10 February, 2016

Romancing the Piolet

Ultra Romance, a gentleman and a scholar.  

With valentines day around the corner, Benedict aka Ultra Romance has been wooing our Piolet frame whilst traveling across the desert.  Check out his review on Instagram!

after a month of desert rolling on the @velo_orange #piolet I'm ready to reflect, reexamine, and review:::::: I did this last trip on 29er @velocityusa duallies wrapped in 2.3 Rock Razors. I would have ran the 27.5+ set up that this frame is also optimized for, but mine didn't have a dynamo hub. Other build notes include 11-42 X 34 friction gearing, and WTB RM-2 dirt drops with custom clockwork stem. This frame replaces the LHT in what you want from a non fancy touring bike. All the braze ons and more braze ons, down tube routing, disc, multiple wheel sizes, cool design, steel, and wikked neutral handling. It's an easy bike that worked equally well with the tyres pumped up touring on the pavement-dirt-low pressure loaded single track. 🌀🌀🌀-trak::: That's where this set up really played an eloquent sax solo. Loaded with 5 days of food and 4-5 liters of water/urine at a time, we bounced over baby head boulder grave yards, and slithered through pristine twisty Sonoran 1-trak without even a hangnail. I was wishing at times for those 27.5x3" tyres I had at home, as that would have been the optimum all round set up, so don't skimp on that. The 29er is essentially dëd, IMO, but it was nice to give my original duallies a proper swan song. And if yer into freshly dëd tech, rumor has it this frame can also clear a 29x3! My only complaints would be getting the bars up higher without a custom stem. It's too low and PRO for a dirt drop tourer. You could get em up high enough, but if yer using more than 30 mm of stack washers, the 💅🏽 authorities will be notified. Also, a mid seat stay braze on would have alleviated my need for the P-clamps. A bike with so many smart braze ons, but no rear mid mount? for the price, I don't think you can find a more thoroughly thought out and aesthetically pleasing production touring bike. This bike with a 700x45 set and a 27.5x3" set would be the last touring bike you'd ever buy:::: if yer not into lugs that is.... 💅🏽💅🏽💅🏽
A photo posted by Bené Turbo Romance (@ultraromance) on

8 comments:

jonathansmith68 said...

I'm intrigued by this Custom Clockwork Stem. Is that a threadless stem? How would one go about pre-loading the headset assembly?

Thanks for sharing!
Jonathan

Wes Ewell said...

I hope he enjoyed the dessert whilst crossing the desert.

Sam Placette said...

This looks like a cool rig. I've been considering getting a Piolet for this kind of all-purpose touring / dirt use and it's nice to see it being used for that purpose. Does anyone recognize the tires? I'm not sure what kind of 700x45ish tires would be right for this kind of build... I'm kind of leaning toward something like Racing Ralphs that are already worn down enough to be semi slick ;-)

I like the look of the racks being used too. Does anybody recognize them?

I think the author may have a point about the stem, the Piolet does seem to have a low headtube proper for a flatbar bike and a purpose-designed stem for dirt drops makes sense. Take this with a grain of salt beause I haven't actually ridden a Piolet ... but I have ridden several mountain bikes converted to drops and finding a nice high-rise stem always seems to be an issue.

teamdarb said...

Finally I've seen one being used hard.

Anonymous said...

who the hell is this guy?...

he's welcome at my house anytime...but would he stay inside or camp on the lawn?

Guy Washburn said...

Nice to see a growing call for taller head tubes. This is my concern with many VO designs...

jonathansmith68 said...

+1 for the need for taller head-tubes! That's why I'd love to see some sort of a tall-stack-style stem with a rise instead of a drop. Pretty please, V.O.?! ;)

Either way, still loving my Piolet and looking forward to putting many miles of exploration on it this Spring.

Anonymous said...

I'm more drawn to the Paris Commune than the Red Army Faction Kommune or Manson Family Commune but I like Ultra Romance. Plus he's pictured here:
http://bikejerks.com/blog/cool-story-bro/