Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Topics - carbonazza

Pages: [1] 2
Component Deals & Selection / Squirt and Paraffin wax for your chain
« on: January 12, 2018, 03:56:37 AM »
A year or so ago, I had a contact with Marcin from Absolute black.
He advised me to try Squirt, a paraffin emulsion(with water) instead of traditional lubes.
And that my drivetrain would last much longer than my usual 5000km.

On top of being much cleaner, it seems he is right about the longevity of the drive train.
I kept a little bottle in my bag, in case of really bad, long, muddy rides to add some mid ride.

However few months ago I found Oz cycling video about waxing your chain:

His answer to questions are very interesting too, part 1:

And part 2:

Recently GCN made an awful disservice to the cause, with a really poor video compared to Oz.

So I tried.
Got the paraffin in a 5kg pack, the 20€ rice pot, a plastic cocktail shaker to clean the chain.
I will probably go the ultrasonic cleaner route soon, to avoid the diesel cleaning and other dirty fluids.

At the beginning it is messy, you need to be careful to not end with paraffin everywhere.
And it last longer than a usual chain cleaning. But it comes better with practice.
I get it done in about 5' of net time now.
Do that in a well ventilated place, as paraffin, although it is the same you get in home candles, is not very good to inhale.

The result is impressive. Ultra smooth, silent and most importantly clean drivetrain.
After each muddy ride, or multiple dry rides, I just shake the chain in hot water and soap.
Rince it. Dry it. And in the paraffin rice pot.
When the temperature gets to about 52°C get the chain out, wipe it.
And mount it back.

I tried the paraffin/xylene Oz recipe to get a bottled lube.
But it doesn't look to be adapted to colder weather, I can't get it liquid on the trails.

Squirt is already a very good option for a medium/good clean chain.
But paraffin is the best if you learn how to use it.

Cyclocross Frames, Wheels & Components / Carbonda Gravel CFR505 build
« on: December 21, 2017, 03:49:49 PM »
Finally !! After about a year of mental convolutions, I decided for this gravel frame:

My contact at Carbonda was Hedy Lee.
Perfect communication, very professional and kind during the whole process.

I received the frame, fork, bar and seatpost today from Carbonda.
Along with a matching pair of ultra light rims from Peter( 29er hookless, 300g - 19mm inner width )
What a day !

Just a couple of screws to tighten and ready to ride !  ???

First impressions are great.
The frame looks of very high quality, outside as well as inside !

The objective is to have a winter training road bike, that can ride in the forest too.
Making the parts as interchangeable as possible between my 041 and my ultra posh Canyon Ultimate.

With the winter coming, the idea of building a Gravel is coming back.
Last year I dropped it as I didn't find a right frame.

Here is one that I really like:
A picture from Taipei Cycle Show 2017

And a picture from this link  with an interesting twist on wheels for a gravel

It has a tall headtube, short chainstays, the room for 40mm or 650B tires, and I find it particularly good looking :)

Peter was considering it last year but preferred to go with another model.

There is a web site that sells it $branded$, but it looks only for the US.

Anyone knows where to find it ?
Did someone already contacted Carbonage ? An email?
I only found a phone number, I'm too shy to call, so far

29+ & 27+ / New 29+ Frame (CS-496) build
« on: February 24, 2017, 12:27:21 PM »
We are starting the build of a 496 frame with a friend as a 29+
It is my first boost, so I start this build post with some doubts  :)

  • We will put an SRAM Eagle on it. Does it need the boost version of the crankset or is the frame already takes care of the 52mm chainline?
    The groupset was bought complete, but I'm wondering the crank need to be exchanged.
    The BB is BB92, and the width of the BB shell is... 92mm !
  • It will be my first set of boost wheels too...
    cmh sold me his 29" rims(42mm/36mm wide)
    They finally landed in Belgium ( they transited in a friend's luggage from Phoenix AZ to Europe recently  :o ).
    From what I understood the 3mm offset goes:
    • to the right of the front wheel
    • to the left of the rear wheel
    Is it right? Does someone has a good article dealing with the specifics of building asym wheels?
    Anything special I need to take care about?

