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  1. #226
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    Beautiful! I've always loved Handsome's stripes! The biggest reason I haven't tried to test-ride a Speedy is because it's so similar to my Smoothie- I'd have to ask the question: do I really need TWO Smoothies? (hmmm....)

    But seriously- the slightly longer TT does make me curious-
    I have a lugged, flame red, '92 XO-3 that rides a little too well, a little too nimbly, with a flat-bar. I'll assume that's because of its semi-racing geometry and the way it distributes my weight across the frame- the front end's way too light; when I thought about it, the shorter TT kinda said it was never intended to be ridden an 'upright' bike.

    I reinstalled the original mustache bars, which immediately stabilized the ride, but I'm no fan of them (braking puts a strain on my wrists and there really aren't many places on a mustache bar to mount the levers at a comfortable angle). In the quest to surmount that, I've been considering drop bars, Nitto M136 (I have a spare one) or maybe Rando bars. What do you guys think?
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    Last edited by DIMcyclist; 09-10-12 at 01:34 PM. Reason: Just thought it would read better; accuracy.
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  2. #227
    Senior Member juggleaddict's Avatar
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    Some simple advise, if you want a Rivendell nothing will replace that feeling. Whether it be the name/image, the functionality, whatever. If you get it in your head that THAT is the bike that you're comparing all others to. Guess which bike you want? : )

    Save up. Get the Riv. I really wanted a custom LHT, it cost me twice my budget, but I couldn't be happier with it. Sucks to wait, glorious to come through happy on the other side.

  3. #228
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by juggleaddict View Post
    Some simple advise, if you want a Rivendell nothing will replace that feeling. Whether it be the name/image, the functionality, whatever. If you get it in your head that THAT is the bike that you're comparing all others to. Guess which bike you want? : )

    Save up. Get the Riv. I really wanted a custom LHT, it cost me twice my budget, but I couldn't be happier with it. Sucks to wait, glorious to come through happy on the other side.
    Ah... good advice. I waited 20 years for this bike... sometimes, it's worth the wait...

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  4. #229
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    That is wisdom, Ozonation- and a nice critique of Rivendell ownership. In one way or another we're all looking for that 'perfect' ride, and while Riv's are nice- and a solid answer for some- they aren't for everybody.

    I'm one of those who holds that a Riv has a lot of less expensive competition. Riv's occupy a particular middle-ground between mass-market & custom frames. The cost of an average (stock) Riv edges toward that of a custom-built frame, and if you're going to spend that much to begin with, why not go the whole nine yards? Or, to put it another way. if you're willing to wait 20 years for a stock Rivendell, why balk at waiting a mere 5 or 6 years for a full-custom Vanilla? Or for that matter, an Ahearne, Ira Ryan, Milholland, Hufnagel, Sweat Pea, Belladonna, Steelman, MAP, etc. - they're ALL stunning rides. But then so is my XO-3, and it only cost 1/10 as much an Atlantis.

    So: is there an ideal poor man's Riv, or is Rivendell itself just a poor(ish) man's alternative to a full-custom? In the end, cheap or otherwise, custom or stock, they're all lugged steel, get ridden, stolen, found, nicked, dented, chipped, bent, scraped, rusty, restored-- and loved. And regardless of performance, it's that aura of time and attachment with which we imbue these objects that truly determines their worth. I've always felt that that's the cornerstone of Rivendell's philosophy, the core of it: that a bike is more than a ride, it's an object of memory that should itself be a worthy embodiment of the time spent in its company.

    And THAT can be ANY bike.
    Trek 820 (650b), Univega Rover 10 (650b), Trek 930, Fuji League, Bridgestone RB-2, Bridgestone XO-3, Soma Smoothie ES, LeMond Buenos Aires, Torelli Corsa Strada

  5. #230
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    In a nutshell, a poor man's Rivendell is an old used bike that you thoughtfully upgraded and outfitted to suit your needs and likes.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

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  6. #231
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    Yeah, more or less; not necessarily old, not necessarily used, but worthy of the time spent riding it... a LOT.

