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  1. #1
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    More Photo's Of My Tourer...

    I just received another batch of photos from my builder, Bob Brown... you can see them here (pages 4 & 5 specifically)

    http://www.pbase.com/istanbultea/bob_brown

    For those more prone to instant gratification here are 2 for you...

    #1 This is a shot of the downtube, headtube, mudguard and fork crown (which was made by hand). I have clearance for 2.35 wide tires with mudguards... even wider tires without mudguards.



    #2 This photo is of the whole cycle as it stands today build-wise. A few things to note... the front rack (which looks a bit angled down but isn't... the Plescher kickstand is elevating the rear end of the cycle forward & down) was a long process for me as I wanted originally to go with a Nitto front rack. Two problems arose from that goal... one, there wasn't any available in the States and wouldn't be for quite some time and two, it weighed much more than another idea I had. The "other idea" I had was to take 2 designs I favored and somehow join them. Out of that idea came the notion to take a Tubus Duo rack and a Nitto mini rack (which was & is easily available) and fabricate them together as one. Next problem, the Nitto is satin polished stainless steel and the Tubus is black powdercoated Cro-mo (together they would look, umm, rather odd). So I suggested to my framebuilder-Bob Brown-that we could sandblast the Tubus. No dice... by doing that we would need something on the Tubus to prevent rust from forming and all we could do is wet paint it which of course would make it more likely to chip & nick when getting panniers on and off and bam-here comes Mr. Rust once again. Basically what I was shooting for was a lighter weight rack that had the lowest center of gravity for my front panniers BUT also had a shelf. Nothing existed, no one makes one. On a strictly cosmetic level I was trying hard for polished silver (to one degree or another) components including racks but that wasn't working either. So it was time for a new plan.
    After realizing that I would never carry much more than a stuff sack or some other fairly lightweight items on the shelf area Bob immediately suggested a fantastic idea. Stay with black for the racks as they tend to melt into the background of a paint scheme anyway (after seeing these photos I would agree with him 100%. Plus, with panniers on no one will see the racks anyway and if I want to truly show the cycle off, remove the racks altogether!); the powdercoat on the Tubus will keep the rust away as well as under warranty and try to find a NOS lightweight aluminum rack (hopefully in black!). Bob laughed and said that he had one... an old Blackburn Mountain bike rack with a half-sized shelf just like the Nitto mini. Perfect! He did some bending to the aluminum and some welding and bam... he created a front rack that is exactly what I was looking for but didn't exist. It's low center of gravity, very lightweight (even more so because of the aluminum), installs on & off in seconds, gives me my shelf that I longed for and... again, on that cosmetic tip-is one color throughout. Also, because of how he designed it, it won't void the Tubus warranty.

    And in case you notice... the rims differ. The front is a Velocity Deep-V (same as I have on my Atlantis) and the rear is a Sun Rhinolite. Originally I opted to go with Velocity Deep-V's for both front and rear as I have had nothing but trouble-free experiences with the set on my Atlantis. So Bob got the parts and built them up. 2 days later I changed my mind (changing ones mind in times like these can be rather costly) so while I had to keep the Velocity's and the front Phil hub (built up and unridden is still "used" you know!) I ended up with something different that I wanted more. The Sun rims. So anywho, the rear has been built up with the Sun rim in the photo but the front hasn't yet as Bob is waiting for the Schmidt SON Dynohub I ordered to arrive. BTW, why did I want the Sun rims "more" than the Deep-V's that I've had no problems with? Easy, they are wider which will work better with a variety of tire widths (especially if I go over 2.0's in width, the Deep-V's are a more narrow rim), they have a shallow profile so spoke repair/tweaking/replacement will be easier than on the very high profile of the Deep-V's and last... on that ever-present Fashion Ho' note, they are totally satin versus the Deep-V's which are black with silver sides.
    Also, in all fairness... the Sun rims have an outstanding rep for hardcore touring as well as tandeming... so they are very beefy & bombproof indeed.


  2. #2
    ObsessiveCompulsiveMember velowolf's Avatar
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    Does the BB stand for "beautiful bike" or "Bob Brown"

    Very nice tourer. Are those 26" wheels or does the size of the bike just dwarf them?

