So, having waited about 4 years to do my first "Readers Bike" post, this is my third in 1 week!
If you've read my "1995 Marin Team Marin" post, you'll know that after having had a clear out and got down to my "ideal" of 4 bikes (race 29er MTB, road training MTB, Utility bike and Pace retrobike), I got itchy fingers on eBay a while back and soon my fourth favourite bike of 1994 was on its way.
I always loved the way Kona's looked. They were the first mainstream brand I was aware off who made bike look the way they still do now with a nice long headtube and sloping top tube.
I love the green colour of the 1994 version and this one has been completely re-sprayed and decalled to look good as new (other than two chips on chainstay). The previous owner got the forks sprayed in the same green which I know is not correct but it looks more harmonious. I also believe these may be a later project 2 fork as they are 420mm long rather than 390mm so unless Kona were well ahead of the game with suspension correction.........
Anyway, that works well for me. I like a slightly longer fork as it makes it much more stable and comfy.
Photos below are of it as it arrived. I'm going to keep the frame and forks, restore the headset and then basically spec it thus. I'm not going for dream spec as I'm trying to keep it to a reasonable budget but here goes............
Oh, did I mention its going to be singlespeed? Sorry but its how I like my Retrobikes. Gives me a genuine reason to ride them rather than just on the more modern stuff in the garage
- Kona Explosif frame, 19" centre to top
- Kona Project 2 fork, 420mm
- Kona headset
- Zoom NOS or similar quill stem, 100 - 110mm
- J&L Titanium handlebar (Ritchey Forcelite stand-in to start with)
- TBC (hopefully White Industries but budget may mean XT Parralax) front hub and White Industries Eno eccentric rear. I'm going to build these on to a pair of NOS Mavic 517 rims via DT Revolution spokes and some orange aluminium nipples (to match the frame highlights). The nipples will either look great or rubbish. Hopefully the former and its fairly likely they will at some time find themselves on to the Orange Vitamin T2 I don't yet own.
- Schwalbe Rocket Ron tyres run with Stans Tubeless
- TA Vega cranks with 36t Surly chainring. Or Race face Turbine if it looks better.
- TBC but likely White Industries free-wheel
- KMC chain
- Cheap, new Brand-X 410 x 27.0mm silver seatpost just to confirm it is 27.0mm! Opinion seems to vary between 26.6 and 27.0 and the vernier shows something in the middle. Likely to be replaced with Thomson when size knows (anyone know how to get the black anodizing off as they only make 27.0 in black?)
- Brand new Selle Italia Flite Classic Saddle
- XT M737 V brakes
First job has been to lacquer over the frame decals which I did this afternoon. I hope it rubs down and polishes up well!
I'm then going to remove the headset, polish up and fit some new (ball!) bearings.
I'm slowly amassing the parts but as I'm also changing my RC200 and blinging up my 29er race bike it could be some time before its complete. Hopefully in time to bring to the Cannock Retrobike event around Xmas is my target.
BTW, if you don't like the non-origianlity of this bike, check out my Team Marin - its just as it left the facctory in '95 and absolutely immaculate!
Photos to follow:
Riding: Pace RC200 F5 Fixie Road Warrior, '95 Saracen Kili Ultra Ti Singlespeed, '00 Whyte PRST1, '92 Peugeot Black Mamba
Ridden: '98 Specialized Stumpjumper M2, '96 Pace RC200 F5, '95 Orange P7, '95 Marin Team Titanium, '95 Marin Team Marin, '94 Marin Pine Mountain, '94 Kona Explosif
Building: '95 Dekerf
Will Ride: Orange Vitamin T?, Yeti ARC?, Rocky Mountain Ti-Bolt or Merlin Ti?, something with elevated chainstays?