What are the ingredients of a commuter bike?
- Durable– Can withstand all the abuse that the city can offer.
- Road tires– built for the street, fast rolling.
- Rack– for the extra luggage which you don’t wanna bring, but you gotta bring… let the bike carry ’em.
- Comfortable– you have to be upright, riding on a sitting position.
- Low key– don’t attract attention. gotta be discreet.
Valleybikes was commissioned to create the perfect commuter bike for Taguig. To lessen traffic and promote a healthy lifestyle, cycling is getting big. It makes sense to just pedal your way to your appointment if it means you don’t have to worry about slow moving traffic and parking.
No public transportation? No Problem! Just ride your bike to the next destination, will make your heart healthier, and your body happier!
The Perfect Commuter Bike for BGC Taguig
You can stash you valuables in the leather pack, so that they won’t bulge in your pants.
A lot of effort and heart goes to a bike especially when it is built during general quarantine time. For one, there is a lack of bicycle parts and frames due to the lockdown of some areas in the Philippines.
Story number 1: The frame
Originally, the frame was planned to be a 700c chromoly. So we asked around if there were any available size 56 from the local Surly distributor. They said yes, there is a Straggler in their warehouse. When I was about to pick up the Straggler, the friendly staff told me that the frame and fork were still in Cebu, locked down. We couldn’t ship the frame to Manila because Cebu was in Enhanced Community Quarantine (meaning business was closed).
Thus, we got the Veloci Disko from Raven instead. It was also size 56, so it was a good fit for the 5’11” rider. Fork came with the frame so we got the headset from Ben as well, because it required oversized bearings up and down. We also got the DMR seat clamp and the Veloci rack from the same shop.
Note: the Disko colorway from Raven cycles is limited (according to Ben) only to their shop.
Story number 2: The Wheelset
I was able to purchase a wheelset online, a DT Swiss R470db. The DT Swiss website describes it as “the jack of all trades of road rims; light, wide and with an ideal price/ performance ratio.” It had 24 holes so I had the master wheel builder, Mang Boyet of John Wilke lace up the rims for me. The wheelset build challenged him and I got my new wheelset the next day. Mang Boyet is indeed one of the best wheel builders in the metro. Thank you, sir!
I stumbled upon a bike shop in Marcos Highway on my way to meet up the online seller for the Shimano hubs. I saw the Schwalbe G-one tires. It was 700c x 35. It was perfect for this Commuter bike. Ka-ching!
Story number 3: The Handlebar
Originally, the build was supposed to have a drop flared handlebar. The bike would look more of a gravel/ commuter type, very popular nowadays among bikers. I actually purchased a drop flared bar already, but then it hit me… will drop bars be comfortable for commuting? Isn’t it more practical to have a wide open bar so that the rider would have a straight, relaxed position on the bike (like in Europe)? So I asked the owner if he was OK to have an open mustache bar for the build. I explained that each bike has a “feel” and I want this particular bicycle to be very comfortable.
In my experience, the best handling and most relaxed bicycle riding position is when I used this kind of open bar. I sourced from my different bike groups and I got lucky with this Ritchey Kyote bar. It is quite expensive, but where else can you get 800mm of pure relaxation? I matched it with long BMX grips. Very happy for this find. This bar can make this bike fly, with that kind of wingspan.
Story number 4: The Drivetrain
It was late in the build when I decided to make it as a single speed commuter. When I finally decided, I chose the Pizz crankset which Keene Patrick had in stock. I got from Raven cycles the single speed kit from Fireeye. I thought everything was done when I found out that the bottom bracket for the Disko is a 46mm (BB30 Pressfit). I had to source from all the bike shops I know to look for that bottom bracket.
God is good because Israel of John Wilke had the First Components bottom bracket in stock. I zoomed over to their shop in Marikina and had it pressed on to the frame. A few minor tweaks and the bike was ready to go.
I took the bike out for a ride one afternoon to have photos and a video of the build. I love the “feel” of the bicycle.
The Brooks C15 Cambium is very comfortable to the butt. No need to break it in. It automatically conforms to the rider’s ass.
The Look pedals performed harmoniously with each stroke. Without the matching shoe, the shape of the pedal conforms to the sole of your shoe making it the most appropriate road pedal for this build.
God blessed the Diskommuter via rain shower so I had to clean it again once I got home. The brakes were soft, the tires didn’t slip on the wet road, and the 48 x 16 gear ratio was not too hard to pedal.
I still debate in my head whether this build deserved cogs and a derailleur. But for those who cycle in the city, tell me honestly, how often do you change gears when commuting? When it is an uphill climb, maybe… but in a city which is mostly flat, I think ONE is all you need.
I believe this indeed is the perfect BGC Commuter bicycle.
VELOCI DISKOmmuter built by Valleybikes
Veloci Disko limited edition frame (by Raven cycles) and fork- Chromoly
Seat clamp- DMR Bikes
Seatpost- Specialized 27.2
Saddle- Brooks c15 Cambium
Handlebar- Ritchey Kyote
Grips- BMX long grips
Brakes- Shimano hydraulic brakes
BB- First Components pressfit BB30
Chain- Shimano SS
Single speed kit- Fire eye
Rear Rack- Veloci
Rims- DT Swiss R470 db (24 holes)
Disc rotors- Shimano Ice Tech 160mm
Tires- Schwalbe G-one 700c x 35
Acknowledgment: Israel of John Wilke, Ben of Raven Cycles, Keene Patrick, Capt. Lee, Mang Boyet, Bert of Raven Cycles, Ferds, Jonj, On-line sellers, to my family for the support, Macky for the funky bassline, and the whole Universe.