  3. #3
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    very very beautiful frame, i want one tooo...

  4. #4
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    "BB" stands for both!!

    The tires are 559mm

  5. #5
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schumius
    very very beautiful frame, i want one tooo...
    Thanks for the kind words... I'm realllllllly looking forward to my first ride this weekend!!

  6. #6
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    i would volunteer for the test ride!

  7. #7
    Stays crunchy in milk
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    A beautiful bike coming together nicely! The more I see your photos, the more I think I'm going to go for a custom on my next cycle. It will always be YOUR bike!

    Strange, I've been drooling after an Atlantis for 6 months. Now that I've "discovered" that Mariposa bicycles are built just down the road, I can think of little else. Unfortunately my wife suggests I have to turn 40 to get one

  8. #8
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    Well I'm biased for sure but I can't imagine not going Custom from here on out. Then again, I can't imagine I'll be needing much else from any *other* cycle than this one!

    What's that old saying... "Never say, Never!"

    BTW, if you need your Mariposa appetite wheted... this link should do it.

    http://folks.harbornet.com/kstagg/Mariposa.htm

  9. #9
    Stays crunchy in milk
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    I've been thinking along the same lines as a 'lifetime bicycle'. Well, at least the frame They way I see it, the sooner I buy such a bicycle the cheaper it will be in the long run, as you can get more years out of it. Think that will convince the Mrs?

    For now I'm stuck driving the beer can special. I do have an lugged 80s touring frame that I might see if I can get rolling again with minimal cost.

    Nice images on that link!

  10. #10
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJRoberts
    I've been thinking along the same lines as a 'lifetime bicycle'. Well, at least the frame They way I see it, the sooner I buy such a bicycle the cheaper it will be in the long run, as you can get more years out of it. Think that will convince the Mrs?

    For now I'm stuck driving the beer can special. I do have an lugged 80s touring frame that I might see if I can get rolling again with minimal cost.

    Nice images on that link!
    I, too, seriously thought my wife would be the "Game Over" factor in my getting the BB cycle I will take delivery of in two, 2, TWO days (sorry about that, I am just beyond psyched at this point... it's been 7 months in coming!!).

    Here is the precise scenario of how I got an immediate "Yes" from her.

    Cleaned the house while she was at work... not just some light cleaning... I'm talking cleaned the house!

    Bought fresh ingrediants for her favorite dinner, made the meal... ditto with her favorite wine. Fresh flowers and a $50.00 gift certificate to her favorite Day Spa.

    She arrived, I had a warm bath ready for her, her most beloved book of poetry sitting next to the tub, soft lighting, 4 candles lit. Also, a cup of tea, 3 Godiva chocolate truffles and incense burning close by. I escorted her into the bathroom while she looked at me like I was from Planet Zorlap. I answered no questions, asked her none... just escorted her. Once she was in the tub I returned to the my duties in the kitchen.

    After an hour of not bothering her I knocked and entered the bathroom, mentioned that dinner would be ready in 15 minutes... and to meet me-at her leisure of course-in the living room for said meal.

    After dining & drinking I put on her favorite CD of ballads. I asked her to dance with me (we hadn't done this since before we had our daughter-who by the way was staying at a friends house). After dancing I served her coffee and a slice of cheesecake w/fresh strawberries I bought at the Carnegie Deli earlier that day and presented her with the spa certificate.

    I then started up her treasured DVD of "Gone With The Wind" which I sat through without making fun of it (like I normally do), dutifully handed her Kleenex when she cried and held her hand.

    After blowing out candles, cleaning up the kitchen and getting our daughter from next door I casually mentioned that I wanted her to look at something online. I showed her Bob's website, did my best sales pitch, etc...

    She started laughing, gave me a serious stare of the eye and then, as she headed off to bed, said to me- "Hey Romeo... go ahead and order it. Just don't break our daughters college fund."

    Mission accomplished.

  11. #11
    Stays crunchy in milk
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istanbul_Tea
    I, too, seriously thought my wife would be the "Game Over" factor in my getting the BB cycle I will take delivery of in two, 2, TWO days (sorry about that, I am just beyond psyched at this point... it's been 7 months in coming!!).
    (Major snippage of not-so-subtle manipulations )

    Let us know if it was worth it when you take delivery!

