Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Bikes Of 2019: Black Mountain Cycles Monster Cross

The "Orange Crush" went single in 2019.
Most of you readers that have been around a while know all about my orange Black Mountain Cycles "Monster Cross" bike that I have had sine, what? 2011? Wow! That's been a long time, right? So, for many years you readers have known this bike as a geared rig with a 2X9 drive train. Back in 2011, that made sense to have. Now? Not so much, as 9speed stuff is getting pushed away more. Good cassettes, good chain rings, and all that will become hard to get a hold of. I contemplated going to 11 speeds with this bike, but that would have required a new wheel set and with rim brakes, well, I wasn't too awful stoked about doing all of that.

What many of you readers may not realize is that the original set up for this bike was single speed. It didn't remain that way for long, but I thought, hey! Why not? I had the stuff on hand, so I took an afternoon in December of 2018 and converted the bike to SS mode.

The list goes like this:
  • Crankset- 180mm 110 BCD Sakae from an early 80's Specialized sequoia touring bike.
  • Chain ring- 40T "no-name" steel ring, likely from an old 7 or 8 speed triple. 
  • Cog- 16T Boone Titanium with matching single speed cassette spacers. 
  • Bottom bracket - Old 90's era UN-52 Shimano cartridge style. Square taper natch! 
Everything else remained the same. And.......the ride? Well, with those long cranks it is different. I had to lower my saddle a bit, which was good, because these first run Monster Cross bikes had pretty high bottom brackets. Otherwise, it is the ol' Orange Crush. I do forget at times that the levers don't do anything and I have no gears to select though!

I have had an idea running for several years now to get out and do a single speed century. When I do, it will be on this bike. I added a Wolf Tooth B-Rad rack adapter which allows me to squeeze in an extra water bottle, and where I have that pack mounted may become another mount. A nice Lezyne side loader cage should make that possible. Then I'd have 4 bottles on board. Plenty to get quite a ways down the road.

I recently added some fender "skirt" extenders....flaps? Not sure what the rando guys call those, but this will make the Orange Crush a lot better in sloppy, wet, and rainy conditions, which is partially why I went single speed with this old rig. It'll be the Winter hack, mucky roads choice when those situations arise.

Stay tuned next week for the next "Bikes of 2019" post.

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