The first step with any good project bike is to give everything a proper inspection. This is an 18 year old bike that I’m pretty sure has spent a number of years sitting unused in a shed, so I needed to get a better idea of it’s actual condition. To do this, I’ve stripped the bike right down to the frame, the original 9-speed Ultegra groupset has been stored for safe keeping and each part has been given a good wash and looking over. There’s something quite cathartic about tinkering with bikes, don’t you think? :-)
There’s a few paint chips that I’ll touch up and some of the decals are scuffed, but apart from that it’s all apples. Thankfully no damage or issues to report. I certainly wouldn’t expect it to be perfect as it is knocking on two decades. After a polish the original “metallic blue fade to grey” paint job came a treat! It’s hard to accurately capture, but it truly sparkles in the daylight.
The eagle eyed may notice I haven’t removed the bottom bracket or crank axle. This is because it’s a different standard to modern cranks and requires specialist tools that I don’t have! I’ll only ever need to remove this part once (to replace with a modern one) so it’d be a waste to buy the tools. The frame is now in the hands of my trusted bike mechanic who will do that job for me.
In the meantime I’m going to sort out what parts I’ve got lying around spare. I’m definitely going to modernise it in some respects. All original would look so good but I don’t think it’d make me want to ride it, especially not with the 53/39T crankset! While I wait for the frame to come back I’ll take stock of what parts I’ve got spare and figure out what I need to purchase. I hope to keep it “budget” but still respect the bike by using quality parts it deserves!