Wednesday, March 06, 2024

Honeman Flyer Update: Overcoming Until The End

 A new day. More challenges to meet with the Honeman Flyer build. The first task on this day was to measure once, twice, and three times. Mock up the stem and spacer stack. Measure some more just to confirm. Then..... The Cutting!

You know, whenever you cut a steer tube, that is a great metaphor for commitment. There is no going back once the saw bites that steer tube, so you'd better be damn sure what you want is really what you want

Then the carbon factor was there also. I know what to do there, and if I may brag on myself a moment, I think this was the finest cut on a carbon steer tube I've ever made. It looked factory fresh when I was finished, just like you'd want it to.

That fork install went well, and the trick there is to use some carbon paste on the plug for the steer tube so it doesn't pull up when you try to adjust the head set. That and greasing the parts of the plug that slide against each other, which also aids in the smooth operation of the plug. Preparation is 9/10's of the job, ya know? 

That front through axle thing bugged me and I ended up getting the Salsa Dead Bolt to go through the Paul hub with a little coercing. Man! How can two things be off so much from each other that they are nearly incompatible?  At least the correct through axle is being used on the fork now. Warranty recovered!

The next step was to get my new front wheel ready. I knew that I had a stack-o-rotors.......somewhere....but where?! I could not find them in the swirling vortex of parts and boxes and whatnot. Dang it! Another hitch in the process. But I did find a matching rotor on a wheel set I had hanging up that I am not using now. So, off it came, and on it went. Well, after cleaning, it went on. A little isopropyl bath does wonders. 

Then it was on to getting the brakes on the bike. I tell ya! That weird all-the-way through bolt set up on the Waxwing fork is both weird and ugly.'s the fork I have. So, since these bolts are really odd-ball, and - of course - Salsa does not provide you with any, the search was on. I was digging through everything I had for bolts and found only one. For the curious out there, the bolts that fit are typical "water bottle" bolt threaded and sized, but longer. A lot longer! 

Fortunately I have run fenders for so long that I have accumulated many longer M-5 bolts in my time as a rider and mechanic. That is why I found one stainless steel one. I had another, but it was way too long. In the end, I had to bust out my Dremel and saw off the longer bolt to fit. After a little careful dressing with a file, it was good to go. Another hurdle overcome.

But it didn't stop there. The rear brake takes extra short bolts, because - why not? So, I had to scrounge those up as well. Fortunately I have tons of shorter M-5 bolts laying about. But the difficulty level in getting these bolts to go into the calipers through the rear axle insert is about as hard as dealing with the rear-most bolt for a caliper on Gen I Fargo. In fact, you are best off removing the rear wheel for access. I'll get to the actual brake set up later where you have to have the rear wheel installed.....

So, on to the handle bar and stem. I measured, as I said before, and determined that I really needed a longer stem. I had a 90mm one that is off a Raleigh, maybe even the OG Tamland one, not sure, but it would do. Then a handle bar.... 

I dove into the pile of ancient flared drop bars I have and found my old Ritchey Venturemax bar. Those are the bars with that weird, bump in the drops, as you might recall. I always kind of liked those, so they went on the bike. 

After that, those gifted TRP levers went on there and I positioned those and tightened up the clamps. I have used a lot of Tektro/TRP stuff over the years so I was pretty sure I'd like these levers despite never having tried them before. 

Then it was on to installing the wheels and setting up the brake housings and cables. I decided on using an inline brake adjuster for the rear brake only. I don't use the rear brake a ton, but having an adjuster on the front end of the bike is nice when you have an adjuster at the caliper for the front brake as well. Just a weird preference I have. 

I then taped and zip-tied the housing for the rear down and taped and routed the front through the fork, as the Waxwing features a through-hole route for the front brake. These are cool and all, but if you run a hydraulic set up, they are a pain in the butt because you then have to bleed the front brake. 

Now it was time to set the brakes up. Man! having to reinvent the wheel, as it were, to set up brakes on this bike was a total pain, and then with the rear caliper bolt placement. gah! I had to check into the Paragon Machine works site to see how the rear caliper was to be mounted and learned that it did not need an adapter for the 160mm rotor. So, after about a half an hour of fiddling around with that I finally started making some forward progress again. 

Since you have to have the rear wheel in to set up the calipers in relation to the rotors, you have to be a very patient and flexible person to manipulate the hex key to get in there to loosen and tighten the bolts until you finally get that caliper where it needs to be. VERY fiddly! Not a fan of that design for that reason, but hopefully I don't have to get in there again any time soon.

After the brakes were all set up I then wrapped the bars. I had thought about using this magenta colored tape I have, but just as I was about to put it on I decided that it clashed with the pink color of the paint job. Too close and not contrasting enough. So, I removed the old (well - not very used) tape I had on that last gravel mutt Schwinn project and used it over. It was in almost-new condition, and I carefully wrapped it in the same direction and on the same sides as it was installed in before. 

Now I was on the home stretch. My thoughts turned to test riding, but..... I did not have the correct through axle for the rear wheel. But hey! I have several bikes. I wondered if one of them might have a through axle I could "borrow" for the time being. 

The Black Mountain Cycles through axle was no good. Different thread pitch. However; the one in the Standard Rando v2 did work. Cool! Now I had a chance to ride yet! I just needed to install bottle cages, set up the chain, and give everything the once-over. 

I ended up going with my tried and true chain choice for single speed - the ubiquitous and lowly SRAM PC-830. Not a "sexy" choice at all, but serviceable and I have a few spares which I could choose from. I selected a near-new one and popped it on. Then I adjusted the Paragon Machine Works sliding rear drop outs. If you have never used these, they are bomber and easy to adjust. But - you need an 8mm box end, a 5mm hex key, and a 4mm hex key to adjust them. So, not very "in-the-field" friendly to adjust, but if you remember a tool kit, make sure you have those three wrenches! 

Final adjustments were made and a recheck of all the fasteners was done. This thing was almost ready to go. Pedals installed, (old, beat to hell Shimano SPD's), and air in the tires. Test ride forthcoming....

Stay tuned for the final reveal tomorrow.....


MG said...

That paint looks incredible… I can’t wait to see the finished bike!

S.Fuller said...

It's always something with some of these builds, isn't it? :) Looking forward to seeing the full reveal. :)

Guitar Ted said...

@MG - Thanks Brother! Stay tuned tomorrow...

Guitar Ted said...

@S. Fuller - Yeah, you just cannot have a bike go together seamlessly, right? I expected no less. Stay tuned tomorrow for the full-monty view.