Sunday, November 16, 2008

Zoom Zoom

Today I finally got my new fixed gear completely put together and rideable!  

Early this afternoon I swung by 1304 bikes and found a seatpost that fit my frame.  They had closed Hillsborough for a run or something, and I had never driven over there before, so I predictably managed to get myself pretty lost on my way.  My sense of navigation completely goes down the toilet as soon as I get in a car.  Dunno why.

So, the only downside to this seatpost is it uses an older style of clamping the saddle rails, but has a notched interface - combining the worst of both seatpost styles.  Idiots.  This means a) it's nigh on impossible to get the bolts tight enough to completely prevent the saddle from changing its angle when bumped hard, and b) it's impossible to get the damn saddle perfectly level.  And I'm pretty anal-retentive about level saddles.  So I'm still finagling with the saddle to get it tolerable.  Right now it's slightly nose down and I feel like I'm falling off the thing.  

Tonight, after I got my second-to-last lab report done, I took it for a little spin around downtown Raleigh.  Overall it was about an 8 mile spin as darkness fell.  I took a pretty conservative route for the first bit, getting a feel for the handling and making sure nothing was going to fall off.  I won't bore you with the details.  

I am very impressed with the handling of this bike!  Stiff, snappy, corners like it's glued to the freaking road, and an almost telepathic response to every little motion I make.  The 52-14 gear does not feel overly large on this bike, it actually feels nearly perfect.  If it wouldn't cost anything I might go to a 15 cog, but no larger.  I simply love the feeling of jumping on the power and accelerating to 30 mph in one smooth motion: no gear changes, just go go go!  I'm struggling with how to describe how this thing feels accelerating... This is by far the fastest bike to 30 mph I've ever ridden.  I'll catch myself looking down at the drivetrain, wondering where someone's hidden the freaking motor!  Hills just disappear under the wheels, it feels like every milli-watt you generate makes it straight to the road.  This is going to be an incredibly addicting ride!

Alright, enough suspense.  Here's an okay picture of the bike I shot in my room.  Hopefully I'll get some more "picturesque" pictures in the coming days.

Totally rockin' the black/silver scheme... looks a lot shinier in real life.

And yes, the frame is a solid two and a half inches too big for me.  But hell, it was $15.  If anybody's got a 54-58 cm frame of similar style and they want to trade, let me know :-)

Frame: mid-1990s Cannondale aluminium, 24" seat tube, vertical dropouts
Wheels: Alexrims x2100 (nuthin' special)
Cranks: Sugino 171 mm straight cranks
Pedals: LOOK original style clipless
Bottom Bracket: Unkown manufacturer, fully adjustable cartridge bearing (soooo smooth!)
Fork: cro-moly chrome-plated, 1" x 8" steerer tube, threaded
Headset: Dura-Ace cartridge threaded headset
Brake: Shimano RX100 with Ultegra cartridge shoes
Those are all the notable components.

So yeah, I'm a happy camper.

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