Showing posts with label Framesets. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Framesets. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Velo Orange Polyvalent 4

The Velo Orange Polyvalent in lilac (top) and deep emerald green (bottom). Both images courtesy of Velo Orange blog.
Velo Orange is currently having a presale on its updated Polyvalent frameset.  The retail price is $725, but the presale price is $675. VO expects the presale framesets to arrive in April 2018.

Velo Orange, based in Annapolis, Maryland, is a bike nerd's paradise: So many elegant parts and accessories!  Chris Kulczycki started the company in 2006.  Last year, Chris retired and sold the company to two of his employees, Adrian and Igor.  

With all those wonderful parts, you can build yourself an awesome bike.  It just so happens that Velo Orange sells framesets.

The Polyvalent frameset can be built into a do-it-all bike. Tom wrote about an earlier version of the frameset back in 2010. He wrote that the Polyvalent's "multi-purpose nature makes it perfect for those who can only have one bike." 

Ah, the search for "The One."  The bike that can do everything.  That's literally the idea behind the Polyvalent.  I don't speak French, but VO informs me that "Polyvalent" is French for "many forms."  Magnifique!

VO has been hyping this updated Polyvalent since, well, October 2016,  and November 2016, and October 2017.  They were excited! Now I see why.

This version has double eyelets so you can run your fenders and install your racks.  It's designed for wide 650b tires or even wider 26" tires.  It takes disc brakes. There's room for three water bottle mounts.  You can do what you want with this monster.

Here are the specs:

  • Frameset material: 4130 double butted chromoly steel
  • Fork: 1" threaded
  • Wheel Size: 650B or 26" 
  • Tire Clearance: 650B x 47mm, 26 x 2.3" (either with fenders)
  • Rear Spacing: 135mm
  • BB: English threaded 68mm
  • Brakes: IS mount disc, 160mm
  • Seatpost: 27.2mm
  • Front Derailleur Size: 28.6mm
  • Water bottle mounts: Triple on top of downtube, one set on seattube, one set on underside of downtube
  • Fender bosses: seat stay bridge, chainstay bridge, under fork crown
  • Rear Dropouts: Vertical with stainless steel replaceable hanger
  • Frame Eyelets: Double eyelets on rear dropouts for racks and fenders
  • Internal eyelets on seat stays
  • Fork Eyelets: Double eyelets on fork dropouts for racks and fenders
  • Triple thru-bosses on the blades for lowrider racks
  • Hourglass braze-on for Randonneur or Campeur Racks.
  • Rear Brake Routing: Easy internal routing for rear brake cable housing/hydraulic tubing
  • Ovalized top tube for lateral stiffness and easy shouldering

Monday, January 30, 2017

Soma Pescadero

The Soma Pescadero all built up and ready to roll through the woods. Photo credit: The Soma Blog

Soma plans to start selling its Pescadero frameset in March 2017.  The price has not been announced.

The Pescadero is Soma's update to the Soma E.S. ("Extra Smooth") road sport frame.  As we said back in 2009, the Soma E.S. "is a quality steel frame for someone who wants to build their own commuter or touring bike. It has a relaxed geometry, which should make for a comfortable ride."  David even snapped a photo of his sister's Smoothie and posted it here.

So why is Soma fixing something that ain't broke?  According to the Soma Blog, the primary reason for the update is that the new Pescadero can run wide, supple 42c tires.  To accommodate the tire width, the frameset fits 67mm long reach brakes.

On the topic of brakes, Soma Blog had this to say about the Pescadero:

Some people feel that long reach caliper brakes just aren't quite responsive enough.  I can't say that I agree with that, since I've been riding them for years, but to those people I'd say you have two options to consider:

Option 1 is to just go for the disc brake friendly Fog Cutter and embrace the future, man.  But if you're the wool wearing, pipe smoking, Robert Burns reading type of cyclist consider...

Option 2. Centerpull brakes! Remember those? Mafac, Weinmann, Dia Compe? Even Shimano used to make them. Anyway, Paul Components up in old Chico, CA makes some and they are just bitchin. Great stopping power, tons of fender clearance, stiff as a metaphor, and boy-oh-boy do they look nice.  We even included a special cable hanger in the back so you don't have to use one of those dangly ones.

