I dedicate this ride to my brother,who is a fine cyclist, and the man who left me far behind on the Ventoux, on that beautiful day up from Bedoin.
Well we are almost there. Five years in the gestation,several weeks in the planning and many hours ridding myself of Worldly goods brings me to this.A state of excitement tinged with no small amount of trepidation. A body that has taken the usual amount of knocks and a head that has plumbed the darkest depths for most of my adult life. No matter, shall we just go anyway?
I’ll see you in Tromso!
Much deliberation has gone into building this bicycle for its intended purpose. To many a bike is a bike and indeed any would complete the journey eventually, but I wanted one that fitted me like a glove,a joy to ride,and with it the knowledge that I had bought together some of the finest parts available to complete mankind’s greatest invention.
There will be some who have little or no interest in componentry,which is entirely understandable,but for those with an interest in such matters there follows a sum of parts.They have certainly come together to produce my dream machine.
Frame: Surly Long Haul Trucker (steel)
Drive chain: SRAM Apex-double chain ring,11/32 block,cranks derailleur,bottom bracket,brake levers and chain.
Gear change: Suntour down tube friction shifters
Handlebars:Nitto Noodles.Stem and seat post both by Nitto
Wheels: Built by David of DCR wheels.exal LX 17 rims,Sapim race spokes,Royce Titan hubs
Saddle: Brooks B17 Special
Brakes: Avid shorty ultimates
Rack: Nitto big rack
Bar bag and tool bag both by Carradice
It all starts with with a ruse; an attempt to fool Norwegian airlines into thinking that a cardboard box is something much more substantial. Hand crafted in Kidwelly, South Wales over two days, the box is born to serve a one way trip to Tromso in the Arctic circle. Will it pass the test? We shall see.