Friday, June 11, 2010
All about the bike
So the bike is finally assembled and running in singlespeed mode. Weighing in at a svelte 10.3kg, it feels FAST! Final race weight will be a bit more after it gets dressed up in race kit with the spares, lights, bottles etc still needing to be attached - as much as I'd like to, I can't leave any of these vital bits behind. For the tech heads out there, here is a brief breakdown of the bike build:
Frame is an XL Giant XTC1 29er with the standard 100 stem and 700mm wide flat bar. It's a good fit for me (190cm tall) and feels really comfortable. Running a rigid On-One fork does not affect the handling of the bike at all and it feels stable and predictable when cornering. Thanks to the light weight, getting up to speed is easy and it definately carries it's speed well too. Gearing is currently 32x17 (but may still change...) and setting up the chain tensioning with an On-One Doofer was a simple operation. Cranks are 180mm Truvativ Stylo singlespeed. The 2.1 Bontrager XDX tyres feel cushy and the grip so far feels good. Rims are Velocity Blunt and the wheels were built by Johan Bornman of Yellow Saddle.
The high pitched whine of the Hope singleglespeed hub when freewheeling is one of the best things about the bike - sure to become a reassuring sound out on the trail. Hope also takes care of the stopping duties with a set of Mini brakes. Thanks a lot to Grant from International Trade, the Hope agents in SA, for the Hope bits - I was initially concerned about what hub to use as it's such a critical part of any singlespeed setup but I have absolute faith in the Hope hub and am really glad to be using it. I'm also using a Murray Orthoped saddle, a locally made product, which comes highly recommended by several long distance riders and initial impressions have been very good. Once the bike is dressed up with all the race kit, I'll post some more pics and specs.