new project, new challenges
Matt has asked me to build him a B+ (27.5 x 3" tires) mountain bike. These new plus -sized wheels and tires are taking the bike industry by storm this year. Matt's bike will have a playful trail geometry but will also have some features to allow for the occasional bikepacking outing. Among the challenges I have taken on are bending straight tubes into gentle curves for the top tube, seat tube, and fork blades.
The bottom third of the seat tube is curved for tire clearance and the entire top tube has a continuous, gentle curve because, well, it's cool. I'm also taking on my first five-piece segmented fork.
As you can see, the fork is made up of a tapered steerer, two short horizontal tubes, and two fork blades. (This is just a temporary dry fit, as there is more shaping to be done.) It is different from other styles of fork (unicrown, plate style, lugged) in that it has pretty much infinite variability. In order to fit the wide tires and boost front hub, the segmented style seemed the best way to go. Plus, I love the aesthetic!
There are a host of other small details in this project that will be firsts for me, some of which require new expensive tools. But I couldn't be happier about the opportunity. I'm looking forward to delivering Matt a rad bike.