Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Last mention of singlespeeds

I know you're all bored of hearing me talk about singlespeeds. I'm bored of it as well, and I promise this will be the last time I do it. I've spent way too much money this summer on bikes (mainly the new Jamis, but also three new wheels and a bunch of parts and tools), and I'm also tired of playing around with bikes.

However ~ a while back I mentioned that I was addicted to surfing the bikes section of Craigslist looking for a cheap steel roadbike that I could turn into a cyclocross singlespeed to leave at my parents' place in Bancroft. A Toronto cyclist named Geoffrey, who's a far more avid cyclist than I am, emailed me and kindly offered me a steel frame that wasn't quite the right size for him.
And this is it. Geoffrey gave me a frame, fork, handlebars, brakes, cranks and chainrings. I put on the wheels, seat, chain, rear cog etc. It's set up with a 40 tooth ring on the front, and a 15 tooth cog on the back. This is a lower gear than my other two singlespeeds, but with the steel frame, and with the fact that the roads in Bancroft I plan to use it on are slightly hilly, I kind of wish I'd put maybe a 17 tooth cog on the back.
Once again I had a hell of a time getting the damned chain tension right. If you click on these photos - go over to the Flickr site - and choose to view the LARGE size photo, you can see that although this bike kind of has horizontal dropouts (which in theory makes getting chain tension easy), when I played with moving the wheel's position in the dropout, it just messed up the contact with the brakes, so I treated it like a vertical dropout and used a halflink to get the tension right.
You can see the halflink in the picture above, and also the SRAM powerlink (it's the one furthest to the right - you can open it with your hands, eliminating the need for a chainbreaker).
Anybody know what company would have made this frame? Geoffrey didn't know and I can't figure it out either. I think it starts with an "F" because of more lettering elsewhere on the bike -- something like F____wing?


And here's a random photo of the Toronto Outdoor Art Show at Nathan Phillips Square, which my friend Mark was showing paintings at this past weekend.


Owen Rogers said...

I think it's a Fleetwing, 70's ten speed...

Jerome said...

BTW, I kind on dig the singlespeed stuff. It's an often neglected facet of bikes. Cool new ride man! Enjoy it.

Smudgemo said...

I'd ride a single speed lots if I didn't have a fairly serious climb to get home. Heading down sucks a bit too because I like to pedal instead of just coast. Personally, I find it interesting when people experiment with bikes in a non-destructive manner.

geoffrey said...

It was a a fleetwing once. But with all the ground hugging iron swapped out for alloy its more like a go-like-stink-wing.
Bancroft seems a happy retirement for that bike. It was fun ripping up the Humber, Don and MGT on it.
Happy trails!