Friday, March 6, 2015

One-Off Magenta Scarab

You've probably seen the Pias Scarab in its multiple incarnations, as interpreted by so many different owners. To be honest, it's fun watching this: serve your creation as a blank canvas, and let people have fun building it to suit their needs, and then ride them hard. But just how far can you custom-build a Scarab? Here's a nifty example.

If you thought that this Scarab build was commissioned in point-to-point detail, well surprisingly, it was not. The initial brief was as simple as a lovely lady asking us to build her a pink bicycle. We figured out that this 48cm Scarab will spend much of its life as an urban bicycle, so a commuter theme makes so much sense. We also happened to stumble upon a pair of Shimano Alfine wheelset, with 8-speed internal-geared hub out back and dynamo hub up front. Figuring that this will simplify the build even more—add to the consideration that these wheels are not commonly found here, we based the overall design over them.

The Alfine wheels came as a full set, with all the small bits included. This means we must use the trigger shifter, which needs to be mounted on an upright handlebar. We used Origin-8 City Classic handlebar, a North Road-styled handlebar with ample rise and backsweep.

This build also become a showcase of every build possibilities made happen because of the small details on the Scarab. Learning from our previous experience, we designed the cable routing layout to acommodate Shimano Alfine rear hub. We can utilize the stock cable routing to provide nice connection between the shifter and rear hub. Since we don't need a front derailer, we simply ditch the supplied braze-on adaptor clamp to provide clean headtube. Mounting the Planet Bike fenders is just a matter of purposing the supplied fender eyelets, with some adjustments made to the struts to clear the brake calipers. By the way, Shimano hydraulic brakes are chosen for its reliability, as well as its positive and light lever feel.

Picking the perfect shade of pink is kind of difficult. Choose it wrong and you'll ended up with a frame that looked like it was just showered with gallons of strawberry milkshake. We came up with this candytone paint which changed from violet to magenta, depending from the way you're looking at it. To add a little contrast against the all-black modern components, we put classic-looked polished crank arms mated to a Shimano 39T 130mm BCD chainring.

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