Monday, 3 June 2013

Single Speed Bob Jackson

There was a comment made by a friend at the Castle Combe Bike show yesterday regarding hub gears which went something like, '.. I really want Sturmey Archer gears to work but they just don't .. I changed to an Alfine and it worked first time...'  I felt a bit like that after doing the Bob Jackson conversion using a five speed Sturmey Hub gear.  I just could not get it to work consistently and the ticking noise, that accompanies certain gears, becomes annoying after a while.
Going to an Alfine defeated the object of the exercise as this would increase weight, so I decided to go the other way - single speed - and so built myself a new wheel - KingKong flip flop with Rigida Chrina to match.  With a thought to my knees I used a 21T free wheel to begin and went out for the first time about a couple of weeks ago.  The experience has been a revelation.  I quickly noticed the increased acceleration and started to understand how track bikes might work.  The hills were not as hard as I though they might be, OK its harder work than the usual low gear but the rate of assent is so much better.  I have only been defeated on one hill (out of Long Dean) and friend tell me that the use of SPDs would solve that one too.
I'm looking forward to breaking-in the saddle over the summer.  Maybe even a night ride.

Bob Jackson Single Speed

FSA Gimondi with TA Specialites chain ring - looks better than that originally supplied

King Kong Flip Flop - 21T - will reduce this number over time

Brooks Champion Special


Disc brakes and front suspension

At having received a request for a disc brake bike with front suspension I had a quick search in the Bike shed and came up with the following bikes, non of which really suit the request but by combining certain parts my come up with a candidate bike.

Claud Butler Rock - 7005 - 20" frame

GT Aggression - 6061 alloy - 20" frame

Rock Hopper Pro - 19" frame

Cross Sprinter 17 inch
The latter Cross has the best condition wheels and tyres - hardly used - Both spindles have solid axles indicating cost cutting compromises.  The rest of the bike is in poor condition.  The Front wheel on the CB could take V brakes.  The specialized is the most convincing frame but the CB has the better forks.   There's no prizes for guessing where the better components are but if you needed to build a convincing bike out of these scrap heap parts, which would you choose?

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