I thought I would post a couple of photos of the Downtube as it undergoes it's makeover.
As show, it's sporting a Spiderflex saddle, Polar bottle cage and insulated bottle (which doesn't seem to work any better than a regular bottle, but it is BPA free ), Nashbar trekking bars, and 130mm stem (also from Nashbar). In hindsight, 130mm stem is probably not what I wanted. I'll be ordering a smaller (probably 80mm) stem after my road trip this weekend. It's comfortable as is, but I worry about having too much of my weight extended that for forward past the post. Also...
I ordered a Brooks B17 saddle and Carradice saddle bag. From my understanding the B17 is most comfortable when ridden in a more upright position. I'm going to for comfort here, not speed, so this just reinforces the decision to go with a shorter stem.
As for the Spiderflex, I'm still torn on this. It's not the worst thing I've ridden by any means, and since there's a space between the left and right pads, you don't need to wear biking shorts or any special clothing for maximum comfort. I think my problem with it is more of a mental barrier than anything. Not having the horn on there takes some getting use too. I feel like something's missing when I'm riding. I'm sure in time I could get used to it, but I'm just not sure I want to. I'll try the Brooks for a while and if I don't like that, then I'll stick to the Spiderflex.
The other components sitting my desk you don't see in the photo are a set of Dinotte front and rear lights (brightest bike lights I've seen for the price, but wait for their specials they have from time to time and safe a fortune) and my CatEye computer. Still haven't gotten a good pump yet (open to suggestions). Need to do this soon before it comes back to bite me on a long ride.
My only other possible upgrade for the bike is to possibly switch to some more durable tires once I start doing longer distances, possibly some Schwable Marathon Plus tires or similar. I'll wait and see how often I get flats first before doing that so I can weigh the headaches against the expensive of a set of such tires (about $90 a set).
I hope to have it all finished by this weekend. Depends on UPS I guess.
I went with a 100mm stem with the Nashbar trekking bar and I'm still upright enough to be comfortable when my hands are on the close part of the bar. I originally was going to go with an 85mm stem but the distance from the near part of the bar to the mounting point is about 90mm so too short a stem might bring your knees too close to the handlebar.
Hello can you repost the pics so I can see your bike> I have a Downtube 8NS also and am verry happy with it and my upgrades, but I am always open to ideas on upgrades.What stem did you fit. I may swop move the downtube stem to another bike.