  12. #12
    Senior Member Rogerinchrist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istanbul_Tea
    I, too, seriously thought my wife would be the "Game Over" factor in my getting the BB cycle I will take delivery of in two, 2, TWO days (sorry about that, I am just beyond psyched at this point... it's been 7 months in coming!!).

    Here is the precise scenario of how I got an immediate "Yes" from her.

    Cleaned the house while she was at work... not just some light cleaning... I'm talking cleaned the house!

    Bought fresh ingrediants for her favorite dinner, made the meal... ditto with her favorite wine. Fresh flowers and a $50.00 gift certificate to her favorite Day Spa.

    She arrived, I had a warm bath ready for her, her most beloved book of poetry sitting next to the tub, soft lighting, 4 candles lit. Also, a cup of tea, 3 Godiva chocolate truffles and incense burning close by. I escorted her into the bathroom while she looked at me like I was from Planet Zorlap. I answered no questions, asked her none... just escorted her. Once she was in the tub I returned to the my duties in the kitchen.

    After an hour of not bothering her I knocked and entered the bathroom, mentioned that dinner would be ready in 15 minutes... and to meet me-at her leisure of course-in the living room for said meal.

    After dining & drinking I put on her favorite CD of ballads. I asked her to dance with me (we hadn't done this since before we had our daughter-who by the way was staying at a friends house). After dancing I served her coffee and a slice of cheesecake w/fresh strawberries I bought at the Carnegie Deli earlier that day and presented her with the spa certificate.

    I then started up her treasured DVD of "Gone With The Wind" which I sat through without making fun of it (like I normally do), dutifully handed her Kleenex when she cried and held her hand.

    After blowing out candles, cleaning up the kitchen and getting our daughter from next door I casually mentioned that I wanted her to look at something online. I showed her Bob's website, did my best sales pitch, etc...

    She started laughing, gave me a serious stare of the eye and then, as she headed off to bed, said to me- "Hey Romeo... go ahead and order it. Just don't break our daughters college fund."

    Mission accomplished.


    Smooooooooooth!

    Not being married anymore I don't have that, shall I say, "challenge" . I just have to get my bank account to agree to it, which will take a few more years.

  13. #13
    Banned.
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    Well at least you didn't have any ulterior motives.

  14. #14
    Senior Member GeorgeBaby's Avatar
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    OK, you've had time now.

    How is the bike? We want pictures of it at its new home.

  15. #15
    Videre non videri
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    That is a really nice bike.
    But the PAINT is OUTSTANDING!!!
    All bikes I've ever seen have been dull and with just a single colour paint.
    Yours looks like the sky in spring time!

    That shade of blue also happens to be one of my favourite colours, along with a certain shade of purple.

  16. #16
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogerinchrist
    Smooooooooooth!
    No. Smooth would be getting her to think it was her idea in the first place.

  17. #17
    Pedalpower clayface's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Istanbul_Tea
    She started laughing, gave me a serious stare of the eye and then, as she headed off to bed, said to me- "Hey Romeo... go ahead and order it. Just don't break our daughters college fund."

    Mission accomplished.
    I'm sure she had gathered some experience from the Atlantis.

  18. #18
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    Ranger wrote:

    "Well at least you didn't have any ulterior motives"

    None, right?!
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    GeorgeBaby wrote:

    "OK, you've had time now.

    How is the bike? We want pictures of it at its new home."

    8:30am presently... she should be arriving mid to late afternoon. Photo's will be forthcoming!!
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    CdCf wrote:

    "That is a really nice bike.
    But the PAINT is OUTSTANDING!!!
    All bikes I've ever seen have been dull and with just a single colour paint.
    Yours looks like the sky in spring time!"

    Thank you, I sweated the color/paint scheme for a LONG time however the real credit goes to Bob Brown... he is amazing with laying down paint.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    halfspeed wrote:

    "No. Smooth would be getting her to think it was her idea in the first place."

    Amen, to that!
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    clayface wrote:

    "I'm sure she had gathered some experience from the Atlantis."

    A lot. Put it this way... I'm always nice and considerate-it's when I'm too nice and too considerate that she starts getting worried.

  19. #19
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    The Eagle has landed...

