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Old 11-24-07, 03:11 PM   #1
LittlePixel
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My Mercton Fixie: Almost there!

Just the front Pantour wheelbuild to do, hampered by sourcing spokes that were too small — Gah!;

Anyhoo - a sneak peek for those of you that recall my many mentions of this project since getting the Merc in June.
Still to fit - brake lever, brake cable, pedals [coming monday I hope] then off I go!




Partlist:
Merc frame, bottom-bracket, clamps, tensioner, headset
Brompton S-type stem, Titanium forks, rear triangle and seatpost; pentaclip saddle-bracket, dual-pull brake calipers.
Birdy suspension elastomer
Phil Wood 32h Kierin (110mm OLN) track hub with 12 tooth sprocket and lockring
Pantour 32h suspension hub
Velocity Aeroheat 32 black anodised machined 349 ISO rims
Schwalbe Stelvio ISO 349 foldable slick tyres
Brooks B17-titanium (butchered)
Campagnolo Carbon cranks w 53t chainring
Ergon grips/bar ends, shortened straight alloy bars
Custom rollers off Ebay UK (butchered rollerblade wheels)
Various Ti nuts and bolts

More pics when finished next week...

Last edited by LittlePixel; 11-24-07 at 09:42 PM.
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Old 11-24-07, 03:54 PM   #2
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Old 11-24-07, 04:45 PM   #3
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Is that a prancing stallion decal on the frame?
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Old 11-24-07, 04:47 PM   #4
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Is that a prancing stallion decal on the frame?
Well spotted - it's actually just photoshopped on for now but definitely considering it - it goes so well with the red frame! (checks ebay for wee enameled ferrari badges)...
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Old 11-24-07, 05:05 PM   #5
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Verrry nice. I like the 16 spoke wheel. I don't think anyone has gone with the Velocity rims that you can drill yourself, but I thought about it when building my current wheels. Since I tour on them, I went for the full 32 spokes, but that makes it the equivalent of what? A 64 spoke 700cc wheel?
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Old 11-24-07, 05:21 PM   #6
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Drilling yer' own must take complicated maths to get it right!
I suppose I should get around to finding a good method to seal the empty holes - anyone got any tried and tested fixes for that? (beyond black duck tape )
Thanks for the kind words - really itching to get it finished now and see if it will work as a fixie with a chain-tensioner...
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Old 11-24-07, 06:16 PM   #7
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Does it still fold?
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Old 11-24-07, 07:25 PM   #8
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Does it still fold?
Yup - how well it works 'fixed' is another matter to be seen once the wheel is on... If not I can always spin on a freewheel.
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Old 11-24-07, 07:30 PM   #9
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I suppose I should get around to finding a good method to seal the empty holes - anyone got any tried and tested fixes for that? (beyond black duck tape )
To my pleasant surprise the tape is holding up very well - no loss so far.

The spokes look very thick...?
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Old 11-24-07, 07:31 PM   #10
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Where did you get the frame?
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Old 11-24-07, 08:10 PM   #11
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Velocity Veloplugs

Nice job, and a look at the Velocity site shows their Veloplugs, which suit your spare hole problem on the inside.

http://www.velocitywheels.com/default.asp?contentID=555
http://www.fixedgeargallery.com/revi...city/veloplugs
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Old 11-24-07, 09:13 PM   #12
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To my pleasant surprise the tape is holding up very well - no loss so far.

The spokes look very thick...?
I think that's more to do with the way I've removed it from the background in the photo; They are normal 14g stainless spokes - admittedly not butted...

Got the 'frame' as a whole Merc bike - they sell them new one at a time on UK ebay. I have a large box full of spares now should I want to rebuild it Mercstyle.
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Old 11-24-07, 09:19 PM   #13
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Nice job, and a look at the Velocity site shows their Veloplugs, which suit your spare hole problem on the inside.

http://www.velocitywheels.com/default.asp?contentID=555
http://www.fixedgeargallery.com/revi...city/veloplugs
Thanks for the links - they look just the thing!
And a European stockist too (hopefully)
Veloplug.com

Last edited by LittlePixel; 11-24-07 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 11-25-07, 05:59 AM   #14
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I'm curious - what is the seat post diameter?
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Old 11-25-07, 06:20 AM   #15
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It's the standard Brompton size - coming in at 32mm
Are you wondering about getting a Ti post for one of your ponys?
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Old 11-25-07, 08:28 AM   #16
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chain tensioner on a fixed gear?
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Old 11-25-07, 10:36 AM   #17
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chain tensioner on a fixed gear?
Maybe because the rear triangle pivot point is too far away from the crank axle, which can lead to a loose chain when the rear triangle is folding position
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Old 11-25-07, 10:50 AM   #18
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Very stylish Pixel. Nice work and unique. You have a talent for seeing how to make a nice bike out of an ordinary one.

