Old 07-21-12, 09:17 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Sendai, Japan: Tohoku region (Northern Honshu))
Posts: 1,664

Bikes: Vitus 979, Simplon 4-Star (Romani), Woodrup Giro, Gazelle AB, Dawes Atlantis

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I don't do long rides, but I try to ride a swift 40 - 70 minutes every day that the rain is not pelting down. I live on the flats in front of the sea (a part of which was devastated and scoured by the great tsunami of 2011). And so, this is a single speed cuz I don't really need another 7 cogs. Oh yeah, it can be a struggle if a west wind blows up out of Mongolia/Siberia during my return run back home. But, this is my current favorite ride despite the limitations. I get a thrill each time I coast down the little driveway out of our house into the street — heading for the levees on the Hirose and Natori rivers.

On this thread, there are a ton of cool bikes I'd love to own (as well as the Cessna 195 —drool). But this rare Simplon 4 star just does it for me. It is the one bike I've ever had that urges me onto the drops so that I push harder. It drives on a single speed, free-hub conversion. Modern wheels fit into a 126 mm spread. The axle was cut. The wheel re-dished. A shim kit was used to align the chain on a Sugino 75 crank spider that mounts a 42T second chainring. The cog is 16T. Pure efficiency, and the frame rides like a cloud, but with racing-bred nimbleness. Totally stable. These days it has a Bontrager "Form Fit" saddle. Reynolds 531 frame tubes; the others — dunno. Someday I want a better wheel-set, but the current one stays true as Robin's arrow.

Vitus 979, Simplon 4 Star, Gazelle Champion Mondial, Woodrup Giro, Dawes Atlantis
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