    Bob (the framebuilder Bob Brown) called last week to inform me that not only was my frame done but that he would be in the NYC Metro area next week (this week) and if I could hold off one week he could hand deliver it and do the assembly here. Downside for me-wait another week... Upside-get it hand delivered, not have to sweat FedEx handling it (which I've only had good experiences with BUT this cycle was a little more special for me!) and actually have the guy who designed/brazed/filed/primed & painted it here to assemble it. It seemed well worth having to wait one additional week!

    Bob called Friday to say he was in town and could come by any of the next 4 days... we agreed on Saturday-afternoon, and he'd have to stay for dinner as well... he accepted, we were glad and I- in particular was thrilled.

    Yesterday rolled around and Bob called me around 12:30 in the afternoon to say everything was still on but he couldn't get away from work related stuff until 6 or 7pm. More anticipation for me... I was pretty much crawling the walls. My wife and daughter went for a walk... I don't blame them-I was worse than a person with Multiple Personality Disorder: one minute euphoric and the next worried about Bob getting lost, stuck in traffic... "Where's he storing my bicycle?", "I hope he's taking it indoors with him and not leaving it in his car?", "Should I call him and remind how dangerous it is to leave stuff in a parked car here in the city?", etc, etc, etc... finally my wife had had enough and announced a long walk for her and our daughter. Can't blame them... I was driving myself nuts too.

    Around 7pm our buzzer rang and it was Bob, he was here, he had my new cycle!! Life was good again!!

    Anyway extremely long story greatly shortened... Bob assembled my new custom, got asked way more questions than I'm sure he'd *EVER* want to answer again (about everything from framebuilding to painting to the bicycle industry to his experiences as a Cat. 2 rider until a serious riding accident kind of ended that to what custom builders think of production bikes, etc and more... including having our daughter constantly tapping him on the shoulder and tell him, "I love you. You built my Daddy's new bike! Kiss me!" Poor guy got kissed about 41 times by our 5 year old daughter), had to watch some of "The Nutcracker" while we fed him Vietnamese food for dinner and ended up leaving here around midnight for his hour long drive back to his hotel in western New Jersey. I think we exhausted him thoroughly.

    First ride report to follow later today.

    Anywho, here are a couple photo's of the evening...


    Bob setting up, adjusting and toeing in the brakes



    Near the end of a very long day (for Bob that is)... putting in some air and getting ready to call it a night. *Note-the empty Vietnamese takeout containers to the right... Bob loved dinner even though our daughter insisted he watch The Nutcracker with her while he ate!
    Last edited by Istanbul_Tea; 12-05-04 at 11:03 AM.

  20. #20
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    Looking good! I have my commuter/light tourer set up with moustache bars, techtonic stem, and barend shifters also. I love that setup and is very comfortable.
    .cinelli.olympic.surly.long.haul.trucker.kona.ku.surly.steamroller.
    .litespeed.classic.litespeed.firenze.bianchi.pista.dean.colonel.plus.more.

  21. #21
    Senior Member GeorgeBaby's Avatar
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    Totally awesome bike. Looking forward to the first ride report.

    -George

  22. #22
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    Yeah! she really looks nice. I hope you will show us some photos of the bike mounted with bags, especially on the front rears. Wouldnt you be tempted to put too heavy or voluminous gear to the front?

    To me it looks a bit like what they say about blonds and New Zealand - dammed beautiful but......

    OK, Im sure its a great bike and congratulate you with it!

    Per

  23. #23
    Senior Member Rogerinchrist's Avatar
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    OK., it's MUCH later today, dark too, WHERE'S THE RIDE REPORT?!?
    Boy I sure hope he hasn't had a wreck with it.

  24. #24
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    damn, you even have mustache bar! im still dreaming about it(and the frame too!)

  25. #25
    X-Large Member Istanbul_Tea's Avatar
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    First Ride Report-

    **Sorry for the delay... bad weather, errands & family life/activities all conspired to delay my report**

    Did some last minute fine tuning: wrapped the bars, adjusted the angle of my saddle as well as height and was good to go.

    First off, going from my setup on the Atlantis to Moustache bars was/is different. I like 'em but I need more saddle-time and miles to see if I'm going to love 'em. Also, going from Thumbies to bar-end shifters is a new thing too. No problems there really.

