• Anthony Little
  • none
  • December 06, 2014
  • Bike of the Week, Bikes, journal, mosaic

I thought it rode well, it fit me perfectly and felt like the best steel bikes do, stiff but not harsh with a nice spring to it.

If you've been to the shop or visited our website I'm sure that by now you would have seen this bike. We've had it here for over a year now as our display Mosaic RS-1 (Road Steel - top of the line). It's been one of my favorite bikes to look at and talk about as well, but until this week I had only ridden it once, a 50 mile ride about 12 months ago. I thought it rode well, it fit me perfectly and felt like the best steel bikes do, stiff but not harsh with a nice spring to it. But it was a pretty crappy day and I felt like shit so nothing really stood out. I was also riding it with Campagnolo Bora Ultra Two 50mm wheels w/ skinny 22mm Continental Grand Prix tires and I was getting pushed around a bit as it was a wet and windy day and my route was not on that great of roads. So as I said, the bike did everything I would have hoped for but it just wasn't the day to go and dig deeper into a new bike. So, I got back, cleaned it up and put it on display where it's gotten plenty of attention.
But last week I decided to really get some time on this bike and made a few changes to make it a little more appropriate for winter training.

The full build:

  • Mosaic RS-1 frame with custom geo (55.5TT).
  • Enve 1.0 fork (comes with frame).
  • Campagnolo headset (Chris King comes with the frame).
  • Campagnolo SRM Power Unit, 170mm 52X36.
  • Campagnolo 2014 and prior Super Record rear derailleur
  • Campagnolo 2014 and prior Chorus front derailleur (with a Super Record titanium mounting bolt).
  • Campagnolo 2014 and prior Record brake/shift levers
  • Campagnolo Chorus 12X27 cassette
  • Campagnolo Chorus chain
  • Campagnolo Super Record BB cups
  • Campagnolo Super Record brakes (single pivot rear).
  • Zipp 202 clincher wheels
  • Vittoria Open Pave 27mm tires
  • Zipp tubes
  • Campagnolo 10spd and older quick release skewers
  • Fizik aluminum 27.2 seat post
  • Fizik Antares saddle with braided carbon rails in custom colors
  • 3T 120mm Team stem
  • 3T 42mm Team Rotundo bars
  • Fizik white microtex tape
  • King stainless bottle cages
  • Speedplay titanium pedals

Final weight including everything, including the SRM PC7 head unit: 16.8lbs. Not to bad considering the clinchers, big tires, aluminum post, heavy skewers, power meter, not to meantion, steel frame. That being said we had it at 13.5lbs with Lightweight Ventoux wheels, a Super Record cassette and lighter skewers, but without the SRM.

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Have been testing the Swiss Stop Black Prince pads out on our Zipp wheels. In the dry they are awesome, they were OK at first in the wet but that was on brand new wheels. I've laid down a bit of rubber on the brake track now it seems as braking is very good, even on long technical descents. Will have to stick the Zipp pads back on to see if it's better or not.

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SRM PC7 head unit. Still my favorite computer to date. We should see the brand new PC8 any week now which will have GPS built in for all the Strava using folks out there.

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Have always preferred the Chorus front derailleur, only because the clear coat covering the carbon on the Record and Super Record units tended to flake off and not look so good. Plus, it's only a gram or two heavier and costs a bunch less. And, if you can get your hands on the Super Record titanium clamp bolt and cable bolt it's the same weight. The Campagnolo SRM has been flawless for me as well. I've had it on 3 bikes so far with zero issues. It's also the most accurate SRM aside from the scientific version. Campagnolo worked with SRM in designing the entire package. The mid-compact (52X36) chainring combination has become my favorite for the area we are riding in. When I'm in crap shape like now, using it with a 12X27 is perfect in the hills and when I'm riding well a 12X23 or 12X25 works great depending on the terrain.

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Since the new SRM PC8 will have GPS I can get rid of the magnet on the spoke. It would be cool if Zipp could have a magnet embedded in their rim like Lightweight does, clean it up a bit. The Campagnolo single pivot rear brake is a favorite as well, enough power for all our stopping needs, but soft enough to make it really hard to lock up the rear wheel. Plus, I really like using the Super Record version. Not too much more expensive than the Record model but it uses titanium for the mounting bolt as well as the cable bolt. Can't really get enough titanium…

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Don't see these much as well. The Campagnolo headset works really well, one of the smoothest out there. You just need to check it often, especially when riding in the rain and re-grease as there is not much in the way of seals. It's definitely not an instal and forget unit like the Chris King, but looks really good and goes well with the Campagnolo group of course. Also, it has a much lower stack height and if you need to get that stem down lower on your bike, this is a good way to do it.

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My favorite skewers ever. It would be so great if Campagnolo decided to make skewers like this again. In fact, if anyone out there has these and doesn't want them, give me a shout and I'll take them off your hands! This is the new Zipp hub, note that the drive side now sports a 2 cross spoking pattern (as does the non-drive side) which is very welcome. Also, just look at these dropouts! So minimal and so nice! If you think they may make the rear end of the bike not stiff enough, I can tell you that is not the case. This bike sprints as well as anything I've ridden.

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Custom Fizik Antares in red and white to match the frame…

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Internal brake cables look great and come standard on the $3100 frame set.

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My personal favorite bend for handlebars is the classic shallow drop classic bend. The Rotundo is a tad deeper than the Deda Shallow bars that I ride on most bikes, but not by much and feel great. Also, the 3T Rotundo bars are available in carbon where the Deda bars are not. I think everyone should try these bars. They are a lot different than the flatter topped more modern bars out there so take a little getting used to, but I find that I have more (comfortable) hand positions while in the drops and the transition from the top of the bar to the levers dips a bit and I feel is much more secure and lets me get a little lower when on the hoods. Maybe it's just in my head but I find that any bike I have with this style bar just handles better. What is not in my head is the fact that it looks better…

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That skewer again…

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So much great stuff in this picture, the Super Record rear derailleur, those skewers, the dropouts, the freshly cleaned cassette and chain…

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The Fizik seatpost, while not one of the lightest out there, is one of our favorites. So easy to adjust and good looking.

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King stainless cages.

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That's it for now, this one will get ridden for a while and we'll fill you in at around 1,000 miles about how it's holding up. This is very much a high performance bike, regardless of the material we're talking about. I would honestly put this up with anything and at the price is a great way to get into a custom bike. Spend a little money and we can build you a high 12lb steel bike that will handle daily pounding on any roads and will also look a lot different than pretty much any other lightweight bike on the hill…

As always, thanks for taking the time to read and give me a shout to learn more and see if this is the bike you've been waiting for.