Saturday, February 8, 2014

Krampus Build

It felt like it took me a long time to get the Krampus together, but I guess it was just less than a week. It's not quite done, but done enough where I could take a chilly spin up and down the street:

My gosh, you say, look at them darn spacers! But even with a slight riser bar, the grips are still 3/4" below the saddle. It felt pretty good on my brief test ride.

Here's what took all the time for the build:

My first experience with hydraulic brakes, the highly regarded but still cheap Shimano M596 Deore series. I had to cut both hoses and bleed the brakes, which resulted at various points in brake fluid spurting all over my workshop. Happily, Shimano uses mineral oil, rather than corrosive DOT fluid, so it was easy to clean up--one reason I picked Shimano brakes. The cable are still slightly long, with my idea being that I can use them on an H-type bar, where the big sweep needs more length. Though now I have this goofy loop on my front cable. But they stop, don't squeal (yet), don't seem to leak (yet), and don't rub the rotor (much), so I'm pretty happy for my first attempt.

edit: with a tip from Monogod on mtbr, I've since rerouted the front hose under the down tube. It has much better bend now.

The drivetrain is my usual mix of cheap and mid level bits:

Sram X7 with a twist shifter, 1x9 with a 32t up front and a Shimano 11-36 in the rear, driven by some kind of KMC chain. The crank is some old Sugino with a square taper bottom bracket and my favored 94 BCD five bolt pattern. I keep a 36t ring on there to act as both an outer chain guard and to let me run a "dingle speed" setup (with, say, a 16t and a 20t cog on the rear = two gears but the same wheel position in the dropout). I still need to add my N-Gear Jump Stop on the seat tube.

And yes, you can see this frame features my be-hated combination of track ends and gears. I find this combination so frustrating to get the wheel in and out that if I ever have to do it out on the trail, I'll be tempted to just chuck the bike in the bushes and take up hiking. The selection of 29er+ frames isn't so vast that I can be picky about this, however (of course, a few days after I paid for my Krampus frame, I found out about the new Singular Rooster that's forthcoming, which has a much more convenient EBB)

The wheels are straight off my Ni-Knard, but now with the plump Knards on both ends:

I'm anxious to get this out in the wild and see if it keeps the fun feeling I had on my demo ride. If so, my skinny tire bikes might be in danger.

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