06 April, 2007

Product Update


Early next week we will again have Honjo 35mm smooth and hammered fenders. Unfortunately I misunderstood about the availability of the 43mm smooth and they will not arrive for some weeks.

V.O. will start stocking Yokozuna brake pads. Why Yokozuna and not Kool Stop, you ask? It's because Yokozuma pads were co-developed with Scott-Mathauser and use the legendary Scott-Mathauser rubber! Plus, they're pretty. They'll be here late next week.

A good supply of 700c highly polished yellow label touring rims from Fiamme of Italy has shown up. These look fantastic on older touring bikes. They don't have eyelets, but these are wide, heavy duty, 36h, concave rims. And at only $70 per PAIR they should sell well.

We will also have the old-logo Sugino 110bcd triple cranks, Nitto water bottle cages, and a few surprises.

I'm looking at some very inexpensive 650B wheels. The sample pair will be here today and I'll order a bunch if the quality seems okay. They have mid-range Shimano hubs and Sun CR-18 rims. Are they worth $145 per pair?

Finally, we can get some basic TIG welded fixie frames at a very good price. I've been kicking around the idea of building them up as a fast city bike. Maybe using CLB brakes, Brooks B-17, Bullet crank, upside-down Wald alloy bars, alloy fenders?. Priced at about $500-$600 complete they might be fun. It's just a crazy idea but is it a good one?

19 comments:

Johnson said...

From Sheldonbrown.com:

Scott-Mathauser and the "Salmon" pad.

Despite the superior design of Kool Stopbrake shoes, for years, Scott-Mathauser brake shoes were the finest available, due to their patented salmon-colored rubber formula. (The "secret ingredient" is iron oxide, a.k.a. "rust", which is what gave them their distinctive color.

Even though they were ugly and had crude hardware, they were favorites of knowledgeable cyclists for their superior stopping power and durability.

Scott MathauserScott-Mathauser brake shoes were manufactured under contract by Kool Stop, but the hardware and shoe shape was determined by Scott-Mathauser. The less expensive Scott-Mathauser shoes had rather clunky mounting hardware; the deluxe models were overpriced and featured bogus "cooling fins." Despite these limitations, the very special Scott-Mathauser compound was so much better than anything else available, that Scott-Mathauser brake shoes were widely recognized as the best perfomers in their day...
...but Scott-Mathauser brake shoes are no longer available!

Kool Stop "Salmon": The Best Of Both!

Now, the un-equalled Scott compound is available in the excellent Kool Stop designs. The "salmon" colored Kool Stop models are the ones made with the Scott-Mathauser material..

The traditional Kool Stop compounds and colors remain available, but we strongly recommend the salmon-colored Scott type.

Anonymous said...

I had hoped that road bikes would be less of a financial drain since you don't wear out or break parts like you do on a mountain bike. Then I find sites like this... :)

Chris

Anonymous said...

I would purchase a city bike for that much..

Anonymous said...

Any chance those fixie city bikes would come with 650B wheels?

Louis said...

Great city bike idea. I'd like to see something akin to the old Motobecane Nobly. More gentle than aggressive and very upright. Might prefer a sprung Brooks saddle to the B.17. And how about a pale color . . . cream, butter yellow, something like Momovelo once tried to offer.

Jon Cameron said...

I like the idea you posted a week or so back about a five speed hub gear bike with fenders at around the same price, both mixte and conventional. Perhaps there is a market for both of these fun ideas.

Anonymous said...

There are plenty of fixed-gear frames available. A tig-welded city bike that uses the inexpensive Shimano/Sun 650B wheels might be a more promising addition to the marketplace.

Chris Kulczycki said...

The fixie would just be a "special model" that would only be available until the deal on this batch of pre-made frames ran out. It has nothing to do with the city bike I mentioned last week.

Since the frames are made by onother company I can't change the wheel size. I might build just one and see what you guys think. At least it will be an interesting display for the showroom.

Anonymous said...

I think the small-run cheap bike idea cheapens your brand. If it was me..I would not do it.

I do like the idea of the City Bike with a sub-branding; "Urbanite...by VeloOrange", etc...

toddsch said...

I'd take a pair of those cheep 650B wheels. They seem perfect to replace the original rusty steel rimmed 650B's on my old Peugeot touring bike which has been languishing due to broken spokes and dented rims angering the cantis. I believe it's the same as the PX50 you pictured earlier on the blog. Would I be able to re-use my Huret wingnuts? ;-)

Andy said...

I like the idea of those low-price 650B wheels. What kind of adjustments would I need to make to a 70s Raliegh with 27" wheels? Just the brakes? And, if so, what kind of brakes would work (reach)? Thanks, A

Also, a low-price fixie would be ok. If you can style it in a classic way for the price, go for it. Although buying a vintage frame on eBay and re-building it as a fixie for less money is more in the VO spirit, I think. Thanks for letting up give our two cents.

Anonymous said...

Andy asked:
I like the idea of those low-price 650B wheels. What kind of adjustments would I need to make to a 70s Raliegh with 27" wheels? Just the brakes? And, if so, what kind of brakes would work (reach)? Thanks, A


That's a tough one. 630-584 / 2 = 23mm additional reach required. Most 70s bikes that came with 27" wheels also came with generous clearance for fenders and moderately wide tires, and typically came with long-reach brakes already. Take the current reach and add 23mm to it; that'll give you what you need in that dimension. About the max you'll find without seeking out rarities like those BMX brakes Ed Braley has used is 80mm (on Mafac RAIDs). You might need a good deal more.

In addition, for 32mm tires you'll have additional 23mm of bottom bracket drop. Take away 3 for using CdlV tires rather than the Grand Bois, and you still have an extra 20mm bottom bracket drop. Unless that Raleigh has a pretty high botom bracket, you may have pedal strike issues - even with shorter cranks (generally in the 70s, bikes came with 170 cranks, and 165's about the shortest you'll find) you'll still have 10-15mm less pedal clearance.

-- Steve Palincsar

ANDY said...

Thanks Steve, I appreciate the info. -Andy

Joel said...

For city riding I kind of like using the single speed freewheel. Otherwise, at that price range, sounds like a mighty tempting salt season ride!

Anonymous said...

Affordable 650B wheels are a great thing, but the CR-18 and Col de la Vie tires are a bad combination. Really, really, really tight fit. I've broken tire irons trying to get them on and off the rim. I'm thinking of new rims to solve this problem.

A4

Adam Alpern said...

So, with all this 650B action going on, when are you going to start selling 650B Honjos?

Anonymous said...

re: the cheapie fixed.

sounds like a fantastic idea. what kind of clearances do the frames have? do they have room for at least 28s and fenders?

Chris Kulczycki said...

The 650B Honjos were ordered a month ago. So we may see them by fall ;<)

The sample fixie frame should arrive on Friday or Monday. I'll know more then.

Anonymous said...

I would buy a complete fixie if styled in a classic/vintage way yet super practical for me to mess around the city doing skid stops and trackstand variations. I would pay $500. Sounds awesome.