29er / Changing the pivot bolts on the 036
« on: December 27, 2016, 05:40:09 PM »
Did someone changed the bolts of the pivots that came with their 036 frame?
If so do you have the references?

I checked my brother's bike today, as he had a very poor shifting with his Eagle drive train.
The surprising reason was the chain was cut just too small.
And when the derailleur was moving to the smaller sprocket, a piece of the derailleur itself was touching just a little the top pulley and prevented it shifting easily.
Now with two links more, the derailleur presents another angle when coming to the smaller sprocket and shifts perfect as expected.

But then I checked the pivot bolts, and they were almost all loose( bad me, I didn't check them after receiving the frame... )
Luckily none of them was lost.
I re-tightened them all, with some Loctite.
However the hex heads are really poor and I would like to change them.

29er / my 041 - Take 2
« on: December 05, 2016, 05:21:28 AM »
After another Carpe Diem moment, I finally ordered the parts needed to re-build my long due 041.

Unpacking the box. Always an exciting moment :)
Extremely quick delivery from, and it had the better prices.

The huge Eagle cassette.
No, I definitely could not take the high-bling gold one.

The wait is over dear 041!!
This is the replacement frame I received from Peter, few months ago, after mine cracked due to a defect.
Pressing the BB92 was easy.
Finally the rear wheel I built few months ago will be used.

I love the design of a straight line between the headtube and the rear wheel

One worry I had was... does a 38T fit ? Well... yes

The bike finished. Not yet ridden.

No time sinks this time( usually headset mismatch, bad internal routing, rear brake bleeding after cut, brake caliper hard to align, hard to bead tires on the rims).

Here again is my proven receipt, if you have a hard to bead tire( almost guaranteed when putting a thinner tire on a larger rim ):
  • Take the tire out of the box.
  • Put a tube in the tire( without wheel ) and inflate it to the max it can.
  • Then abandon it there a couple of hours, while you build the bike.
  • Put the tire on the rim.
  • Remove the core of the valve. Pump it, until it pops twice.
    No need of soapy water or any other sorcery.
  • With a seringue put the sealant through the valve.
  • Put the core back, and inflate.
  • Rotate the wheel in all directions to send the sealant in any existing hole.

The internal routing of the 041 is very easy.
And I didn't have to bleed the rear brake after cutting it( experience is coming :) )

8.1Kg finished as pictured.
It will go below the psychological barrier of 8kg with summer tires and Time Atac pedals  8)

I'm a big fan of the Hope X2 brakes.
They are great to stop me. Very light.
But very expensive.

I took off the Lauf fork from the 062.
The front wheel was already in use on the 062 too.

Big change to my usual setup. I moved from a 660mm to a 700mm bar(not sure I will stay that large).
And 80mm stem from 90mm.
I'm do not like the SRAM grips you get with the Gripshift, but they are ok for now.
And I'm sooo happy to have a Gripshift again. The bar is so neat.
This one, is much better than what I remember of the XX1.

Or maybe it is the whole shifting that is better on Eagle.
I screwed the cable to the derailleur.
And shifted perfectly directly, not any fiddling needed.

Another striking property is the silence of the transmission when riding.
I was used to the grinding on higher sprockets. Here nothing.
And no chain drop issue when back pedalling on the bigger sprocket either.

Compared to my singing rear Hope's hub, the DT240 is adding quietness too.
I'll need a bell now. With Hope's hub, just stop pedalling and the walkers jumps out of the path in fear :)

The engagement angle is much much bigger on the DT240, that is a disappointment.
When free wheeling then pedalling again, there is a big gap before it takes on.
With Hope hubs it is immediate.

Here is the bike after the first ride.
I should have taken the picture before cleaning, with the mud!

Although on paper it has the same gears ratio as before, I felt the 38T to be a bit harder on steep climbs.
Either my quads will learn, or I will go down to 36T when my transmission dies.
One thing sure is now on the flat, this is flying!

