We left Mark last time with his revelation on how he called his bike “Sunseeker”. This episode sees him complete the bike which has brought a lot of joy to our Captain.
It was at this point i decided to get custom built wheels to match. As my Moulton has hand built wheels by SBC cycles I gave them a ring. Can you make me a pair of wheels with Hope RS4 Hubs with 32 spokes rear & 28 spokes at the front with orange nipples & black rims. Yes they said be ready in 4 weeks.
I now got in touch with Vince and we took the 7800 Dura Ace parts off my Eddy merckx bike. I also ordered new Deda bars and stem, bought two Campagnolo Chorus seatposts. One was two thin 26mm not 27.2mm. The headset on the frame turned out to be no good so I bought a new Campagnolo Record – surprisingly cheap at £55.
I could not get hold of my favourite saddle a Charge Spoon in brown – everywhere was sold out but in the end I found one.
I also ordered some Brooks bar tape in brown. I ordered custom bar ends from Kapz with Sunseeker written on them – they where fairly dear but they look really good. I had to get some STI adjustment barrels for the frame in orange. Lastly I went through two sets of wheel alignment screws – have you ever tried to screw the end cap onto a screw with a spring? It’s so hard to do – I still have three missing caps in the kitchen somewhere. I was looking at getting some old style tyres but just in time Perilli launched a classic version of my favourite tyre the P Zero.
I took my Dura Ace parts off to Wallington Cycles where Duncan kindly let me use the cleaning tank. At the same time Tony Mallender fitted it to the frame which was quite difficult.
He also fitted the seatpost which was hard to get in as well. Finally Duncan fitted the Hollow tech bottom bracket to the frame. I did read that when Shimano made the 7800 Dura ace groupset they put all their design knowledge into it to make it the best groupset in the world at the time.
So I finally rode to Tully’s Farm with Barrie – both on steel bikes.The Sunseeker is pretty light for a steel bike weighing 9.3kg which is 1.3kg heavier than the carbon fibre Eddy Merckx. The surprising thing is it feels very fast is it because the frame is stiffer; maybe the wheels are very good too – they roll really fast. I seem to be able to close a gap fast, hold speed easier. When I look at Strava some of the times on the climbs are the best I’ve done this year. All very strange considering the bike is 1kg heavier than my carbon bike.
Overall the project has been well worth all the effort of everyone involved.
Thanks again to Vince, Wallington Cycles, SBC Cycles and Winston & Mario Vaz.