the Current Classics gallery:
is my custom Bob Jackson Special Tourist. It was built by this Leeds,
UK builder in 2007. It has Reynolds 631 Oversize main tubes with
725 oversized stays. I went for a custom frame for two main reasons.
I wanted disc brakes, and I wanted a drop-bar specific geometry
(shorter top tube) that could be set up with very high bars (compared
with the fashion today). The seat tube is 60cm, top tube 57cm. The
fork steerer is 34cm long! I have had problems with the fork originally
supplied- the left blade which has the disc mount bent under the
braking forces, but has recently be re-made with a slight alteration
to the design, so hopefully this one will not bend in the same way.
The fork ends face slightly forward to enable the front wheel to
be changed more easily with full mudguards, and also so that the
braking forces on the axel are no longer in the same direction as
reasons for the disc brakes are that they require less adjustments
after they are set up, and they still work well in the wet. They
are not any more powerful than well-set up cantilevers, but in the
rain you really appreciate them.
tops of the handlebars are a little higher than the saddle. I have
a large head-tube extension added to the top lug, and 35mm of spacers,
as well as the custom-painted PRO stem flipped to slope upwards.
The top tube is also slightly sloping, this allows the head tube
to be even taller, while still having enough stand-over height.
The lugs were cut and brazed back together to allow a sloping geometry.
original build, seen in the photo lent against a tree, consisted
of a complete black 9-speed Shimano 105 groupset, the only exception
being Avid BB7 Road disc brakes. The wheels were an out-of-place
Bontrager Select Disc set, which were the only pre-built disc road
wheels I could find. I grew to hate the paired 24 spoke modern look
of these wheels. The wheels have been replaced by a custom built
pair with a XT-level disc dynamo hub on the front, and 2008 XT rear,
laced to 36 hole disc-only touring rims from Germany. The dynamo
hub will power front and rear B+M LED lights when the dark evenings
return. The tyres are now 700x35 Schwalbe Marathon Plus, which weigh
a lot, but are almost immune to punctures. These replaced 700x25
road tyres to give a comfier ride. I also had modern ergo-shaped
Richey BioMax handlebar, which never allowed easy use of the brakes
from the drops (even tilted up to make the levers closer). These
were replaced by Nitto Noodles in a 46cm width.
saddlebag is a Carradice Zipped Roll, and easily carries enough
for commuting, and the panniers are Carradice Kendal, all made from
traditional cotton duck material in England. The Brooks B17 Champion
Special in British Racing Green matches the colour of the frame
lugs, and is also made in England.