Fabrice’s Victoire MTB
Fabrice’s Victoire MTB
GENESIS OF THE PROJECT
Each Victoire bicycle is unique, built according to the demands of his future owner. Since we started seven years ago by fixed gear, we have always pushed further our skills, exploring new subjects and going out of our comfort zone. There was the road bike, then the MTB, the randonneuse and more recently the TT bike. Our experience is now rich of 350 bespoke projects, all different, and sometimes - like this one - unusual.
Fabrice contacted us to build a "road MTB" :
I have always ridden on the road with a MTB with slick tires, and I am convinced that it’s the best for me. I wanted a comfortable bike, efficient on the road for long distance rides.
We have to admit that this concept was not very clear for us at first sight. We understood it better when he came for his fitting in our workshop, after he rode 200 km with his Stooges. We understood that Fabrice likes to ride different : a Jones H-Bar, Pedaling Innovations flat pedals and 2.35 tires are some specs we are not used to see, especially on a bike that is dedicated to ride the asphalt :
The Jones H-bar offers unique feelings, close to a motorbike. There are also many different ways to put your hands on it. Thanks to these pedals, I can ride with the axle behind the middle of my feet, which I like a lot. They are also very comfortable.
There is another point that enables us to pinpoint Fabrice’s project. Like us - and other builders - he is a fan Ezra Caldwell's work, the frame builder behind Fast Boy Cycles, who passed away some years ago. His TF5 model was a reference to create this project, a way for us to pay a tribute to this great artist.
We had a long discussion, with Fabrice before his fitting, where he presented us his own vision of cycling. We had to adapt our fitting method to these particular parts. For example, with these pedals, the saddle is lower, with a stronger setback because of their position under the feet. We pay also a lot attention to the H-bar to get a good access to the multiple positions.
The frame is made of different kind of tubing. The horizontal bar behind the bended top tube gives a Klunker style to the bike. The lugged fork was also handcrafted in our workshop.
Fabrice selected White Industries crank and hubs to match his bike. The latter are laced on 650B rims, mounted with 2.35 wide Schwalbe G-ONE. He will use this configuration for commuting, and plan to build another wheelset on Onyx hubs with 700 x 35 tires for long rides.
I rode 200 km to my home after the delivery. The comfort was already great with my previous bike but it is even smoother on the Victoire. The main difference is the performance. The Victoire is much more reactive and climb really well ! I did not go upper than the 42/28 ratio. I can not wait to try the handling with 700 wheels and tighter tires !