    Oh, wait-- it's a Riv: it's gotta have... lugs, right?

    Y'see, that's another consideration when discussing the idea of a 'poor man's Riv': which aspect of a Rivendell are we talking about? Simply a GP-designed frame? Or the aspect that emphasizes rugged, do-it-all functionality, or the one that the BikeSnob has referred to as the "$3000 fop-chariot"? Or some blend of these?

    Let's assume the latter and say that the functional can also be beautiful, and that true beauty ages well.
    Last edited by DIMcyclist; 09-10-12 at 08:17 PM. Reason: Clarity, humor.
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  7. #232
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    I was real close to getting an Atlantis but settled on a Mercian instead. I think the Atlantis and the Rivendell are fine bike, but their not the last word in bikes. I got a lot more custom features on my Mercian that the Atlantis couldn't even touch, and I paid about $300 more for the Mercian. Another great manufacture of custom bikes is Shamrock in Indianapolis IN, their cheaper then a custom Rivendell and will do any custom feature you want, and their strongly recommended by Richard Sachs...Rivendell is not recommended by Sachs, I thought that was interesting though it may not mean anything. If Shamrock had been in business when I bought the Mercian I may have bought the Shamrock, but there is something unique about knowing the Mercian was built in the oldest school way still in existence today, they use a hearth to heat the frames and prepare them for brazing.

  8. #233
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIMcyclist View Post
    That is wisdom, Ozonation- and a nice critique of Rivendell ownership. In one way or another we're all looking for that 'perfect' ride, and while Riv's are nice- and a solid answer for some- they aren't for everybody... I'm one of those who holds that a Riv has a lot of less expensive competition. .... And regardless of performance, it's that aura of time and attachment with which we imbue these objects that truly determines their worth. I've always felt that that's the cornerstone of Rivendell's philosophy, the core of it: that a bike is more than a ride, it's an object of memory that should itself be a worthy embodiment of the time spent in its company...And THAT can be ANY bike.
    Very true, and very deep! There are several other bikes that can be had for half or maybe at most two-thirds of what a Rivendell retails for.

    However, there is a certain "mystique" of owning and riding a Rivendell assuming that is the bike you want. If you're absolutely set on owning and riding a Rivendell, and you don't have one, then every time you ride your non-Rivendell bike, you'll think, "Is this as good as the Rivendell?" Maybe, maybe not. It depends on how much that mystique is valuable to you.

    I think my point is that if you want something, and if nothing else will do, then don't settle for a substitute: after all, the poor man (or woman) pays twice. Save up, pore over old Bridgestone galleries, gaze longingly at Rivendell's website... it makes finally owning one that much sweeter!
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  9. #234
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    Very true, and very deep! There are several other bikes that can be had for half or maybe at most two-thirds of what a Rivendell retails for.

    However, there is a certain "mystique" of owning and riding a Rivendell assuming that is the bike you want. If you're absolutely set on owning and riding a Rivendell, and you don't have one, then every time you ride your non-Rivendell bike, you'll think, "Is this as good as the Rivendell?" Maybe, maybe not. It depends on how much that mystique is valuable to you.

    I think my point is that if you want something, and if nothing else will do, then don't settle for a substitute: after all, the poor man (or woman) pays twice. Save up, pore over old Bridgestone galleries, gaze longingly at Rivendell's website... it makes finally owning one that much sweeter!
    On one hand you praised DIMcyclist for being so profound, but then on the other hand your saying Rivendell is the only bike for anyone because all others have to measure up to it. NOT TRUE. There are lots of other custom bike builders that are at least as good and mostly better then Rivendell not the other way around. Grant Peterson doesn't even make or manufacture or paint the bike personally or at his shop! He's just a designer and marketer, and that's it. And other brands of custom bikes have been around a lot longer then a Rivendell, so Rivendell is a come along lately brand that's factory made by Waterford to Grants specs, thus it is the substitute not the original.

