Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking

Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby spirito » Sat Jan 25, 2014 12:23 pm

koen wrote:
I do understand a very few may have issues but in general it seems majorly overstated.


In your opinion.

But do you understand that telling other people they are wrong for choosing something that clearly works for them might end up with .... :roll:

We all do it though. The moment someone asks me about stand over height I assume that their parents were brother & sister :lol: :P
Cranky Jim wrote: God did not invent gears. Men invented gears ... because we are not gods.
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by BNA » Sat Jan 25, 2014 12:46 pm

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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby singlespeedscott » Sat Jan 25, 2014 12:46 pm

koen wrote:First..Its a gravel bike...not a world tt contender.


As I said before LDR is not one to go slow.

koen wrote:... yet along with all other cyclists until the recent decade or so we never thought about q angle


Thats because cranks from 20 years and back actually had lower q factors than their modern day equivalents. People didnt notice it because it wasnt an issue.
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby koen » Sat Jan 25, 2014 2:28 pm

spirito wrote:
But do you understand that telling other people they are wrong for choosing something that clearly works for them might end up with .... :roll:



I didn't say people were wrong to buy the latest spin whether its 29ers or q factor. It's just this is a retro forum and we aren't all about the latest thing.
Some of us are luddites on steel rims :)
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Jan 25, 2014 8:40 pm

I alluded to crank choice a while back but it wasn't particularly clear, the triple in the photos was just what the frame had on it, when i build the bike up it will definitely have double cranks, most likely standard going through an MTB derailleur to an 11-32 cassette. I am contemplating compact cranks but i had them on my first road bike a few years back and HATED them.

The stem in the pic is significantly longer than what it will get, either 80 or 90mm. If anything is hurting more than your legs after a few hours then you're not pushing hard enough :lol: . I remember reading an article ages ago (possibly rivendell?) which talked about the effects of shorter stems as opposed to taller ones. Either way you can be sure i'm not heading out on any odysseys until i've got the position dialled.

I'll have to check the size of the Miyata, but i've got a feeling it's a similar size, in terms of geo and quality it's virtually identical, but the mystery frame wins by virtue of the double bottle mounts on the DT.
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Jan 25, 2014 8:44 pm

Oh forgot to mention, i had triple cranks on an Apollo Concorde a while back and other than the shifting being rubbish (worn rings and junk FD) and hating the ~50t big ring i never had any issues with it. That's the only bike i've managed to clear the Obi Obi on so far :) .
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby singlespeedscott » Sat Jan 25, 2014 9:50 pm

What's wrong with a 50t chainring?
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Jan 25, 2014 9:54 pm

Oh nothing wrong with it, if you only ever ride up Bellthorpe, everywhere else it's too damn short :D .
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby koen » Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:42 pm

I like those cranks that came with that bike on OP and they suit my riding. I especially like the granny on occasional mega hills. But the 110mm spider is problematic on big rings. Had a tandem with 55t on 110 and it flexed soo much it sometimes was reluctant to change up. ( plus after all the Q discussion I measured my old bikes and some of the old deore triples are not much different to the road bikes I have. I guess it is affected alot by spindle choice on old square taper bikes...something harder to change on new BBs)
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby LugNut » Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:08 am

One of us! One of us! One of us!

I built a late 80s Specialized Rockhopper as a bush basher to live at my dad's place in Castlemaine, and it quickly became my daily commuter. I'm currently building another for a friend out of a custom built Gotty Hansen frame.

I'd say that they don't really fit into any of those categories; they're a little sluggish and heavy, and not very blingy or attractive, except in an 'old worn t shirt' kind of way. I'd call it a Dirt Tourer.

If you need more bar rise, try using a Dirt Drop stem, Nitto still make them and they can be bought through Ben's Cycles in the States.

For tyres, I'd go for something lightweight and with a soft casing, because damn they're sluggish enough as it is. I went for Resist Nomad 2.15" tyres on a friend's recommendation and haven't looked back. They can be found locally. They're far lighter and have a softer casing than Marathons, and make for a buttery smooth ride. I've had one flats in just under a year, which is good considering they spend most of their time in the broken bottle capitol of Melbourne.
2.15s wont fit in my friends frame, so I'm looking to get a set of Compass 26x1.75 tyres, which look even nicer.

For cranks I'm happy with the 110bcd Specialized triple that came with it, previously set up with a 28-39-48, but now without the granny as I rarely used it. Combined with the 32t cassette it gives me enough range to do nearly anything, including mountain biking, but a smaller inner might be better. I always wanted to set it up with a triple as a double but running a single 'commuter' ring on the main spider, say a 46t, and then one granny MTBing/arse hauling ring on the inside triple, say a 32t. Fun times.

