Yesterday I mentioned my Ridgeback was on its last legs and I was looking at a bombproof urban commuter and I mentioned this: Charge Mixer 8 and Jon at Redbikes was good enough to mention the On One Pompetamine Alfine 11spd.
As you can see if you click on the links, they’re both pretty similar, steel framed, hub gears, disc brakes etc.
This got me thinking. The object I’m trying to achieve is a very low maintenance very tough winter commuter/towpath bike. What would something like that look like?
I’m no bike designer but to start with my frame material of choice would be Titanium. Not holding back then am I?
Why Titanium? Robustness mainly, it doesn’t corrode, it doesn’t need a paint job and to clean it just needs a good hose down and a wipe over. I happen to love a bare ti frame as well! The ride quality is pretty near steel, which if you’ve ever ridden a very good steel framed bike you’ll know just how good that is!
Type of frame would be a 29er MTB type frame. Loads of dirt clearance and I like MTB geometry anyway, very comfortable. Forks would be carbon straight leggers for direct steering and who needs suspension on the road or towpath?
Wheels, obviously 29ers, a good Mavic MTB wheel, very strong, light enough and at 29” rolls really well. The tyres would be a puncture resistant Schwalbe. The rear wheel would have a Alfine 11 speed hub, with Shimano XTR hub up front.
Actually on the bits’n’pieces, headset, bottom bracket, crank and hydraulic disc brakes all would be Shimano XTR. All light, all hard wearing (low maintenance) and all good quality.
Here’s the left field bit though, I’d go for belt drive. I’m sure it is not beyond the wit of TI frame builders to put together a frame where the right hand chainstay has a bracket for the dropout that screws/bolts onto the frame to create a gap when it’s removed to fit and replace a belt.
Belts are quiet, maintenance free, no lube required and last 3 times longer than your average chain. I especially like the maintenance free bit.
Onto ancilliaries, carbon seat post and riser bars, any alloy machined stem of quality would suffice and obviously mudguards are a must. If only to keep the crap off a new Brooks Saddle.
Pedals would be Shimano XTR SPDs.
Hub gears – Check.
Hydraulic Disc brakes – Check.
Ti Frame – Check.
Carbon forks – Check.
Belt drive – Check.
Brooks saddle – Check.
29” Wheels – Check.
Schwalbe tyres – Check.
Carbon seat post – Check.
Carbon riser bars – Check.
Shimano XTR whatever is left – Check.
That’s now my dream bike. The only problem is to afford it I’ll need a lottery win, and if I get a lottery win I’ll be giving up work so I won’t need it anyway! Doh!
Anyone care to give me about 3k so I can have it? Tell you what, just to be on the safe side, can I have 5k?
I’m wondering how long it’ll be before MTBs get hub gears and a belt drive. It seems the logical way forward to me for the environment they operate in.
What form would your money no object, I can get it built to my spec dream bike take?