Thursday, July 9, 2015

The $25 Technium

I've been riding my $25 Raleigh Technium a bit more since I bought it a few weeks ago. So far, I have to say I am very impressed with it. Perhaps because I am coming from a spell of riding my Camargue as my only road bike, but the Raleigh just feels super lively. The Camargue isn't bad, but loaded down with bags and racks and hampered by its thicker tubing, it doesn't have much zip for me... at least compared to this Raleigh.

To recap, the Raleigh looked pretty good when I bought it (did I mention it cost just $25?):

But I only did one ride stock before I started in on the changes:

My first setup involved the biggest changes:

27" wheels to 700c, gears to a fixed gear, new crank and bottom bracket from my bin, and fenders:

The front fender just barely clears the 32mm (actual, it's a Performance Forte Metro labelled as a 35) tire:

Just to get a quick setup, I threw on this AT2 type bar with a stem adapter and a threadless stem:

I liked this setup quite a bit, but this bike was feeling sporty enough that I felt the urge for a drop bar. Also, with the short top tube, I wanted the greater variation in hand positions to stretch out more:

My stem adapter was a cheapier from ebay, and it had a gaping hole on top where you insert a long 6mm wrench to adjust it (hmm, might have to add that to my on-bike tool kit, just in case). I had images of that hole piercing my chest in a crash, so I filled it with something I had handy:

It was from my recent father's day present I opened to celebrate my latest build:

Still love that head badge:

The Weinmann brakes are quite weak, though not as bad as what I had on my Nordavinden. Anyway, as a fixed gear, the brakes aren't super important for me. Until they are. Maybe new pads are in order.

Speaking of brakes, I'm running a rear brake with this guy, mostly because I wanted the hand position from the brake hood, and running a brake hood without a brake just seemed strange. However, this brought up an issue that someone mentioned: the brake housing runs inside the top tube, and the relatively heavy housing bangs off the inside of the tube with a loud "thunk" over each bump.

I may just pull the housing out and zip tie it to the outside of the tube, but that may forever eliminate the internally routed cable. At least for me--I don't have the patience to fish it back through the tube.

With the Raleigh set up this way, I'm now more inspired to hit the road for pointless road loops. That's a good thing, since with all the rain we've had recently, there's no mountain biking here in mudville for the last few weeks.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Clem Again

Regular reader(s) may recall that I journeyed up to Ann Arbor to buy a Rivendell Clem Smith Jr last summer. That particular bike ride didn&#...