Is that the standard Merc plastic chain tensioner? If so dump it and buy the aluminium one from Anita's ebay shop for £12. The plastic one is pants. I broke three of them and my mate broke one in his first twenty miles. It is by far and away the least relibale item on the Merc. The rest of the stuff is OK. The alu tensioner is a good item, but best keep a spare screw for the inner jockey wheel. I bent one while hammering my bike over bumps. The aluminium item won't break like the plastic one does, but when the chain gets well out of order on bumps and the rider keeps up the pedaling pressure, something will give - its the jockey bolt on the metal tensioner, or the tensioner itself on the plastic one.


And to makeinu - Pokkuhlag is right. As you fold the rear triangle right under, the chain becomes about two inches too loose.
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Old 11-25-07, 11:08 AM   #19
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Is that the standard Merc plastic chain tensioner? If so dump it and buy the aluminium one from Anita's ebay shop for £12.
Where is Anita's ebay shop? I can't seem to find it.
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Old 11-25-07, 11:09 AM   #20
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Maybe because the rear triangle pivot point is too far away from the crank axle, which can lead to a loose chain when the rear triangle is folding position
Yes - ideally it would be without but it would drop the chain all the time. The chain slackens by 2-3 inches when you fold the triangle under itself so this is really the only option besides finding a way to secure the slack chain some other way when folded.
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Old 11-25-07, 11:21 AM   #21
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Very stylish Pixel. Nice work and unique. You have a talent for seeing how to make a nice bike out of an ordinary one.
Thanks man! I'm a sucker for aesthetics - they look a lot nicer with no cables going to the rear... I think I'm a minimalist at heart.

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Is that the standard Merc plastic chain tensioner?
It is but I have an alloy one already on order - forgot to mention that. Yes - I recalled your previous posts on the subject and it does indeed seem a little flimsy especially for my use. Hopefully it will arrive as quickly as the bike did; @makeinu - for Merc parts on ebay search for username 123maddy.

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The alu tensioner is a good item, but best keep a spare screw for the inner jockey wheel. I bent one while hammering my bike over bumps. The aluminium item won't break like the plastic one does, but when the chain gets well out of order on bumps and the rider keeps up the pedaling pressure, something will give - its the jockey bolt on the metal tensioner, or the tensioner itself on the plastic one.
Thanks for the sage! Hope i can get a good chainline; to me these are the inherant flaw with the frame - if only there was a way they could get the rear to hinge around the same centre-point as the cranks then the tension would never drop and it'd be a more reliable system...
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Old 11-25-07, 12:28 PM   #22
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Great Stuff pixel !!
Q's ...
did you buy a complete merc (and ditch the rear triangle etc. ?)...
Were Brompton OK about selling just Ti triangle and forks ?
For the ultimate minimal look how about some internal cable runs ?
... or ... I guess if rear is fixed ? ..then you only have a front brake cable -- but then, wont the chain tensioner allow 'overrun' ? (ie top chain run slackening when slowing) ??
Looks like gearing may be 70"+ .. will this be OK for setting off and hilly bits --- (or did I remember comments about thighs like hams ).

Anyway ... well done !! NV !
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Old 11-25-07, 12:42 PM   #23
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Did you buy a complete merc (and ditch the rear triangle etc. ?)...
I did yes. I have a box full of Merc bits if anyone wants anything...

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Were Brompton OK about selling just Ti triangle and forks?
Didn't need to worry them as SJS Cycles will sell you any part you can think of with no questions asked...

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For the ultimate minimal look how about some internal cable runs?
That sounds like quite a job - I'd fear of drilling the alloy. Maybe on a steel one...

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... or ... I guess if rear is fixed?
It is - or that's the plan.

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...but then, wont the chain tensioner allow 'overrun' ? (ie topchain run slackening when slowing)??
This is what remains to be seen... I've a good feeling about it but know it's a gamble. If it's not workable I'll be just as happy to spin on a freewheel. Might not bother with rear brakes - I never use them anyway.

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Looks like gearing may be 70"+
75" by my calcs (53—>12)

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will this be OK for setting off and hilly bits --- (or did I remember comments about thighs like hams ).
Perhaps not - that's just the chainring that came with the cranks. If it's too much I may go down to 52t or lower. I usually ride about 72" on my Twenty and Peugeot so I guess I have to suck it and see. It'll be FAST if it does all work though [grins]

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Anyway ... well done !! NV !
Sweet - thanks!
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Old 11-25-07, 01:27 PM   #24
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if only there was a way they could get the rear to hinge around the same centre-point as the cranks then the tension would never drop and it'd be a more reliable system...
Yes - you're right. I look at the DT Mini and admire the simple drive, sans tensioner. It's is the only fail point I've found with the bike - oh, and a few rear spokes. I don't know if Brompton plastic tensioners break much, but the original plastic Merc one does. Grace Gallant who make the Merc, now supply new models with the metal part as standard.

Last edited by EvilV; 11-25-07 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 11-26-07, 05:14 AM   #25
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I will be extremely interested to hear whether or not the chain tensioner dies under backpedalling. Cool project!
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