Rikulau V9 Disc Brake Custom

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jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

Here is the build thread as I was encouraged by fellow members here to write one. Please pardon me for the less than average English used here.

Unboxing

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According to Rikulau, Vulcan Seamless Stainless Steel is...
Vulcan (V9) is a seamless tubing based on C465 stainless steel developed and patented by Carpenter, USA. It is a martensitic alloy that can be age-hardened through proper choice of heat treatment condition to enhance strength. It is now widely applied in the aeronautical and military industries. C465 is also the raw material Reynolds uses to develop 953 tubing. 953 is a welded tube, while Vulcan is the first seamless tubing made of C465 in the world. Tube-making and heat treatment are accomplished in Taiwan. Through chosen age-hardening heat treatment temperature, Rikulau is able to achieve a balance in tensile strength (about 1800 MPa) and good ductility on V9. Thus, Vulcan is eligible to build a race-oriented light-weight and stiff frame.
I got this custom frame not because of that I appreciate the material (I don't know much about this material). Rather, I need a bike that suits my geometry of seat tube angle 72° / top tube length of 540 / saddle to handlebar drop of 60mm. There is no mass-produced bike frame to be even close. My bike fitter Mr Liu agreed to help me designing a bike around my geometry and the Rikulau custom frame is the answer.

SRAM eTap only

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I am a SRAM fans so obviously I'd stick with eTap. Hopefully eTap would last many years as this frame is eTap only. There is only one pair of rear brake hose ports on head tube and bottom bracket shell. I didn't aware of the brake hose routing issue when I purchased the Chris King ThreadFit 30x T47 bottom bracket. The protective sleeve diameter is ard 37.3mm, which leaves very tight space for the 5mm brake hose to pass through the space between the sleeve and bottom bracket shell. Since I left this build job to my LBS, I hope the mechanic don't swear too much when assembling :)

p.s. The Plan B is to change to CeramicSpeed T47/68, which should have enough clerance judging from the product photo. Won't consider WheelsMFG as the Enduro DUB bearings don't have the plastic sleeves to protect the aluminum shaft of the Red AXS crankset.
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Full custom paint job would cost a few more weeks of delivery lead time so I went custom font for the logo to save time. I don't know how to judge the quality of welds on this material (nor any other lol). Please leave your comment and school me.

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Weight is always an issue here...

Given the heavy frame weight, I decided to go on diet a little bit at seatpost cluster as the items on T1sl Disc are not suitable to the Rikulau. I hope the Cane Creek AER bearings would last a few years given the lighter material used. When I settled on the stem length I'd opt for a Darimo IX4 as well. The Aeronova Team is a keeper as I like the concept of long handlebar reach. It's not heavy for an aero handlebar.

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Actual Build to be continued when it's complete next week.

Thanks for reading for now :beerchug:
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

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kidrob
Posts: 301
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:06 am
Location: Belgium

by kidrob

omg, this is some proper bike porn! Looking forward to more pics and your progress on the bike!

by Weenie


fxx
Posts: 150
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 2:10 pm

by fxx

Is that post mount rear caliper?

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shotgun
Posts: 319
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 3:38 pm
Location: Philippines

by shotgun

those welds! that detail! Awesome!
2018 Giant TCR Advance SL0 Disc
2017 Festka Scalatore
1989 Battaglin Roche
1985 Alan Carbonio

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

fxx wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:30 pm
Is that post mount rear caliper?

Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk
Yes, post mount for 160mm rotor.
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

shotgun wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:44 pm
those welds! that detail! Awesome!
Thanks! Honestly, this is my first stainless steel bike and I have no idea how to appreciate or judge the welds quality. Any traits you see that contribute to a good/bad weld?
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

The mechanic obviously started the installation only from today as I received the first update regarding the fork. The lower headset gap is not looking nice. The effective lower headset stack may be more than the expected 12mm from the designer. What's more? I forgot to send him the RoadMachine 02 specific fork caliper mount :( Shouldn't slow the installation too much tho.

