She needs a name!


I thought it would be good to do a quick post about my bike. Firstly, she’s a beaut don’t you think? Secondly, I only bloody built her myself didn’t I. Yep, not only did I decide to ride to China, I decided to build the thing that is going to take me there. The logic behind it was that if something breaks I need to know how to fix it, and all the bike mechanic classes in the world watching someone else fix a bike that’s different to mine isn’t going to be as good as doing it myself. It’s been a learning curve and I’ve spent many hours watching youtube videos and hassling Seb at London Bike Kitchen (love those guys – pop in and say hi!) but I think I finally have something that’s rideable.

Below is a breakdown of the individual parts of my bike. I found it so useful reading the bike specifications of other people who have built their own touring bikes and the kit lists of people who have embarked on long-distance tours, so I wanted to give that back to anyone that wants to do something similar and doesn’t know where to start…………I was in that exact place 2 months ago.

Frame: Surly Long Haul Trucker (Black – 42cm)

Front Wheel: Hand built myself – Rigida Sputnik 26 inch rim, Shimano DH 3N72A Dynamo Hub, DT competition spokes, Schwalbe 26 Inch 559 x 20mm High Pressure PU Rim Tap, Schwalbe Marathon Dureme tyres

Rear Wheel: Hand built by Spa Cycles – Rigida Sputnik 26 inch rim, Shimano Deore hub, Schwalbe Marathon Dureme tyres

Saddle: Brooks England Flyer-S Women’s Saddle

Seatpost: taken from my Specialized Dolce

Handlebars: Genetic flare drop handlebars (31.8mm clamp), Fiziks bar gel, Brooks leather bar tape, Shimano Pro LT 1 1/8 inch stem +/- 6 Deg

Pedals: taken from my Specialized Dolce

Brakes: Tektro V brakes (front and rear)

Levers: Shimano Sora 3500 STI triple 9 speed Road lever set

Bottom Bracket: Shimano BB-UN55 Bottom Bracket British Thread

Chainset: Shimano Acera 9 Speed Octalink Crankset ISIS 48/36/26 175mm BLACK FCM391

Front Derailleur: Shimano XT M770 Front Derailleur

Rear Derailleur: Shimano XT M771 9 Speed Rear Derailleur

Cassette: Shimano HG50 9 Speed Cassette

Chain: KMC X9-93 9 Speed Chain

Mudguards: SKS Chromoplastic mudguards

Racks: rear: Tubus Cargo, front: Surly nice front rack

Panniers: Carradice Kendal Original (green with honey) front and back

GPS: Garmin Edge 1000

USB Charger: Busch and Mueller E-Werks

Things I would possibly change if doing it again: I would build my rear wheel myself as Spa Cycles built it with silver spokes not black (gggrrrrrr) and I’d probably find other mudguards – the SKS’s don’t have the best fixings!

Overall the parts including GPS and digital stuff have cost about £2,000. She’s pretty heavy but that means she should be up to the job of getting to China and she’s also lovely to ride.

I love her – but like me she’s been nameless for the first couple of weeks of her life – your suggestions are very welcome.

Thanks for reading. MaFen. x


2 thoughts on “She needs a name!

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