Saturday, August 16, 2008

Short, but is it stupid short?

Here's the frame that didn't want to get built! Last year, I had some leftover tubing from making a curved TT that I thought might make a cool curved ST. So, I decided to make a "What if?" bike. As in "What if I built a frame with chainstays way shorter than most pro builders recommend"? I did the front triangle and then set it aside to build some other frame, then another frame, then another, until I had forgotten about this one. I unearthed it while attempting to clean the shop last month and figured it was about time to finish it.
So here it is:

Most agree the 370mm is too short for chainstays, this bike can run at 360. Head angle is 74 and the seat is an effective 73.
I also figured that since this is just a test frame, it should have some curved seatstays to see if they really help to smooth the ride.
The seatstay angle looked funny if they were to attach to the top of the seat tube, so I stuck them on the top tube in fine Hellenic fashion -named for 1920's bike builder Fred Hellens so, no, GT did not pioneer this design! They aren't attached to the seat tube at all in order to take full advantage of any compliance they might offer.
Bridge is a 16 tooth cog with requisite lightning bolt.

My favorite part of this bike is the segmented fork- my first one that narrows at the top. I expect that I'll be using this fork long after I'm done testing this frame.
Just have to pick a color now...I'm thinking bright green. What do you think?
Next up, a step by step build of John's fixed gear commuter.

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