06 July, 2018

New Whip (sorta') - Bearclaw Beowulf Single Speed

Been awhile since I've posted here and it seemed high time. I've been skiing, riding, and living life.

The bike stable seems to continually shift for me, though perhaps I've finally found equilibrium for a bit. Since my last post, I've:
  • Sold the Specialized Stumpjumper Carbon World Cup Comp; she was a great entry into a really good mountain bike. But I just found I wasn't riding this carbon everything hardtail enough to justify owning it. Bonus - sold it for what I paid two years earlier.
  • Sold my Niner RDO singlespeed after deciding I needed to bump up from a medium frame to a large. New ride included front suspension, so that was a plus. But then in the midst of some upgrades, a cracked frame (where seatstay joins the seat tube) was discovered. 

This all set a chain of events into motion. Basically, the components on my single speed were all Olde Schoole - straight 1/1/8" fork steerer and QR axles. These days, tapered head tubes and thru-axles pretty much the norm. I had a deal on a used Niner SIR 9, but that fell through. Which caused me to pause and reconsider my course of action.

Yup, time for a new build with many of the old parts. Over the past year, I've gotten to know the guys at Einstein Cycles in Traverse City, MI. Super knowledgeable mountain/fat/gravel bike shop. If you're looking to get serious, these guys know what's what. Owner Jason Lowetz has created their own line of very cool bikes - Bearclaw Bicycle Co. In talking with Jason and head mechanic/wheel builder/guru Dan, I decided to reinvest the money from the Stumpy sale into a modern kick-ass single speed. A titanium Bearclaw Beowulf.

After some e-mails, calls, and Facebook messages, a new build was settled upon, many part from my Niner, and many new. Final build includes:

The finished product is light. Looks bomb-proof, and rides fabulously (at least my first outing was great!). By now, you're thinking, "Just show me the damn thing!". Well, then here you go...

She's not fully done yet -- need to settle in on spacers for the stem/bar height and have the steerer tube cut down. And I've got some titanium handlebars on order. And, maybe a Ti stem...

Full performance review coming soon!


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