Last modified: November 18, 2010

Winter Big Block Bike Check

It snowed last week so I immediately got to prepping my bikes for winter.  One of which is Big Block numero uno, the first BB proto which I've put tons of miles on and generally beat to shit. 

I feel like many people don't really understand what the Big Block is.  I sometimes hear things like "if it's a track bike why does it have a bottle mount? If it's a track bike why does it have brake mounts? If it's a commuting bike why doesn't it have fender mounts?".  You know, that sort of thing. 

Well first of all it isn't a "commuter bike," although you can certainly use it for such if you're so inclined.  The Big Block's geometry and tube spec is 100% Velodrome racing track machine.  It is a sprint bike, it is fast, steep, and ultra responsive.  This thing is pure scalpel. 

Now to answer some of the questions, I don't know about you, but we over at All-City like to ride our bikes far and to do that in comfort a water bottle mount is really pretty handy.  It also has brake mounts because single speed on a track bike can be a ton of fun and it makes sense to give someone a front brake on a bike you know most people will ride on the street.  If you give them a front, you might as well do a rear too. Not to mention that brakes rule for winter and I for one won't ride brakeless in clipless, maybe it's because I don't ride Times (that's what the homies say) but brakeless on SPD's is way too cavalier for my blood.  In toeclips I'll ride brakeless all day but....

So basically what I'm getting at is that this bike has the pure blood of a drop bar track machine, but since we face a variety of conditions and like a bike to be adaptable to the different ways we like to ride, we Minnesota'd it up a little bit.  I know you're looking at that bike below and it definitely doesn't look like a track bike, but friend believe me the ride is pure sprint.

In the future we plan on selling them with track drops to send home the point.  This little number, even disguised in "commuting" form is 100% track destroyer.

I'm rambling here so let's just get to my winter setup:

All-City Prototype Big Block 55cm
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Rear clip on fender, front downtube splash guard, 43X17 fixed, two brakes.  (Double braked fixed is the bomb for winter or trail riding.  When you're doing a nasty offroad descent you can use the rear brake to lockup your wheel and skid down the hill with your feet in an attack position, super useful for maintaining control)

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1980's 110 BCD 43 tooth Sugino BMX chainring, second hand 170mm Dimension cranks

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KMC rustbuster chain, AC stainless 17t cog, original AC proto dropouts.  These dropouts are not forged or stainless like the production version, they are waterjet cut and lack the built in chain tensioner

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XTR cantilever brake levers (I cut the shifter pods off), rise bar (I have the NB with drops, and BB with rise for winter.  When the ground is unstable, I much prefer the control of a mtb bar)  Under the bar light mount, hella lo pro bro.

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Rear blinky, well worn Bontrager saddle

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Standard AC track hubs, to Velocity Aero's, tied and soldered

Oh and in case you were wondering (you probably weren't) it was 27 degrees this morning and that meant first ride in long pants
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long underwear, Dickies, Winter cycling shoes

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Chuey winter cap, second hand Campy jacket

Notice the clean shave.  Normally by this point in the year I've got the beard going, but this year B.Ridget (my lady) has put her foot down and we made a deal that I wouldn't start growing a beard until December.  She f'ing hates the beard, and going four long cold winter months with your significant other not wanting to kiss you sucks, so compromises had to be made.

As I walked in I spotted Adam's rig.

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I like seeing our bikes with big mitts hanging on them.



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