Bespoke Builds - Moots Vamoots RSL

By: Brandon Aug 22

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We're visiting titanium again in our Bespoke Builds column, this time from Cyclepath out of Portland via Moots in Steamboat Springs. I somehow doubt we need to draw the line from Moots to our previous post containing JP's Eriksen.

Moots has long been a dream bike of mine, and with the introduction of the Vamoots RSL, Moots took their Ti to a new level. While known for it's ride quality and durability, Moots stepped up the performance of Ti by massaging, shaping, and machining the tubes from top to bottom.

This one was built with a wishlist of parts, from the ENVE 3.4 wheels to the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 drivetrain, this build is worthy of it's own showcase.

Attention to detail is what will take a build like this and allow it to stop traffic. The perfectly appropriate custom Moots bar tape, titanium stem and seatpost, as well as the Brooks saddle make this bicycle fit the bill for it's rider exactly as intended.

Thank you to Cyclepath for sharing this incredible ride with us.

photos by Cyclepath and words by Brandon Elliott

 

Bespoke Builds - JP's Eriksen Titanium Commuter

By: Brandon Aug 18

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The newest in what is already a deep and beautiful lineup of Bespoke Builds comes to us in a slightly different way: it just walked through the doors at Embro HQ. This one, a Kent Eriksen, was virtually the choice of friends of the owner as much as the owner himself. While JP knew he was looking for Ti, he did a poll of sorts to figure out which builder to use. After the first two answers from trusted friends came back suggesting Kent Eriksen, the poll was closed and the order was placed.

Designed to mirror the geometry of his cyclocross race bikes, the idea behind this Eriksen is rather simple: a weather-proof training bike that sees year-round commuting and plenty of hard training and intervals. This bike sees salt, snow, rain, dirt, gravel, and travel.

Being the kind of guy who would much rather be riding his bike than designing it, JP had a few ideas to share then he set Kent free. Though one major detail remained that Kent didn't have a hand in: the fork. Walt Works was brought in for this custom job, which included details he'd never done: 140mm post mount rotor and internal generator wiring. Obviously the fork turned out perfectly, it's beautiful and the finish really is unparalleled.

One of the touches JP insisted on was the pictured generator hub from Schmidt attached to their Edelux light.

Of course I think we'd be missing much of the point of covering this bike if we didn't talk about the SRAM Force CX1 drivetrain. JP knew from the get-go that this frame would be a rolling test-bed for the viability of CX1 as more than "just" a cyclocross group, in return much data has found it's way from this Eriksen to SRAM HQ in research of future product possibilities for 1x road applications. Talking about the drivetrain choice led to a lot of number crunching of gear ratios and how a 1x system can be quite easily applied to use on the road in the flatland states.

While JP was happy to chat about cable routing options and fork choices, he's clearly much more excited about riding the bike than staring at it.

photos and words by Brandon Elliott

 

Bespoke Builds - Sam's Independent Fabrication Ti Planet Cross

By: Brandon Aug 13

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Following on the heels of our last Bespoke Builds article of an Argonaut, this is an Independent Fabrication Titanium Planet Cross out of Signature Cycles in New York. If you're ever nearby any of their stores in Greenhich, Manhattan, or Central Valley, you must pay them a visit.

Like many other custom builds, this one has a story. From Blake of Signature Cycles:

This week we are highlighting something unique. We wanted to highlight this beautiful Independent Fabrications Ti Planet Cross, but more importantly we wanted to highlight the fact that it is 7 years old. That's right! Having a handmade bike is an investment... while many people opt to buy new bikes every 2-3 years, there's something to be said about the long term investment of a well made item.

In 2007 Sam purchased this bike with in intention of racing and riding through NYC's worst weather. In reality, what it became was much more than it was ever intended to be. Sam began riding to work daily, even riding through Hurricane Sandy and this past winter. If you ask any mechanic, nothing destroys a bike quite like commuting, and after 7 years of punishment, it was time for a little TLC.

We stripped the pink paint, bead-blasted the Ti frame to give it a Matte finish, and replaced the entire parts kit. New Campy Record 11, replaced this Record 10. His trusty Fulcrum Racing 1s were replaced with Enve's SES 3.4 hand-built wheel laced to orange Chris King R45s. The old Avid Canti's replaced with custom anodized Paul Mini Moto brakes.

In almost every way this bike is new... however the "spirit" of the frame has not changed, and all the folks at IF that designed, machined, welded, and finished the bike can still see their craftsmanship at work. Here's to the next 7 years!

There's no doubt that living in New York offers near endless possibilities of where to shop for your next custom build. The crew at Signature Cycles are clearly stepping their game up to meet the challenge and the quality and quantity of custom builds coming out of their doors should stand as a testament of their dedication to their craft.

photos courtesy of Signature Cycles, words courtesy of Signature Cycles and Brandon Elliott

 

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