front. With the price of a new Krampus, I thought seriously about getting a Chinese custom titanium frame for not much more, when I came across a used Krampus frameset on that was an XL... in new condition... with an uncut fork... hundreds cheaper than new. Sold! Unfortunately, the weather down south held up the shipping. Curse the polar vortex again!

While my Krampus was stranded in a UPS no-mans land, I came across an interesting frame on CL again (why was I still looking?). A Breezer Lightning Pro 26er about 90 minutes away in Zanesville. I borrowed a weekend car from work, the quiet and smooth all-new for 2014 Acura MDX:

Since Jodi's sister lives towards Zanesville, I could cleverly sell this as family time. I dropped Jodi and the kids off to visit, then headed in to Zanesville to meet the seller. Just like that, another new bike was mine. I added a few parts Saturday evening when I had some time to kill:

Despite the parts, I don't have a clear plan for the Breezer (unusual for me). I actually bought it because:

- 26er steel hardtails are a vanishing breed
- it had a great paint job
- it was my size
- it was cheap
- it was nearby
- just look at the paint job!
- it gave me an excuse to play with the MDX's self steering Lane Keeping Assist on the highway. Cool!

My first thought was to make it a 69er. Since it normally take a 100mm fork, it should work pretty well for this. But my more recent thought is to make it a fat tired around town bike. We'll see what happens with it. It's been moved to the back burner, because today my Krampus frame finally defeated the polar vortex and arrived here in Dublin:

I had my new headset waiting for it:

And that's as far as I got tonight, since I was stymied by this:

My first try at hydraulic disc brakes. I need to read up on changing hose lengths and bleeding brakes before I tackle this job. Luckily, with the next wave of polar vortex coming this week, I will have time.

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