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Going full custom

As a reader I’ve been really enjoying the blogs of late, we’ve had Dave’s resurgent fitness (and racing prowess), we’ve had the joy of building your own bike, and indeed the pleasure of watching someone else do it for you - so I won’t be re-riding those trails, instead I will be taking it further back. Not as far back as a bike-fit mind, ‘cos that’s been done already as well, but rather to the bit in-between the fit and the build.

With the Transcontinental fast approaching, my broken bones are mending and it’s time I (re)started to prepare in earnest for the challenge ahead. Attention is focussed on the bike. Some dude once said ‘it’s not about the bike’ and it’s true, it isn’t. The bike is the vehicle, and the legs are the propulsion system - fitness will always trump design and aesthetics, but that doesn’t mean design and aesthetics are irrelevant.

I’m a believer in the merits of a good bike fit, but rather than simply changing stems and saddles etc to make you fit to the bike, I am going down the other route, custom; fitting the bike around me.

I’ve done the fit, dialled in the position, taken into account the long hours, the desire for luggage carrying, and the need for speed, and the outcome is a simple technical drawing of my new frame.

It’s based around a WyndyMilla Massive Attack, but with a few modifications to the geometry to make it fit what I want to do, and allow me to add and extra bidon. To say I’m excited about the outcome would be an understatement, but first I must temper my natural enthusiasm and wait for those tubes to be hand-wrapped.

And whilst I wait, it gives me the opportunity to come up with a custom paint scheme for it…..

6 comments

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Jimbomitch [165 posts] 4 years ago
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Am I being daft or will the position of the third bottle foul the chainset?

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themartincox [553 posts] 4 years ago
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not daft, but it won't foul it either. The builders will align all the bosses to ensure it all fits in nicely, that's one part of the drawing which isn't totally accurate to scale.

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severs1966 [418 posts] 4 years ago
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Third bottles in this position have been normal on touring bikes for decades. It's a great place to store an aluminium bottle of stove fuel on a tourer; you don't want it leaking on your clothes in a pannier.

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Alb [165 posts] 3 years ago
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No stack & reach - hope that's not the frame builders drawing

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Sam Alison [26 posts] 3 years ago
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Why would a framebuilder need to know stack or reach? In any case - it's quite obviously a drawing.sent by Martin to the builder/company arranging the building.

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BikeJon [210 posts] 3 years ago
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I've just finishing building up my custom Ti frame to get it on the road. I've really enjoyed going through the design to get what I wanted. The geometry was easy for me as I feel my carbon (cross) bike has the perfect geometry for me (I use it virtually solely on the road) so I precisely copied it. My Ti frame is to make up an exquisite commuter so it's great to have the same geometry all year round, no matter which bike I'm on.
I enjoyed being able to spec disc brakes (chain stay mounted), internal mechanical routing as well as making it Di2 ready. I also got mudguard/rack mounts and a chain pip added as well as getting the seat post slot facing forwards, to stop any dirt spraying in there from the rear wheel. I could even choose different tube diameters, so chose a tapered head tube and a wider down tube. It's all rather lovely, especially as I went the full hog and got Di2 for it!
I got mine from cielorossobikes for a pretty incredible £800 (double butted too) and it is worth the lead-time wait (typically 12 weeks). But I also think it's best if you have some experience in what you want and types of design design options I've alluded to here. Neil will help you out but I was able to be quite exacting about what I wanted due to the knowledge I've picked up over (too many) years.