Le file-au-train de Philippe
Philippe wanted a comfortable touring bike for his outings on the Ardèche roads. He gave us "carte-blanche" and we made him the Victoire n°512, a modern and comfortable new generation road bike.
The Victoire n°512 is made for the Ardèche roads, with sometimes uneven surfaces. Like the bikes of the 1940s, versatile because they were thought out according to the quality of the routes of the time, this project was designed like a road bike. But the tires of 38 chosen, quite wide, will allow Philippe a few incursions on the paths.
The frame is made with Columbus Zona tubing. This series with numerous references allowed us to adapt the frame to Philippe's size. The oversized seat tube is compatible with the use of a 31.6mm seat post. To keep the frame from being too floppy, we used a tapered top tube ranging from 35mm to 31.7mm. It offers greater rigidity at the level of the head tube and therefore easier steering.
The cables and sheaths of Victoire n°512 pass inside the frame. In addition to protecting the cables thanks to the brazing of conduits inside the tubes, this option makes it possible to purify the visual line of the bike.
We placed diabolos on the seatstays necessary for fixing a rear luggage rack. Because Philippe is essentially a cycle tourist, it is possible that he will have to move equipment with him. The versatility of his bike is thus reinforced.
The Victoire n°512 fork is a Columbus Futura Cross +, usually reserved for gravel bikes. Equipped with three eyelets on each sheath, it allows you to secure a ManyThing cage type package. Its large clearance gives Philippe the possibility of mounting even wider tires if necessary.
The crankset, its casing and Philippe's chainring are provided by the Californian brand White Industries. The set was chosen in a black anodization to match the finish of the bike.
The chainring has 40 teeth and is associated with a Sram XG MTB cassette in 10-50. This ratio allows Philippe to be able to ride smoothly regardless of the terrain.
The callipers mounted on Victoire n°512 are Hope RS4+. This model, made in England, offers more power and modulation than a classic caliper thanks to its four pistons.
The rear derailleur is also a reference from the world of mountain biking: It is a Sram GX Eagle derailleur. In order to be able to combine cassette, MTB derailleur and levers for so-called "drop-bar" handlebars, we used a Ratio kit, an English brand whose products allow this compatibility after a simple operation inside the levers.
Tested for more than a year on bikes like Julien's Victoire n°491, this solution is entirely satisfactory and means that you don't have to invest in the American manufacturer's expensive electronic systems to take advantage of its mountain bike cassettes with their impressive teeth.
Philippe's wheels were hand-spoked in our workshop with DT Swiss 350 hubs and Mavic Open Pro Disc UST rims. They are equipped with Teravail Rampart tires in 38, a comfortable and necessary section to face the Ardèche routes.
The paint of Victory n°512 is composed of two shades of blue arranged in a gradient from top to bottom, and one of a gray used for the markings. All are metallic.
An azure blue has been affixed to the upper part of the bike, while lower down, an anthracite gray tending towards blue incorporates the components of Philippe's transmission. The entire finish was then clear-coated and then polished by hand.
Philippe asked us to paint his stem in order to integrate it into the visual line of the bike : it therefore underwent the same painting process as the frame.
This bike is a unique object, made of high-end steel, made to measure, in France, with handpicked elements, and made by exceptional craftsmen. A bike not only made for me but also 100% suitable for my cycling touring practice.
« After the decision-making comes this very important day, in a friendly atmosphere, during which everything is discussed: the project, the desires, the specifications, the choice of materials, components... Accompanied by Julien, who realizes not only a thorough static and dynamic postural study to determine an optimal geometry, but also to guide and advise you according to what you want to do with your future Victoire.
Finally comes the time for the 1st outing! It should be noted that I live in the North of Gard, on the edge of the Cévennes, where the roads are small and bumpy, all in turns and steep slopes. From the very first kilometres, I realize that I am perfectly poised, an immediate impression of comfort, a feeling of having always ridden on this well-adjusted bike. The first Cévennes climbs arrive... Helped by the choice of a single chainring and a large cassette, the pedaling rate is easily maintained, but the surprise is this impression of being helped by the bike uphill, this must be this famous springback specific to steel... Downhill, once again, this feeling of stability is very reassuring, the bike places itself well in the trajectory where the eye is looking, and does not deviate, the grip angle is also facilitated by the 38 mm tires. Flat or downhill, the filtration is perfect, and when I reach the fateful 50 km, I don't have pain in my back or my wrists, what a joy! So I extend my initially planned loop, and 120 kms later, I'm back, a big smile on my face... I get off my bike, I look at him, he looks at me, we smile at each other and we understand that it's for life ! »
Mon vélo file droit, je sens de suite son équilibre et sa stabilité, en plus de son confort. La relance est franche et sans inertie, surprenant de vivacité.