16 September 2010

Building up the Walt

For just a couple of hours over the last couple of nights I have been working on putting things together. I know for most people they would have a new dream bike put together in a couple of hours and would have some miles under their belt on their new ride. Not me! I want to take my time make sure things go together right and I like knowing how things work while I am putting it together. Be one with the bike!

Here's what I got

Walt has a really good deal on parts to make a build package. You can only get the parts if he is building you a frame. So don't ask him to sell you parts!

If you have been following my Blog for the past year you know I will make a post about items that are made in America and it was a goal for me to put as many parts as I could on the bike that where made in the GOOD OLD U.S.A.

First up is the Headset from
Cane Creek I went with the 110 and it is CNC Machined in Fletcher, North Carolina. I have a Chris King on the Bontrager and wanted to try the 110.

Next up is the
Thomson Seat Post, Elite X4 stem and seatpost collar and they are located in Macon, Georgia. I went with Thomson because they are bombproof and they are just cool!Do I need to say anymore?

The last two come together and they are the brakes and pads. Because of a
Cyclocross magazine articleI was going with IRD brakes but could not find them in stock so I went for the big money and got the Paul's Neo-Retro brakes.

Here you can see them on the fork

You can check the site out
here These things are cool! They look cool and the spring is on the outside. So they are backwards to other brakes. They are a little different to set-up but seem to have tons of power. Made in Chico, California. The brakes come with Koolstop Thinline Brake Pads I am not sure where at in the US they are made but they are made here.

That's it in the Made in the USA department. Let's see how far I get on it on Friday. I have to pick up the Salsa Bell Lap bars and some spacers.

15 September 2010

Right Out of the Box!

I believe the last time I had a new bike was in 1998 and I have been long overdue for a new one. I figured it was time in my life to get a bike built for me and I have been jonesing for a cross bike for 10 years.Here's what I was looking for. I wanted a American made steel cyclocross bike that I could race but could also be a bike for adventure and could handle some single track. It needed to be well built and would last for years to come.

So after a 1 1/2 years of searching the web on custom builders and cyclocross bikes I picked Waltworks to build my bike for me. Walt had already built a fork for me for my Bontrager and I have been very happy with it.

It has been a process since about April of this year. That's when I put my down payment and sent in my fit sheet to get on the waitlist. Then about the later part of July, Walt and I started on the design process and then it was on to him building the bike. I would guess since the time we started to the time I received the bike we have emailed each other about 25 times and almost as many phone calls.

Having a custom bike built for you is different than going to your LBS and buying one off the showroom floor. I have to say that Walt was great to work with and he knows his stuff. So if you are looking for a builder then you need to check his site out!

Now on with some pictures!

Here's the frame in what I call Waltworks Team Blue

If you are going to build a custom bike you might as well have a custom headbadge made. This one is made by Jen Green of Revolution Cycles Jewelry

The fork

A little lug work. Walt keeps his builds on the low down and does not do a lot of lug work but this is standard on his bikes.

Kind of keeping with the seat tube with the lug look.

Kicking it old school with Breezer Dropout on the rear. Rear spacing is 132.5 so I can run road or mountain hubs.

Okay, that's all I have time for tonight. I am working on putting it all together and I will share the build list and why I picked what I did in another post.

09 September 2010

All I am going to Say is Stay Tune

I got word today that my Waltworks has shipped! I hope to have it in the next couple of days.

02 September 2010

2010 Devil's Backbone Mountain Cross Report

You might want to skip this post if you are looking for pictures. But you cancheck out last year's report and pictures here.

This year's event turned out to be as good as last year's event. It is still listed as a non-competitive event but as I over heard one of the riders say "If there is a timer then it's a race" I think he made a good point. But what is cool about this event is that it can be a race or a non-competitive event or a epic ride with friends or you and the mountains. It's your pick!

My plan was to do better riding the course and have a better finish time and for the most part I met my goal. This year's course was a little different making it easier for riders to make it in to the feed zone area.

Here is a map of this year's course

**WARNING** If you have a mapmyride account and want to print the cue sheet some of the legs are WRONG. The map route is RIGHT. I think it would be best to do your own map.

It took us about 26 miles to get to the first feed zone which the second feed zone is in the same location. I think the first part of the course was longer and there was more climbing this year. It seem to take forever to get there.

The second leg of the corse was a nice downhill section, which was made with a slate type flat rock and was different than the hours of gravel road that I had just been on. You could fly down on this stuff! You know what goes down must go up and it did. With a climb back to the Blue Ridge Parkway. This was one of the harder sections for me. We hit the Blue Ridge up around Irish Creek and from there it was 3 miles up.

The third leg of the course was departing the second feed zone with about 8-10 miles of downhill gravel roads. Riding back on the downhill section ran-up on two pot smokers in a jeep. I was going about 40 mph when I got up to them. I guess they found it funny to speed up and throw rocks and dirt up every where.Not too smart of a thing to do since they did not know that riders where up infront of them on the trail.

By the Numbers:

65.14 Miles
2913 cals burn
4 water bottles
2 cups of Coke
2 cups lemonaide
1 cooke
2 1/2 packets of CLIF Blocks
1 Handfull of M&M's
126 riders
75th place

One improvement for me was that I could climb more of this course than last year which was a good thing. I also learn something to. A 29 inch or 700cc wheel does much better on this course. I have taken care of that issue for next year with having a Waltworks Cyclocross bike built. I was a little late with getting my name on the waitlist to have it here in time for this year.