29 May, 2018

Igor's New Go-Fast Bike

by Igor


"Restomod" is a term that is thrown around among vintage internal combustion enthusiasts quite a bit. It involves the blending of old-world design with modern-day features to create a vehicle that is more reliable, safe, and comfortable. This mid-90s retired racer is just on the cusp of vintage, so I decided it was ready for a proper spruce up with a bunch of modern and a few not-so-modern components for a speedy restomod interpretation.


This is a mid-90s Team Mack issue Waterford 1200 road bike. It's built from Reynolds 753 tubing and Henry James lugs. In order to be able to employ this tubeset, builders had to go through a certification process to prove they know how to handle and fabricate using this super-thin, heat-treated tubing. You can't use use long-pointed, ornate lugs as the tube could crack over time, so the lugwork is short and simple.


This is where I'd put my race number - if I raced!
The Ventana fork uses carbon legs, alloy dropouts, 1" steel threaded steerer, and a very neat-looking CNC'd fork crown. It seems fine according to my eyeballs and the coin test, but I might replace it with a steel fork down the road.


Three-cross wheels lacing is tried-and-true, but I wanted to do something special for this build, so I employed the master wheelbuilding knowledge of Baltimore's own Tommy Barse of Cutlass Wheels to build up a set of 32 hole PBP Rims to a Grand Cru 11speed Touring Hub and a High-Flange Front Hub. Here's Tommy's take on the wheels and the nitty-gritty of the build:


"There was no hesitation when Igor approached me about building a set of wheels for his Waterford. Igor mentioned that he wanted a sporty, responsive design for more spirited riding. My choice of spokes was easy - Sapim D-Lights in the front wheel with their 2.0/1.65/2.0mm butting; Sapim D-Lights in the rear wheel on the non-drive side and Sapim Race (2.0/1.8/2.0) spokes on the drive side. The nipples selected are Wheelsmith silver brass - their finish is unparalleled in quality and longevity. I have not seen their Duristan finish fade, corrode or mar unlike other manufacturers’ nipples. I stock bulk 310mm uncut spokes from Sapim to cut to the proper length for each build. My Morizumi spoke cutter has been an extremely valuable tool to build quality wheels with just the right thread purchase between spoke and nipple.


The Velo Orange PBP rims measured very round in the four sections that I measure ERD for spoke calculation. The 2-cross spoke pattern for the front was selected for the wider bracing angle to provide better cornering and climbing stiffness for the shallow box section rim. The radial non-drive side and 2-cross drive side were selected for a little less weight and increased lateral stiffness. Being in the mid-Atlantic, especially Annapolis, I incorporated high quality DumondeTech MR grease on the nipple shoulders and Loctite copper anti-seize on spoke threads for ease of maintenance. Wheels turned out wonderful in terms of lateral and radial trueness. Several rounds of stress relieving proved the wheels are stable, allowing for confident riding in all conditions.


The neo-classic aesthetic is eye-catching and a nice balance of classic silver components with a less classically styled approach to semi-tangential spoking. These will serve Igor well for years to come!"

The wheels are all wrapped up in Fairweather Traveler Tires in the 700x28c sizeway. While the Rust color would have been cool, I think the black and tan combo looks superb.

Onto the drivetrain! The shifters are Campagnolo's 11speed Athena. They're all metal, silver, and have a very light actuation. They also fit exceptionally well on our upcoming Nouveau Randonneur Handlebars. The cockpit is held in place by our Removable Faceplate Quill in a classic Chrome finish. Once the fit is dialed in, I'll cut the excess quill to save dozens of grams.


The dangler is also Athena and is quite handsome. I swapped the unit's stock plastic pulleys with our 10T Alloy Jockey Wheels for two reasons: 1) since these replacement wheels don't float, shifting is super crisp and 2) they're red. Very red. 


The crankset is our 110bcd Drillium paired with an Athena pusher. While our rings aren't technically rated for 11speed drivetrains, I haven't experienced any issues with this group or Shimano's previous generation 105. Needless to say, if you want to run 11 speed on our cranksets, I'm very confident you'll be fine. All that said, Shimano and Campagnolo recently released their 12 speed drivetrains. So there's that...


