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Mo' Bacon

Old 06-28-24, 01:27 AM
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Mo' Bacon

I've mentioned the doorknob problem before, right? You find a doorknob you like, so you have to build a house to go with it. Well, that's kind of the story behind my latest build. I've had a spare set of 650B wheels sitting in the garage for a few years, and they've been a constant threat to trigger another bike build, but I've been mostly successful at putting it off. Then, the most unlikely thing happened. I bought a 1973 Raleigh Professional last year that the previous owner had built as a single speed.



I had no intention of leaving it like that, but on a whim I decided to ride it to work once in this configuration. To my surprise, I found that I actually kind of liked the Velo Orange Postino handlebar. I had dabbled with various mustache bars in the past, and never found a configuration that I liked, but for some reason this one with the plain city brake levers just kind of clicked with me for a commuter bike. It was still only a half baked idea, but it's something I started kicking around in the back of my mind.

I guess at this point I should also give credit/blame to others on this site. The one person whose builds I am most aware have inspired my latest is @52telecaster. I'm not sure it's any specific build, though his Grand Record came to mind when I was thinking about it. I think he's done a few like this. A lot of other people have shown some nice builds similar to the one I'm sharing here.

So, anyway, a few months ago the idea started to take shape. I was thinking I wanted to do a 650b comfort commuter build with the Postino bars, maybe an IGH rear hub, and a generator front. The specifics ended up changing, but the basic idea was to build something that would be equal parts classy, comfortable, and practical. At the time I started planning in earnest I was thinking a Raleigh Gran Sport would be a good platform. I looked around the various sale sites and didn't find one. I know @gugie has about half of the Gran(d) Sport(s) in the Portland area, so I checked with him. He didn't have one in my size, but he did show me a nice 1978 Motobecane Grand Jubilé. I already have a 1972 Grand Record and 1975 Grand Jubilé (my 650b Gugificazione gravel bike), but if two Motobecanes are good, three must be better, right? Hence the title of this thread -- Mo' Bacon! We did a test fit with a 650B wheel, and while it didn't have quite enough clearance, it was close enough for the Bike Butcher of Portland to give it his seal of approval. A few weeks later, he made it fit.





Since then, I've been gathering parts for the build -- a Swiss-threaded bottom bracket, a Brooks Cambium saddle, Velo Oranga touring pedals, Gravel King tires, Huret clamp-on cable guides, a huge cassette and Deore LX rear derailleur that could handle it, and Microshift thumb shifters -- to go with the parts I already had on hand -- the aforementioned handlebars, brake levers, and wheels, a 26.2 Campagnolo seatpost, a Specialized flag triple crankset, Tektro R559 brakes, and an Ultegra front derailleur. Finally, last night I was able to finish the build.















I took the bike out for its inaugural ride today -- as advertised, to work and back. It was pretty much exactly as I hoped it would be -- relaxing and comfortable cruising. Best of all, on the way back home I was able to make it all the way up Col de Kaylor -- the half-mile hill up to my house which starts out with an extended 8% grade before kicking up to 14% near the top. I usually walk the steeper part. I used to be able to ride it, but recent attempts have shown that I don't have the fitness for that anymore, but with the 28x34 low gear on the Mo' Bacon got me up.

I'm not quite finished with the build. I had pictured it with an elaborate front rack that would securely carry my laptop and a small handlebar bag. It turned out that the drop from the bars to the front tire isn't enough to accommodate the laptop in the upright position I had in mind, and the cabling pretty much rules out a handlebar bag. Plan B, which will probably end up being better anyway, is a Velo Orange Porteur rack in front to hold the laptop laying flat and an Acorn saddle bag for the various other things I need to take to the office. Fed Ex says the rack will be here this weekend, and I've already got the Acorn bag.
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Old 06-28-24, 09:32 AM
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@ Andy_K It is interesting how something unexpected can influence or even change the direction of a build.

De Rosa Pro was on THE list and when SQ put one up for sale in my size, I grabbed it.

There are a couple of period or near period correct builds in the small stable and I was considering the same for the Pro. Then I started looking at Campy parts of that time period. Sorry, but I am a bit of a snob in that i prefer Campy on any older Italians and then the top-of-the-line with a top-of-the-line frame set. C-Record became a problem for the bank.

While having it sit a bit while I pondered, a wheel set showed up at an incredibly low price that set the path. Ambrosa Nemesis rims, Campy Record hubs, Campy 10 speed cassette and a surprise of black spokes with red ones on either side of the valve stems. The direction was set in two directions, drive train and color. There were a couple of additional evaluations like black vs silver and where, but it turned out to be very satisfactory even with a mx of years of top end parts. At one point I crossed the line on what I was willing to spend and splurged on NOS skewers to get a match for the hubs and aesthetics.

Andy, great looking bike!

I won't pollute your thread with my pics but for those interested, Help me build a 1990 De Rosa Pro - Bike Forums




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Old 06-28-24, 10:22 AM
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I was wondering why you didn't go IGH, but the desire to climb Col de Kaylor without walking is understandable.
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Old 06-28-24, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K

​​​​​​
What happened there on the nds? Dent damage before crimping the stays, or..?
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Old 06-28-24, 11:23 AM
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Love it it
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Old 06-28-24, 12:14 PM
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Nice conversion. Looks like it it is very comfortable.
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Old 06-28-24, 12:51 PM
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What about fenders, Andy? It is the PNW where you're commuting.....
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Old 06-28-24, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie
I was wondering why you didn't go IGH, but the desire to climb Col de Kaylor without walking is understandable.
​​​​​​I may still end up going that route. Mostly I deferred it to see how much I like this configuration. I had wheels with a freehub, so it didn't make sense to tear them down for a IGH rebuild until I was certain this was the way.