Nice. This is some of the best bicycle product writing since Grant Petersen was at Bridgestone.  That line about the "wool wearing, pipe smoking, Robert Burns reading type of cyclist?"  It's like they really know us!  And speaking of Petersen, the Burns mention is the best literary reference used in conjunction with a new bike release since Rivendell came out with the Betty Foy, a mixte named for a character in a Wordsworth poem.

Here are the specs for the Pescadero frameset:

- Tange Prestige heat-treated butted CrMo steel front triangle; butted CrMo rear end
- Road sport geometry (inbetween road race and cyclo-cross bikes in handling responsiveness)
- Rear rack, front mini rack & fender mounts
- Designed with Paul Racer center mount, center pull brakes in mind. Also fits 57-73mm reach dual pivot caliper brakes.
- Lugged crown CrMo steel fork included
- Stiff and light Breezer-style dropouts
- 1-1/8" size headtube
- 27.2mm post size
- 6 sizes: 48, 51, 54, 56, 58, 61, cm
- 4.25 lbs. (51cm)
- In Colonial Blue

And here's some Robert Burns, circa 1786:

Lines To An Old Sweetheart

Once fondly lov'd, and still remember'd dear,
Sweet early object of my youthful vows,
Accept this mark of friendship, warm, sincere,
Friendship! 'tis all cold duty now allows.
And when you read the simple artless rhymes,
One friendly sigh for him -- he asks no more,
Who, distant, burns in flaming torrid climes,
or haply lies beneath th' Atlantic roar.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Soma Wolverine

The Soma Wolverine frameset includes fork and Tange IRD stainless steel sliding dropouts. Photo courtesy of Soma Blog.
The Soma Wolverine frameset is available from Soma Fabrications for $620.

We once had a commenter -- our resident curmudgeon, really -- who called himself "Al in Philadelphia." Whenever we posted about a bike like this one, Al would exclaim: "Why is this THING being reviewed on a site that calls itself 'Bikes for the Rest of Us'?"  I'm not even paraphrasing. Check out Al's comments on the All City Space Horse.

So for Al and anyone else who wonders why I consider this THING a bike for the rest of us, let me explain.  It all comes down to one word: VERSATILITY.

This Wolverine will take racks and fenders. It can be built up with an internal gear hub.  It is compatible with a Gates Carbon Belt Drive.  But best of all, it accommodates really wide tires.  According to Soma, it will fit 700 x 45 tires with fenders.

A Wolverine with racks and fenders. Courtesy: Soma Blog.

Bike tires are shock absorbers.  Skinny tires might make sense on racing bikes, but they make for an uncomfortable ride in the real world. Wide, fat tires are great for riding on unpaved surfaces as well as roads that are paved but strewn with potholes and bumps.  Wide tires are also useful when hauling cargo.  So get with the cush.

One more thing about this bike: the color.  We never talk about the color here, even though, let's face it, many bicycle (and car) purchase decisions are made on color alone.  The Wolverine is pumpkin orange, which brings to mind the bike that set the standard for versatility nearly 25 years ago: the 1993 Bridgestone XO-1.

By the way, there is a great review of the Wolverine on reddit: Soma Wolverine vs. Surly Straggler. It's recommended reading if you're interested in this bike

Here are the specs:

- Tange Prestige heat-treated CrMo front triangle; butted CrMo rear end
- Clearance for 700x45c tires w/ fenders
- Rear hub spacing:135mm
- Gates Carbon belt drive compatible
- Matching lugged flat crown fork Tange Infinity CrMo steel fork; double eyelets pannier rack and mini rack mounts (mini rack mounts not pictured)
- Braze-ons for rear rack and fenders (disc brake-compatible racks only)
- 1-1/8" size headtube
- Sizes:50, 52, 54, 56, 58. 60, 62cm
- 4.79 lbs (frame); 2.3 lbs. (fork, uncut steerer)
- Color: Pumpkin Orange
- Compatible with Paragon Machine Works "flat/flanged sliding dropout" replacement inserts (Rohloff, Single Speed, Direct Mount, Thru Axle)

Friday, May 9, 2014

BULLITT Cargo Bike

While a number of North American designers have developed "longtail" cargo bikes, where the kids or freight are carried in back, the Dutch and Danish prefer keeping things up front. LARRY VS HARRY, a shop in Copenhagen, designed the BULLITT to be a relatively light-weight and speedy way to transport cargo and children.