  10. #235
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
    On one hand you praised DIMcyclist for being so profound, but then on the other hand your saying Rivendell is the only bike for anyone because all others have to measure up to it. NOT TRUE. There are lots of other custom bike builders that are at least as good and mostly better then Rivendell not the other way around. Grant Peterson doesn't even make or manufacture or paint the bike personally or at his shop! He's just a designer and marketer, and that's it. And other brands of custom bikes have been around a lot longer then a Rivendell, so Rivendell is a come along lately brand that's factory made by Waterford to Grants specs, thus it is the substitute not the original.
    rekmeyata.... NO, I did not say that Rivendell is the only bike for anyone. I said ... assuming that is the bike you want, and by you, I am clearly referring to whoever has been thinking about wanting and owning a Rivendell. And in this thread... way, way, way back, the OP was asking specifically about Rivendell.

    Substitute YOUR favourite brand of bike in place of the noun Rivendell. You're reading too much into what I wrote.
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  11. #236
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    rekmeyata.... NO, I did not say that Rivendell is the only bike for anyone. I said ... assuming that is the bike you want, and by you, I am clearly referring to whoever has been thinking about wanting and owning a Rivendell. And in this thread... way, way, way back, the OP was asking specifically about Rivendell.

    Substitute YOUR favourite brand of bike in place of the noun Rivendell. You're reading too much into what I wrote.
    Yeah, you're right, I was reading too much into it, it's late and I sped read it. sorry.

  12. #237
    Senior Member corwin1968's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIMcyclist View Post
    Yeah, more or less; not necessarily old, not necessarily used, but worthy of the time spent riding it... a LOT.

    Oh, wait-- it's a Riv: it's gotta have... lugs, right?

    Y'see, that's another consideration when discussing the idea of a 'poor man's Riv': which aspect of a Rivendell are we talking about? Simply a GP-designed frame? Or the aspect that emphasizes rugged, do-it-all functionality , or the one that the BikeSnob has referred to as the "$3000 fop-chariot"? Or some blend of these?

    Let's assume the latter and say that the functional can also be beautiful, and that true beauty ages well.
    To me, this is what Rivendell's philosophy boils down to. The rest is just window dressing. Personally, I couldn't care less about lugs or classic looks. I just want a good steel frame that rides well, takes wide tires, allows me to get in a comfortable position without looking too odd (even some Rivs suffer from this with their nine inches of quill stem sticking up) and that mostly looks good while doing it. I'm far more concerned with frame geometry than how the tubes are joined or how it's painted and Grant's reputation for designing nice riding frames is my primary motivator toward RBW.
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  13. #238
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
    Yeah, you're right, I was reading too much into it, it's late and I sped read it. sorry.
    No worries, but thanks! And yes, you're right that there are many other fine manufacturers. In fact, I had to think long and hard to see if the cost was justifiable to me before I finally decided to get a Rivendell. I looked at many other brands and custom manufacturers: there's even a local guy here in my town. In the end, I decided to just for what I had been thinking about for 20 odd years.

    My biggest concern is convincing my significant other that you need more than one bike!
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  14. #239
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Ozonation;14715954

    My biggest concern is convincing my significant other that you need more than one bike![/QUOTE]

    Oh man, I have that big time around my house! My wife is not into cycling at all and is not into me being into cycling! She thinks I'm nuts and will come up with chores for me to do when she knows I'm ready to go riding...you can imagine where that conversation might lead! "yes dear"!! When I got my now oldest bike in 84 she was a bit peeved because of the cost, but I was racing for crying out loud! Besides the insurance company from the party that hit my old bike paid for it so why would she care? Then in 87 I bought a 87 Miyata Team to race with and she had another cow because I already had a racing bike and didn't need another, but I explained I needed a back up, she didn't understand. Then I found a 88 Miyata 712 in a garage sale for dirt cheap and she gave me the dirtiest look. What was surprising was when I bought the Mercian, she came with me as we toured small part of UK and somehow we ended up in Derby, not sure how that happened, and I somehow found this little Mercian shop, so we walk in and I order a bike to be built without her complaining! I think she knew I wanted a touring bike, and she actually loved the lugs on the Vincitore Special!! That was the first and only time she actually liked a bike! But now I need to get a modern lightweight racing bike (all my road bikes are steel and from the 80's except the Mercian) and she's bucking me again because I now have 6 road bikes and why on earth do I need another?

