I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to go over to the North American Handmade Bike Show this year. The decision was made quite late but I wanted to make something nice to ride over there on. I really like the look of old steel track bikes so wanted make something reminiscent of those and then make a few concessions to see how well it can do the touring thing. Touring accessories included raise handlebars, 5 speed Sturmey Archer hub, front rack, dynamo hub lighting and a bunch of bike packing bags. Overall it rode really well, was perfectly comfortable and didn’t get too battered by the journey.
As well as the race in Milan, it was a pretty busy weekend. The drive down through France and Switzerland, track day at the fabulous Vigorelli Velodrome, riding the city, bike cafes and our fair amount of pizza. It was nice to be able to ride Milan with my son and for him to see all the excitement. We had a great visit to our friends at Cicli Drali, had posh coffee at the Bianchi Cafe and hung out in a bunch of local bike shops like the great Velociclista. Roll on next year.
Having done about 10 Mountain Mayhem 24 hour MTB races, when we heard this years 20th edition was going to be the last we thought we’d see if we could get some of the old team together. We got a team of 5 so after an absence of quite a few years and the first chance to ride one of one of my own bikes we were on for the race. The 29er did the business. Added some suspension forks a but kept the 1*10 gearing, which in honesty wasn’t quite enough, with a 34 front and 36 rear (and old legs) I could have done with a lower first gear. Great weekend had by all.
Roasting hot day but very cool dawn breakfast.
One of the nice things about making bespoke bikes is can choose the geometry. I decided to go fairly aggressive head angle (for a fat bike) as the last thing I wanted was a barge. It’s steeper than anything else I saw in the market so although it keeps your attention on the descents it’s pretty awesome fun on twisty single track. Trying out a shorter stem, in spite of my natural xc tendencies also seems to help the fun!