I have been posting in "on the road" for awhile, thought I'd show the bike. I got this bike early this season and put a few thousand km on it.
The frame/fork were built by Dave Kirk (http://www.kirkframeworks.com
). I wanted a springy, comfortable frame that would perform well on poorly surfaced mountain roads, that would take up to 28mm tires with fenders, and that would work with both Vista pedals (which put you 15mm forward and below the usual position, see picture below) and normal pedals if I wanted to switch. The seatstays are what DK calls terraplane; the curve provides a small amount of vertical flex on rough surfaces to improve road holding/traction, it’s not for comfort or looks. The frame has an eTT of 590mm (TT has a slope of 4.5 deg), HT 177, SS 423, HTA 72.8 deg, STA 72.5, BB drop 75. Frame weight is 1730 (steel bolts removed, and 85 g discounted for the CK headset), and fork 780. (This being WW: I am sure it would be less for a 56cm frame with tighter angles, shorter straight stays, no eyelets, fillet brazed instead of lugs… ). The paint is by Joe Bell, charcoal with a sparkle, with gooseshit details.
Equipped with 7900 shifters, derailleurs, 11-28 cassette, chain, cables, Extralite cranks and 120 stem, Stronglight CT2 rings (here 48/33 that I used in the Dolomites), Vista pedals, Far/near brakes, syntace post (cut), SLR superflow saddle, ratio tacto bars 420, lizard skins 1.8 tape, Ti cages from wiggle, wheels by Ron Ruff (White mountain wheels): alchemy hubs, C4 V22 rims, Xray spokes, 20/28, Pro4 tires and whatever tubes (I have ridden also 26mm grand bois tires and latex tubes, have not yet tried anything bigger). Total weight is 7950, from my bathroom scale approximation.
The bike rides great, it has the springy and lively feel of steel, smooth and plenty stiff for my needs. Very comfortable on long days. What surprised me was the stability at speed, the bike is quiet, steady and predictable when going down an imperfect mountain road at 60-80 km/h (on my previous bike it was often a bit hair-rising, you had to hold things together…). Initiating a turn takes a small input, tracking in curves is very neutral and consistent, a bit like a giant slalom ski. On broken pavement it behaves very well, no drama. What is due to the longer wheelbase or to the terraplane seatstays I don’t know, but it works.
Mostly I want to mention the builder, Dave Kirk, to those who are not aware of him. Very experienced, innovative, and a great guy to deal with. He truly listens to you, provides solutions, keeps you informed at all times, and delivers on schedule (or before). It was a privilege, one of life’s luxuries, to have a frame built by such a professional.