Another thing that surprised me is how I didn't miss my beloved oval ring.
Quite the contrary, I had the impression of a fuller pedalling. Except may be the steep climbs, that seem harder(I worked to improve my pedalling these last months).
So... I guess this oval/round debate is definitely personal, if not just mood :)

The new master link is much more visible.
When lubing the chain, it is easier to spot you did a full revolution already.

r2-bike, had only the gold version of the derailleur in stock with Gripshift.
I would have preferred the black. But anyway I love it !

To avoid the stupid bend of the shifter entering the right of the frame.
I tried something else this time. Using the front derailleur holes.
And zipping :( the hose to the right seatstay.

So not fully internal routing, but the line is much shorter.
And no hard bends at all, usually found: out of the shifter, entering the frame, under the BB, out of the chainstay.
I hope this will result in better long term shifting.

I had to drill the little aluminium caps to run full housing.

I took a strange route for the front brake, to avoid a strong bend too to the left of the fork( from an MTB2223's advice on another bike ).

I'm impressed how the bike manufacturer ignore that in Europe we have the front brake on the left( make some forks with the damn caliper on the right!! ).
And that with a 1x11 shifter( on the right ) it is better to enter the frame on the left ( This is international, Peter ? )

For the ride... I did say it many times and it stay.
This frame/bike is the best of the ones I tried( 256, 062 and even the new FSi I recently tried ).
Obviously for what I like: XC, out-sprinting friends and arriving first on the climbs  ::)
Very stiff under load. It doesn't move at all.
And extremely precise to ride.

Did I say I'm very happy?  :D ;D :D

Now, I will rebuild my 062 as my second bike.
Maintain the hubs. Put my old wheels, and the Lefty.

And ride with it when it is really wet and the mud gets deeper.
This season is exceptionally dry compared to last year, hope it will stay this way.

Component Deals & Selection / Maintain a front DT240 hub
« on: December 01, 2016, 11:54:31 AM »
Did anyone tried to maintain/change the bearings of their DT Swiss 240 hub ?
I have the front 100x15 like this one:

I can only unscrew one of the end cap.
And don't see how to disassemble it any further.  :-\

The technical document doesn't help me much:
And videos seem to deal only on the rear hubs.

29er / Building a CS-036 for/with my brother
« on: August 05, 2016, 01:00:57 PM »
My brother inherited from my old Cannondale Rush a year ago, and wanted a 29er as an upgrade.
He tried my 062 and found it to harsh to ride. And he didn't want a plus either.

So I looked for a 29er full suspension and didn't find much than the good old 036.

This was our first full suspension build.
The build was comparable to my 3 past hardtails, although with a few surprises to deal with...

But first here are some pictures.

As usual... Any color as long as it is black.

The huge Eagle cassette. Look at that bottom jockey wheel !
We removed the front derailleur gear, and replaced it with two 5mm plastic screws.

The rear shock which gave us way more work than planned( and is still not finished )

I left 25mm of steerer tube, just in case. And will cut it in a few rides.

As he wanted a nice bike, here are the components:
  • Frame, seatpost, bar, 2 spare derailleur hangers and a Neco headset from Peter( thank you for the great service as usual )
  • The wheels as well from Peter, these are the 30mm rims without holes and DT240 hubs( unfortunately my brother got hit by the 48.5% anti dumping tax on built wheels... )
  • Procraft alloy stem
  • The SRAM Eagle groupset: a mix of X01 and XX1 components, very easy to tune
  • XT brakes+KCNC Razors, my brother found the 90€ for 90g upgrade to XTR useless( to put in perspective this is 1000€/Kg! so ok)
  • A seat from Aliexpress, full carbon with a thin gel pad, and leather finish, I love this $50 saddle
  • Rockshox Sid XX fork and Monarch XX rear shock
  • Rocket Ron snakeskin front and rear, tubeless
  • A DT swiss rear axle

