Thursday, February 09, 2012

Custom Bike Build: Scott's Mukluk Ti Single Speed.


Scott contacted us after seeing some of our other titanium Mukluk builds.  He was interested in putting together a Mukluk ti single speed.  The bike was to be ridden in the Blue Ridge mountains of North Carolina.  It'll likely never see snow in it's life.  The idea of the bike was to put together a light weigh, fat tired, mountain bike. The components were to be high quality, without getting excessively pricey.  What we came up with achieves all of this in a visually stunning, mechanically perfect package.


The build of this bike is made up of no nonsense parts that offer a lot of performance for the dollar.  The frame is complimented by a White Brother's Snowpack fork, held in place via a Cane Creek 110 headset. Contact points are handled by a Thomson stem and seatpost along with a Salsa Promoto carbon flat bar.  Brakes for this build are Avid BB7 mechanical discs with Ashima rotors and custom steel brake lines.

 The stem in the negative position with just one 5mm spacer puts the bar in the same spot as Scott's Selma.  Switching from bike to bike should be very easy in regards to fit.  I have to say visually this looks amazing as well.  The stance of the bike is just mean looking.

The wheels in particular are lightweight.  They utilizing the new Surly Marge Lite rims laced to Paul's ultra wide WHUB hub, and Salsa's great Mukluk 2 hub.  The bike rolls on 45 North's awesome new Hüsker Dü tires.  The result is a lightweight 28lb package that looks as good as it rides.

The drive train on this bike is quite simple.  We used the Origin 8 Compact double crank and a single Salsa ring.  The crank lacks an outer ring position, making it a clean looking option for single speed use.   A Surly 22t cog and spacer kit round out the back of the bike.  Standard for our SS set ups, a Shimano 8 speed chain connects everything together.

I have to admit this is a bike I would love to own.  I would change nothing on it.  It would fit me perfectly, and all the parts are personal favorites of mine.  It's gorgeous, purpose built speed machine.  It should be a joy to ride.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Custom Bike Build: Mike's Racing Fargo.


With winter wrapping up, gravel racing season is looming large on the horizon.  People are starting training and equipment set up for the long days in the saddle ahead.  Last week we finished up a Salsa Fargo Build for Mike's gravel ambitions this year.  The plan was to build the bike as a fat tired racer.  This bike was built not as a drop bar mountain bike, or as a comfy touring bike as most Fargos tend to be.  This bike was set up as a light weight, efficient, racer with a decided forward stance.  The wheels on this are super light, and the tires add a ton of comfort as compared to a standard CX sized tire.


Here's what we came up with.  This bike was built to share the front Enve wheel with Mike's recent singlespeed El Mariachi build.  They form the basis for the rest of the build.  Functionally they are amazing, but they look stunning next to the thin steel tubing of the bike.  The orange Chris King parts look just as good on the bone color of the Fargo as they do on the blue of the El Mariachi.  Orange is again used as the accent color for this bike.  It's carried through in the King hubs, headset and bottom bracket.  It's also used for the bar tape, Salsa seatpost clamp, and the hardware on the Eriksen titanium seatpost.

The drivetrain on this bike uses parts familiar to readers of this blog.  Shimano XT front derailleur and double cranks shift flawlessly up front, and are paired with Sram's dead reliable X9 rear derailleur and Sram 1070 cassette.  All are reliable parts that are light weight, cost effective, and visually appealing.

Black rotors next to the bright orange hubs with black spokes offer a great amount of contrast.  Against the subtle bone color with a shimmery metallic clear coat it's a hell of a combination.

Rather than the Fargo standard Woodchippers, Salsa Cowbell bars were used on this bike.  These bars have quickly grown to be my favorite ever for long rides.  While I love the Woodchippers for true mtb riding, these fine bars work wonderfully for gravel, CX and touring style riding.  They are perfect for the intended purpose of this bike.  I love the color of the bar tape for this build.

This bike is simply gorgeous.  It's a bike built for a specific purpose, but one that would be comfortable in many different riding conditions.  The bike is visually perfect, and functionally it will do anything Mike could ask of it.  I have just finished my personal Fargo build similarly to this bike.  I love Fargo's built this way.  These bikes are perfect starting places for long distance gravel weapons.

Friday, February 03, 2012


We're throwing a little impromptu party tomorrow night, Saturday the 4th.  We'll start things out at 4pm.  We'll have food, fire, and all sorts of other good stuff going on.

We hope you can join us.  It'll be a good time for sure.