Saturday, July 23, 2011

Chris Kvale: Ol' Blood On Ivory

As she stands right now - I don't have the bars wrapped because I am saving some really nice leather wraps I got from Tom Sanders, and getting good nickle plating on the stem has proven to be a real hassle. It is presently visiting a plater recommended by Joe Bell, who really ought to know. The front rack is pretty heavy handed and also it doesn't sit horizontally because the Paul brake mounting hardware protrudes quite a bit and kicks it up. This winter I'll have a more delicate rack made, probably by Vincent Dominguez - maybe a rear rack too. Other than that it's pretty much wrapped up except for stripping and buffing the crank, polishing the fenders and brake handles and general dinking around with it.

As they are set right now the brake levers will hit the top bar.  Has anyone got a source for a 2" or 3" lace-on black leather protector for the tube?



22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I have the same issue with those bars and have a chipped top tube to prove it. I would at least wrap some cotton adhesive or tennis racket tape or something for the time being; otherwise, don't say I didn't warn you.

I don't think the rack works. I would just lose it unless you really need it.

Otherwise it's probably the best bike I've seen on the internet.
mw

Gunnar Berg said...

Thanks. Best on the internet is a little heady. Yeah, on the rack.

gabriel said...

Yo Gunnar, Don't loose that front rack! if the bike were designed for front wheel load carrying , and you are considering loading the bike, it is the way to do it. If you want, until the new one gets fabricated i can turn and thread an extension for the support rod out of aluminum for you if you send me a drawing.
as to the top tube wrap, i have some nice soft upholstery leather i can cut and drill if you want.
You will find that Tom was very generous with that leather bar tape. There should be enough left to wrap a portion of the top tube which is a solution i used for a track bike of mine.
I do agree with Anonymous, it is an absolutely exquisite bike.

gabriel said...

oh, and excellent choice of colors. Even the yellow in the type.

Gunnar Berg said...

Gabe, Thanks!

Gunnar Berg said...

I think a smaller rack with a maroon Guu-Wantanabe would be killer.

reverend dick said...

How does it ride?

Gunnar Berg said...

The real question about a bike. As sweet as any bike I've ever been on. But they always do when they're "the new bike" don't they? Maybe ask me again in a year. What has surprised me a little is how easily it goes fast (old guy fast anyway.) Don't think I'll be bushwhacking Ft. Ord single track with it though.

Mimbres Man said...

Very nice. Beautiful colors. The Pauls brakes look great!

Johann Rissik said...

Lovely piece, if I may say so. I'llemail you the contact details of a guy here who has just covered my Ergon grips in leather when the rubber wore away. He does yacht wheels for international yachts. Fine work.

Anonymous said...

Love the colors! Are those CLB levers? (Did you have to drill the handlebars?) I second your idea of the Guu-Wantanabe bag and a more delicate rack. Just beautiful! -Tony

Gunnar Berg said...

They are CLBs with a LOT of filing, sanding and polishing. They still need a final buffing. The bars are drilled and have internal wooden cable stops, 3/4" dia dowels with a stepped hole drilled through and anchored by a crew throw the bar side wall.

Mark Stonich said...

Gorgeous bike. But since CK built it, that was a foregone conclusion.

Can't wait to see it up close.

Most of my top tubes have to be protected from brake levers or bar end shifters. I don't think a single layer of leather will do the trick. Either uber dense foam or multiple layers of cotton bar tape under the leather would be Plan A

Kyle Brooks said...

I really like your color combination. A front rack is a nice addition, if you can get it level -- and if it can be attached to the front fender it adds a nice element of stability to the fender. A custom-built rack would be a nice option, though pricey. For the top-tube protector, I saw that one person suggested using a little piece of your leather bar wrap which you can punch and stitch. Another option is cotton bar tape, wrapped and shellacked -- you can match the look and color of the leather pretty well with that. I've used it to wrap chainstays, it's durable, and if you choose to remove it later, it cleans up with alcohol and doesn't seem to harm the paint any.

Masini said...

WOW... that is a great-looking bike! Nice job. Any chance we can get you to post the complete spec? Is that a Paul thumbie shift lever mount? Very well done, sir!

Anonymous said...

I've enjoyed reading your blog since I saw it mentioned in the Velo-Orange blog. I'd check with Walnut Studio for the TT protector. http://www.etsy.com/shop/WalnutStudiolo

-afs

Gunnar Berg said...

Masini, It's a vintage Shimano "deer-head" era mountain bike shifter.

Gunnar Berg said...

Kyle, At this point the price of a custom rack is pennies in the overall scheme of things.

Silk Hope said...

It's Knock'em dead Gunnar. Enjoy! You need to call the guys at Signal and get a "Pinot" rack ;-)

jusvelos said...

lovely colours

Mark Stonich said...

Maybe I'm just too practical minded. Or maybe I just don't like orthodoxy based on someone's idea of aesthetics. But....

Horizontal front bag support racks look ugly to me because I know (or think I know) that front bags work best when tilted back slightly towards the rider.

The angle of your current rack looks just about right.

OTOH I use a digital level when installing rear racks :-)

Gunnar Berg said...

Yes, the bag functions perfectly with this, sags just a little and even looks level(ish). and I also agree on rear racks, so you're two fer two.