The few misses and surprises were:
  • We planned an XLoc full sprint, but didn't know we needed the connectamajig thing(ordered it, but not sure how this thing even works)
  • I never paid attention to the posts here about the 036, and brutally discovered some bushing were needed for the rear shock :(
    Not sure it is the same on all 036 frames but it was the 21.8mm x 8mm, and you need two of them(one for each axle)
  • It was not possible to pass the hose of the rear shock through the hole next to the shock.
    We just pulled back the white hose guide a little inside the frame.
    Then used a round file to make the hole bigger.
    Push back the white hose.
    Connect the hoses and pull it through the frame( + bleeding the xloc )
  • I forgot the 160/180mm adapter for the front brake :(
  • The aliexpress carbon seatclamp I use on my bikes was to wide at 15mm, the 036 need a 10mm clamp
  • The hoses are not fully internal, and some zippers or clips are needed to attach the rear shift and brake hoses to the chainstays
  • The Rocket Ron 2.1, although TLEasy were particularly hard to inflate.
    So I used the trick of inflating a tube inside the wheels and leave them for the night.
    Then remove the tube. Put some air, to get effortlessly that gratifying double pop. Try it if you have a recalcitrant tire.

He did a first real ride today in our local forest and as you may imagine coming from a 26" 2010 Rush, he was ecstatic.
He was particularly impressed by the lightness of the bike and the silence of the ride( DT240 freewheel is dead silent compared to my musical Hope's hub ).
And how smooth was the ride on some of our Belgian cobbled roads.

The weight? Well, I couldn't find my scale yesterday after the build... But for a full sus, it feels very light :)

I finally tried cheap Ti spindles two months ago.

However while hunting a creak that appeared recently, I found out it was coming from the left pedal( amplified as usual by the frame ).

Look at what I saw when disassembling it (the top one):

Scary isn't it?

The bottom one is new, as I received two left side by mistake :)
The other spindle(right side) is not as bad, but already well underway.

After breaking 2 crank brothers in 2 years.
And having tried cheap Ti spindles, I'm afraid it is time to look for another brand of pedals.

Anyone has relatively light pedals and still happy after months of usage :) ?

Component Deals & Selection / GCN at Taipei 2016 video
« on: March 14, 2016, 03:41:37 AM »
An interesting video of GCN talking( positively ) about the no brand frames we love so much :)

29er / After a 256, after a 041, here comes my Workswell 062
« on: March 10, 2016, 10:12:30 AM »
After a few recent issues with the frames, the lefty, broken pedals, etc.
I realized that having just one bike was not a viable option anymore.

While I can fix most things, some issues may take a very long time to sort out.
Which means no ride during that time.

So after having tried a 256, then briefly a 041, I was wondering what I could do now.
RS VR6 made so much positive noise about his bike it was intriguing.
And a very reasonable price helped me decide for a 062

I took the simple PF30. Since I had the BB and the XX1 crank already.
Verified multiple times with Ken there about size, BB, etc. (Ken was very helpful and nice).

As promised the frame arrived about 10 days later here in Europe! Well packed and protected.

Some goodies come for the price, which is a very nice touch:

They have definitely some issues with the bottom bracket.
The one you see in the picture, looks like a PF30 outside, but expects a 24mm spindle.
For me PF30 means a 30mm spindle, so I couldn't do anything with it.

I prefer to start the internal cabling before anything else.
So I can guide the hoses easily by the headtube or the bb shell.

First the rear derailleur. Full hosing. Entering from the top.
Unlike the 041, I was able to make it enter from the left side.
And make a nice curve for both the rear brake and derailleur hoses.

The front brake hose does not touch both hoses.
The result is clean, no need of any cable handlers or stickers to protect the frame. I like it !

Then over the BB ( note the bare carbon PF30, like some brand bikes ).

Till the end of the right chainstay, where you can remove the cap and grab it easily.

Very easy.

Now the rear brake.
As some other reported already they made it much harder than it should.
Starting from the back.

It goes out below the BB, and can be directed to the downtube.

I was quite disappointed to see a bottom hatch like the 256.
However it is somehow better built here.
But after two years riding in mudland, I noticed the mud and water get inside the frame anyway.
It is finally better to drill holes or leave an easy way out for the gunk, before it stagnate and drown the bearings.
So I took it off, for now, and ride without problems.

Now comes the pain. How to get the hose in this pesky little white tube:

Here you can see the white tube through the hole of the rear derailleur.
If there is a next time, I'll start with the brake then the derailleur.

