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 Post subject: 1998 WTB Ti Phoenix
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 7:41 am 
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 2:53 am
Posts: 267
Location: San Rafael, CA, USA
This is a largely-custom bike I had built for me in 1998. It’s a bike I tried to make very (probably too) versatile -- with S&S couplings and the multiple bar setups. The parts mix was pretty similar to my ’92 Cunningham and ’95 Newsboy -- in other words, all WTB/Potts/Cunningham and mostly early-90’s.

It’s a big bike -- 19.5” c-to-c and the largest size the Phoenix was ever offered in. It looks even larger because I asked Steve to extend the head tube DOWN and make it non-suspension-corrected knowing that I would only ever run it with the Type-II fork. If I’d waited another year or two, I probably could have had an equivalent Potts 29’er which might have looked and performed better for someone of my 6’5” tall size. No real regrets though.

The original build spec was documented in a photo gallery and “dot-Mac” web page I setup for each of my bikes in 2003. That page disappeared many years ago, but I’ve recreated it in this Flickr gallery including all the kitschy and not-entirely-accurate descriptions:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/halaburt/sets/72157632067810709/

As one of my 3 primary MTB’s, I’ve ridden this bike regularly these last 15 years. Starting about 2 years ago, I undertook some upgrades and those are now all complete. I shot a new round of pics of the bike as it sits today:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/halaburt/sets/72157632046658758/

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Last edited by halaburt on Thu Nov 22, 2012 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 7:42 am 
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 2:53 am
Posts: 267
Location: San Rafael, CA, USA
Here’s the current build spec:

Frame: 1998 WTB Ti Phoenix 19.5” (Non-Suspension) #98044; S&S Couplings

Fork: Potts Type-II, 118mm dropout spacing

Headset: Chris King TwoNut (No Logo), Paragon Cable Hanger
Stem: Willits Titanium (quill-style)
Handlebar: WTB (Aricle) Offroad Drop Bar
Grips/Tape: Newbaum’s Cloth, Grab-On material under tape, Velox Plugs

Brakes: WTB ToggleCam w/WTB Bridges (F&R)
Brake Pads: WTB GripMaster
Brake Levers: Shimano 600 Non-Aero

Shifters: Shimano M732 Deore-XT, WTB MultiMounts, Cunningham Inline Adjusters
Front Derailleur: Shimano M735 Deore-XT on Manitou 1.5” Band
Rear Derailleur: Shimano M950 XTR
Cassette: Shimano M900 XTR 8sp 12-32t
Chain: Shimano HG91
Cranks: Morati MTB 180mm
Chainrings: Shimano SG-X 46/34/24t
Bottom Bracket: WTB New Paradigm GreaseGuard (thread-in)
Pedals: Shimano M970 XTR

Hub Skewers: Cunningham Slo-Release
Rims: WTB Laser Beam 32h (F), 36h (R)
Hubs: Cunningham/Hi-E 118mm 32h (F), WTB New Paradigm 140mm 36h (R)
Nipples/Spokes: DT
Tires: WTB TyrannoRaptor 52/54K

Saddle: WTB SST (Ti rails)
Seatpost: Cunningham Fixed-Angle
Seatpost QR: Cunningham Lightweight w/Cunningham Clamp

Bottle Cage(s): Cunningham/Nitto “XL” (1), King Cage Ti (1)
Chainstay Protector: WTB
Pump: Zefal Solibloc, seatpost/internal (Cunningham-modified)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:31 am 
Old School Hero
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Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 11:41 am
Posts: 246
Location: New Zealand
Hi nice bike, waaaaaayyyy to big for me.
I have finally got my hands on a 98 Phoenix se and slowly building it. Can't wait to see if they live up to the web reputation.
All these little features that separate them from the mainstream should add up to an interesting ride.

Would you class it as more of a single use machine ? Smooth single track long distance stuff or is it ok on rocks and more 'modern' trails with berms and rocks etc ? Our trails are pretty rough generally

I am not building it with all the jewels your one has thou, more of a working mans build.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 3:13 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 507
Location: Bolton
Very tasty.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:54 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:24 pm
Posts: 790
Location: Wales, United Kingdom
That is stunning. It ticks every box for me. I love the classiness of this build, dripping w/ WTB and Cunningham too. I saw your post in the MTBs with Offroad Drop's thread on this site, I love the stem and the story behind it. What fantastic work!

Drops w/ MultiMounts (WTB optional...but encouraged) = Grail status, for me anyway 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:10 am 
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
98+ BoTM | BoTM | PoTM Winner
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 2:53 am
Posts: 267
Location: San Rafael, CA, USA
Thanks for the kind words everyone. This round of updates/upgrades has been fun and going back through those old pics and captions was interesting for me. My favorite changes:

Getting the fork (re-)painted to match the frame. As noted in those early pics, the fork was initally powder coated "clear" where you could see the brazing. The color was sorta-close to the Ti, and it was very cool to see the brass at the brazed joints. Over time though, there was some rust spidering starting to appear. After getting some amazing work from the SoCal painter Joe Bell on some other bikes, I asked if he could attempt to match the frame's (and stem and Morati's) bead blasted finish in paint. Joe is one of the only painters still working in genuine DuPont Imron today. His work is incredible -- the parts you DON'T SEE (like the steerer) look better than what most painters achieve on parts you do see. I think he just about nailed it on these forks. In particular, he used a matte clearcoat instead of the traditional super hi-gloss Imron clear.

Image

Image

And then a very small, but special thing: the seat clamp. No CNC here, but manual machine operations and then (LOTS of) hand-filing by Charlie Cunningham.

Image

clockd wrote:
Hi nice bike, waaaaaayyyy to big for me.
I have finally got my hands on a 98 Phoenix se and slowly building it. Can't wait to see if they live up to the web reputation.
All these little features that separate them from the mainstream should add up to an interesting ride.

Would you class it as more of a single use machine ? Smooth single track long distance stuff or is it ok on rocks and more 'modern' trails with berms and rocks etc ? Our trails are pretty rough generally

I am not building it with all the jewels your one has thou, more of a working mans build.

The Phoenix has a lot going for it out-of-the-box. Not sure about the setup on yours, but I do think that the fork and brakes make a big difference. By '98 most were built up with suspension forks and V-brakes. I have many friends with that setup who love their bikes as much as I love mine, but it's probably a sorta apples-and-oranges comparison.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:48 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2009 5:51 pm
Posts: 733
Location: Bay Area
THAT is a beautiful bike. I really appreciate your attention to detail... and your appreciation of CC and SP's attention to detail. The forks turned out perfect.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 12:13 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sat Jan 30, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 507
Location: Bolton
Loving the fork repaint, a sign of a true artisan.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 10:08 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2008 7:44 pm
Posts: 599
Location: Kingdom of Titanium
Beautyfull bike, drop bar and fork type II looking very vintage. :roll: :roll: :roll:


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