Monday, June 04, 2007

Building my blue bike while Barry blew

With tropical storm Barry breezin’ through town this weekend, bringing heavy rain and high winds, it was the ideal time to be indoors building up my new Recherche.

By Sunday afternoon the worst had past and the rain abated long enough to get outside and take a few photographs.

However, gale force winds and the threat of more rain made even a short test ride out of the question. Of course I know how the bike will ride; exactly the same as all my previous bikes.

I had blue tires and blue handlebar tape just waiting for another blue frame, so I am pleased to have found one.


maltese falcon said...

Very, very sweet.

RonLau said...


Very nice. I can see this bike on Foothill expressway in a pace line. Smooth, fast, nice handling...



Steve said...

Very nice.

So do you really prefer those components, or just think they match the era of the frame?

I still prefer my Fuso paint
job though...

maltese falcon said...

I was studying the pictures again and noticed the brake levers are switched (as you discussed in another blog), but what really caught my eye was the fact that the cables are routed behind the handlebar, rather than in front of it. Is there a particular reason for that? I know that I like to hold onto that particular area of the bar when climbing seated and if the cables were like that for me, it would bother me considerably. So, a matter of choice or a mechanical reason for it? Lovely bike either way.

Dave Moulton said...

Brake cables in front of the handlebars is an absolute no, no, almost sacrilegious. It is a purely aesthetic thing, but before aero levers, the correct curve of the brake cable was part of the beauty of the overall look of the bike. The cable has to be the exact length, not too long or too short, so it flows from the brake lever to the front brake and to the first cable guide on the top tube. For this reason, the positioning of the top tube cable guides is also important.

I remember Feliero Masi at a bike show getting extremely angry and animated because one of the Masi bikes was set up with the cables in front of the handlebars. He was speaking in Italian and I couldn’t understand what he was saying, but I knew exactly what he meant.

Look at photos of pro riders from the 1960s and 1970s and you will see that almost all had their bikes set up this way. Most have the cables crossed just above the stem, which keeps them in the center. Even with my set up the cables do not interfere with my hands when holding the center of the bars.

Anonymous said...

Very nice Dave,

Say, is that a small 'O' ring of some sort keeping the rear brake cable from sliding forward through the last top tube cable guide? My wife's beautiful '84 Fuso has a rub mark in the top tube paint where the brake cable comes out of that last guide and 'lays down' towards the rear brake. Hers isn't the desired profile (which was easy to keep with the old cable clamps - though they had their own downside). Just wondering what your solution is there?

Savannah, GA

Dave Moulton said...

Nothing wrong with your eyesight, how did you pick that out.

Yes, I cut a small groove in the plastic outer casing of the brake cable housing, and slipped a 1/8 O-ring (#60.) just behind the last cable guide. This holds the cable clear of the frame and prevents wear to the paint on the top tube and seatstay cap.