Shimano has an IGH with a 400% range. Given how little I need at the top end, that would probably work.
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Old 06-28-24, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa
What happened there on the nds? Dent damage before crimping the stays, or..?
That was an initial indent made based on a tire that ended up being a bit shy of 38. The 650x42 tires needed a much bigger dimple.
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Old 06-28-24, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by northbend
What about fenders, Andy? It is the PNW where you're commuting.....
I'm still enjoying summer! I've got some VO 650b Snakeskin fenders that will probably be on this bike at some point. (This bike is beginning to look like a rolling Velo Orange advertisement.) The Cambium saddle is an early acknowledgement of the PNW climate.
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Old 06-28-24, 02:08 PM
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So what’s gonna happen to the Raleigh?
Asking for a friend.
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Old 06-28-24, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Spadoni
So what’s gonna happen to the Raleigh?
Asking for a friend.
The same thing that happens to most of my bikes. This was the plan when I bought, and it came together just as I imagined it would.
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Old 06-28-24, 02:43 PM
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I was wondering about the Raleigh too. Made me look on the bay for one.
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Old 06-28-24, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by SJX426
I was wondering about the Raleigh too. Made me look on the bay for one.
The persistent connections between the Raleigh and the Mo' Bacon have surprised me. The Raleigh being the source of the handlebars that kicked off the inspiration for the Bacon is the obvious one, but as I was working on the build I was looking around the garage for a spare Huret Jubilee bottom bracket cable guide that I thought I had in reserve. It turned out I had used it on the Raleigh. Then as I was finishing the Bacon build, I discovered that the brazed on cable stop for the rear derailleur was an odd size that didn't match either standard modern shift ferrules, bare shift cable housing, or the common diver's helmet cable stop that requires a stepdown ferrule. What it did match was a custom ferrule that @oneclick had machined for me for the Raleigh build. Fortunately, he sent me two!
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Old 06-28-24, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K
That was an initial indent made based on a tire that ended up being a bit shy of 38. The 650x42 tires needed a much bigger dimple.
More info, the Atelier has two big ol' C-clamps with brazed on indenters. One is horizontal, the other, vertical. My test tire said it was 42mm wide, but it was a lying S.O.B., and Andy's real 42mm wide tires. I initial indent was perpendicular to the stay, which of course wasn't quite enough, so we switched to the other tool, which made all the difference
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Old 06-29-24, 12:52 AM
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I put a Pöstino bar on my Atala Record when I modified it for commuting. It looked cool and was great for short rides, but for anything longer I start to miss having multiple hand positions. I ended up going back to a drop bar, and the Postino is in the spares bin.
Really nice Raleigh frame, I have always coveted one of those.
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Old 06-29-24, 05:07 AM
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Great looking bike!

I did the same thing with a crank. I fell in love with this on the ebay one night and had to have it. But then "what do I do with it"?
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Old 06-29-24, 06:05 AM
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Very nice Andy! I was expecting an appearance of Gugie’s bacon handlebar tap. I expect there’s going to be a rush on atelier services this summer so glad you were able to get some time there.

I guess a little late but after trying different configurations on my city bike I’m really happy with my Pelago porteur rack and matching bag.

https://pelagobicycles.com/shop/equi...racks-baskets/

https://pelagobicycles.com/pelago-rackbag-eco-large/
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Old 06-29-24, 07:12 AM
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Good thread. I was thinking of selling my 70s Moto GR but it would make a fine commuter as well. Plus the paint job on my bike has the problems that some old Motos have which makes it a commuter candidate.
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Old 06-29-24, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by kroozer
I put a Pöstino bar on my Atala Record when I modified it for commuting. It looked cool and was great for short rides, but for anything longer I start to miss having multiple hand positions. I ended up going back to a drop bar, and the Postino is in the spares bin.
I can understand that. I do 95% of my riding on the hoods on the hoods, but that other 5% can be important.

There was a time when I had a nice commuter with straight flat bars, but I found that even on a 10 mile commute my wrists didn't like that angle. The Postino bars feel more natural, but for sure I prefer drop bars for longer rides.
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Old 06-29-24, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
Good thread. I was thinking of selling my 70s Moto GR but it would make a fine commuter as well. Plus the paint job on my bike has the problems that some old Motos have which makes it a commuter candidate.
Bad paint on a 70s Motobecane sounds like a good candidate for Gugificazione to me. The paint on this GJ is too nice for torch work.
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Old 07-01-24, 03:52 PM
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Heck, Brewsmith has a pair of brakes up for sale here and I'm already wondering about building a bike around them!
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Old 07-01-24, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by mhespenheide
Heck, Brewsmith has a pair of brakes up for sale here and I'm already wondering about building a bike around them!
The Superbes?
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Old 07-09-24, 05:43 PM
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Awesome Andy!!!
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Old 07-09-24, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by jdawginsc
The Superbes?
The centerpulls in the for sale section here. Just gorgeous.
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