    So I live in your shoes, heck your shoes are probably a bit better then mine?

  15. #240
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Ah rekmeyata... there's always another one, eh?

    My wife is actually pretty good with bikes: she has a nice comfort bike for cruising around, and a Brompton folding bike as well for commuting, and she's happy with both.

    I'm actually TRYING (LOL) to keep my bike stable to at most three. My next thought is to get a used fat bike for winter riding/commuting - and just because a fat bike looks so cool. I've never been overly happy with my old hybrid: seemed good 10 years ago, and now, well, not so much. I'll probably try to unload once I figure out the winter riding.

    As for N+1... the other thing I do is photography. I have five cameras - go figure!
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  16. #241
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    Ah rekmeyata... there's always another one, eh?

    My wife is actually pretty good with bikes: she has a nice comfort bike for cruising around, and a Brompton folding bike as well for commuting, and she's happy with both.

    I'm actually TRYING (LOL) to keep my bike stable to at most three. My next thought is to get a used fat bike for winter riding/commuting - and just because a fat bike looks so cool. I've never been overly happy with my old hybrid: seemed good 10 years ago, and now, well, not so much. I'll probably try to unload once I figure out the winter riding.

    As for N+1... the other thing I do is photography. I have five cameras - go figure!
    The only bike I planning on purchasing new is a Motobecane TI bike, and that will probably be my last new bike for as long as I live. If by chance I see a nicer used bike for cheap I will get it, but other wise I'm pretty much done.

    I still have a Canon Eos Elan 35mm and a Pentax K1000 that now just sits on a shelf; but I have a mint condition Polaroid type 48 with case I had since I was kid at age 8 but no more film for it, a mint condition in the box Kodak Instamatic 134 I got new but for some reason only used once, and a Polaroid Spectra I used in business long time ago but it too can't get film which is ok because the color quality was horrible. I wish I could get B & W film for the Type 48 just for fun, it really did take great B & W photos though, the color film sucked. A Canon digital tape movie camera we don't use anymore either. The only cameras we use now is a Canon A1000IS my wife uses and a Panasonic Lumix weather proof camera I use. All the other cameras I just use them as displays in my book shelf. I use to be into photography but in last 8 years I kind of drifted away from it, my wife takes most of the pictures now.

  17. #242
    2nd Amendment Cyclist RichardGlover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIMcyclist View Post
    I reinstalled the original mustache bars, which immediately stabilized the ride, but I'm no fan of them (braking puts a strain on my wrists and there really aren't many places on a mustache bar to mount the levers at a comfortable angle). In the quest to surmount that, I've been considering drop bars, Nitto M136 (I have a spare one) or maybe Rando bars. What do you guys think?
    What about some Salsa Woodchippers?

    Well, honestly, I'd try what you already have - no reason to spend money if a workable solution is already on hand.
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  18. #243
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Isn't the Nitto M136 the same as the Randonneur? I really like my Nitto Randonneur, it has flared drops so your wrist don't touch the side of the bar and it provides more handling leverage which is important for touring with a load; and it has a bit of flair bring a part of the bar a tad closer to you on the tops which offers a slightly different hand and reach position thus more hand position options. Also the Nitto Classic bar has a slight outward angle to the drops, not as much as the Randonneur though but more then a standard road drop bar.

  19. #244
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    My mistake Rekmeyata- it's an M186; they're 122mm shallow-drop ergo bars, not usually available here in the U.S. (I had to special-order both of mine from Japan); no flare in the drops & light as a feather- I love 'em. I have one set on my Soma and the other came from my LeMond (where I've temporarily swapped out the Nitto for an FSA wing-pro, just to see if I like the feel- the dimensions are about the same, but the shifter position is a little different and subsequently the lever reach seems a tad better from the drops; it's too early to tell for sure though).

