I'm getting ready to retire my old friend here and I thought it would be fitting to post it in the garage as a show of respect for a good bike that has served me well. The frame is a blue aluminum Vitus 979 size 56. My buddy Tom initially set this up for me as my first proper road bike. Once I got into something a bit more modern that fit better, I decided to have some fun and convert the Vitus to a single speed.

The rear wheel has a Campy hub, I believe C Record, with a 7 speed freewheel and Matrix rim. Front wheel has a Campy Athena hub on Matrix rim. Conte 4 Season 23s on both. Delta Hublox on both wheels to keep those thieves at bay.

An older Surly Singulator takes up the tension on the chain leading to the also older Dura Ace Crankset that was modified with short bolts to house just the small chainring. I have this set up with a very conservative 39/16 which gave me the best chainline. I stubbornly stuck with SPD and my Cannondale Coda pedals. I was fortunate enough to score a beautiful pair of Dura Ace brakes (again courtesy of Tom) that just fit this bike perfectly. Early 90s model is our best guess.

Campagnolo seatpost tied up with a Vetta Cosmos saddle that came off a stock Bianchi. This saddle turned out to be ideal to soften the ultra stiff ride that the Vitas provides.

Cinelli bars and stem. The bars are inverted and cut into bullhorns, capped with Velox plugs. Paul E-Brake levers, front and rear and a fair first attempt at the Harlequin weave with cloth bar tape. I wasn't able to get it quite even but not bad for an early effort.

I logged many more miles on this as a single speed than I planned and had a lot of fun riding it as a commuter and around town. I'd love to hear anyone's comments on it.


I'm currently setting up a Milwaukee Orange One to replace my Vitus. I'm looking forward to another build and some fresh miles ahead.

Thanks so much for providing the space for this. It's great to see what everyone is riding.

Rick Billings




Vitus - side view
Vitus - front end detail
Vitus - bar wrap and brake detail
Vitus - crankset detail




Current Classics Photo Gallery - Cross Bike Photo Gallery

Single Speed Garage Photo Gallery
- Working Bikes & Practical Hardware

  Submit a Single Speed Bicycle Photo