|Trek 520 frame|
The frame and fork are early 90's vintage lugged Trek steel and made in Waterloo, Wisconsin. The original finish is a version of "Trek Green", which Trek must have had semi truck loads of back in the 90's. I can't count how many Trek bicycles were some version of this color, or this color and purple.
Although the frame was made with lugs, Trek had an assembly line set up where all the lugs were joined to True Temper tubes by machines which expedited the process of making lugged frames. So, it is not a "hand made" in the truest sense of the word, but these frames do have a good reputation for ride quality and handling.
|Previous attempts at customization|
The main area of concern for me was an oval patch of rust pitting that showed through the paint on the top tube. I immediately attacked this spot and sanded it down to determine if I was dealing with a frame in need of further repair, or just a surface irregularity. While the pitting was bad, it did sand out and I feel I will be just fine with a paint job and rebuilding of the bike.
So, there is another reason to pursue the "mutt bike" status. The original paint job has basically been destroyed by the previous owner and myself. Now for an appropriate paint job to reflect the "true mutt bike" soul of this project.
|Wheels that came with it...|
At some point I will cut out the DX hubs and relace them to an appropriate rim as back up wheels. The XTR set are much lighter, more durable, smoother, and the Delgado rims sport a much wider inner rim dimension that is perfectly suited to the mounting and use of gravel appropriate rubber. The frame can handle some pretty beefy tires, so I'll likely go with something in the 38mm-42mm range on tires here.
The bike has a 1" steer tube, threaded headset, which is a Shimano 600 cartridge unit, and that will stay on the bike. The old bars were Modolo Anatomics, and I will ditch those in favor of a new set of Cowbell 2's. Of course, that'll mean something will have to be done about the stem to get the 31.8mm Cowbells to work. I haven't settled on a solution to that yet.
Stay tuned....Gravel Mutt Project will be ongoing for a bit.