Saturday, August 17, 2013

Dirt road frame

A little over a year ago, I was invited on a ride in Rothrock State Park by Tom Hovan.  It revolutionized my riding.  There are so many quiet gravel roads up in the park, and it's right behind my house.  In 5 minutes, I can be riding in solitude.  Granted, I'll be riding up a mountain, but it will be in solitude. 

Last year, I rode my road bike with a little bigger tire.  I would switch wheels when it was time to ride on the road.  I got tired of that, so I went to the stash of frames in the attic.  I have been riding an old touring bike I made decades ago on gravel roads.  It doesn't fit me, I got the idea to build a frame that was too big for me because I'm shorter than the nominal bear.  And back then, I wanted to sell this frame.  But as a framebuilder, it's more than a little embarrassing to ride a frame that doesn't fit.  Maybe it's a "French Fit," because the reach is just fine for me.  But my thighs hit the seat stays, so it's time for a new bike to replace it.

I have a "monster cross" bike in the works, but I like the touring bike/frame so much that I want to replicate it only without the very high top tube.  Long reach side-pull brakes and pretty much a road geometry.  Maybe a little slacker head angles, I have to decide how much work I want to do bending the lugs.  I have a set of Llewellyn "Slant 6" lugs, so it's going to be lugged.  I will use one of the forks I rejected for the monster cross because it's not heavy enough for discs. 

More on this when it starts to happen.  Tubes are due in on Wednesday.

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