Posts from the ‘Custom Bikes’ Category
April 22nd, 2013
The look of our latest Parlee Z5 custom bike builds reminds me of the classic bike builds I grew up lusting over, after it underwent a modern high performance evolution. The clean traditional lines with classic box section rims accompanies components that I could only dream of as a kid. Behind the EE brakes and Clavicula cranks lies some of the most advanced manufacturing and engineering in the industry. With the bike heading off to live in the Colorado Rockies, the priorities are to be light on the climbs and steady on the downhills. We looked to make something capable of floating up every upward pitch, and could tame every switchback that climbs and descends the land of beautiful Colorado peaks. Read more
April 17th, 2013
Over the last weekend CyclingNews reported on one of our old projects, the worlds lightest bike. This now seems like a good time for us to revisit this project as well. It also seems like a good time to mention that this project is the inspiration for two of our upcoming Interbike projects. No, we’re not going to make a lighter bike, as there doesn’t seem a point since this is still the current record holder. We will however be offering two new projects both with an eye on total weight, yet keeping with a more generally accepted idea of all around use. Read more
April 13th, 2013
It’s April, but that doesn’t mean it’s too early to start thinking about ‘cross. In fact we’re getting CX bikes ready for both those that are well prepared and those that can’t stay off of dirt roads no matter what time of year it is. I believe this cross bike belongs to the later a machine that is perfect for the race coarse that will more than likely see many more miles exploring back country roads and the occasional piece of single track winding through the forest. Read more
March 13th, 2013
Several years ago I had a Scott CR1, which at the time was my favorite frame. During some pulley wheel testing, a mishap led to the destruction of the frame. Considered destroyed because of it’s non-replaceable hanger. Also destroyed were the derailleur and rear Lightweight. Being a favorite frame of mine it didn’t get recycled but rather just hung up in the rafters as a memory. Some years later it we decided to pull the frame down and breath some new life into. It was sent off to a friend and custom carbon frame builder, Bre Ruegamer. The non-removable hanger/dropout combo was removed and replaced with custom machined horizontal dropouts. At the same time the rear end of the frame was re-spaced to narrow it by 10mm so it would accept a 120mm fixed gear hub. Then the frame, fork and stem were stripped and repainted with matte black. It was rebuilt without having an eye on choosing lightweight parts and finished weight is just over 12 pounds. Read more
February 25th, 2013
With the 2012 Parlee Z5 SLi on sale and the 2013 Z5i now in stock we’ve been moving ahead building up a gaggle of new bikes. This got me thinking about all the completed bikes I haven’t posted yet. I decided to start with a not so recent SL Road build we worked on with Nick from Crumpton Cycles. Cutting-edge thoroughbred builds like this are my favorite, a bike I’d gladly race — ideally set up too light for the UCI 6.8kg rule like this one.
Nothing tops a handmade frame built by a master. Attempting to keep the magic happening, a few other standout features on here are the forged Praxis Rings on the THM M3 cranks. The Praxis rings may not topple the weight weenie contenders but they do shift better than any other aftermarket ring set I’ve ridden — on par with the best offerings from Campagnolo and Shimano. This combo with the M3 cranks is a perfect marriage and THM now specs these as their stock chainrings on their cranks. These exotic beauties in the matte finish look great with this frame.
February 15th, 2013
This week someone had asked me to pick some of my favorite project bikes and send them more detailed photos. In thinking about this I realized 3 of my 5 top choices had one thing in common, artist Geoff Mcfetridge. Not too many people get to work with such an awesome artist and I feel lucky that I’ve been able to work with Geoff on 3 projects so far, and hopefully another chance will come up in the future. If you aren’t totally familiar with his work, I’d suggest clicking this link and taking a look. Since we’ve now taken some new photos and pulled some never before seen ones from the archives it seemed like a good idea to share them. I’ve tried to use mostly detail shots that focus on the paint rather than the complete bikes. So without any more delay on to the pictures.
