In my previous post, I stripped the paint off my frame, sprayed on some primer, and was beginning to sand it. Well, I eventually got around to painting it, but I wasn’t happy. Even a perfect spray paint job still looks like spray paint, so I took it to a professional and had it powder coated 80-90 Jet black. One upside to powder coating is, the powder melts very nicely into the welds. This frame always had crappy looking welds, so now they’re a little easier to look at, although I doubt Gary Klein has anything to be jealous of.
The sad part is, I spent more time fucking around trying to paint it on my own, than I did driving back and forth to the powder coater in a city about 40 minutes away. The guy who did the work was Jeff at Xtreme Body & Paint in Jefferson City. He was really easy to work with, and does awesome work. Turn around time was a mere 2 days.
Once I got the frame back, I had to visit my local bike shop to get the BB threads chased, and the head tube re-faced, but that’s to be expected after any paint job.
Since I’m running a front derailer now (and because I don’t want to run full-length cable housing) I decided to install an STI cable stop on the downtube, and an under-BB cable guide. I got both parts at Nova Cycles for just a few bucks. For the STI stop, I used a 1/8" drill bit and some 3mm x 3mm aluminum pop rivets. The cable guide needed to be screwed on, so I drilled with a 5/32" bit, and used a Park TAP-8 5mm x .8 tap. Installing the guide was as easy as it gets, but the STI stop took some work. I’ll mention how I got that on in another post.
You’ll notice I also have rear brake cable guides, so I never have to zip-tie full housing to the top tube ever again. I installed those prior to painting, and once the powder coat melted all around them, they look like part of the frame. I intentionally left the STI stop off until after the paint job, because I didn’t want paint–or powder–to get inside the threads.
Unfortunately, along with some pretty easy mods, I’ve also had some very annoying issues. Because I’m turning a track bike into a 2-speed cyclocross bike, I’m having clearance issues, most specifically with the tires. I verified long ago that some 32c Kenda Kwicker tires fit the frame and fork, but what I wasn’t expecting was for them not to clear the Cane Creek SCR-3L brakes I just bought. Due to the design of the calipers, the mounting bolt is higher on the body than it was on my Alhonga brakes, meaning the brakes hung too low below the fork crown and rear brake arch. Because of this, 32c tires rubbed big time, so I had to order some 30c Kenda Kwick tires instead. BUT, I wanted 32c, dammit, and I wasn’t about to give up. Currently, I’m waiting on a set of Tektro R538 brakes, which should give me the clearance of the Alhongas, with the reach of the Cane Creeks. Once I get that worked out, I’ll be able to use either tire, depending on where I’m riding.
As for other clearance concerns, they all seem to be working themselves out quite nicely. My biggest concern with running a non-track crankset with dual chainrings is, the inner ring may come in contact with the frame. As it turns out, I have about 4mm clearance between the chainstay and a 39T ring on my SRAM Force cranks. It’s tight, but that’s more than enough room to get by.
My other issue was whether a water bottle bolt would get in the way of the front derailer clamp, but I have just enough room to make it work. I can’t use that bottle mount anymore, but I don’t think I ever have before anyway.
I did luck out with my rear tensioner set-up, so I’m happy about that. I’m using a Paul Comp. Melvin tensioner, with a DMR chain tug, which includes a rear derailer hanger. The Melvin has 3 spacers to help align the pulleys, and once I was finished configuring them, alignment was perfect.
This is basically where I sit for the time being. I’m waiting on an STI barrel adjuster and the Tektro brakes. Once those pieces arrive, I should finally be able to go for a ride.