Not the pink bike…..

Not the pink bike…..

My pink bike, which won ‘best road bike’ at NAHBS in 2016, has been fantastic – a LOT of miles on it over the last three years, and it really has performed pretty much perfectly as it was designed. So when FSA asked if I would collaborate with them on a show bike, and I decided to do another fat-tire road/gravel build, it took some thought as to what I would do differently. I kept the curved seattube and very short chainstays along with the integrated seatmast. The framebag on my TransAm bike has been very useful for long rides (so nice having empty back pockets!), and my gravel explorations have been getting longer, so adding one here was an addition. To do this but retain the space for two large bottles, I added a curve to the toptube, and continued this into the stays just for the aesthetic. The threaded bosses for the framebag are brazed internally in the tubes, so that with the bag removed the frame looks clean. Brian at Kaibab Customs once again worked his magic with the frame bag, which perfectly fits the frame, and has internal dividers that not only help with organization, but ensure the bag doesn’t bulge – having a bag rub on your knees is not good…..

I maintained the third bottle cage on the back of the seatmast, but also added a fourth mount under the downtube. For the fork, I sourced a US-made carbon fork from HIA Velo. This can be used with the Mavic Speed Release thru-axle – nice to not need a hex key or to have to remove the axle. I wanted to have this feature for the rear too, so I custom modified a set of Syntace dropouts to work with this system. The only thing I changed with the geometry was to lengthen the frame by 10mm and shorten the stem by the same. Just to increase the front center and the downhill stability a fraction.

FSA supplied the bar and stem and of course their semi-wireless WE groupset. The adventure crank gives slightly lower ratios with 32/48, and the group will handle a 32T in the rear. Plenty of clearance with the 38mm Schwalbe tires mounted on Enve G23 rims.

Everytime I post an unpainted frame, I am asked about clearcoating – I have not had a lot of success with this in the past. A couple of attempts with wet clear resulted in very quick corrosion under the clear. Clear powder has proven durable, but is a lesser quality finish and tends to go a little yellow over time. But Eric at Colorworks found a new two-step process that sounded promising – for this bike we beadblasted it first to gain uniformity and better adherence. Time will tell how it holds up – so far it has survived being in the garage all winter without issue. But hasn’t been ridden yet!

Although this was built to fit me, I don’t really *need* another bike – since the pink bike is so great. So should it happen to fit someone who is interested in it, I would consider selling it. Saddle height 750mm +/-20mm. Effective toptube 580mm, Stack 557mm, Reach 413mm.

One Comment

  1. This bike is absolutely positively gorgeous! I’ve been looking for something like this that I can use on gravel / Taramac and even to pull my 2 year old behind me. I’m typically a 56 in most bikes. Couldn’t tell from the dimensions if this would fit, but if you think it would I’m highly interested in buying this bike! (If it is still available). Thanks!

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