October 9th, 2012
We hardly ever post bike builds that we don’t complete here at the shop but working with Sugarkane on this bike build has been one of our favorite projects. The build does a great job of focusing on weight but not emphasizing the ultra light over functionality and race worthy aerodynamics. The final build would hold up in any race and luckily he’s also been documenting the project on Weight Weenies showing why he chose a lot of the parts you see here now. Major changes have included switching ENVE 1.45s (now used as climbing wheels) to the more all around Smart 6.7s. Braking was also improved when the popular EE Brakes replaced the Zero Gravity stoppers. The stock Campagnolo Super Record 11-speed cranks have been changed for THM’s M3 modular crank complete with a ceramic bottom bracket and Praxis chain rings. Finally the New Ultimate seat post and striped down SLR saddle gave way to a Berk combo after an Extralite post was installed. The final seat / seatpost combo not only lets you get a custom feel on your rig it saves a lot of grams.
June 29th, 2012
While we got our NeilPryde Alize bikes at the end of 2011 we never had the chance to write an extended review. Perhaps that was a good thing because now with over 10,000 miles on several frames we’re able to give you a better idea of the newcomer to the road bike market. Without further adieu here are some of our thoughts now that we’ve had a chance to put some more miles on our NeilPryde Alize road bikes.
A look at weight
I have the second-largest size of the Alize called the XL and the bare frame weighs 1099g. Built up on training clinchers with a power meter as shown it’s still a bit under the 6.8kg/14.99lb UCI weight limit. After seeing the photo of my bike I have to concede that it just begs to lose the training wheels in favor of deep aero wheels..
Madcow’s frame is the size small and weighs 1020g. Built up with Enve SES 6.7 clincher wheels it weighs 6.2kg/13.6 lbs complete. With carbon tubulars we are seeing weights in the low 12lb range. Read more
June 7th, 2012
Black is the New Black
New Mexico’s mountainous Gila National Forest is a road climber’s mecca. Specifically, Silver City is home to one of the hardest stage races in ‘Merica, with roads crossing the continental divide several times. The steep high altitude climbs force you to put up or shut up, and are followed by hair raising descents that test your mettle. A customer of ours from the region commissioned us to build this custom Parlee Z5 SLi to handle the rigors of these rides found in her backyard, built around the idea that a lightweight climbing bike shouldn’t sacrifice descending, nor handling capabilities.
An exotic group of parts adorn the bike in a unique configuration to suit our customer. Black is the new black. The Clavicula crankset was specifically arranged with a compact spider and super stiff Praxis chainrings. Tune Mig 45 and Mag 170 hubs were laced to the new Smart Enve System (SES) 3.4 tubular rims, which in this case provide a perfect balance of aerodynamic stability and weight. The logos on the Enve bar and stem combo were removed, and the frameset itself was custom painted with stars, which are only caught in the right light; a unique design you rarely see on a bike. The aesthetics as a whole were focused around the look of the Parts of Passion laser logo seatpost, emitting that murdered out, stealth appeal. The Z5 SLi frameset is specifically designed with wire access for the Shimano Dura Ace Di2 group, leaving out any frivolous cable stops. Weighed as shown, the bike is right at 13lbs, while our customer’s ultra lightweight Enve 1.25 wheelset drops it another half-pound. Read more
March 23rd, 2012
This is the final update on the Project Right bike we’ve been documenting on our blog. Project Right started as a challenging request for an extraordinary bike, a task that was immediately exciting for everyone at Fairwheel. The bike got lots of attention at the English Cycles booth at the North American Hand Built Bike Show in Sacramento.
The request came in for a “completely unique” build – a single speed that would stand apart with a completely out of the box approach. If possible the bike was to be be single-sided, similar to the GT Super Bike. A unique finish was exceptionally important, so the fact that our customer is a big fan of Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are and the Spike Jonze film adaptation became artistic inspiration. What’s more, the bike needed to function as an everyday rider / commuter for the hills of Seattle, preferably belt-driven for reduced maintenance and increased longevity in the rain. Read more