Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Overkill and Adequate

There are certain aspects of Lyle's mechanical tendencies that I have trouble avoiding; one of these is in a job done properly. I've just committed to cleaning and regreasing the chainring bolts on this bike. Why? Because they won't be tight enough if everything isn't put together fresh and clean; and, the setup will be that much easier to take apart next time.

Relating to Lyle's last post, bike fitment is another area that we at Project B are highly aware (and critical) of. I've just set up the Sekine in its second cyclocross iteration. After taking the bike to the New Brighton Cyclocross - fixed, 42/16, 40cm bullhorns, front brake only, rack and fender (see this is where we talk about the right tool for the job) - and not doing too badly until a pinch flat, I decided cross was worth pursuing. Thanks to Elaine and James for rad photos:

Here we are lined up at the start, Thunder in Your Heart still blasting through our heads I can guarantee you. I have the man Matt Barber and Team Mighty to thank for a loaner set of tires for the race.

...and after we were both taken out by mechanicals. Not Cru, but Luke, just missing the taco'd wheel. Send me an angel.

Back to the bike, though. Slightly slacker-than-road angles, tons of clearance, and a good quality frameset that fits; cue up the viable possibility of Sekineclocross, and my first crack at ergo bars. With a pair of Tektro aero levers won the night previous at the Eff Off Nikcee alleycat and the prospect of a parts bin build, a good day was spent with Projekt-Breakfast followed by bar scavenging, cabling, and taping.

Then a bunch of rowdy fools showed up at Wendell's weekly cyclocross clinic to tear ass around Jericho Park.

A 90mm Cinelli Frog and 42cm ergo drops are completely appropriate with the style of the build. While the hoods seem a bit far away at the moment, they're amazing for climbing. Oh, and the brakes are set up "euro" - for now, at least. I've always been fine with right-hand front brakes, but when there's a left lever, I generally default to left-front. Of course, this is an easy switch if I choose to do so, as the Profile splash tape has no adhesive.

Let's get back to why I'm changing the chainring on this bike. At the race, fixed 42/16 wasn't ideal - uphill switchbacks especially. Swapping to the 16 tooth freewheel also wasn't perfect. Off-road riding demands a shorter gear. I talked about getting a 17, until Mike hooked me up with a loud brassy 18 tooth freewheel (o hai, Mike at New Brighton). Next problem: the chain is going to be too short. Hence, the switch to 40 up front. Same number of teeth, 60 inch gear instead of 71. And the dropouts will happily allow a 17 and possibly the 16 as well. 

Thanksgiving 2006, I rode it from New Denver to Three Forks and back, getting my pants caught in the drivetrain in MKS Sylvans and tied down wine-red toe clip straps (what ever happened to those pedals, Dennis?). This year, I take the Sekine in another phase intending on the same destination, with a different route: The Galena Trail. The new gear should be great for the rail grade, but I'm bringing the spare with the 16 anyway.

Is there anyone who wouldn't be stoked on the trail after seeing this graphic?

This bike has seen many phases, possibly more than even the KHS did. Let's have a look back in the archives for some 2006 action. I remember Tim Wyatt busting my balls over the authenticity of the paint the first night I brought it out. Yes, it's still the original paint on Tange Champion 2, though I bent the original fork learning how to bunnyhop it. 

The Sekine is again hooked up. Matching wheelset, two rears with, eventually, four gearing options. Ergo bars and loud tape. Cleaned and greased chainring bolts. This weekend should provide plenty of uphill switchbacks to dial in the fit. The Sunday after that, October 19, is the Vanier Park Cyclocross. See you there.

1 comment:

((lyledriver)) said...

I'm jealous of the biking in and around Sandon. (The first time I rode carbon was out there) Also, the new super low range Sekine is going to handle awesome. The ergo hoods should help to not flip over backwards.

I'm curious as to whether you're going to feel the need for interrupt levers on the bar flats as well.