Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Yuba Mundo Arrives

Due to a one thing and another, and Ben and I exchanging emails all of last week, and my frame didn't leave the shop until Friday 21st May. Fedex estimated a delivery date of 31st. I was hopeful, but thought it might take longer, but checked their tracking site almost hourly :)

This morning it surprised me. While I was thinking it was just leaving Sydney, it arrived. How is that possible - from USA to the middle of no where so quick. Four days!!! I order stuff in Australia, and it takes longer than that. Needless to say, I'm very happy right now.

I wasted no time unpacking and starting assembly. Thanks heaps Ben. It was well wrapped and padded in the box. It was so exciting unwrapping each item and finding what was there. I can't say enough good things about Ben at Yuba.

Rather than fill up this blog with pictures, see all the pics I took here

Finally it was unwrapped and on the floor. Initial impression - its solid. Just what I ordered. I'm happy with the  finish - it is what it is. A good value, cargo bike frame. For the record, there were no scratches on the paint before I started. But as this is going to get a work out touring, I'll be buying some touch up paint at some point. I also assembled with the help of grease. My reasoning is this is a metal frame, its going to spend pretty much all its life outside, a bit of grease on parts will help slow any rust down. The insides of the frame will also get a squirt of something oily also.

First order was getting wide loaders on. Then start to transfer other components from my MTB to it. Wide loaders just went on without any problems. Just slide on and tighten up the bolts.

Then things got interesting. Some things I thought would be a problem, weren't. Others that I thought would be no problem at all - are.

For the problems - at the moment two standing out:

I had planned on using my existing front hydraulic brake, and was leaning towards just using v-brakes on the back to get rolling. But the front hose hose is too short, and its going to need a ton of spacers and longer bolts to fit the caliper. That blew the option of getting it ridable. Time to either get a new front brake, or find spacers and a longer hose. Thinking about it now, I was probably overly optimistic thinking I could use my existing front brake - it was for a very special fork setup, and I did want to raise the handle bars on that bike anyway - so of course the brake hose would be too short!

Next was the Rohloff.  I ordered the axle adapters as the Mundo dropouts are 14mm and the Rohloff axles are 10mm. After taking a drill to the adapters, they fit the axle.

Time to drop the wheel in. I had thought that I'd just drop the wheel in, make an clamp to hold the torsion arm, and be done. This isn't to be. Using the torsion arm and external gear mech on this frame, it is not going to work. Both parts need to be below the frame and so don't fit together.

The dropouts are 7mm steel plate. Looking from the rear with the wheel out, the left hand dropout is flush with the tubing the forms the frame. The right hand side is mounted about the middle of the tubing. This means that there is only the width of the dropout, before the tube bulges out. On the other side of the tube is the disk mount.

After a lot playing with different angles on the axle plate I have, I think that either the OEM axle plate will just work, or the OEM2 axle plate will work with some help. Not 100% certain just yet. I need to find dimensions for the Rohloff drop outs to see how they compare to what metal is available on the Mundo. The Mundo dropouts are long with lots of thick steel - so the OEM is probably going to be the best bet.

I will be taking a welder to the frame though what ever happens. With lots of putting the back wheel in, and taking it back out again, the axle adapters got annoying real fast. They are small, round, and both want to drop off when your not expecting it, and roll away. The other thing that bugged me about them is that the drop out is 7mm thick, but the axle adapters are 4mm wide. I'd like to get a bit more axle in the dropout.

More installing tomorrow.