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Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

romanmoser
Posts: 489
Joined: Sun May 06, 2018 8:30 pm

by romanmoser

why the bmc fork ?
cost sensitive choice ?
they are not that many after market 50mm rake disc fork i agree ( enve come to my mind, but retail price is retard for a rigid fork )
maybe others ( whisky parts ? )

not interested in having it painted stealth ?
your build was looking sober, class till this
that green would be a pain for the eyes

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

romanmoser wrote:
Wed Apr 01, 2020 3:55 pm
why the bmc fork ?
cost sensitive choice ?
they are not that many after market 50mm rake disc fork i agree ( enve come to my mind, but retail price is retard for a rigid fork )
maybe others ( whisky parts ? )

not interested in having it painted stealth ?
your build was looking sober, class till this
that green would be a pain for the eyes
50mm rake 1.5" fork with reasonble fork length (mine is 369mm) is hard to find. The BMC is not cheap at bike24.com but that's what I could get.

I agree, the green is bad. I wanted to sand down the paint but was too lazy to start it. Will do it when I get it back from workshop.
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

romanmoser
Posts: 489
Joined: Sun May 06, 2018 8:30 pm

by romanmoser

why do you insist on 1.5" ?
especially for smaller rider, now they are 1.25"forks available
You have a 44mm straight headtube
So with a chris king inset 8 instead of inset 7
You could use a fork wich would ride less harsh and still oversize

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

romanmoser wrote:
Wed Apr 01, 2020 4:35 pm
why do you insist on 1.5" ?
especially for smaller rider, now they are 1.25"forks available
You have a 44mm straight headtube
So with a chris king inset 8 instead of inset 7
You could use a fork wich would ride less harsh and still oversize
It's the designer who insists on 1.5" not me. He knows mich better than me why it is needed so I didn't question it.
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

romanmoser
Posts: 489
Joined: Sun May 06, 2018 8:30 pm

by romanmoser

hmm
maybe he don't know about 1.25"

don't want to sound like a dick
but would consider 1.25" if i was you
again you only need the right headset
you can use both on a 44mm headtube

jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

He certainly knows about 1.25". He designed many bikes for riders he has fitted, and worked very closely with Rikulau and Ora. He helped many riders, often with injuries, to overcome fitting issues.

On the other hand, comfort was never my top requirement. In fact I haven't mentioned it at all when I asked for a custom bike building around my body geometry. I want good responsiveness in steering and acceleration; stable in fast descending. I'm sure he knows what to do with the bike geometry.

And yes, we all know what a 44 tube could do with the proper headset.
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

addictR1
Posts: 1878
Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2012 1:11 am

by addictR1

Wow looking good. Those dime stacking welds on a SS frame looks clean. Can’t wait to see more porn.. hum I mean pics.


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jlok
Posts: 1653
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:30 am

by jlok

Finally received the bike and did a short first ride. (sorry it's too late too dark to take pictures of the bike... will do asap!)

The rear triangle is very strong so that acceleration is rapid and direct. There's no lateral twisting feeling like T1sl. I went riding a short steep slope (1km, 7% first half, 14% second half, 17% near the end) and confirmed the strong rear triangle is indeed... strong :)

The steering /control is quick and responsive. When negotiating a roundabout, the turn in is quick while very stable staying in its line. Bottom bracket is a tad bit low as there is one single pedal strike (same as T1sl in this regard). I went through another small roundabout from 6 to 12 o'clock so it's essentially a S-bend. I had to correct the line and lean deeper as I found it a bit too hot near the apex. The bike's willingness to change line rapidly during turn surprised me.

The comfort is definitely better than T1sl. It filters much of the high frequency vibrations. It fits me like a tailor-made suit (it better be as the custom geometry is designed by my fitter). Riding no-hand becomes very natural now.

Now I want to test ride a fast descent when the weather become better.
Rikulau V9 DB Custom < BMC TM02 < Litespeed T1sl Disc < Giant Propel Advanced SL Disc 1 < Propel Adv < TCR Adv SL Disc < KTM Revelator Sky < CAAD 12 Disc < Domane S Disc < Alize < CAAD 10

by Weenie


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