Yuhan’s road/gravel bike

Yuhan asked me to build him something similar to my pink bike, so I took his fit numbers and designed the geometry to match, based around a Whisky carbon fork (chosen for the hidden fender mounts), and ensuring no toe-overlap.

The frame has an integrated seatmast which was custom externally butted before being subtly curved for better tire/fender clearance. There is then a modified Thomson seatpost which has an internal wedge to secure it whilst allowing for seamless saddle height adjustment. The toptube is bi-ovalised for lateral stiffness and a better match up to the oversize headtube, which houses a Chris King headset for the tapered steerer of the fork.

A SRAM Red groupset has the gear cables routed internally through the downtube, with the rear TRP disc caliper also internal, but with custom machined cable stops that enable an easy swap to a hydraulic brake in the future if desired.

There is a brazed boss on the rear of the seatmast for attaching the fender, which removes the need for a chainstay bridge. Plus an additional set of bottle bosses further up.

The PDW fenders were painted to match along with the frameset by Colorworks, with the design matching Yuhan’s team kit. The final weight as shown is 20lbs.

Here are some thoughts on my first custom bike. It took a little while because I wanted to avoid any bias from the “new” bike, despite that I really wanted to thank you after the first ride. So this is how I felt after 1000km.

My history on road bikes is not that long, but I’ve ridden some high end bikes such as S-works SL4, Passoni top evolution, Pegoretti Love3, Colnago master, Parlee etc… but first of all, I must be clear that none of them was custom made to fit me.

The first ride on the new bike, I took it on a 100km with 1500m elevation spin. My first thought on the flat was the silky smoothness on the tarmac, maybe part of the credit should go to the Compass tires, but that feeling of tarmac is a pure joy to ride!

Then it’s the fit, to be honest I was a little concerned about the top tube length when I first received the geometry because it was 1.5-2cm longer than what I had. But Rob, you were absolutely right, it fits perfectly and those numbers don’t really matter. I’ve never been this comfortable on a bike before, even after 180km of riding. Also, with toe clearance issue solved, now I don’t need to pay attention to the position of my leg anymore. I also have enough room when I’m off the saddle, knees are far from hitting the handlebar.

I’ve done a lot of climbs within the past two months, including the Taiwan KOM route. In Taiwan, there are over 200 peaks which are over 3000m in this small island, so basically there are mountains everywhere you go. I’m not sure if I’ve been climbing wrong but my style changed drastically after a couple of climbs. I used to just pedal and grind when it comes to climbs, and would just grit my teeth until I make it to the top. But now, I just hold the top of the handlebar and sit back on the saddle, once I reach a certain cadence and steady output, I start to get this rhythm and the climb is so much easier then before, I even set PRs with less effort. By the way, the bike is heavier than a lot of my old bikes. I almost felt like there’s a force from the bike that helps me with this rhythm. But of course, I can only grind when gradient kicks up above 9%.

During descents, I have so much confidence because it is so stable and comfortable. The mechanical disc brakes are also very smooth as well, I don’t see the necessity of upgrading it to hydraulic brakes at this moment.

At last, I just don’t think I’ll ever need another bike besides this one. The only thing I regret is that I should’ve put in a deposit for two instead of one! Thank you so much for this amazing bike, I enjoyed discussing every details we went through and I will certainly enjoy riding this beauty for life!

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