Monday, January 15, 2007

The To-Do List

Besides ramping up my mileage base, the big things on my to-do list right now involve getting a new bike. It is such a big thing because for the first time I am spec'ing all new parts on a custom frame. In the past I have done a lot of cannibalizing to build frames up. More recently I have taken to buying mid-priced bikes, riding them into the ground, selling them and starting over. While I have been doing the disposable thing with my mtn bikes, I have stayed true to my 10 year old Ibis Hakkalugi single speed conversion. It is such a great bike that I will never part with it. My dream is to build the off-road equivalent of the 'lugi. A 29 inch single speed mountain bike with quality parts that hold longevity and reliability as the highest virtues.
I am not a gear junkie, I like good stuff but when I find something that works for me I stop looking. As I research parts I have discovered that I know less about bikes now than I did five years ago. Outboard Bottom Bracket bearings? I just learned about Isis BBs and now those are old school. I have spent a lot of time at I will be buying my parts from one of my Local Bike Shops but Speedgoat's user friendly site and enormous inventory has been a great help in my research.
After the Parts list gets somewhat settled I will begin talking to Doug Curtis at Curtlo Cycles about getting a frame built. Local Builder (Winthrop is part of my 250 mile neighborhood), steel frames and experience building 29 inch Single Speed frames, Curtlo was the obvious choice.
Beyond the bike build, this spring will begin the process of choosing the non-bike equipment (sleeping, bag, bivy, clothing, etc). I am not going to worry about the bike weight (reliability and longevity are husky virtues) but I will be thinking about the ounces where I can. I didn't know my sleeping bag was heavy until I looked at a 1 pound 5 ounce Mountain Hardwear Phantom 32 degree bag. I can save a pound there for a lot less money than I could with bike parts.
As for this site, I hope to begin listing all of the related resources that I have been accumulating. There is a surprising amount of material on the web so it may take a while to become complete. I have done enough talking for the day time to do some riding.

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