Post Gran Fondo Race

Hi All,

It’s been more than a month since Gran Fondo New Jersey race and here are few pictures from the 107 mile race on the Troika Road frame.  It was a 7.5 hours unforgettable riding experience starting in Morristown, NJ going to the Delaware River and back with over 9,000 feet elevation… my longest ride so far!

 

Happy tratis,

Vlad 

 

Road Race Bike – Gran Fondo NJ

Hi All,

Hope you enjoyed your summer and had your good share of rides and fun.  I’ve been working on the road frame and fork that I wanted to use in the Gran Fondo NJ race, which is coming up next Sunday.  The race starts in Morristown with an amazing route to the Delaware River and back.  It covers 107 miles and has four challenging timed hill climbs with total climbing over 9,100 feet.

The frame and fork are done and bike is completely set up.  I had a twenty mile ride on it and the ride felt perfect.  I used BiceCad Fit advisor to design this frame.  This application allows one to enter rider’s dimensions, which in turn gives an optimal bike size for the rider.  So, every bike is different and is specific for a rider when I build the frame.

I utilized a True Temper, OX Platinum steel tubing for the construction of the front triangle.  This alloy is double butted with tube wall thickness of 0.7-0.4-0.7mm.  In addition, this is an air-hardening steel alloy, meaning it does not lose its strength after applying high heat during TIG welding.

The bike has a lively ride that offers a balance between road feel, stiffness and comfort.  Double-butted tubing dampens some road vibration and offers good feel for the road surface below.  This quality is what leads many riders to experience the sense that a steel bicycle is an extension of the rider.

The frame is TIG welded and has internal routing for shift cables and breaks.  I built a segmented fork with 1″ steerer tube.  The frame is powder coated and has custom Jen Green’s head badge.  I installed a Sram Apex group set with white finish and ten speed drivetrain.

Check out some pictures of the bike and stay tuned for an update on the new Road Disc/Di2 project for my old friend, Dr.  Eduard Burt, DC.  He is an avid cyclist and a great health practitioner.  Take a look at his blog for cyclists on how to lower neck and back pain here.

Vlad

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Troika, Fat Bike Review

I am learning that the process of acquiring frame building tools is very long.  But finally, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!  My last jig for mitering main tubes should be arriving after Labor Day weekend.  Also, the conversion from one phase to three phase power for my Bridgeport mill worked out fine.  I am using WEG CFW-10 VFD (variable frequency drive) with potentiometer allowing me easily adjust the speed of the Bridgeport motor.  Meanwhile, I’ve been riding Troika that I built at Metal Guru and can share my experience of riding on the “fat” wheels.

I’ve been test riding Troika mainly in the Tourne Park, little gem of the Garden State, which became my “backyard” mtb park.  This rugged park  is the only remaining undeveloped fragment of the Great Boonton Tract.  This area was purchased by David Ogden, colonial Attorney-General of New Jersey in 1759.  The main entrance of the park, McCarfey Lane, was created in 1767 to haul iron from Hibernia’s mines to Old Boonton where cannonballs were manufactured for Continental Army during American Revolution.

Tourne Park offers a bit of everything for mountain biking: ripping through single track, needling technical rock gardens and roots, leg burning rock and gravel climbs as well as hairy, technical descents.

Troika shows very stable ride downhill over loose rocky terrain because of the larger contact patch with the ground on 70 mm rims and 3.8″ tires that I run at about 7 psi.  The tire pressure and rim width dictate the amount of footprint on the ground.  Hence, the wheels with wider rims and lower tire pressure increase the contact patch, which in turn provide for a more stable ride downhill and cornering.

In addition, Troika does not slip during high-grade climbs over gravel.  I had a non-slipping ascend to the top of the Tourne during test riding.  Troika’s rear wheel equiped with Surly’s Nate 3.8″, 120 tpi (threads per inch) tire with super large knobs sticks to the ground extremely well.  Going over the logs and large rocks is not a problem either.  As I expected, Fat Bike performs as an all terrain bike.  I have no doubts that Troika will even be more superior ride over anything I owned in the past when riding during wet and snow conditions.

Below are few photos riding Troika in the Tourne.

Happy Trails!

– Vlad