Most of the models come standard with a 7 or 8-speed internal gear hub in the rear, disc brake in the front, a custom kick-stand and fenders. Derailleur gearing and e-assist are also available. The riding position is somewhat leaned-forward, especially for taller riders, and there is no step-thru frame option. The modern-looking aluminum frame is meant to be extra stiff, to prevent twisting even with heavy loads.

I had a chance to test-ride this bike alone and with kids in the front (in a version that has an added kid seat); the handling is similar to a road bike, with responsive (or twitchy) steering which takes a minute to get used to. Disc brakes are a good idea on a bike meant to carry weight at high speeds.

These bikes have been reviewed by:
Josh Volk
Lovely Bicycle
Momentum Magazine

Many of the Bullitts in the USA are sold by Splendid Cycles in Portland, Oregon, but they are also available in a few other cities. The bike comes as shown, but most people pay for a child seat or cargo box to be added, and an electric bike version with a lithium battery pack is also very popular. A frameset costs $2350 alone. The complete bike with Alfine 8-speed hub is $3500. The e-bike version with a BionX rear hub is a grand more, $4500. Dynamo hubs and lights are an option.

Due to the relatively narrow cargo deck (no wider than the handlebars), one child can fit easily, but only small kids can double up.  Winther, another Danish bike company, makes an adaptation of the Bullitt frame called the Wallaroo, which has a wider child carrier included, to fit two kids side-by-side. However, there is only one current USA dealer, JC Lind in Chicago.
BULLITT Specifications (ALFINE 8 version):

shifterAlfine 8 speed
rear drivetrainAlfine 8 speed
bottom bracketAlfine
chainSRAM 9-speed
brake leversAvid
brakes frontAvid BB7
brake rearAvid BB7
rotorsShimano centerlock
HeadsetFSA Pig
stemCivia Midtown 25.4
gripsCivia Ergo
pedalWellgo Platform
fenders20″ front/26″ rear black
tire frontSchwalbe Marathon 20×2
tire rearSchwalbe Marathon 26×2
tube frontSlime tube 20″
tube rearSlime tube 26″
rim stripSchwalbe rim liners
wheel frontAlfine/Alex DM24 rim/stainless spokes
wheel rearAlfine/Alex DM24 rim/stainless spokes

BULLITT Geometry:

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Handsome Devil

Complete Handsome Devil build. Credit:

The guys who started Handsome Cycles were inspired by Grant Petersen, who runs Rivendell and who worked for Bridgestone USA from the mid-80's to early '90s.  In particular, the Handsome guys were inspired by Petersen's 1993 Bridgestone XO-1, which they now offer a replica of called the Handsome XOXO.   

The mainstay of Handsome Cycles, though, is the Handsome Devil, which debuted in 2009 and which I wrote about here. Tom now owns a Devil.

Why did Tom choose a Handsome Devil over the Surly LHT and other bikes? He wrote about that here. Recommended reading.

Honorable Mention: Grant Petersen's Rivendell Atlantis, which I wrote about here. In his recent article "What bike should you buy?", Hiawatha Cyclery's Jim Thill wrote: "The Atlantis taught me a lot of what I now believe to be important characteristics of any bike that fits my needs and personality."

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Soma Buena Vista

The Buena Vista built with fenders and rear rack. Credit: Somafab

Soma Fabrications sells its 2013 Buena Vista mixte frameset for $500 (the 2012 frameset is currently on sale for $470). This is a quality steel mixte frame made from Tange Infinity heat-treated Chromoly with rack and fender eyelets. 

