經過了漫長的九個月等待，終於拿到了我的客製化鈦合金旅行車車架。自從2014年去義大利騎單車旅行之後，我就越來越確定自己不會再參與比賽。我想要的是一台能陪我上山下海到處流浪的耐操旅行車，這樣的念頭催生了訂做鈦合金碟煞旅行車的目標。期間曾經survey過Independent Fabrication, Firefly, Hampsten, kualis，但是這些廠商訂做鈦合金旅行車架並不便宜，不包含S&S coupler就要US$3500起跳。這樣的價格我實在是花不下去，且還有其他事情要忙，因此訂做車架的事情也就一直擱著。
After the whole 9-month long waiting, I finally received my customised titanium touring bike frameset. Since I went touring-cycling in Northern Italy with Harriet in 2014, I am very sure I won’t attend cycling race in the future anymore. I want a reliable and portable touring bike which can be with me around the world. Because of this idea, I want to customise my own titanium touring bike. I’ve surveyed some handmade bike factories e.g: Independent Fabrication, Firefly, Hampsten, and kualis. However, the customised titanium bikes made by these factories are really prohibitive. The price is usually up from USD$3,500, and it’s not including S&S coupler. I cannot afford this price, and meanwhile I was busy on other things, so this idea was pending.
去年年初，瓶子發現了一家價格讓我比較能夠負擔得起的俄羅斯手工車廠，有接受鈦合金跟鋼管車訂製（跟builder全程用英文聯繫，所以不建議英文不好對車架細節又不熟的人自己弄）。但是因為中間要準備搬來紐西蘭，直到去年七月初才開始跟frame builder聯繫，討論車架與零件的細節。八月初確認訂單付訂金，十一月初才收到S&S coupler。而因為外胎與車架間隙不夠，也將BB shell從傳統的BSA改成T47。十二月上旬完成車架初模，四個月就這樣過了，接著又無消無息。
Last January,Harriet found a Russian handmade bike factory, which is located in Moscow. This factory can make customised titanium and steel bike, and its price is affordable for me. Because I would move to New Zealand last May, I started discussing the frameset detail with the frame builder since last July. In the first of August, I confirmed the order and paid the deposit. After the frame builder received the S&S coupler from the United States in November, he started making my frameset. Meanwhile, he found there was not enough clearance between tyre and chainstay, so he changed the BB shell from the traditional BSA BB shell to the T47 one. Last December, I finally saw the initial frameset.
反正剛搬來紐西蘭有很多事情要忙，我也不急著拿車，就慢慢地等待等待。今年的一月下旬，builder來信說現在在弄cable stop，這時離車架完成的日子不遠了。 🙂
This January, the frame builder told me he was working on the cable stops. I couldn’t wait to see my frameset!?
In the end of February, the surface of frameset was finished. This time I chose matt finish because I wanna try something else. (I chose the glossy one for my last customised titanium road bike, which was already sold to another cyclist in the US)
In the beginning of March, the frame builder sent me the final photos. The frameset, Velo Orange fender, front rack, and handlebar bag were included in this photo. Then frame builder shipped my frameset on 9th of March from Moscow.
Before the frameset arrived in New Zealand, I didn’t know where my frameset was. I couldn’t use the tracking number to track anything. The frame builder and I were afraid that my frameset would be lost. We tried to contact the post office but got no update regarding my frameset. After the frame builder filed the complaint for the post office, my parcel was arrival in New Zealand custom on 9th of April, and I received my frameset on 15th of April.
Although I got my frameset, I had no suitable tool for installing the headset and crown race. ThankHarriet for finding this special long thick screw (it’s originally for timber door) in Bunnings warehouse, so that I could save NZ$29 labour rate. This special screw with two square washers can be the simplest headset installation tool.
However, this DIY tool is too difficult to use. If this kind of DIY tools is useful, Park Tool doesn’t need to make the special tools for the bike. I tried to install my headset using this
shitty DIY tool many times, but I had no idea how to press it evenly. I eventually lost my patience??, then… I gave up this tool and used plastic hammer tapping the headset into the head tube directly?. Anyway, after fighting with the headset for a while, it was pressed into the head tube.
After installing the headset, I had to install crown race into the fork as well. I bought a 32mm PVC tube from Bunnings warehouse, and I thought I could use this for installing crown race. Well… I was really too naive…?
林祖媽我又錯了。用這根PVC管敲crown race花了我洪荒之力，連橡膠槌都斷頭?。敲了N次之後才把crown race打進去。我之前在車店工作好幾年，從來沒有敲過這麼難敲的crown race！?
I was wrong again. In order to install the crown race, I made an all-out effort to achieve this task. As I tapped this PVC tube, my plastic hammer was broken due to this
damn crown race.?
I thought I could assemble fork, stem, and handlebar with frame after installing headset and crown race. But… I didn’t expect that I couldn’t press the headset cap into the fork (the headset cap usually can be pressed into fork by fingers)!! I had to use the PVC tube again. I used to work in the bicycle shop for a couple of years as a mechanic, but I’ve never encountered this kind of circumstances before…?♀️
Finally, I assembled the frame, fork, headset, crown race, stem, and handlebar. Although the DIY tools can be used for installing the headset and crown race, it’s really a shit. I don’t recommend anyone using this way. If you use this way and damage your bicycle parts, please don’t tell me…?♀️
Then installed the fenders, front rack and handlebar bag. I tried to install the rear rack, but it would be affected by the post of the rear fender. So I have to find another way for installing the rear rack.?
Velo Orange的便當袋相當的復古，個人很喜歡，且可以搭配Velo Orange的前貨架固定。美中不足的是若想要單獨使用這個便當袋而不搭配VO前貨架，會遇到許多問題。
I really like this Velo Orange handlebar bag. It can be integrated with the VO front rack. However, there will be some issues when you use this independently without integrating with VO front rack.
After processed above procedure, then installed crankset, chain, front/rear derailleurs, shifters, paddles, wheels, and disc brakes. The initial setup for my bike it almost finished. However, I just realised that my old KCNC seat post cannot be plugged into the new frame. But Harriet’s seat post and another seat post from my steel bike can be plugged into the new frame. There must be something wrong with this KCNC seat post obviously. It means I have to purchase a new seat post for my new bike. ?
The T47 BB installation is very simple and easy. All you need is this wrench.
The initial installation is finished finally. The next and final stage will be installing the rear rack, star nut, inner/outer cable and adjust brakes/gears (as long as the star nut arrives in New Zealand). Hope I can ride my new bike as soon as possible or the winter is coming soon.