Saturday, June 22, 2013

Gravel Mutt Project: Coming Together!

A Bike Shaped Object now!
Gravel Mutt Project Update:

So, I finally got the bike painted and buffed out a bit so I could start throwing on some components. Of course, the "lynch pin" for any bicycle build, in my opinion, is the head set. You do not have a head set? Then you just have a frame and a fork until you get a head set on there. I just have to start with that component, then I can make some good progress on any bike build.

Of course, the Gravel Mutt is of such vintage that one inch headsets were the rule of the day. Threaded at that. I had to do some scrounging and look at what I found! I had squirreled this component away years ago when I tore down the only carbon fiber road bicycle I ever owned, which was an Aegis. That bike had a one inch threaded head set, and the head set was just too cool to toss. A purple anodized American Classic Tri-Lock! Wow, I knew that was going on the minute I found it.

Everything was there for it, so I installed the thing and now I had a bicycle's foundation- the frame set. Next was the stem adapter from one inch to inch and an eighth. Then a no-name stem which led to the rare, much wanted, (apparently by the interest I've seen of late), Ragley Luxy Bar, which is no longer in production. On those went some DiaCompe aero levers with white hoods. They should clean up nicely.

Close up of the head set.
Then I cleaned up the XTR/Salsa Delgado wheels and popped a SRAM 9 speed cassette on there. I know I was thinking about sticking with a seven speed rear, but I also realized that if I go with a 9 speed rear on this bike, I then can easily swap wheels with my BMC bike. That would be kind of nice, so I decided against the seven speed idea. Besides, I had a 9 speed cassette in reserve, so it didn't cost me anything now to use it up.

I probably am going to stick with the idea of using the original bottom bracket with this old Sante' crank and a 40 tooth ring with my MRP guide to keep the chain where it belongs. We'll see how that all gets along!

Shifting is going to be by a single friction bar end shifter, of which I have several to choose from. I even have a Campagnolo one! However, I probably will stick with a SunTour unit I have. Then there is the final piece of the puzzle- the brakes.

I did find my box of cantilever brakes today, but I haven't taken the time to rummage through it just yet. I saw a glint of blue anodization though! Maybe I can make a set up of blue anodized cantis. We'll see. I also know I have a complete set of original XT linear pull brakes. The parallelogram ones. But if I use those, I have to track down my Travel Agents, which are.......somewhere! 

One more vintage item, which I would like to use, but probably will not, are some Curve titanium skewers in purple ano. The dang things are light, cool, but have a propensity to become loose, even when you have tightened them. Don't ask me how, I don't know, but they are spooky that way. Eventually, if you catch the first time or two that they become loose before that becomes an issue, you find that they suddenly work good. But loosen them once to remove a wheel, and it's back to chasing the final tightness. Yeah....weird!

Stay tuned! The Gravel Mutt Project marches on.....


.s.s. said...

Looks familiar.

Guitar Ted said...

@.s.s.: Yep! I would say that I was definitely influenced a bit by that bike! I've seen images of it previous to my painting of the Gravel Mutt, for sure.

Adam Lorenz said...

Lots of good things going on there Mark.

Capncavedan said...

Looking good, GT!