CUSTOM GRAVEL BIKE BY ERIK
05 May 2023
What made you decide to build a bamboo bike?
My actual randonneuring bike is too large to fit me well, and, as I have already built a bamboo cargo bike years ago, I decided to build a custom bamboo rando bike to ride the Paris-Brest-Paris 2023.
Did you enjoy building the bicycle from scratch and would you recommend the experience?
I really enjoyed it till the moment I recognized that I made a huge wrong geometry decision. So I had to cut the frame near the steering tube to make it 4cm longer (my toes where touching the front wheel while cornering)
What did you find most difficult about your bike build?
Finding the right geometry. I wanted a really custom bike which fit be better in every aspect than all other bikes I have. I had a lot of parts laying around which I wanted to use. The fork, for example, had a not so long steering tube, so I had to shorten the headtube. I wanted 40mm tires and fenders, but also a crankset with a small Q-factor, ...
What was the easiest part of the build?
Glueing the frame together with carbonrovings (as I did already with my cargo bike). Quite a mess, but very satisfying. I made a custum jig out of aluminium profiles and 3d printed parts, because I didn't follow your geometry (which was a bad mistake ;) and I prefer the frame in his natural upright position
How would you describe the ride of your finished bike?
My first long ride (after a very short test the day before) was a 300km Brevet, which is part of the 200, 300, 400 and 600km brevet series to qualify for Paris-Brest-Paris this year. And it was a great success! It runs perfectly straight, riding with no hands is no problem and it's very comfortable. Here a lot of pictures, feel free to use: https://photos.app.goo.gl/PbeifqBpUexEhwUq6
What would you improve about the build experience or your finished bike?
Think first, then act. The parts you delivered werd great, exept the screws for the rear thru-axle adapters were very short. And as I'm not the lightest guy, I made my own from stainless steel.