Operation Gravedigger - Klunker Build

Mar 1, 2009
404
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Stockport, England
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A few of the rather normal guys around here approached me the other day and suggested to re-enact the Repack Races of yore. The venue are the fire roads in the mountain forests near Macclesfield.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DK-I10Tf ... re=related

Only Klunkers with coaster brake are allowed. I mean, sod brakes anyway, there are enough trees and stonewalls to slow you down.

Since I find this form of suicide rather appealing, all I have to do is build myself a Klunker now. So I dug up an ancient abandoned project. It is one of those cheap Taiwan frames, I don't even remember the manufacturer, something like Son of the [CENSORED] or thereabouts. I had the tank plates welded in by an automotive body shop years ago, but then the project never went anywhere.



So this is going to be my Klunker, festooned with all the leftover rubbish from my other builds (like fork, wheelset, etc.). It certainly won't be pretty, but just to wreck it and kill myself in the process, looks don't matter I reckon.

It will get a solid fork, a mismatched 26" alloy wheelset I have lying around, mismatched knobbly MTB tyres (used ones) courtesy of my neighbor, a one-piece crank, and a motocross handlebar. I may throw the odd rattle can at it, my general idea is orange, like the Tucker Snow Cats were, which had the weird habit of falling into crevasses in the Antarctic and take their crew with them.





Not too dissimilar to what I have in mind with the Klunker. Hence I call it "Operation Gravedigger".
 
Mar 1, 2009
404
68
Stockport, England
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Re: Operation Gravedigger has begun

I have no idea why this build gets delayed all the time. No more so!

I brought the frame to the family car painter. He is one of the few people enjoying the privilege to be allowed to touch my cars.
I told him something like "flat orange" or thereabouts, and he said something like "yeah right..." and I just left the frame with him.

This is what I got back:





He said something like he was inspired by those American diesel locomotives or something. No idea which mushrooms he is on.
But I decided to take it home with me. This is at home:





Then I couldn't stop myself:







Not bad for klunker to be destroyed in a repack race, eh?

A few things still to be sorted, but it's basically there.
 
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Right, I had my fun DHing with coaster brake only (highly recommended if you want to die!) and thus made a few changes.



I only went slowly down a 600 hill here on a rough single track. The coaster was not smoking but it was too hot to touch for more that a second. I can't imagine going down a real mountain with one. I broke two chains this summer. The breaks were the result of a bad chain brake tool. The Park chain break tool works extremely well when breaking a coaster chain but it bends the link when reassembling. After I figured out what was causing the problem I use the Park tool for breaking and another for putting it back together. I quit doing single track with only a coaster brake last summer so I had a backup front brake. Suicide, I hate to think about going off the trail and of a cliff. One of my friends has a tandem mountain bike and he and his wife are fearless with it. Going down a double black diamond trail he fell of in a rock garden. His wife couldn't steer as she was in the back and she went careening off the mountain and hit a tree. They both went to the ER by ambulance. They were interviewed separately by the cops and they decided this type of activity constituted spouse abuse and told him if it happened again it would mean jail. Didn't stop them, they rode the Rocky Mountain crest with the tandem. Their custom mountain bike tandem is warranted forever. They keep sending in parts for free replacement, like a snapped in two front hub. Every time they get a free replacement part the company says "we never replace this, how could you break it"? They say "we are just an old retired couple" (they both retired young, 50s I would say). Not a good idea to be helpless with either no breaks or steering when doing this stuff. I like your bike, how did you enjoy using it for DH?
 
Dec 23, 2014
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313
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Portland Oregon
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I only went slowly down a 600 hill here on a rough single track. The coaster was not smoking but it was too hot to touch for more that a second. I can't imagine going down a real mountain with one. I broke two chains this summer. The breaks were the result of a bad chain brake tool. The Park chain break tool works extremely well when breaking a coaster chain but it bends the link when reassembling. After I figured out what was causing the problem I use the Park tool for breaking and another for putting it back together. I quit doing single track with only a coaster brake last summer so I had a backup front brake. Suicide, I hate to think about going off the trail and of a cliff. One of my friends has a tandem mountain bike and he and his wife are fearless with it. Going down a double black diamond trail he fell of in a rock garden. His wife couldn't steer as she was in the back and she went careening off the mountain and hit a tree. They both went to the ER by ambulance. They were interviewed separately by the cops and they decided this type of activity constituted spouse abuse and told him if it happened again it would mean jail. Didn't stop them, they rode the Rocky Mountain crest with the tandem. Their custom mountain bike tandem is warranted forever. They keep sending in parts for free replacement, like a snapped in two front hub. Every time they get a free replacement part the company says "we never replace this, how could you break it"? They say "we are just an old retired couple" (they both retired young, 50s I would say). Not a good idea to be helpless with either no breaks or steering when doing this stuff. I like your bike, how did you enjoy using it for DH?
Great story. Love it. And really cool paint scheme. Love the white stripes!!!!