My current chapter with bikes started in 2017, when I moved to Washington, DC, realized there was an amazing exploring to be done by bike and built up a gravel bike. At some point those regular weekend rides started to hit 100+ miles and I decided it would be a fun idea to do Unbound. This bike has since carried me across the finish line of the Unbound 200, SBT Gravel Black, and Belgian Waffle SD among other events. Its has a lot of miles on it, but will hopefully be replaced soon by a custom Ti frame from Mike DeSalvo. Its been 17 months--but I am hopefully getting close to the front of the line.
- Guerciotti Brera, size 52 frameset
2 wheelsets with Berd spokes, one is 27.5 and the other 700c
Sram Red AXS levers, Force wide derailluers
Vision 4d MAS handlebar with disconnects for blip shifters on the extensions
Easton EC90 crank, now with a Bingham built spider and Praxis 48/32 chainrings
Photos of some different configurations of it are here: https://imgur.com/a/6YPitOk
Weighs about 7.8-8kg (w/ pedals and cages, no bottles or lights) depending on configuration
After putting down a deposit with Mike, I decided I to build a single speed cross bike. Its used around town and will be used for some racing if I ever get around to it. The big thing here was learning how to paint decently using a rattlecan. This bike is a 52cm Van Dessel Aloominator made by the now defunct Zen Fab of Portland, Oregon. The fork stem and seatpost was done with mostly Spray.bike paints. The single speed is made possible by an Squid Oner eccentric BB. Its running a regular road wheelset with gearclamps on the HG hub to hold the singlespeed cog in place.
More photos are here: https://imgur.com/a/VVN3dWN
Just before the pandemic I had picked up a Wahoo Kickr bike and during it, I had started to use it to play with my fit using the Myvelofit app as a measuring tool and translating those into bike geometries using BikeCad. This was at first more confined to helping me decide what road bike to eventually buy. However, the fits were agressive and started to get me into the area where small bike frames seem to have compromised handling. The math was very hard for me and was a barrier to figuring how to characterize the different options. The ability to play with the BB height via the eccentric on the Van Dessel convinced me to give this a more serious effort and I ended up designing a frame with my own geometry and having it built. This is the result:
There are also some really custom things going on with this bike. The highlights are:
- Ti frame with Carbon ISP (they upsold me on this) and X12 dropouts
Custom geometry w/ 80mm BB drop, 405mm stays, and a 73 degree head angle
Modified 3T Fundi 50mm offset fork, resulting in a trail figure of ~51mm. I shaved and plugged the cable port then partially painted fork, finishing it with an air dry matte clear Cerakote (using those painting skills from the prior build!)
Enve SES Aero 40cm handlebars
FSA ACR stem with custom MFJ printed glass nylon spacer that allows for the front brake hose to be run up and into the fork steerer. This mates to the newer, double depth, composite DEDA DCR 36 degree spacer which in turn fits into a Cane Creek ec44/40 lower headset (being used as the upper). The Bottom is a Cane Creek ec44/33
Sram Rival AXS, with a 1x drive side 165mm crank mated to a road / "standard" width 165mm power meter crank + a Croder 5x 110 spider + Praxis 12 speed rings (a thing I liked from the gravel bike)
Bottle cages and mount from Silca
Woodman ISP topper w/ MJF glass nylon shim held in place using a Extralight expander
Zeno couplers in the stem and frame allow me to disconnect the hydro lines to drop the fork, remove the bars and work on the headset should the need arise
Ascent Polaris 69mm wheels (currrently running 28s)
Frame was produced by XATW / XACD after talking to a few overseas factories and hunting down examples of their work IRL. The reason for this was partially cost, but also shorter lead times. That latter didnt end up really being much of a benefit due delays from additional covid lockdowns, as the frame took nearly 5 months from order to get to my door anyway.
I've been riding this bike since August and I am pretty happy with it. While its not an aero bike as I wanted a more classic look, I did take care to minimize the round tubes facing the wind and my narrow position on this bike is extremely fast. It also gave me more confidence that the new(ish) Domane RSL has a similar geo with a similarly narrow cockpit and is also optimized around 30mm tires.The downside is that its heavy, as the whole bike as pictured weighs 9kg. After swapping to road pedals, I am down a little, but its the heaviest bike I have owned in a long time. I will also be swapping the stem from 90mm to 100mm as having that narrow of a cockpit seems to have increased how far I can reach with my arms.