BIKE & BITS
After hundreds of hours hunting I went for the Roberts rough stuff. I have not taken stock of the bike yet so will update this as soon as I have. :UPDATE:
So Bridget has arrived!!! Here is a short review of the bike and Roberts.
Firstly the initial service was very good, I headed up to Roberts in Croydon to get fitted a mentioned, a very informal type of thing. I think having been doing what they do for how ever long you have confidence in what they say. I was very happy for them to take the lead. So you say you want carbon chainset, they call you an idiot and so No you want this……….. and to be honest they are 99% of the time right.
I always new it was going to take a while, I think it ended up being almost 3months which is fine as it’s a long term project. My criticism though was the lack of contact, I really wanted to feel part of the build consulted as each phase, this was not really the case. Chas is very hard man to get hold of, a kind of old school type who I think may have responded better to letters. Brian on the other hand answers the phone and can usually help.
Having discussed on day one what I wanted, a Green frame with all silver components I turned up to a Green bike with a mix of silver and black, not the end of the world but would have been nice to had been asked/checked. As well as this, I was promised a build spec with cost very early on, this never materialised though and until picking it up I have no idea how much it cost.
THIS SHOULD HOWEVER NOT take away from what is something of true beauty and quality, it is lighter than I thought and simply a wonderful piece of kit, that will easily and happily take me around the world.
I have not ridden it properly yet, still waiting for some average weather, but as soon as I have I shall get a review up and full build spec.
Bike partially loaded front and back, Dad setting the pace and a Tetbury Coffee shop waiting for us!!
So how did Bridget do in her loaded state?….She was excellent. The large rake in the front forks offer great comfort on bumpy country lanes, relaxed and yet responsive steering and a general good allround feel. The Brook’s saddle is a dream to perch on, but does creak a fair bit, which after X number of miles may become tiresome.
Gearing was good, did not need to use the little buggers and seems pretty confident in the largest cog, But on a long flat with a strong tailwind may be insufficient.
Wheels, I was out riding with the old man (no Bradley) but he was perched on a Condor racing bike. We had a role off (not very scientific I know) but Bridget held her own, dropped off after a while but nothing to be ashamed of!!!!!
I have gone for a very cheap handle bar mirror, I don’t really want to see the 14wheel lorry that’s about to run me down, but for £2 seems a good idea. Little screw mounting, on a flexible arm.
Tubus Pannier Racks
Soon to be on the bike, light strong and supposedly the best you can buy..more to come!
So on the bike for a while, seems solid, the front rails for the pannier though seem a little odd in size, very snug fit.
UPDATE**Racks and Panniers, seemed fine, rattle around a tiny amount. But not fully loaded up, so sure that will quiten ‘em down. Over all - good and very well balanced, coming out of the saddle and throwing it around was fine, and much better than expected.
Hub/USB - So I have gone for a fancy dynamo hub which has a USB outlet which fingers crossed will charge 90% of my gear, not tested yet, but will update ASAP.
UPDATE** The Plug USB charger, so the facts. Iphone plugged in for 5miles which took 25mins - charged it from 50% - 59% which I am pretty happy with. Oh and I could not really feel the hub doing it’s thing, which is great news.
What did I want; high PSI, gauge, and a good system that does not put pressure on the valve.
So having had a look around I went for the topeak ……….. it brought all of these factors in to one. So has a built in gauge tops outs at 120psi and has gone back to the old school design of a flexible hose to mount the valve. Not really used it yet, but feels solid, not to heavy and looks like an ideal tool.
Park tools was the obvious choice. Little bit weighty, but used so many weak tool that thread or break after while, fingers crossed it will last the job.
Current running with a crankbrothers, but think I may treat my self to new one.