Blanc de Noirs

This is my primary bike, which I use for commuting, road riding, randonneuring, and hopefully some light touring soon. I bought the frame on eBay, and selected and installed everything myself except the headset (quite a learning experience!). The photos were taken along the Willamette River across from downtown Portland, Oregon, on Springwater Trail, which I follow along the river from Sellwood to Hawthorne nearly every day. I started riding consistently about a year ago and, like so many before me, am now completely obsessed with bikes. I did the fixed gear thing for most of last summer and fall, but I wanted a bike that I easily ride anyway in the lovely Oregon countryside, not much of which is flat. Thus, the Blanc de Noirs was born.

The two bikes which served most as inspiration for this build were Joel Metz's Jack Taylor #8467

and Tony Pereira's own "Bordeaux"

While this bike doesn't show much specific resemblance to either, I feel that it is another take on the principles of durability, practicality, and elegance.

The specs:
Frame and Fork: 80s era KHS lugged steel touring model, painted a lovely shade of blanc de noirs Champagne
Wheels: Vintage Phil Wood hubs, laced to Mavic MA40 rims, 126 rear spacing with axle aligned for a low-dish 6 speed narrow
Headset: Stronglight Delta
Racks: Blackburn rack in rear, fork braze-ons in the front for one
Saddle: Brooks Team Professional
Seat post: Suntour XC
Fenders: Velo Orange extra-long Honjo
Handlebars: 80s era Mavic
Stem: Nitto Technomics
Brakes: Shimano Deore LX, with Mavic hanger in front and Suntour hanger in rear
Brake Levers: Suntour Superbe aero
Shifters: Shimano 600 "Arabesque"
Front Derailleur: Suntour Superbe Pro double
Rear Derailleur: Suntour Cyclone GT
Cranks: Campagnolo Nuovo Record double, custom drilled for a 74bcd wheel before they started producing a proper triple
Chainrings: Campagnolo Nuovo Record
Freewheel: Suntour Winner 13-30 6 speed Ultra
Chain: Shimano Hyperglide
Pedals: MKS touring with vintage Christophe clips and straps
Bottom Bracket: Sugino spindle with Campagnolo Nuovo Record cups
Tires: Schwalbe Marathon rear, Avocet Cross front
Bell: brass bell from Velo Orange
Pump: Zefal HP4 custom painted by Joe Bell
Mojo: "Protected by Killer Sheep" sticker and Sweetpea Bicycles spokecard with Scotchlite star

I also have a set for the bike on Flickr that I'll periodically be adding photos of this bike to:

Phil Varner

Portland, Oregon



Blanc de Noirs - skyline & river backdrop
Blanc de Noirs - rear quarter view
Blanc de Noirs - front quarter view

Blanc de Noirs - drivetrain detail


Blanc de Noirs - top down at the middle



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