    How does one describe the riding characteristics of a cycle? It's difficult to do. The words that came into my head while pedaling were- "Smooth, extraordinarily solid and stable... easy to turn in & out of corners". Comfort is a word I want to use but right now that's relative to the fact that I've spent a lot of time on my Brooks B.67 that's on my Atlantis and now put another B.67 on my Bob Brown... but, of course, it's brand new and not broken in. So, all my hard work has been lost with regard to my 'other' B.67. (Yes, I know I could mount it on the Bob Brown but I want a saddle for each cycle and I purposefully bought the new Brooks with silver springs for the Bob Brown-my other B.67 has black springs... oh, the cost of vanity!).

    The Sugino cranks feel great, as do the Schwalbe Big Apple tires. The Schmidt hub is just about the coolest thing I've ever come across. Think about this... a hub that can run just about any drilling you would need for your choice in rims, it's as well engineered as the best hub in the world-Phil Wood, it also just so happens to generate light whenever you need it with very, very little noticable resistance, creates no resistance when your light is turned off, is maintanance-free & waterproof, actually improves with use and comes with a 5 year warranty?! Gotta say, it's the best 228 dollars I've spent.

    Back to the ride- I did a 10 mile loop and hit everything from sidewalks to smooth asphalt, gravel & dirt to grass. Lots of potholes, bumps, ruts, etc too. Everything felt fantastic... saddle aside. Back in the summer riding my Atlantis on sunny days I used to think I got a lot compliments from passersby on the paint & lugs... yesterdays ride was during a cloudy, cold, windy and occasionally raining day, and I got stopped constantly by people. A racer type guy on a carbon fibre Trek pulled up next to me at an intersection and said, "Wow, all you're missing are the bags. You going on a tour or something?" I told him about our plans for a world tour, he smiled and then said, "I gotta tell you, that's just about the prettiest paint job I've ever seen". I thanked him and the light changed and he was gone in a wink while I got up to speed... his speed probably being around 19-21mph and mine being more like 9-12mph!! I ain't fast but I get there eventually.

    Today the weather is even more crappy outside. I'm debating another ride and trying really hard to take Bob Brown's parting words to heart (paraphrased), "Ride it. Ride it hard and remember I built it to last and painted it to withstand abuse so just get out there and ride it. If you chip it or nick it plop some Testors or nail polish on the spot and get right back out and ride it... and treat yourself to a new paint job in 5 years or so. I made it for you to ride... it's not happy unless you're riding it" I smiled and said, "But you know, it's a real bit&^ that I'm getting something so beautiful just as we are entering winter with snow, salt and muck on the ground". He looked up at me and without flinching said, "This bike-just like all of the ones I build-I put everything into them... all my abilities and skills. I literally get sad when I ship out a new frame from my shop but I also know that someone out there is adopting it and going to give it a great home. The only thing I want from any of my clients is, their satisfaction and happiness with my work. And to me satisfaction and happiness means not being fearful of using it... all the time not just in the sunshine. If I didn't build frames, didn't know how to build frames, any of it and had spent the kind of money you did on this cycle, you know what I would do? I would ride it every season, everyday, rain, snow, salt, mud... all of it. It was made to last and the only thing that will wear out-if at all, will be the small stuff like rims, tires, chainrings... all easy stuff to replace or repair. The frame? Sure it's beautiful but it will be just as beautiful with some signs of age too... the nicks and scratches-that's all good stuff too. It shows love. I can fix, repair and/or replace everything and anything on this cycle... including new paint in five, eight, ten years from now so my advice is: Ride It and Love It"

    He then went on to tell me about his college days. He hadn't ever built a frame, didn't know anything about how to do it but he did love cycling. He saved and saved his money and purchased a new Keith Bontrager semi-custom. He rode it everyday for 4 years-year round, even through the winters in Minnesota which he pointed out is the Road Salt Capitol of the United States.

    I think I'm going for a ride tonight.

    I already love this cycle and I think everytime I ride it the bond and love is going to get that much stronger.

    Last descriptor I can think of is this, It rides like a classic Caddy-Elegant, long, quiet, comfortable, stylish and completely enveloping.

    I'm pleased as punch! Photo's to follow soon!

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