I've always been a believer that you can have any bar tape you like as long as its black or white, and I've mostly stuck to this. But I've got one bike, a multi-coloured one that I've had for 5 years now, and its questioning my sanity. Its had black saddle and bar tape for nearly all that time, but for all that time I've had the repeated urge to build it up with more bat-shit crazy multi coloured-ness.
Flirting with or maybe ram raiding anti porn's HQ, it will be a seasonal affectiveness disorder slaying, busy as fuck build. Is it possible to build such a bike while still being sick to the power of rad? I can always revert back to black. But its January in the UK, it feels like living in a black and white movie and I need some colour in my life, you can't talk me off the ledge, this is happening.
Before Xmas bike looked like this, the green saddle and tape was only added 5 months ago and was my first foray into non black tape and saddle on this bike, but I craved more.
I've never liked the look of the old carbon coated alu forks that came with the frame when I bought it, or the spacer/ahead combo and never knew what colour steel forks the bike came with originally. Scouring ebay before Xams I came across some Columbus Max forks in Italy that looked just the ticket and would make a great new colour addition to the bike. I bought them in an instant.
The new fork was 1 inch threaded and there was not enough steerer for an ahead jobby, so it was going to be returned to a quill stem. I've always liked 3TTT quills, but I fancied a black one
but Ebay presented only jokers wanting over £100. Fuck that. Hilary Stone came up trumps with one at a fraction of the price of the Ebay vultures. Also changed the outer ring and chain ring bolts from silver to a black, and threw on some rowdy red Look pedals.
The fork was already pushing me further towards the full-bore rowdy build, but then while browsing another section of Hilary Stone's website I had no need to be in, I came across this saddle:
This was the defining moment, the one component that clinched the deal and the final nail in the coffin of sanity. Tipping point reached, it was now a case of Timmy Mallett-ing the fuck
out of the bike.
A quick google of Timmy Mallett and 'allegations' didn't yield anything of note so that reference seems OK, but only time will tell how well that comment ages.
So what bar tape goes with a 3 colur ssaddle and a multi colured frame/fork? Much scouring of ebay later and I plumped for some Supercaz Jamaica bar tape.
The change to a quill also needed a change of headset. The fork is a tighter fit for my frame that I'd thought, but thanks to the good folk at Brixton cycles a low stack no frills Tange number
makes possible what a Campag headset could not. Next step wheels and tyres. Even my inner monster thinks full coloured tyres is a step too far, so I'll be going with some black or tanwall
tyres with some rowdy primary colour highlights. I've got loads of wheels and tyres so have plenty of options to try and see which ones, if any, work and which ones are puke on cock minging.
First up the Tron wheels with added lasers, PEW PEW PEW. Some black Shamals fitted with some new blue Michelin Pro Endurance tyres.
I think that's probably a bit much, next! The colour matching on these green Vittoria Open Pave tubulars mounted to some black Shamals goes well with the green on the frame.
And for added shiny, and throwing another rowdy colour, pink, into the mix, a pic with some Shamal tubulars/Vittoria Open Pave tubs with red instead of green.
Realistically I'm not going to be using tubulars for daily riding, so those last two options are out.
Lets try some black tyres with red bits to see how they look with the fork, some Vittoria Open Pave clinchers on Record hubs and Ambrosio Excellence rims.
I've also got a set of Chorus hubs with silver Mavic Open Pro rims, but they are not really silver are they, there's no bloody shiny, they're more of a dull grey. I came across some old shop stock of a load of world champs stripes finishing tape:
...which evoked childhood memories of collecting mulleted football heroes in shiny Pannini World Cup sticker books during the 80's. Hmmm that got me thinking, for the lols its out with the scissors and tape measure and lets embark on some further trolling of the 'you can't wear the stripes unless you earn the stripes' brigade and push it even more. I've got some old school tan wall Vittoria Techno's that came with an Ebay wheelset I purchased, so thought I'd give them a go with these wheels. Behold a truly unique wheelset, they definitely add colour and shiny to the grey rims.
The green is a good match again with the frame, but as with the green on the tubulars I'm not liking the green tyres and red fork combo, and those tyres are reportedly very puncture prone, so not ideal for London's glass strewn shit roads. Probably a step too far but they do look better than I thought they would.
Next some tan wall Vittoria Corsa's on Chorus hubs and black Open Pro rims
And finally some yellow Shamals with some yellow Pirelli's
Whatever the wheels and tyres its making me laugh just looking at it, in your face winter! Any drivers that SMIDSY me while I'm riding this have no excuses and need their licences taken away.
Please let me know which wheel and tyre combo looks best/least worst. My favourites so far I think are the yellow Shamals and yellow Pirelli's, and the regular tan wall Vittoria Corsa's on Chorus hubs and black Open Pro rims.
All that remains then is for me don all this jersey....
....and head out to Regents Park and cross chain a few laps in a full aero tuck at 16 mph getting overtaken by everyone. #sopro