It's available in four sizes: 42, 50, 54, and 58 cm. The 42 cm takes 26" wheels and accommodates a width of 1.5"; the larger sizes take 700c wheels with a maximum tire width of 28c. Available in Pearl White and Old Gold.
Buena Vista frame and fork in "Old Gold."
Here are some reviews: Lovely Bicycle (test riding a 650B version)

Paved Magazine

Monday, August 13, 2012

Rivendell Betty Foy

A complete Betty Foy. Credit: Rivendell Bicycle Works.
Rivendell sells its Betty Foy mixte frameset for $1,050.  A frameset includes the frame, fork, headset, and bottom bracket.   A complete bike, without saddle or pedals, is estimated to cost $2,200, depending on parts.

While we're on the subject of mixtes, it seemed like a good idea to include the Betty Foy.  As with other Rivendell frames, the Betty Foy is high quality steel, with investment lugs.  The frameset is currently available in three sizes: 50, 55, and 60 cm.

Here is what Rivendell, i.e., Grant Petersen, has to say about the Betty Foy:
Clearance is key to the Foy.  It has enough to fit tires up to 40 mm wide, so it's good on rough roads.  It has clearance to take fenders easily, even with 40 mm tires, so it's the ideal foul weather commuter.  What you can do on a bike, you can do on your Betty Foy.

The name "Betty Foy" comes from a character in the Wordsworth poem "Idiot Boy" (go ahead, read it!).  This is a nice touch, given that there is something poetic about mixtes.

Monday, July 2, 2012

All City Space Horse

All City Cycles is reportedly selling its new Space Horse for $550 as a frameset or $1350 for the complete bike.

Nick, a new reader, brought the Space Horse to our attention. He said he discovered it in his search for a good all-around bicycle "to replace my racey road bike and bridge the gap between it and my mountain bike, consolidating down to a single cycle." It sounds like Nick has found The One.

According to All City, which also makes the popular Nature Boy, the Space Horse "is the most versatile bike in the AC lineup. It can handle front and rear racks, fenders, and has clearance for 42c tires. It also has our new custom semi horizontal dropouts which allow it to be set up geared or single." Hmmmm... perhaps it is The One.

Here is a review by Prolly is not Probably. And here are the specs:

Frame | All-City Space Horse 100% full 4130 ChroMoly steel. Double butted down, top, and seat tubes. Externally tapered, ovalized, and dimpled chain stays, tapered seat stays 130mm rear spacing, 1 1/8th headtube, English bottom bracket, 27.2 seatpost

Fork | All-City Space Horse 100% 4130 ChroMoly tapered fork blades, lugged crown and matching dropout.

Headset | Cane Creek S-10 Silver

Stem | Kalloy Silver, four bolt, 1 1/8th threadless, 31.8 clamp

Handlebar | Kalloy Silver, Classic bend, 31.8

Tape | Velo Cork Black Shift

Brake Lever | Shimano Tiagra 4600 10 speed

Front Derailleur | Shimano Tiagra 4600

Rear Derailleur | Shimano Tiagra 4600

Brake | Tektro R520 Silver

Crankset | Shimano Tiagra 4600 Silver, 50-34t

Bottom Bracket | Shimano

Seatpost | Kalloy Silver, 27.2mm

Saddle | All-City Gonzo Black

Cassette | Shimano Tiagra 12-30t, ten speed

Chain | Sram PC-1031 Silver

Hubs | Tiagra Silver

Rims | Alex DA16 Silver, 32 hole

Tires | Continental Contact 700 X 37c, steel bead

Tubes | Cheng Shin 700 X 32 Presta Valve

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Surly Pacer

The 2012 Surly Pacer is "sparkleboogie blue."  Sharp. Courtesy: Surly.

The Surly Pacer, available as a complete bike for MSRP $1175, or as a frameset for MSRP $465.

The Pacer has always stood out as an all-purpose steel road bike, especially in this era of carbon fiber racing machines, but three things about the 2012 Pacer caught my attention.

First, it's available as a complete bike now, not just as a frameset. That makes it more accessible to wider range of bike buyers.

Second, the 2012 model takes wider tires than previous Pacers. It will take a 32 mm tire, or 28 mm with fenders.

Third, I couldn't help but notice Surly's catchy slogan: "The Pacer reminds us, quietly, that there is a road bike out there for the rest of us." 

Here are the specs:

Frame: Surly 4130 CroMoly steel. Main triangle double butted. TIG welded.