After trying various options, I took a copper wire as a tool.
It was fiddly but it went out rather easily:

Time to put the headset.
There was some play as the black top cup didn't press correctly.
Some shims came with it.

One was enough.

I put my trustworthy BBInfinite bottom bracket.
With some Loctite. With the same ceramic/stainless steel bearings I took out of my 256.

Now... the fork!
Fed up with my Lefty's issues, I wanted to be maintenance free for the fork, and go for a high end rigid.
But my LBS had something else.
He was making a very good price on a Lauf fork.
As the Lauf went out a couple of years ago, I liked the idea. So jumped on it.

I'm riding XC almost exclusively, so the 60mm are more than enough.
My wrists thank me after each ride compared to a rigid.
I went through some rocky parts too, and as someone pointed on the web you just have to adapt to it, and everything goes fine.
It shines on the cobbles too( we have quite a few of them in Belgium ).

In addition, losing about 500g on the front makes a huge difference handling the bike.
I still have to order a carbon rim, and build the front wheel( my previous front wheel has a Lefty hub).

I'm still not fond of the mad-max-like look, but I love the ride.
A chiner generates loads of questions when riding in group. Imagine a chiner with a Lauf  :D

The rest of the assembly went fine. The bar and levers.
The carbon stem I got with my 256( for two years ) had a crack on one fo the 4 screws that tighten the bar.
I took a Procraft aluminium stem. I love this brand. They make beautiful and light parts for a very reasonable price.

I didn't cut the fork tube yet totally, as the stack is 3cm lower than what I was used to.
My back doesn't look to complain on this more aggressive position, so I will cut it soon.

And here are some more pictures of the final result.

After a few hundreds of kilometers on it, some ride impressions:

I'm not sure the 12mm shorter chainstay is the only reason, but it is much more playful and easier to handle than the 256 and the 041.
I feel more with the bike, than on the bike.

But when jumping out of the saddle and hammering the pedals, the rear is flexing quite a lot. More than the 256.
Especially comparing to the stiffness of the 041 which is a blade. This is my only negative point that makes me miss my 041.
And the 27,2 mm seat tube makes it as comfortable as the 041 when eating small bumps ( the 256 definitely not ).

29er / After breaking my 256, here is my brand new CS-041
« on: December 18, 2015, 06:32:58 PM »
First of all some picture of the new beast  8)
I wanted it fluo green or yellow, but didn't want to deal again with the hassle of the Belgian customs, so it ended again all black.

As many others here, dealing with Peter for this frame was a pleasure.
And luckily he had it in stock.

I took most parts from the 256:
  • Lefty( freshly back from a warranty repair, the bottom piston was scratched/toast)
  • 30mm carbon wheels, with a rear DT swiss axle
  • XX1 cassette, this was my second and probably the last. Even with a new free hub, Shimano's are much cheaper
  • XTR rear derailleur and shifter
  • KMC X11 SL chain, as it was new, I reused it
  • Hope Evo E4 brakes with KCNC Razor Rotors
  • Crank brothers pedals
  • my beloved "aliexpress" carbon seat
  • stem and bar that came with my 256

Unfortunately the bottom bracket was only available in BB92 and the seatpost diameter is 27.2, not what I had previously.
  • I got a discounted Procraft seatpost from a shop here.
  • A carbon seat clamp from aliexpress
  • And had my "carpe diem" moment for the crankset and felt for a Next SL
  • An Absolute black oval of 34

It weights a nice 8.6Kg( 19 lbs ) with pedals and tire sealant.

Here are some random impressions from the build and my first rides with it:
  • The frame is clearly stiffer than the 256.
    I was used to feel a little flex when sitting just before riding. Here nothing, it is hard as a bench.
    This probably comes from a much stronger rear triangle
    Well, it is strange. When hammering the pedals or cornering it feels definitely stiffer, and do not forgive when you hit bigger bumps

    But at the same time, the 27.2mm seatpost is kind of elastic, and eats the small bumps
    For instance making our awful Belgian paved roads, all of a sudden, much more comfortable.
    Although, it took me a couple of rides to be used to this strange new floating feeling.

