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Cycle Monkey

Internal Gearing Specialists, Bicycle Distribution & Service Center

Co-Motion Americano Touring Bike with Rohloff SPEEDHUB, Schmidt SON28 Dynamo, and Gates Belt Drive

Taking a four month tour through the Balkan Peninsula in Europe requires a commitment to adventure. As with most self-supported bike trips, you must be prepared for different road conditions, varying weather, and unexpected mishaps. The embrace of the unknown was exactly what inspired this build: the customer, from Santa Cruz, CA wanted a fully-equipped touring bike to set out to see new parts of the world. Based on his criteria, we set him up with a Co-Motion Americano equipped with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14, belt drive, generator hub, and an array of other reliable touring components to keep him comfortable during his travels. When this customer first contacted us about a Rohloff-equipped touring rig for his adventure, he explained that he wanted a bike that would give him the freedom to take off in any direction and be ready for whatever he might come across. This would not be a tightly planned trip; instead, he planned to carry enough gear to give him the flexibility to go wherever he decided along the way. Terrain would include steep mountain passes and winding coastal roads to the flat bike path along the Danube River, with some gravel paths and dirt roads along the way.The only part of his trip that was planned was the start date, so delivery time for the bike was critical. Our customer wanted to fly to Crete at the beginning of April to explore the island before the summer heat arrived. He had been in discussions with a custom frame builder who could not commit to a firm delivery date, and he started to get nervous as January began. Knowing he wanted a Rohloff hub on his new bike, he started researching alternative frame options and came across some of the other touring bikes featured on The Monkey Lab. He gave us a call to see if we could deliver a bike before his trip, and we suggested a frame from Co-Motion.Co-Motion has developed a reputation for building high quality, indestructible touring bikes, offering three belt-compatible models designed around the SPEEDHUB. We often recommend their frames to customers for touring builds based on quality, but they also have a very tight production schedule, which was critical for this build. They have consistently delivered frames within their quoted lead times in the past, so when they confirmed that they could meet our time frame, we were confident committing to delivering this bike to our customer in time for his trip. When the frame showed up, we were able to build the bike up in time for some pre-trip break-in rides. The Americano is one of Co-Motion's most popular touring models. With an intended use for road touring, it fit our customer's needs perfectly. The Rohloff-specific version of the Americano has cable routing and dropouts specific to the SPEEDHUB, a belt drive insertion point, and an eccentric bottom bracket to adjust belt tension. The “Co-Pilot” option adds S&S couplers to allow the bike to pack into an airline legal case and avoid costly oversize baggage charges. Like all of Co-Motion’s frames, the Americano is cut, welded, and painted in their Eugene, Oregon facility.For the wheels, we opted for reliable, sturdy components to ensure our customer wouldn’t encounter any problem on the road. We started the build with Velocity’s Cliffhanger rims, which have thicker walls than most other rims, and used Sapim Race spokes and brass nipples to lace up a Schmidt SON28 dynamo hub in the front and a Rohloff SPEEDHUB in the rear. Schwalbe’s Marathon Mondial flat-protection tires finished things off.The SON28 hub provides unlimited battery-free lighting through Busch & Mueller's Luxos B headlight and Toplight Line Plus taillight for when rides go past dark. It also powers Tout Terrain's The Plug USB charger – installed in the steerer tube – to charge electronic devices on the road.The SPEEDHUB has developed a reputation as the single most coveted piece of equipment for touring cyclists. Its extremely reliable, minimal-maintenance design uses high-grade steel gearwheels that sit inside a sealed oil bath within the hubshell, completely protected from the elements. With 14 speeds that span the same range as a triple mountain bike derailleur system, the SPEEDHUB has enough gearing to cover just about any type of terrain. Global travelers have racked up 125,000+ miles on these hubs with barely any signs of wear inside.We also paired the SPEEDHUB with a Gates Carbon Drive belt drive, which lasts at least twice as long as a chain, does not need any oil or maintenance, and does not stretch. Together, the Rohloff SPEEDHUB and Gates Carbon Drive system create the longest lasting, most minimal-maintenance drivetrain available on the market and one that is quickly becoming the norm for touring bikes.Rounding out the build, we chose a variety of components that would ensure comfort for long days in the saddle. Jeff Jones’ H-Bar offers multiple hand position to reduce fatigue on the road, and we wrapped it in thick road bike bar tape for increased comfort. Ergon’s ergonomic GC1 grips have built-in palm rests and a high-rise stem positions the handlebar in an upright riding position. Selle Anatomica’s Titanico leather saddle feels comfortable out-of-the-box and flexes slightly with a rider’s pedal stroke to minimize chaffing. We paired the saddle with Cane Creek’s Thudbuster suspension seatpost to smooth out harsh bumps and road vibrations.For the final touches, we outfitted the bike with Ortlieb's waterproof Front and Back Roller Plus panniers mounted to a set of Tubus front and rear racks and added full coverage fenders to keep water spray to a minimum. Shimano’s XT touring pedals allow the versatility of being able to ride with or without clipless shoes, offering both a clipless and a platform side.Our customer contacted us once he got to Europe to let us know that he was just about to set off on his tour and that the bike had come together perfectly. He said couldn’t wait to get going and was glad he decided to have us build a bike that was would handle any possibility. If you’re looking for a fully-equipped touring bike of your own, contact us to start the conversation about what we can put together for you!Build Details:• Frame: Co-Motion Americano Co-Pilot• Fork: Co-Motion Americano• Headset: Cane Creek• Stem: Profile Design Aris• Handlebar: Jeff Jones H-Bar• Shifter: Rohloff• Grips: Ergon GC1• Seatpost: Cane Creek Thudbuster• Saddle: Selle Anatomica Titanico• Front Hub: Schmidt SON28• Rear hub: Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14• Spokes: Sapim Race• Nipples: Sapim Brass• Rims: Velocity Cliffhanger• Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Mondial• Cranks: Shimano Deore• Pedals: Shimano XT touring• Bottom Bracket: Shimano Deore• Chain ring: Gates Carbon Drive• Rear Sprocket: Gates Carbon Drive• Chain: Gates Carbon Drive• Brakes & Levers: Avid BB7_MTN• Rotors: Magura Storm• Extras: Tout Terrain The Plug USB charger, Planet Bike Cascadia fenders, Tubus Logo rear rack, Tubus Tara front rack, Ortlieb Front Roller Plus and Back Roller Plus panniers and Ultimate 5 handlebar bag, Busch & Mueller Lumotec Luxos B front light and Toplight Line Plus rear light, Topeak Modula EX bottle cage

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Comments

Very nice almost exactly what I'll be needing soon, recall the approximate price?

About $8k all in. Lots of bells and whistles on this build!

Beautiful build! Which frame color is that? Looks darker than pewter gray but lighter than metallic black. Regards,Mark Drury

That's the metallic black color. The full sun that the photos were shot in make it seem a lot lighter. It's a dark grey/light black color with metallic flake.