Tuesday, September 13, 2011

In with the new, out with the old

Lots of changes here at the House of Zen. While work is preventing me from getting in a lot of long rides this year, it hasn't prevented me from riding, or making some changes to the stable. My beloved 1990 Paramount has been sold to a local rider who fits the bike much better than I did. A bittersweet goodbye, but when a bike isn't right for you, you don't ride it, and all bikes deserve to be ridden rather than sit hanging unused in a garage.

New to the fleet is a 2011 Surly Big Dummy. I've been intrigued by the BD since it first came out a few years ago with it's sexy curved top tube. The new incarnation loses the fancy top tube, but is still a cool bike. I picked this up from a local rider as a frame/fork/vrack/freeloaders package. As is normal, what was planned to be a cheap quick build turned into something a little fancier as I got into the project.

Ready to Roll

The final build list:
  • Shimano XT Hubs laced to Mavic XM321 rims. Shod with 2.5" Maxxis Hookworm tires
  • Race Face triple crankset mated to a Shimano 122mm square taper BB
  • Shimano Deore front and rear derailleurs
  • SRAM attack shifters
  • Jeff Jones Aluminum loop bars
  • Salsa 110mm stem
  • Chris King headset
  • Salsa Promoto 2 seatpost with Brooks B17 on top
  • Salsa seat collar
  • Ping bell
  • Origin 8 platform pedals
  • Avid speed dial levers running BB7 brakes
  • Avid 203mm rotors (F & R)
  • Planet Bike Cascadia 29er fenders
  • Pump
  • Bell
  • kickstand
  • Some inner tubes and electrical tape to keep the paint wear to a minimum

I painted the V racks black to match the frame. I also ordered in a set of wide loaders and painted them black too, as well as adding some well placed innertube to potential wear/bump spots. The bike is sporting a black Flightdesk as well.

Initial ride impressions after a couple hundred miles with and without cargo are positive. A bit of work uphill, but it cruises at 15-18 on flats just fine. Handling is great, and the bike is well balanced, both loaded and unloaded. Loads so far include 70 lbs of groceries, empty and full LP tanks, a case of beer in two Rubbermaid coolers, and my lovely wife. I'm looking forward to many miles on this bike over the coming months. It will be interesting to see how well it handles once the weather starts getting colder and snowier.


Anonymous said...

That's the Black Ops BD!

Nice Build.

Anonymous said...

That's the Black Ops BD!

Nice Build Up. It's never as inexpensive as you would like, but it works out in the end.

Have a good weekend!

Mel said...

Nice build, looks a very long bike, and I bet it can take quite a load.

Steve Fuller said...

Mel, I've already hauled a bunch of stuff on it. A couple of large wood pallets, a load of groceries plus my wife on back. Pedaled my wife around one of the local Christmas light displays. It's a lot of fun to ride.