Saturday, December 24, 2005

Geeking out

Doom cost me about 3 months of my life back when I was in grad school. That was then, BikeCAD is now. I've been geeking out over the geometry of my new bike frame. It's my first (and probably only) custom job so I wanted to get everything just right. Rickyd pointed me to bikeforest.com, and there went a week of my life.

You learn a lot when you work with a good custom builder. In my case that builder is Mike DeSalvo. I called him up back in October about building my dream bike: a 29er, rigid-specific, titanium singlespeed. I chose him because of his excellent reputation, relatively short waiting time, and more importantly, because no one around here had one of his frames. He sent me the first CAD drawing last week and since then, he and I have been tweaking it. The whole bike must work in concert and each little change-- one half of a degree here, a few milimeters there-- leads to three others. Mike was great to work with. He listened to all of my suggestions and corrected me if I suggested something stupid. I basically wanted a bike like my old, faithful Karate Monkey, but with a lower front end, quicker handling, and better standover. I also wanted to be able to fit a fat tire in the back (like an Exiwolf), have good clearance, and run ~17 inch chainstays. I don't know exactly how he's gonna do it without curving the seat tube (yuck!), but Mike assures me it can be done. After a few emails and phone calls, it all came together. Mike sent me the final CAD, I signed off on it, and the building commenced.

The whole project, frame, custom fork, parts, etc. is gonna be pricey. But compared to other mid-life crisis indulgences (my first one at 35!), this one's a steal.

For a good discussion of bike geometry and how it affects handling, look here.

Karate Monkey
Before


DeSalvo 29er
After

2 Comments:

Blogger gmr2048 said...

very cool joe. congrats on the new toy!

1:33 PM

 
Blogger iconoclasst said...

Looks sweet man. I guess when your skills and strength (and disposable income) reach a certain threshold, it's time to lay down the jack and go custom. That's 3 things I have to work on. 8^)

Damn, with a custom Ti bike, you're back to the RickyLite days, in a way, haw!

4:29 PM

 

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