Q: Colin, we've heard through the grape vine that you might have just a couple bikes kicking about, but which one is the "one". That special bike, the one that you pull out of the shed time after time?
A:"Its Quality not Quantity maaaaan", said no-one ever, that I ever listened to. I confess to finding it hard to say no when it comes to bikes and have a soft spot for an unloved underdog. I would say that I have 3 main, quality bikes, and the rest kind of trickle down from there, this bike definitely originated from the parts bin, although it has become an absolute favourite, being ridden more than almost all my other bikes put together last year. My favoured frame material is Steel, for the springy feel and skinny looks and . I'm definitely not a parts snob, if it works well enough, it can stay.
Q: What is this bike exactly?
A: This bike was dreamt up when Comrie Croft hosted the UK Singlespeed Champs in 2019 (result was a puncture and a hangover, thanks for asking) I wanted to participate and found this frame with a fork, plus some bits, delivered for £75. It's had a few incarnations over the years, but the more I rode it, I felt it deserved some tweaking so have added some of my favoured parts to get it the way I like it. It's a bit of a budget build all the same, so many parts reflect that. I prefer to run a rigid fork on the singlespeed, it just seems to keep the power more direct on the climbs.
Q: So the bike was forged in the run up to the SS world champs, its been a daily driver for you too. What about recently has it seen any race action?
A: The bike has just most recently been in action at the Strathpuffer 24 hour event, where I scraped it to 3rd Singlespeed and 20th Solo overall, it was faultless and an excellent choice given the muddy conditions, zero drivetrain issues! It's all I've been riding in the lead up to the event, and it's kept a couple of much fancier bikes in the shed, so that says it all. It's very reminiscent of the OG 90s rigid bikes I rode as a youngster, I love it.
Q: Have you got a favourite bit of the bike?
A: Favourite bit of the bike.... I'm tied between two things the Fat 365 One More Lap top cap or the Surly bottle opener chain tugs
Q: Have you bodged anything?
A: I needed this bike to be reliable as, so everything is fully functional and solid
Q: Why single speed?
A: It started as a running joke, and now I just love the pureness of the riding, the speed with which it eats up the climbs (when I can sit on the gear) and the simplicity and lack of maintenance issues
Q: What ratios are you running for Single speed?
A: Gear ratio? 30/21 for Puffer, normally 30/18, on 29er wheels
Q: Why did you build it this way?
A: A combination of cheapskate, what I had lying around and a select few important performance additions
Q: Most important question of course, favourite sticker?
A: When I was a kid, everyone had Oakley Thermonuclear Protection stickers on their rides, so probably those, plus my brother sent me them (cheers bro), although I have a couple of original Vision Street Wear stickers on there too.
Frame: On One Inbred Single Speed, Steel, this frame will still be around when cockroaches rule the burnt remains of Earth
Fork: Krampus 29er, 4130 Cr-mo for 29" Wheel, Disc - inc Anything cage mounts. A-C 483mm
Wheels: Superstar 23mm Front with Switch Ultra Hub, Mavic Crossmax XL Rear
Tyres: Currently sitting on Maxxis Ardent 29 x 2.25 Rear and Old Style Forecaster 29 x 2.35 Front, both TR Exo double compound
Drivetrain: Ring is a Sacrificial JG 30T 104 Purple anodised aluminium ring, I would run a steel ring if I could but they are hard to find in thick thin 30T, these ones last a decent length of time. Chain is an Izumi Japanese Track Chain 1/8th, beasting single speed option. The Sprocket is a Surly Hardened Steel Fat Foot 21T Drilled for cool
Brakes: Front is a ultra powerful Liger style interbreed with a Zee lever and an Old Skool Deore LX Caliper, and the rear is a standard Deore. with 180 front and 160 rear rotors. I would run a large rotor on the rear, but the disc mount wont accept it, the less time you have to pull on the levers the better with the rigid forks. I fitted the levers with little green rubber booties, cos of insulation, not just to throw more colour, right?
Cockpit: NukeProof Riser Warhead Bars and Warhead 60mm Stem, Original NukeProof Yellow. I like the bit of extra control the riser bars bring, as the front end is fairly low without them. I run ODI Dreadlock Grips which give good cushioning on the rigid forks. The bard ends I run inboard of the grips so I can hook my thumbs around them on the ups ala the Banned by UCI TOGS, or so I can stretch out on long fire road climbs for improved lung air flow. They pretty much sit at the same width as a set of 90s bar ends which i am familiar with from olden times.
Weight: Please don't be so undignified
Colour: Was White
Extra Stuff: Nukeproof Horizon DH Clipless Pedals, which are super reliable and have a good platform should things get squirrely, RRP Max Front guard with home made extension, Mudhugger Medium Rear, plus a couple of front Crud Guards mounted upside on the down tube and behind the seat tube for full all round protection.
Fabric Cell Elite Radius Saddle, which for me comfort-wise beats any regular padded saddle, I run these on all my mountain bikes, and totally wipe down winter friendly. Rigid seat post, none of that dropper wizardry for this old skool gal.