Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Velo Orange, meet Motobecane Fantom Outlaw
When I got my new Motobecane Fantom Outlaw and set it up as a commuter I was pretty dang happy. But it turned out that the gearing was just a hair tall for my headwind commute with parachute-like, wide catching panniers. That, and I'm just not always willing to work really hard on a commute ride.
When I realized my Sora shifters were made to operate a triple, I started looking for something with lower gears. I looked at all kinds of cranks, both road and mountain. Then I came across the Velo Orange VO Triple Crankset with 24, 36, and 48 tooth chainrings. It looked sharp, and was reasonably priced. I needed a different front derailleur, which I found used on eBay for $10. I also needed a long cage rear derailleur too, but I had a nice Ultegra model left over from upgrading Tricia's Ruby. I got a new chain and was in business.
I like the lower gears. The 36 tooth ring is a lot more useful than the 39 was for me. I haven't needed the 24, but I have fantasies of over-night "touring" and think I'll be happy to have it. The amazing part is that it shifts really well. The Sora nine-speed shifters are very positive and the bike shifts with a very reassuring mechanical crispness that I wasn't expecting in a lower-level group. The Velo Orange chain rings are ramped, so both front and rear shifting are pretty swell.
Next up: Fenders, before it starts to rain.