"If I don't believe in solipsism, who will?" - Al Batt

Saturday, March 21, 2009

1984 Chris Kvale

Dan Lestrud dropped over on Tuesday evening for smart talk and Akavit shots. He also brought over the new wheelset. They are built of Mavic rims laced to vintage Phil Wood hubs with 4-cross DT Revolution spokes - not strictly period correct, but smooth, light, and absolutely round and true.
This was the builder's personal bike for a number of years, as indicated by his name stamp on the bottom bracket. I built this bicycle up close to what it would have been in 1984. Chris' choice of saddles would have been a Cinelli Unicantor. The Selle Concor Superleggeri I put on is very light with it's aluminum rails and was state of the art. I think it is a prettier saddle than the Unicantor. Chris disagrees...but it was my money being spent. Maybe I'll put on a Cinelli after I hit the railroad tracks hard with my fat ass securely planted and I break the Supperleggeri rails. In general it's a typical Campagnolo build-up except for the hubs, Simplex Retrofriction shifters and the salmon brake pads, upgrades over soft spots in the Campy lineup. I have a set of Modolo Pro brakes...I'm considering it. It's 58cm seat tube x 56cm top tube, which gives it a short wheelbase and no doubt it's little twitchy, fast steering like a highstrung sports car. I compensated a little for the short top tube with a long Cinelli stem.
Dunno what it weighs, but it's a light bike for it's day. For those people who have seen other handbuilt bicycles that are fine, just look hard at the seat cluster on this little jewel. Just look.


Jonny Hamachi said...

God I love this bike, but it is Very Twitchy. I was going to fender it with a front rack but this geometry makes me think it's not the right frame for such style.

Gunnar Berg said...

You're right. But hell, I did it to mine anyway. I as I recall, yours has a very short wheelbase. I guess we have to keep in mind that it was built for a master rider. If you do it, you'll have the fastest rando on the block.