Anyway here's a few pictures of a recent ride through the Otways for build inspiration. I have since gone back to 44cm Nitto Noodle bars, instead of the 38cm SR Randonneurs pictured there, because I preferred the width and I needed that Technomic stem for another bike. Replaced it with a Nitto Dirt Drop stem.

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IMG_2665 by biekomelbourne, on Flickr
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IMG_2670 by biekomelbourne, on Flickr
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IMG_2684 by biekomelbourne, on Flickr
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby LugNut » Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:01 am

Also, Centurion had a colour scheme exactly like that.

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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:10 pm

I think i've seen your stumpy in another thread, it's a neat looking rig.

I was actually thinking about this project today, as i'm looking at nicking the Microshift brifters for another project :) .
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby LugNut » Tue Mar 04, 2014 10:06 pm

Take some piccies to give this thread closure before you pull it apart!
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Wed Mar 05, 2014 5:17 pm

Pull it apart? I haven't even started sandblasting it yet, let alone building it :) . No the gravel grinder is still sitting in the queue patiently waiting for her time, but in the meantime i'm going to have a crack at putting drop bars on my original Jamis mountain bike.
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Wed Jul 16, 2014 1:14 pm

It's been quite a while but there's some significant news on this one now. Specifically, the Kojima/Nishiki/whatever is heading back into the shed, because i found a better candidate yesterday.

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It's a 1989 or thereabouts Apollo Cross Trainer. Cromo allegedly involved somewhere, it's fairly heavy but that may just be down to the steel bars, stem, seatpost, cranks and brakes :) . The original wheels were Exage hubs on Araya rims, the ones in the photo are off another project, but show that it fits 700x38s with a huge amount of room to spare. Now i know i said i was ok with 26" after test riding the mystery frame but it has always been a nagging annoyance, and i'm much happier with 700C, short of finding a frame that's designed around 27 x 1 3/8" wheels (which would have to be pretty unlikely).

The only potential fly in the ointment is that while the top tube is the right length (56cm), the seat tube is just 53.5, so i will need to find a suitably enormous seatpost in 25.8mm. But i think i have one on hand already, so it mightn't be an issue.



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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Wed Jul 16, 2014 7:38 pm

Nope, no flies, ointment, buffalo, march or otherwise :) . The first seatpost i picked up was the right size, so in it went along with the traditional test bar/stem combo. Fits very nicely, so now it's just a matter of buying some big fat tyres (most likely 38mm Maxxis Overdrives) and a pair of wheels to suit.


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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby silentbutdeadly » Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:21 am

It should be effective but I would be wary of the dirt road handling if you continue with your traditional positioning unless you can get your bum back further over the back wheel when the going gets 'interesting'.

Apart from your typically eye-watering saddle to bar drop...this is fast resembling my own mongrel grinder viewtopic.php?f=70&t=75323

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Unfortunately, for this bike, the front end is suffering on the rough tracks. The headset has drifted apart a couple of times already and just yesterday the A-head conversion quill let go of the fork in some sand which nearly caused some grief. Putting a quill stem back in it isn't an option as I'm without suitable drop bars (though plenty of flats). The back end has suffered too with both the seat post and the rear QR skewer failing. The former was sorted with a USE Shokpost while the latter was replaced with a spare Hope skewer.

I have a perfectly good but redundant Cannondale hardtail 29er that's only a couple of years old just sitting in the shed...so that might get a major touch up and this bike will go flat bar and be moved on to a new owner...
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:23 pm

This is my current "dirt bike" and the one i used on the 200km epic that got me wanting a more gravelly bike in the first place.


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That's the only photo i can find of it and was just after i had restored it, so the seatpost is not at my height, it actually sits about 3 or 4 inches higher than that. As well as the 200k ride ( http://www.strava.com/activities/98415963/ ) I've done about 6 or 7 Noosa Strade Bianche long course rides and a few short solo gravel rides. Never had a problem with handling or traction, and only had 3 flats, 1 from smashing into a timber bridge at about 40kmh, one which was a mystery and a blowout (possibly damaged casing) just a kilometre or so from the end of the Kilcoy ride. Hopefully the 700 x 38s will be as good with flats as the 27" tyres have been.
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Re: Randonneur/Cyclocross/Gravel grinder project

Postby ldrcycles » Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:11 pm

Just a couple of questions as i start to get the parts together.

I'm looking at using straddle cable carriers like this just because they are prettier than the ones i'm used to seeing but do they actually have any advantages?

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And i've seen a couple of comments saying that fork mounted hangers are less prone to judder and have some other advantages over the headset mounted type?
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