    Since the Nitto isn't doing anything, I figured I might as well test it on the XO for now. If it turns out well, maybe I'll give the Randonneur bars a try; they sound interesting, kind of a nice middle-ground between the Mustache bar and road drops. I actually have considered Dirt Drops (like the Woodchipper) but I think their braking position would be even more awkward than the Mustache bar's.

    In any case, I finally get to dust off that set of Suntour bar-cons I've been saving...
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  20. #245
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    My biggest concern is convincing my significant other that you need more than one bike!
    I guess I'm lucky there; in my case, she's a former downhill racer. Between the two of us we have like, nine bikes in our garage.
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  21. #246
    Senior Member DIMcyclist's Avatar
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    Btw, Rekmeyata, when you toured England, did you do that on the 'B' roads? It's something I've been considering.
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  22. #247
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIMcyclist View Post
    My mistake Rekmeyata- it's an M186; they're 122mm shallow-drop ergo bars, not usually available here in the U.S. (I had to special-order both of mine from Japan); no flare in the drops & light as a feather- I love 'em. I have one set on my Soma and the other came from my LeMond (where I've temporarily swapped out the Nitto for an FSA wing-pro, just to see if I like the feel- the dimensions are about the same, but the shifter position is a little different and subsequently the lever reach seems a tad better from the drops; it's too early to tell for sure though).

    Since the Nitto isn't doing anything, I figured I might as well test it on the XO for now. If it turns out well, maybe I'll give the Randonneur bars a try; they sound interesting, kind of a nice middle-ground between the Mustache bar and road drops. I actually have considered Dirt Drops (like the Woodchipper) but I think their braking position would be even more awkward than the Mustache bar's.

    In any case, I finally get to dust off that set of Suntour bar-cons I've been saving...
    That's cool. The thing about Nitto, no matter what you buy from them you know it will be the best.

  23. #248
    Senior Member Chris_in_Miami's Avatar
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    The latest frankenbike built from the spare parts bin, I think it's poor-man's-Rivendellish (though that wasn't exactly the goal in putting it together)


  24. #249
    Senior Member rekmeyata's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIMcyclist View Post
    Btw, Rekmeyata, when you toured England, did you do that on the 'B' roads? It's something I've been considering.
    I did not tour England by bicycle, I had a business meeting in London that I took my wife along with and stayed 8 days longer then the 2 days I needed to be there. I can't recall the exact roads we took to Derby but I think the highway was M1 going to Nottingham out of London, when I got close to Derby we took an A road but I can't remember that number, we did this by car. I'm sure you could probably do some research on bicycle Touring routes in the UK. My understanding is that B roads are like our county roads but sometimes worse. A B road could be a dual lane pave, single lane pave, or dirt. So I suggest you find a map of bicycles routes. You might want to start on Google Maps, from there you can enter to starting point and then your destination point or two or more, then in the bar right above the starting point are 4 categories of travel the far right one is by bicycle. Although the Google map is not 100 percent accurate it is about 90 percent here in the USA, not sure about the UK. Bike lanes or paths on the Google system are a dark green line.

    I'm sure someone here has probably done the UK by bike and can lead you to the right maps, I suggest you repost this question in the touring forum.

  25. #250
    Lost Again gitarzan's Avatar
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    Soma Saga, 1991 Sirrus, Specialized Secteur Elite, Miele Umbria Elite.
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    I built two Riv inspired bikes

    From a 1991 Sirrus Frame, Ultegra, Deore parts. A road geometry.


    Then a Soma Saga frame I built up. Touring Geometry. The fork tube has since been trimmed.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jseis View Post
    Is a ukulele player in a mandolin town and banned from all bars by the chief of police unless he leaves his strings and gravy at the front door.

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