Monthly Archives: September 2013

Building a Cyclocross Bike on the Cheap (Part 4): Photo Wrap Up

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Notice the rigged bolt for the hanger

20130905-120746.jpgThe most aggressive 35 mm wide tires I have tried. My local courses tend to feature a lot of long, wet grass. My 30 mm wide tires weren’t cutting it.

20130905-120913.jpgThere isn’t much clearance

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I would say it looks pretty good for $400.

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Building a Cyclocross Bike on the Cheap (Part 3): Completion

After a few nights of wrenching, my Redline cyclocross bike is finally in one piece with no live cable ends dangling, ready to snag you when you walk by the bike in the garage. Amazingly, I
was able to meet my goal of building the bike for under $400. After a week into my project, I thought $500 was a more realistic goal. However, I got more for my “leap of faith” donor frame than anticipated, and the shipping was less also. Please note, my spreadsheet shows >$400, but this does not include the eBay sale of the road brakes that I anticipate will bring me under the 4 bills threshold.

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Build
-Redline Scandium Frame (year, model?)
-Bontrager SSR paired spoke wheels
-Ritchey WCS Alloy seatpost (parts bin)
-Shimano MT55 canti brakes (parts bin)
-Kenda 35 mm Kross Supremes (new)
-Bontrager saddle, stem, and bars
-Sora shifters
-Tiagra rear derailleur
-Shimano non-series front derailleur
-Bontrager triple crank
-Bar top in line levers
-Bontrager handlebar tape (from donor bike to keep price down)

The only real snag was mounting the fork mounted hanger in the front. My aluminum fork had a simply drilled through hole which the mounting hardware did not fit. A quick trip to Lowes, and I had a heavy bolt that just fit (hello, hammer) and was just about the right length. I had to use a bolt between the hanger and fork to clear my headset. A little clunky, but it works.

A full photo gallery will be posted soon, as well as additional thoughts once I have time to run it around my personal 3 acre test track. Still have to tune up the brakes and derailleurs….

Part 2
Part 1

DIESEL FUEL: Hard Cider Wars Round 1

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vs.

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The first round of cider wars features two very different competitors. Fighting out of the blue corner is the blue blooded European Stella Artois Hard Cidre (that’s not a typo). Fighting out of the red corner, is…well, Redd’s Apple Ale from Georgia.

Stella Artois Hard Cidre
Stella’s entry into the hard cider foray doesn’t try to hide it’s uppity roots. From the spelling, to packaging, to selling in packs for 4 instead of 6, this drink is more for Belgian royalty than the pave or mud of a hard core Belgian bike race. The apple taste, well there ain’t much of it. Stella Hard Cidre has notes more similar to a dry wine with merely fruity undertones upon swallowing. My palate could barely detect apple flavor.

Redd’s Apple Ale
Let’s get this out of the way right away. I am not even sure this “ale” is technically a cider. However, if it smells
like a cider, tastes like a cider, and looks like a cider, let’s just call it a cider for my purposes.

I loved apple juice as a kid. Redd’s is essentially apple juice for big kids. It has a strong apple taste, and the carbonation leaves your mouth feeling clean after swallowing. It’s quite a refreshing way to hydrate after a ride or run. It’s also makes a nice dessert to sip when doing bike maintenance when the moon comes out.

The Winner
Based on it’s working man attitude and strong apple flavor, Redd’s advances to the next round.

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