The perch is our Smooth Touring Saddle. It's my go-to nowadays for all new builds. The seatpost is an interesting one. The seatlug requires a 27.4mm size and a 27.2mm would commonly crack the binder's ear over time. Luckily, this one is in good shape minus a bit of paint flaking.


All that speed needs to come to a stop at some point, and it is handled by a pair of single-pivot Dura-Ace caliper brakes. They're exquisite.


While clipless pedals would look great, I have found Sabots to be my pedal of choice.

To accentuate the gorgeous fade paintjob, I wrapped Grand Cru Leather Bar Tape over Red Tressostar Cotton Tape. When you're riding, you can see the red tape through the perforations. Details matter!

Finally, a bit of storage handled by a Day Tripper Saddle Bag and Road Runner's Burrito Supreme Handlebar Bag. It's a great combo for a camera, rain shell, tools, cell/wallet/keys, and a rolled up slice of pizza.

9 comments:

Mike Jenkins said...

If you like it and it works as a showcase for your products, then great. For many of us, I suspect, the bike seems incongruous.

Mike C said...

Looks great. I winced just a little reading that this mid ‘90’s 1200 is on the cusp of being vintage! My go-fast is a ‘98 1250 Sport Tourer with 9 spd Campy Chorus and it still kicks butt! I took it on an ultralight tour of the French Alps 2 years ago and it was super. However next time I will have to replace the original 53/39 crankset with a new compact crankset as I was doin’ a lot of standing conquering those Cols!

resty said...

What a beaut! Love it.

Ford Kanzler said...

Great-looking and I bet a fine riding bike.
A bit surprised you didn't employ a dual-pivot front caliper for far stronger stopping power.
Glad gum-wall tires and silver finished components are used for a vintage-like appearance.

David Schensted said...

That's a very nice build, I'll bet it's a lot of fun to ride. Personally I'd ditch the carbon fork for a steel one. Hopefully you'll post a ride report.

fmackay said...

Nice bike. But a 25yo carbon fork of unknown provenance? I think I would pair that with a full-face helmet...

aubrey said...

Well, the nice thing about having multiple bikes, is they can be different from each other, and you can ride the one you feel like at that moment. I love puffy tires, and have several bikes that are designed for them, but I also have some really neat "vintage" ones that will only fit 27-28's, barely. But the horizontal 1" top tubes, light, lively tubesets (okay, one has Columbus Max..), lugs, and wacky paint jobs, I find so appealing and they're a lot of fun to ride. And they make my puffy-tired bikes so nice to get back on! Igor, your Waterford is wonderful, a real find! I LOVE the number plate braze-on! I LOVE the 1" threaded fork/quill stem! I would get a proper steel fork made in a heartbeat!

Photon Don said...

After decades of wanting one i just received my custom steel bike. My goal was to emulate a 70's stage racer with modern conveniences. The crank choice was easy- DRILLIUM! Drivetrain is SRAM Force 22 (11 speed) and it shifts like buttah. I can see no reason not to get the 10 speed drillium crank with an 11 speed gruppo. Gorgeous Waterford!

Julien said...

Other than being anti simply because carbon fiber composite = plastic and not vintage, you are not giving enough credit to the life cycle of epoxy carbon fiber composites. They have almost no fatigue life limit (unless it is bonded to aluminum and you have galvanic corrosion. I did my master of carbon fiber composites in the mid-eighties for Boeing that were starting basic work on what became the 787 Dreamliner. Carbon fiber epoxy airplanes are designed for 30 years life at 12 to 16 hours flying time per day or about 150,000 hours and about 50,000 take-off and landings (4 to 5 per day for 30 years). If you ride 20 km/h that's equivalent to 3 million km... Bottom line unless you crash it that carbon fiber fork is likely to outlive any rider. I have steel, aluminum, titanium and carbon bikes they are all different and love them all.