Project SingleSpeed

I’m not a hipster… Honest. I just have some slight hipsteresque tendencies. Yes, I enjoy needlessly retro black and white film photography… Yes, I enjoy some hipster music (LCD Soundsystem and DFA records)… And now I have my own single speed push bike!

I’d been umming and erring about buying a fully assembled fixie for a while, but I thought that would be cheating a bit and go against the fixie/single ethos. About this time I’d been looking at a city break to Copenhagen, and the single speed bike seemed to be the go-to mode of transport for most Copenhagenites.  So I got on to the guys and gals at the Birmingham Cyclist forum and asks if anyone had an old steel frame or bike that could be converted to a single. A nice chap called Tim answered my post and offered me an almost perfect frame. It is a partially converted Team Raleigh Europa steel framed road bike. I snapped his hand off!

Below are a few before and after pics.

Pimp My Bike – Surosa Toledo Pro

I’ve just done a bit of bicycle pimping, just in time for it to sit in the house until spring!  First of all I replaced the dinged bar tape that I managed to take a chunk out of on my first ever ride in SPD clips.  I coasted up to the traffic lights in front of several motorists, forgot I was clipped in and keeled over, taking the chunk out of the bar tape and giving the drivers a chuckle!

I decided to match the decals on the bike and swap from black tape to sporty white.  I thought it might make me a bit more visible than being almost entirely matte black.  

Several YouTube tutorials later I managed to get the tape looking fairly neat, although I’m sure you get better with practice!

The cheep Selle Italia saddle now looked seriously out of place, and I’d been toying with getting a new perch for a while.  

I work above the Specialized Concept store in Birmingham so I spent a happy lunch hour looking at the saddles they had in the store.  I went for the Specialized Romin Evo Expert saddle, and after the first ride into town and back, 20km it seems great! I’m really happy with how it looks and how it feels, and it will only get better with more km.  

 Cannon hill park. Quiet the day before the Great Brum Run!

This is the route I take when I’m not feeling very adventurous. Recorded on  Cyclemeter app for Iphone.  Unfortunately they are using the native Iphone maps instead of Google maps, and this is a real drawback!