I've contemplated building a new bike up to run along side the Orange for a couple of years, but for one thing or another I could never justify it. Now with the move South completed and my back finally on the mend I'm riding more, and so I've started thinking about the idea again.
I've not paid attention to the MTB scene for years, so I'd not heard of On-One before (to be fair, I've not heard of most of the current brands before
), until I came across PhilStone's thread on here one evening. Some quick Googling returned pretty much universal possitive-ness for the frame and suggestions of decent prices in the offing. A visit to the On-One site got me thinking that £399 was indeed a decent price for a reasonably light carbon frame. Then I noticed the LTD edition....
To set the scene, I had no intention of spending money on a new bike at this point (I'd even passed up on a Pace RC200 off eBay the week before), and I certainly had no budget to build a new bike either. No, definitely not. But... It was late at night, I was bored and On-One had 1 LTD edition satin black, black decals, 456 carbon in stock at £299. And it was 18". And I seem to have bought it. And so it looks like I'm building a new bike after all then
I decided to try and make the most of the discounted frame price and turn this into a super saver build by getting as much as possible either from eBay or here. I did decide that the BB and headset would come from my LBS though, which meant they could fit them and I wouldn't feel guilty asking for help later with brake fettling / bleeding since I've never run discs before. I actually ended up getting the brakes, rotors and wheels from them anyway, since they offered me a decent deal, meaning I ended up not paying much more new than I would have going for used stuff, and so I was happy with that. They've since shortened the hoses and bled the brakes for free so I'm more then happy that I supported my LBS.
I run a Hope Ti BB and Ti-Glide hubs on the orange which are (well, were in the case of the hubs) still going strong after 17 years and zero maintainence, so deciding on Hope for BB, headset, hubs & brakes for the 456 was a no brainer. I also had a couple of spare XTR M953 mechs that had been destined for the Orange, so that meant I wanted 9 speed 95x shifters to match. After a couple of weeks of seeing nothing but used M970s & M980s go for ridiculous amounts on the bay and seeing nothing on here, I ended up grabbing a new set of M970 3x9s off eBay for £125. It was more than I wanted to spend but less than I'd just seen the used sets go for
. I've since grabbed another M970 front shifter from here and a rear in the CRC Easter sale, so my spares box is starting to grow.
I've got a set of 18 year old RC-35s on the Orange, so wanted to stick with Pace forks again for the 456. Luckily it turned out that Phil was thinking of selling his RC-41 Fighters, a deal was struck and he travelled all the way from Jersey to Devon to hand deliver them (OK so he may have been visiting family at the time too). Thing is at the same time as speaking to Phil, I'd put a low ball offer in on some Type-C's on eBay which got accepted, so I now I have a set of RC-41s in the spares box too.
Other than the Charge Spoon Ti saddle (a bargainous £48 from Wiggle) and the Goodridge gear cables, everything else is off eBay or here. I had originally built the front end with Race Face Deus XC bars and 90mm stem, but after a couple of rides these have been changed to a 100mm stem and an FSA X-Force carbon bar which I'm particularly proud of after I paid a whopping £22 for it, OK so the lacquer is a bit scratched but I least I don't mind when the thing falls over
Colour wise I've kept it simple and stealthy to match the hagunemnon colour scheme of the frame, meaning the only colour is Hope's Gunsmoke for the rotors, seat clamp, QRs & bar end plugs.
I must say I'm more than impressed with the frame for the money - I think I'd still be happy if I'd paid the full £499 for it to be honest. It gives a comfortable ride, accelerates and climbs well and isn't at all skittish on descents either. All in weight is just over 23lb without being stupidly obsessive, so I'm happy with that too. I just need to get used to the completely different feeling geometry to that of the Orange.
There are two problems I have with sourcing components off eBay though. First is when stuff goes for silly prices. I lost count of the number of auctions I watched that ended at considerably more than I could have just bought the item new. Sometimes the RRP was clearly listed in the description and they still exceeded it. I just don't get why people do that on eBay and I ended up buying a new set of M980 pedals to go along with the new shifters I'd already bought, albeit for £80 delivered. The other problem I have with buying stuff of eBay is I've ended up doing this..
Oh well, makes the next project easier.