Hi! I thought I'd take a minute to introduce myself to the forum. I'm an American currently living in FRANCE
Let's just say that its been a big change for a 'Southern Boy' (Atlanta, GA). Given current world events, you can imagine what its like trying to get help at the local bike shops. Anyway, I decided that my birthday gift to my self would be to build up a new/old bike.
Recently I've come to miss my early eighties Peugot and my early nineties Raleigh. Granted, the Peugeot was only 501 and the Raleigh 531 but there was something about the 'ride' of those bikes I've just not found in any of the Alu/Ti/Carbons I've ridden since.
My current road bike is a Giant TCR Aero with a mix of Ultegra and Dura Ace componetry rolling on Spinnergy Xaero wheels and 'penus de jour'. Yes, its fast (waay faster than me!). Yes, its light (we won't talk about the spare tire around my waist now will we?) BUT, it just dosen't sing. Let me explain, My Raleigh would actually make a sound (not quite a whistle but higher pitched than a hum) when I got it up to speed. At first I thought it was my imagination but many people who have ridden with me have heard that bike 'sing'. I don't know if it was the combination of the 531 frame and fork working with the 15 guage straight spoked 32 hole Mavic rims or some other freaky resonance thing but simply put; the bike sang. This was also a bike that was comfortable ALL DAY LONG!
So why did I get rid of the Raleigh. In a word. STUPID! I bought the MTB. I bought the GIANT. I got married.
I had a baby boy.
I moved to France (Da wifey is French you see...) and all of a sudden I had to severly downsize my whole life. Too much stuff to take, so I gave the Raleigh to my best friend whose Cannondale suffered an untimely demise.
So that was then, this is now. I recently eBayed a NOS Titan SLX frame (kinda cool looking purple & black paint with a chromed rear triangle and 'mystery meat' chromed fork) that I intend to build into a 'modern classic'. I want to retain the sweetness of the steel ride while embracing the better elements of the last 30 years of technological advancement.
Here's the game plan as of today. I think I'll use a pair of Spinergy SPOX wheels on this project until I decide on exactly what the 'right' wheelset is. I'm kinda' leaning towards a 32 spoke combo with crow's Foot lacing in the rear (remembet that spare tire?) and Three Leading/Three Trailing lacing up front. Or, maybe a wicked 32 spoke radial front. Anyway, the SPOX are on their way to me and I've got all winter to work out a plan for the wheels.
I'm also going to commit bike heresy by putting Dura Ace components on an Italian frame. Hey, you gotta' go with what you know... While I breaking the rules, I've decided to ditch the STI levers and go with Dura Ace down tube shifters. This will let me accomplish two objectives: shedding some weight (on the bike!) and cleaning up the cockpit. On the Peugeot I used Dia Comp Aero Levers and downtube shifters and I really enjoyed the clean, cable free look. After realistically evaluating my current riding habits, I've come to realize that I really won't miss the lightning fast shifts that only 'Brifters' can give. (Besides, I've still got the Giant for the days I really feel the need for speed) So, downtubes are the way.
The balance of the components will be Dura Ace 7700 with the exception of an Ultegra 6500 bottom bracket. (Yeah, I'm lazy at times) I've eBayed another Specialized Body Geometry Saddle (who cares about the titanium rails, these things fit MY butt!!!) and Dura Ace 7401 pedals. (I tried SPD-Rs but just never felt right on them) All that remains is to pick a seatpost (Hmm, here's a place where carbon might work out nicely...) and a 1" threaded bar/stem combo. (I just like that classic cockpit look) I'm also considering the straight blade chromed Colnago knock-off fork that some of the forum members have used. It just might be the thing to really set the bike off.
So there you have it. Dont think restoration. Think custom hot rod. Will it be the lightest thing out there? NOT!!! Will it be the fastest thing out there? Hardly. Will it be one of the coolest things out there? Maybe. More importantly, It'll be MINE!
Thanks for taking the time to read this note. I would appreciate all the tech support I can get on this project. I'm definately not going to get it at my new LBS.
Best regards to all,