Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Roller Cams On The Brain: Final Update

It's a rollercam thing. You might not understand.
Okay, well I think I've made up my mind here about the Dorado Sherpa MTB which I have been fettling with off and on over the past several months here. I'll get this out of the way right now- It's a keeper. 

I've waffled back and forth on just what I wanted this bike to be, but I've stuck to the guideline to "service what you have first. Maybe then make modifications/upgrades. So, I ended up just fixing what needed fixing on this old Costco bike. 

It is not anything remarkable outside of the pair of rollercam brakes. That is enough for me, and the fact that old MTB's make for really comfortable city bikes. That's why I've been using an old Schwinn High Sierra as a townie for many years. That's another not very special bike without those rollercams it has front and rear. But for some reason, I've never been able to get the front one on that bike to work correctly, and it has bothered me for many years. That and there is precious little clearance for tires and fenders on that bike. 

That's where keeping the Dorado comes in. It has everything the Schwinn had, plus tire clearances, and room for fenders. Plus it even fits me better than the Schwinn does. The rollercams actually work correctly, and they were easily set up because they aren't crustified from years of usage. They have some surface oxidation, but nothing that inhibited their performance.

Now decked out in accessories for a trial period.

Anyway, there it is, all gussied up with some accessories I had laying about. The big thing here, in my opinion, are the fenders. They fit well around those big 26"er tires, (temporary placeholders), so I know anything I get that is urban/pavement oriented will likely fit fine, since those tires will likely be narrower. (Extraterrestrials probably wouldn't fit without fenders on this bike, by the way)

The fenders, Planet Bike models seemingly out of production now, are the type that have stainless steel stays and are held in place on the bike mainly by these rubber straps. Almost like a mini version of an old car rack strap. The fenders are sort of a hybrid in that you can attach them at the chain stay bridge and brake bridge using hardware and a bracket, like most fenders. Anyway, they were odd, and for the front, I had to modify the stays and fork mounting holes to get that fender to work. 

Another Planet Bike accessory, the Snack Shack top tube bag, is there along with a couple Banjo Brothers bags as well. That should suffice for most of my errands/commuting by bicycle trips in the future. 

I know I've gone on about the handlebars, but with that oddball ID for the fork steerer, and my inability to come up with a stem that would work the way I want it to, I am resigned to using the set up as it is. Honestly? It feels great to ride. Maybe I just need to get over myself concerning that particular aspect of this bike. 

The plan is to take this on a three month trial and see if it will do the tricks I need it to. (It probably will) I will need to make a few minor adjustments, I am sure, and I may add a rear rack. We'll see about that. I know I definitely do not want a front basket, and I know that from experience. This sort of bike has such a slack head angle with such a high trail figure that anything like a basket will be a chore to live with. So, no front baskets! 

 Well, that's it for now on the Dorado Sherpa mountain bike/townie. What do you think of it? Let me know in the comments.


Phillip Cowan said...

I hadn't seen a Dorado till yours then last Friday a Dorado mixte popped up on Bike Snob's site. It's the same color yellow. Nice rescue!

Guitar Ted said...

@Phillip Cowan - Yes, someone else that reads the blog pointed that one out to me just last week. It has been heavily modified and the rollercams are long gone from that example. In fact, I'm pretty sure someone swapped front forks on it since it has cantilevers. But it could be that it is a change in spec, a carry-over model, or something else.

Thanks for comment!

Derek said...

Love old bikes that are in great shape, functional and also get used, and it seems your Dorado ticks all the boxes. I enjoyed reading about the revival of this one, nice work.

Guitar Ted said...

@Derek: Thank you!

Skidmark said...

Greets GT, I really like your fit&function setup on the bar and stem. You could always mock-up a racestem-dropbar combo for picture takin’ purposes.😂

Guitar Ted said...

@Skidmark - Thank you! Update: Extensive test ride in town today. Probably 15 miles. Verdict? The bike is perfect as is. No drops on this one!