Fork: Surly 4130 CroMoly steel. Lugged and brazed. 1 1/8" threadless steer tube, uncut

Crankset: Andel RSC2 , RSC2-217XR. 34/50t. Silver

Bottom bracket: Shimano UN-54, 68 x 110mm. Square taper interface

Front Derailleur: Shimano Tiagra , FD4600. 28.6mm clamp

Rear Derailleur: Shimano Tiagra, RD4600-SS.

Silver Cog or Cogset: Shimano Tiagra , CS-4600. 12-28t

Chain: SRAM PC-1071 , 10-speed. Silver

Headset: Cane Creek 40 , 1-1/8" threadless. Black

Brakes: Tektro R358 , Dual pivot. Standard reach (47-57mm). Silver

Brake/Shift Levers: Shimano Tiagra , ST4600

Stem: KALLOY AS-008 , 26.0mm bar clamp. Silver

Handlebar: Salsa MotoAce Short and Shallow , Silver

Saddle: WTB SST Comp , Steel rails. Black vinyl.

Seatpost: Kalloy SP-342 , 27.2mm. 350mm. Black

Extras: Surly stainless steel post clamp, Cushy cork bar tape

Front Hub: Shimano Tiagra , Shimano Tiagra HB4600. 32h. Silver

Rear Hub: Shimano Tiagra , FH4600. 32h. 130mm O.L.D. Silver Rims Alex R390 , 32h. Black

Tires: Continental Ultra Sport , 28mm. Steel bead. Black

Sizes: 42, 46, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62

Braze-ons: Single fender eyelets front and rear, dual water bottle mounts, and pump peg (54cm and larger)

Monday, April 30, 2012

Soma Tradesman

What you see is what you get.  Courtesy: Soma Fabrications.
Soma is offering this new-for-2012 Tradesman cargo frameset for $700.

According to Soma, the Tange chromoly frame can load 40-50 pounds of cargo. It's one-size-fits-all.  Here's a few more details:

- 22" inches wide and 68" long

- Designed for 26" rear and 20" front wheels.

- Designed for front and rear disc brakes

- Extra long 40mm oversize head tube for maximum cargo capacity

- Modular high-tensile steel rack.

- Wheelbase of 1116mm

What it looks like built up. Courtesy: Somafab Blog
There have been a few reviews:

Urban Velo

Bike Tinker

Pushing the Pedals

Soma also has another cargo bike in the works, called the Pickup Artist, which you can read about here

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Lighthouse Sequoia

The Sequoia is back!  Credit: Lighthouse Cycles.
The Lighthouse Sequoia, by Tim Neenan. According to his website, a new custom Sequoia is $1800 for frame and fork.

Neenan distinguished himself in the 80’s as Specialized’s first bicycle frame designer when he created the Sequoia, a sport-tourer, the Expedition, a touring bike, and one of the first mountain bikes, the Stumpjumper.

The Specialized Sequoia, a lugged, steel bike largely manufactured by Miyata in Japan,  is now recognized as a classic. It takes wide tires and was built to travel distances and to carry things.  It's an excellent commuter bike, as the blogger at "A Few Spokes Shy of A Wheel" can attest after putting 30,000 miles on his.  Neenan, with the blessing of Specialized founder Mike Sinyard, is now recreating the Sequoia at Lighthouse Cycles.  You can get it lugged or TIG-welded, your choice, with a custom fit.

Own the road! Credit: Lighthouse Cycles

Don’t have $1800? Here’s an alternative: find yourself an old Specialized Sequoia and lovingly restore it. Here are a few examples:

Mark Rosenberg on cyclofiend

Franklyn Wu on flickr

Kitchen Lattice on flickr

And for more on Sinyard, Neenan, and the history of Specialized, check out this Bike Rader article.

Do you own a Sequoia?  Tell us about it in the comments.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Surly Troll

The Troll as a complete bike. Credit: Surly Blog.

We already mentioned the Surly Troll in our recent discussion of "do-everything" bikes. The Troll frameset is due to arrive in November 2010, and according to Surly's blog, the MSRP will be $495. Surly has not said whether it will be offered as a complete bike in the future.

