… I build bicycles.
After staying up until 5am on Saturday night I got up early and went and scratched an itch I have had for some time… maybe I was missing the Pugsley with it’s rigid frame and fat tyres and winter has been over for a while so the fixed winter bike and it’s fatties are stored until the snow flies.
I had picked up this Diamondback Apex frame that nobody wanted quite a few months back and it had been collecting dust and last evening I picked up a bunch of bits at the co-op so that I could turn that frame into a bicycle and settled on the rigid, fat tyred, six speed set up you see up there.
It was ready to roll before lunchtime rolled around and I also installed a new suspension fork on my Blizzard.
The Apex is a very nice frame made of True Temper TT tubing and is very light and with some moderately nice parts it built up to weighing a few hairs less than 25 pounds; the wheels are ancient RM 25’s laced to a Shimano UG hub and a Suzue high flange up front, the crank is a Race Face with a 34 tooth single and bash guard, brakes are Avid and Shimano (with Kool Stops), levers are Deore, and the shifting of the 13-26 six speed is handled by the Deore thumbie and a short cage XT derailleur.
On my way back to the co-op this afternoon I rode through Millcreek ravine on the gravel paths to test the handling and tyres and could not have been more pleased and the bike is actually pretty civilized on the street too.
Aside from finding a slow leak in the front tyre (the tubes were used) the riding was without incident and even the slow leak did not cause me any issues as there is a lot of volume in those 2.2 / 2.3 inch wide tyres.
The ride and handling of this bike is exceptional and on par with any Kona or Rocky Mountain from that era… it will keep the Blizzard and the Moulden company as it’s a keeper… at least until I build up the Kona Explosif I have waiting and then we will see.
The one by six was nice but yesterday I looked around this shop full of parts and grabbed a set of XT 8 speed wheels, an XT long cage, and an XT trigger to change the bike from the one by six to a one by eight which expands the range to give it a stump pulling low and a little more top end.
The Araya RM20 rims match up really well with the frame and makes most of the parts period correct XT, the shifting and performance could not be much better.
I do have some XTR 8 speed parts but am saving those for another build.