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PostPosted: Sun Oct 09, 2011 7:22 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 11:41 pm
Posts: 530
Location: Norfolk. Rides at Thetford Forest
Wow, that finish looks great! Loving the way this 853 is coming together. All 853 tubes should have been painted with a clear coat so that we can see the quality in the 'raw'. I have ridden ALL frame materials, lighter exotic steel frames bend and break, titanium is hard to fix and feels a little too special for everyday use, aluminium is just too harsh, full suspension is uncool, but good old Reynolds 853 ticks all the boxes - its very strong, can be repaired, you can use it everyday, has just the right amount of natural flex and spring, is fairly light, but best of all it give me the biggest 'grin factor' when riding off road of any bike I have ever ridden in over 20 years! It's took me a long time, lots of various quality bikes and thousands of miles, but I have finally found my personal 'holy grail' bike! I ride a 1998 custom build everyday and have a 1999 hardly used one as a 'garage queen' piece (pic below).


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File comment: 1999 Kona 853 Explosif, all original apart from the grips.
853.JPG
853.JPG [ 341.55 KiB | Viewed 1030 times ]
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 09, 2011 8:32 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
Best looking 'stock' Explosifs ever... 8)


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 10, 2011 9:47 am 
Devout Dirtbag
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Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2011 3:40 pm
Posts: 121
Location: Sevenoaks
Thanks for the details pics. I think my Roberts DB will be taking a trip to Eastbourne at some point in its future...


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 1:57 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
Thought I'd better post an updated pic of the current version of this build, as it's nice and sunny 'Darn Sarf' today...

Image

The Bombers in the previous pic were always going to go on SWMBO's Spesh. as I have a Z1 Bam and a set of NOS Grimeca discs
to go on here (and I decided I wasn't keen on the bar afterall)...

...however, I had my heart set on the diddy DiaCompe 1-finger levers so I built it up like this for now.

The wheels will eventually go on my RSP full susser, the fork on 'something else,' and with this currently tipping the scales at 24lb
I'm quite happy with the way it's turned out so far... 8)

Especially as this...

Image

...was how it started well over a year ago (those are the disc wheels it will be wearing when I move on to the next version of the
build...). The eagle-eyed will also notice it's wearing a different fork.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:12 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 4:15 pm
Posts: 3499
Location: Behind you with the duct tape pulled out.
Whos your coater and does he blast it himself? Also whats his prices like?


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:26 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
poweredbypies wrote:
Whos your coater and does he blast it himself? Also whats his prices like?


He's in Eastbourne, and charges £35-£40 for frame & forks... 8)


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:17 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
Recently took the Explosif out in its current guise...

Image

...as I shall shortly be changing it somewhat and wanted to see how it went as is;

So: Having been a life-long rigid fan I can now safely say that I am a convert to suspension!

The combination of short travel front fork and decent sus. seatpost means I can maintain my favoured *rse up/head down riding
position for a few more years yet without crippling myself...

...I still love my rigid bikes, but they may find themselves limited to more benign trails and sympathetic single track from now on :oops:

Being, as I currently am, a lardy 17stn I wasn't sure what to expect from the Manitou; I've rebuilt it with a 1/2" extra travel and
firm elastomers and it seemed to cope admirably on my regular 10 mile loop.

The brake levers are another matter entirely though; the Dia-Compe Gold Finger single-digit levers may look the dogs b*ll*ocks
aesthetically but when it comes to actual braking performance I'm afraid they're total b*ll*cks!

They may be fine for poncing around your local skate park on a BMX but try hauling yourself up when a little dog darts out of the
undergrowth when you're doing 25mph and you soon find out what colour adrenaline is! :shock:

Needless to say I'm looking forward to getting my Grimeca-equipped disc wheels bolted on...

The drivetrain was faultless once the new cables had bedded in a bit; the combination of SJS/Dura Ace 'Thumbies,' Race Face
chainset, XTR mech's and fancy hollow-pin chain worked like the proverbial sewing machine (clockwork??)...

...I never even missed a gear with the Rapid Rise rear mech! :wink:

I shall be changing the front end completely; in its place will be going a 100mm travel Mozo Pro fork, matching Race face stem
and a NOS Zoom Brahma Bar. The wheels will go so that I can fit my Grimeca discs, and I already had a bit of luck with the U.S.E
seat post; I prefer to match Stem and seat post, and the new stem is black. Looking at the U.S.E post in SWMBO's little Stumpy...

Image

...I couldn't remember which model I'd fitted?? As luck would have it, when I filched it out, it turned out to be a 27.2 carbon post! 8)

The silver post in the photo' above is a 25.4 with a 27.2 shim, the Stumpy seat tube is a 29.4; one straight swap later and we're
in business... :wink:

I'm even swapping the CK headset for an Onza Mongo; needs must, and the expensive kit will shortly find its way into a 'For Sale'
thread in an effort to stave off yet another case of Retrobike-induced financial ruin! :oops:

Now I can hardly wait to see how different it feels/rides with the replacment kit in place - even after my 5-mile-walk yesterday!... :D


Last edited by We_are_Stevo on Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2012 2:24 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 1:16 pm
Posts: 4344
Excuse my ignorance but if it's 853 tubing, isn't that a 98 and not a 97?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2012 2:50 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
The frame was built in '97, and the model was available from September '97 (I have the original sales receipt)...

...and that's good enough for me :wink:


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:27 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 1:16 pm
Posts: 4344
We_are_Stevo wrote:
The frame was built in '97, and the model was available from September '97 (I have the original sales receipt)...

...and that's good enough for me :wink:


That'll be a 98 model then :wink:


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