With its wide tire clearance, the Troll is designed to be an extremely versatile bike. When it was first announced on Surly's blog, they described it as "a commuter, tractor, off-roader, tourer, dethmachine."

As for the "tractor" part, it seems plain that the Troll was designed to go with Surly's new trailer. The Troll has horizontal dropouts along with a thick axle plate for installing Surly trailer-mounting nuts.

The frame has full line guides for derailleur and brake housing, fender eyelets, and disc and rim brake mounts. Both the frame and fork are equipped with mounts for front and rear racks, and the design allows the use of racks, fenders and disc brakes all at the same time.

Basically, the Troll can be whatever you need it to be, short of a carbon-lite racing bike.

Here are the specs:

Tubing: Surly 4130 CroMoly steel. TIG-welded. Main triangle double-butted

Seatpost diameter: 27.2mm

Seatpost clamp: 30.0mm Surly stainless, included

Headset/stem: 1-1/8" threadless

Bottom bracket: 73mm shell width, threaded standard English (1.37" x 24t)

Braze-ons/extras: Full-length housing line guides for derailleurs and brakes; 2 sets of water bottle cage mounts, removable post cantilever pivots; upper seatstay threaded barrels,mid-and low-blade fully threaded through-blade fork eyelets; threaded holes for racks, fenders and trailer mounting nuts; Rohloff OEM2 axle plate mounting slot

Brake compatibility: Disc and rim brake compatible. Note: rear disc brake is limited to 165mm maximum rotor diameter and requires the use of Surly caliper adapter

Tire clearance: 26 x 2.5" with rear wheel fully forward. Clearance for 2.7" tire with wheel farther back

Chainring clearance: 28/38/50t

Hub compatibility: 100mm O.L.D. front, 135mm O.L.D. rear

Fork: TIG-welded 4130 CroMoly, 100mm suspension corrected, tapered straight blade. Low- and mid-blade fully threaded through-blade rack eyelets; fender mount eyelets at dropout; 1-18" x 260mm threadless steer tube, 51mm disc mount, removable cantilever pivots, line/housing guides

Color: Agent Orange

Troll frameset. Credit: Surly

Update #1: check out Bikes to Like at Chasing Mailboxes on Pedro's Troll. 

Update #2: For 2012, Surly now offers the 29'er version of the Troll, which it calls the Ogre

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rawland Sogn

The Rawland Sogn steel frameset, with its signature biplane fork, can easily be built up as a versatile, do-anything bike. Most notably, the wide fork allows for swapping knobbies and road tires and wheels (700C or 650B). You could keep two wheelsets and have two very different bikes using the same frame.

Ready for the road.  Courtesy: Gino Zahnd
Ready for the trail.  Courtesy Gino Zahnd.

And now for some news.

Rawland Cycles recently announced that it will reissue the Sogn after listening cyclists' suggestions for “refinements of this venerable model.” The price is $500 for frameset orders received by October 15, then the price will go up to $600.

For more on the Sogn, check out the Cycling Spokane blog.  If you own a Sogn, leave a comment and let us know how you built it up and whether you're enjoying it.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Yuba Mundo V3.0

Longtail cargo bicycles are the minivans and pickup trucks of the bike world. The long load decks can hold groceries, kids or a thousand bananas. Yuba's second generation Mundo has 21 speeds and includes a load deck and fenders with flaps for $1099. The strong steel frame of the Mundo has the highest load rating of any longtail bike in the US. You can find the full specs here and close-up photos from EcoVelo here. My favorite feature? The deflopilator (say it in your best Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz voice).

Yuba is offering a special edition "Mundo Wheels 4 Life" that is slightly fewer features (it has 6-speeds and lacks the load deck and fenders) for $899. Even better when you purchase a Wheels 4 Life version they donate a bike to Africa or Central America. You can also get the Mundo as a frameset or e-bike.
Yuba also offers great accessories including *huge* 85 liter "Go Getter" panniers, child seats (the deck can fit two) and stoker-type bars for rear passengers. The Mundo frames have built in load platforms that also accept running boards. So if you pick up stoker bars, running boards, a soft seat and wheel skirts you're set up to ferry around the kids.

See more photos on EcoVelo Blog where they do a full review of the Mundo V3.0.