  • The oval ring, is something I would suggest all 1X riders to try.
    It is not a very expensive test and it can make a big difference(it did for me)
    Especially on steep climbs or when you push hard.
    As stated by Marcin from Absolute black, it definitely gives you an unfair advantage over your friends
    On the 256, I started with a 28 XX1, then moved to a 30.
    Then I tried the 32 oval, it was a revelation.
    But then the 4 smaller sprockets of the XX1 cassette were toast after just a year( I'll go Shimano after this one ).
    So I was definitely too small in front. And jumped directly to an oval 34(an "ovality" of 32/36)
    I clearly suffer more on some climbs, but I use the whole cassette evenly, and can even challenge some roadies now.

    Just have a look at the design of the BB30 ring:
    For me it is an engineering work of art. The one I took off my 256, decorates my desk now :)

  • The frame arrived in perfect state, well packed and protected.
    The cable stops looks more finished than the 256.
    With various options to nicely plug the unused holes.
    Sadly the rear brake entry is still a simple and quite ugly hole in the frame.
    The internal routing was dead easy for the rear brake.
    For the derailleur, the inner hose looked well done, so I decided to try it(no frame drilling this time)
    It was very easy to route as well.
    Unfortunately the cable enters the frame on the right, and it makes a rather ugly curve, an need a sticker to protect the frame.

    Hopefully it will stand the mud I live in most of the year( I added some teflon at the cable end ).
    If not, I will go again full hosing, but it will probably be a pain to drill and route.

And finally some minor issues:

  • The drop out on the derailleur is different, there is no more an option to put a headless screw to tighten the nut
    And the axle seems 5mm too short, not coming flush with the nut. Not sure what I will do, but my rear-axle-peace-of-mind is gone.
  • The cable stop for the front derailleur is ugly and riveted( can't be removed easily ).

  • The headtube is 5mm shorter, making the lefty assembly less compact than on my 256


A couple more pictures before leaving:


Sorry my ex-256 colleagues  :P, but I definitely feels it as an upgrade.
It makes a more racy/radical bike.
The 256 was already great and sharp, but this one is some steps higher.

29er / Broken frame
« on: November 19, 2015, 05:14:02 AM »
Last week during my Wednesday night ride, I felt on the side with all my weight on the frame.
It happened already quite a few times, but a rock was just there to welcome my seatstay, that broke in two pieces.

Obviously my co-riders mocked its Chinese origins. Next time buy a real bike, etc.
I'm sure, under the same conditions, any of their carbon bike would had suffered the same fate.
The seatstay are the thinner tubes in general, and it was a very unlucky fall.

I wish you never hear a cracking frame noise. It is a very sad sound.

While I fixed my frame in the past, when my chainstay was hit.
This one looked impossible to fix, to then ride it with confidence.

Sooo, I contacted Peter, who happened to just have a CS-041 19" in stock :)
Hopefully he should ship it soon.
The frame, a new crank and a new seatpost depleted my road bike savings I was slowly accumulating for next spring :(

29er / Bended XX1 derailleur cage
« on: July 01, 2015, 10:32:01 AM »
During my last ride, a big branch found its way between the derailleur and the wheel, and bended both.

Truing the wheel was easy, only a couple of spokes were hit.

I read SRAM cage parts are not replaceable => $$$  :-\
Did someone already re-aligned a derailleur cage that was bended? If so, how?

The dropout was slightly bended too, but clearly this is not the weakest link here.
The derailleur suffered the most.

29er / Add some sealant in your tires, now!
« on: June 26, 2015, 04:06:54 AM »
Just a friendly reminder that we are in the summer.
And the sealant in our tires dries faster.

I had my first flat ever on a track this Wednesday.
Without any doubt because of a dry tire, although I did fill it a month or so ago.

And oddly enough, on Thursday, I got a big 5mm rusted screw planted in the same tire.
The noise of the screw hitting the chainstay is scary.

I removed the screw and put the hole down.
This time, it was full of sealant, and a fair amount of it went out, but it plugged the hole!

I then pumped the tire, with this incredible little cheap pump and finished my ride.

Pages: [1] 2