The bastard love child of a Quadangle and a pogo stick.
Never knowing love, scorned as the bastard love child of a Quadangle and a pogo stick, the insurmountable Cockroach, resilient to decades of neglect, abuse and debauchery. Purchased new in 1994, this here Cannondale Delta V, complete with the often mocked Headshok system has proven to be the most seaworthy vessel of the fleet.
Continuing to dance with the one that brung ya….. Wearing many hats over the past two and a half decades, the ‘Roach has been a standard issue 26″ MTB, an oh-so-cliché slick-tired commuter, an exploratory reconnaissance vessel for a year long tour of the North American continent, and then, cruelly, relegated to the attic like a pedal powered pariah.
After numerous iterations and configurations, it now has risen again, like an angular, knobbly messiah, as a singlespeed cyclocross steed of stubbornness. photo by Kevin Mitchell
The last half of the local cx season was raced on the joyous jalopy with a complete air of silliness and self deprecating mockery, Singlespeed was taken up as a way to mitigate some of the self inflicted seriousness that the morning Masters races had become.
Not having a dedicated SSCX mobile, I dug around in the heaping hordes of two wheeled detritus that litter my world and, like the Arkenstone, the Delta V emerged again to defend against the “way-too-serious about prancing in a field with grown men in tights” mindset.
“She may not look like much…..”
“But she’s got it where it counts kid..” Surprisingly enough, after all the laughing and pointing, the ‘Roach quieted the naysayers with a fair share of hardware hauling. Eyebrows of Fury. Photo by Chip Riggs
So this was the dismemberment plan the day prior the first SSCX race. The first step was to squeeze some dubs under those fenders. The rear was a breeze, no mods necessary…but the front needed some machine love. Stan’s Grail wheel pulled from SuperX for testing.
The biggest, chunkiest bit I could find was put to work in the aging Bridgeport mill, clearing some real estate under the fork crown. There’s a vid of this blasphemy on my IG feed, check it on the right.
Just enough massaging to be functional with 35 c tires. The wheel is dished a bit, gotta fix that.
Even though I’d prefer to not run ’em. The rules state that I need a front brake. Rotor clearance aplenty! Roval 29er wheel stolen from daughter’s bike.
At this point in the project, I’d rather not weld brackets on the frame/ fork, some home-brew bracketry was whipped up. Marvel at the chainwheel bolt spacer on bottom bolt. 140mm rotor and TRP Spyre caliper provide sufficient stoppage. (Thanks Curtis!)
*new plan in photo at bottom (Aug. ’17)
The rear bracketry train wreck took a fair bit of swearing and arm waving…..when I get the mysterious sliding dropout puzzle cracked, then I’ll make a more permanent mount. *new plan in photo at bottom (Aug. ’17)
…any jagged kinda thing
so aero that air runs away-Thomas Barbazuk
Resplendent with vintage, age appropriate aero helmet and non-standard MAMIL costume, singlespeed turned into an mega-fun time well worthy of many laughs. Also seen in the photo above ( by Cathy Bester) , the rather flaccid fork as the 23yr old Headshok elastomers have crumbled away under the insurmountable weight of time and determinedly decided to be destined for dust.
Rather recently, in preparation for the 2017 Florida cyclocross race season, an effort was initiated to reinvigorate the limp member.
With no luck reaching out to the Vintage Cannondale community for replacement elastomers, nor the special tool required to loosen the inverted castle nut buried in the steer tube, a more geographically appropriate solution was devised.
The chronic EDD is corrected and surprisingly effective with firm-yet-yielding buoyancy and glacial response time. Seeing life again recently in the Gravel/Multi-Strata universe, I always dug the Headshok system, despite the static is receives.
Stuffing the BB30 Cannonade Hollowgram SiSL2 cranks into the threaded BSA/English bottom bracket shell required a bit of surgery as well. e*thirteen chainguide pilfered from ’13 Specialized 29er Stumpjumper EVO, 40t OG BMX chainring
Typical perch, undersize Thomson mast left over from flatland bmx days and rather smooth, stock Fabric Scoop saddle from the SuperX. DOF newbie photo.
Flat bar cyclocross? Heresy! This bike is crazy fun with the flat bar, it is (was) a mountain bike after all. Easton carbon riser bar, Subrosa grips and ancient OE 1.5″ Headshok stem at the bow. ( thank you Joe at Orange Cycle Works!)
Shimano clicky pedals, you’ve probably heard of ’em. If anything on this rig is reliable…it’s these.
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (and an Extraordinary Woman) at the Infamous 2016 Swamp Cross singlespeed race included race organizer, Gainsville Legend and Dead Kennedy’s fan, Todd Leedy, FLCX Series Champ Kelly Edwards, the Florida State TT & Crit Champ (who can eat 24 tacos in one sitting), Justin Pfaff, as well as a mötley crew of usual suspects: Patrick O’Shea, Drew Smith, Robert Reineke , Pete & Joan Miner of Blackadder Brewing fame, and some dork in an pointy helmet and girl’s shirt. Cathy Bester photo.
Tensioners..”I hate ’em, they stink!” Can’t go below 16t cog or chain skips and knee slams the stem…joy. Hopefully before the season starts this year, I’ll finish some kinda’ sliding/ pivoting dropout thing-a-ma-bob. Initial testing has been promising.* *new plan in photo at bottom (Aug. ’17)
Yep, more ” any jagged kinda thing”* proof-of-concept Thunderdome bracketry. It works, it’s solid, it jacks the BB waaaaaay up. (update Aug.’17) I’ve since welded brake brackets on and simply slotted the existing dropouts higher, no more bracketry dangling…photo at bottom. *weapons giveaway program, ah yeah.
Specialized Trigger 33c non-tubeless approved tire ostentatiously running tubeless on the stern.. usually raced around 20-24 psi, stays on the rim until about 30 PSI, then catastrophic rapid failures occur. Oval 327CX wheels recently acquired from Fuji CX Craigslist find… darn light, fancy bladed spokes…too early to pass judgement yet.
Up at the bow again, a WTB Cross Boss 35c, I dig these, predictable traction, lightweight, firm-yet-yielding, stays on any rim, usually ran around 19-22psi…they do slowly bleed out sealant from the sidewalls though…keep an eye on that.
Why a fernery? Cuz’ they’re hot..and sandy…and this one has some hills , and occasionally, a bit of mud….sorta like a Florida CX race. It’s a perfect place to get well acquainted with heat stroke, snakes, biting flies, poison ivy and gun-wielding landowners. It’s also PDG for 50 minute, zone 5, hypoxic meltdowns culminating into a overly dramatic wheezing heap atop the sand, poison ivy and snakes while orbited by clouds of #$%* evil biting flies. But really, I dig it here. Everyone Hates Florida.…except roaches.
*Aug. ’17 update: Quick-n- dirty peek at revised sled, full article soon