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Cycle Monkey

Internal Gearing Specialists, Bicycle Distribution & Service Center

Black Sheep High Light Titanium Belt Drive Single Speed with FaithTruss Fork

Black Sheep looking south from Albany Hill ParkThis beautiful titanium bike from Black Sheep Bikes in Ft. Collins, CO came into the Monkey Lab for a Gates Carbon Drive belt conversion. While we are known best for our Rohloff Internal Gear Hub builds, we're big proponents of the Gates belt drive system, which is a fantastic option for single speed bikes as well as internal gear hub bikes. With Black Sheep's signature curved tubes, this bike is an exquisite example of the kind of creative fabrications that can be achieved by small custom frame builders. The whole bike weighs in at only 21 pounds but feels even lighter due to it's super light EDGE (now ENVE) carbon rims.Gates Belt Drive with XTR cranks and Chris King single speed hubThe Gates CenterTrack belt conversion involved replacing the front and rear sprockets along with the belt itself. The belt system offers superior durability, lube free functionality, and quieter operation compared to the metal chain it replaced.Removable seat stay yoke with Cane Creek top cap allows the rear triangle to be removed for travelNo modification was required to install the belt drive system due to the unique travel-friendly rear triangle design found on this frame. The seat stay yoke separates where it meets the seat tube and the telescoping chain stays slide apart from each other a few inches behind the bottom bracket to allow the frame to pack into a smaller case. As a knock on benefit, the belt can be installed while the rear triangle is removed and tensioned by adjusting the length of the chain stays. Once it's adjusted, the wheel can be easily removed just by undoing the quick release.Telescoping chain stays adjust to set belt tensionDriving the belt system is a pair of Shimano's XTR cranks. These cranks make a great choice for a single speed drivetrain with a lightweight yet stiff hollow spindle design that provides an excellent pedaling platform. The polished outer face is a nice design touch that keeps these cranks looking clean and scuff free.Titanium Truss fork with Chris King Thru Axle front hub in anodized PewterUp front, Black Sheep's Faith double bladed truss fork handles the steering duties with a thru axle front hub to hold the wheel securely in place. The twin blades allow the fork to flex, providing some passive suspension while remaining stiff enough to maintain steering precision.Black Sheep Custom Titanium Truss fork with dual steerer clamps and an integrated Chris King sealed bearing headsetThe truss fork accommodates a 2.4" Schwalbe Racing Ralph tire with ample room to spare. Steerer tube clamps above and below the head tube ensure a stiff connection between the frame and front wheel.Eriksen Ti "Sweetpost" seatpostAdding another touch of titanium is a Kent Eriksen "Sweatpost" titanium seatpost. These posts are a popular choice for riders choosing titanium frames due to their simple design, wide selection of colors, and availability of various sizes and offset options. A single bolt tightens the clamp once the saddle is adjusted making it easy to re-position it with a single wrench.The top shelf custom-built wheelset on this bike is hard to beat. A Chris King single speed hub engages quickly and precisely thanks to it's 72 engagement teeth built into the patented RingDrive system. Since the Chris King single speed hub uses a cassette style interface, it's ideal for the Gates Belt Drive system as it allows the belt alignment to be adjusted for improved crank and tire clearance. This is especially important for alignment with Hollowtech and other 2 piece crank interfaces that have an integrated bottom bracket spindle whose size cannot be changed. The EDGE (now ENVE) carbon All Mountain rims are amazingly light, and help the bike accelerate like a champ. One of the purported disadvantages of larger 29 inch wheels is their greater rotating mass, but with these featherweight wheels the difference is trivial. The advantages of reduced rotational weight are even more pronounced on a single speed since you're frequently taking off in a higher gear than you might otherwise ride on a geared drivetrain. Even from a dead stop pedaling uphill this bike accelerates like it's floating on air.Matching Blue Anodized Hope Disc Brakes and Quick Release Seat Collar and Rear SkewerThis bike would be an excellent candidate for a Rohloff conversion should the rider ever desire a wider range of gears than the single speed drivetrain offers. Functionally, the SPEEDHUB 500/14 system sets up similarly to a single speed drivetrain and maintains the clean, functional aesthetic of a single front and rear sprocket configuration. We've built many 3-wheel custom wheel sets for customers wanting to switch between single speed for shorter local rides and geared for longer back country adventures or serious touring.If you have a single speed that you want to retrofit with a belt drive, or an idea for a custom dream bike that hasn't been built yet, get in touch and we can work with you to make it happen. If you have a bike that you'd like to equip with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB but you're not sure if it will be compatible, just send us a few pictures, and we'll let you know if it can be done. Most single speed frames are compatible, and we have years of experience equipping bikes originally equipped with a single speed drivetrain to work with SPEEDHUBs, so consider going to a 14 speed internal gear hub if you decide that one speed is no longer enough.Build Details:• Frame: Black Sheep High Light Titanium 29er• Fork: Black Sheep Faith Titanium Truss• Headset: Chris King Inset• Stem: Moots Titanium• Handlebar: Groovy Luv Handle Titanium• Grips: ESI Chunky• Seat post: Eriksen Sweetpost• Saddle: WTB Rocket V• Seat Clamp: Hope QR• Front Hub: Chris King ISO Disc 15mm Thru Axle• Rear hub: Chris King ISO Disc Single Speed• Spokes: DT Swiss Aero Light• Nipples: EDGE (ENVE) Internal• Rims: EDGE Carbon All Mountain (ENVE)• Tires: Schwalbe Racing Ralph/Specialized Fast Trak LK• Cranks: Shimano XTR• Pedals: Shimano SPD• Bottom Bracket: Enduro Sealed X-Type• Chain ring: Gates CenterTrack• Rear Sprocket: Gates CenterTrack• Belt: Gates CenterTrack• Brakes & Levers: Hope• Rotors: Hope Floating