New Bike Build for tcr no3

Bike Construction  –  Done!

Its a Salsa Collosal (eat a big breakfast!)



I want as comfy bike as possible to munch the miles. (ie stable, predicable)
I also want it to ride well ie its not dull.  Its tough to combine the 2 but my argon 18 tri bike did it so well I considered doing the tcr on it.. (but have seen a bit of sense)
I wanted disk brakes.  Solid reliable braking (Alps in the rain with gear?) in all weathers.  Fit and forget (ish)
I wanted titanium but cost stopped me.

It needs to be put together reasonably cheaply, (I am buying lots of other stuff)

I will be scavenging kit from / sacrificing  my winter road bike. I was going to  grab stuff from my cyclocross/ commute bike but have decided to try to keep that in one piece – fitted mud guards are nice on winter.

Stuff and Reasons


Not sure of the colour.  The grey just looks dull.  However I am not buying this to look good….
This year’s orange is nice…. But I have a cheap grey one

Cost £649

Press fit bottom bracket.
10 mins web time helped figuring out what a press fit bottom bracket actually is….
I have a cheep bearing press.  watch a utube video, and a bit of lube, a couple of false starts as the brackets start to go in wonky, then go for it
…. Easy peasy

Cost £30

Hmm all the last frames I bought came with a headset.  This one did not.
Spent 2 hours looking at what I needed… Internal width of the frame, external width of the steerer tube, oh and it’s tapered….
Ended up with a mix and match set from the oddly named Gusset.  Looks fine.

Bit more pfaffing with the press (tried both top and bottom bearings at the same time – gave up on that then did the top first then bottom.  Again a bit of lube and in they went

Cost £35

Handle Bars

Cheap ex display / marked white wcs aluminium bars from Chain reaction.  Would love carbon but I am using tri bars and like those really tight.  I don’t like over-tightening on plastic (oops I mean) carbon bars.

White bars and a grey frame look ‘interesting’ together.

Cost £25

Tri bars
t3 carbon flippy pads, aluminium bars.  Means I can flip the pads up and climb on the top of the handlebars.  Having a range of hand positions is important.

These work surprisingly well

Cost.  scavenged from original bike, but specifically purchased in Dec.  @ £90

Scavenged from my old road bike / my parts bin.  I’ll check the fit then will adjust as needed

Seat tube.
Scavenged from either my wife’s mtb (control tec carbon) or a Thompson aluminium  post from my mtb. Probably going to go for the Thompson post – an extra 40g to carry the rear pack securely?

Have bought a 170g carbon bontrager post from eBay… Great price…. Then noticed (after purchasing it) it’s coming from Hong Kong.  Oh dear.  I’ll put it on my mtb!

Cost £40 for a (fake) post.

Saddle – an ASM adamo prologue saddle.  Scavenged from my road bike.  Its white, longer and comfier than the ISM Adamo Road I used to use, and better for road riding than the tri specific Road model.

Disk brakes
Was going to cannibalize the bb7 brakes from my commute bike.  However, the frame takes 140mm rotors without adaptors, so I started looking online.  Rotors are £20 a pop, using my existing 160mm rotors means I can flip wheels easilly, (don’t always want to run my dynamo hub?)

Found a set of bb7 road sl (super light version saving 40g) for the same cost as the normal version – bargain!  I bought 2, and a post convertor to adapt the caliper position from 140mm rotors to 160mm

thought hard on a ride the other day.  what does 140mm max mean on the frame specs… err 160mm may not be a good idea.  I now have 140mm rotors 😦

Cost £90 + £40 for new rotors

Will be buying a new set (hed rims, 32 spokes, son dynamo hub) but in the meantime I have a pair of disk specific road wheels from an old cyclocross bike.
Cost £880!!!! but scavenged initially

Scavenged totally from the
old road bike, the Betty Leeds. Its SRAM Rival for training, but I’ll borrow the SRAM Force stuff I have on my nice roadbike a month out from the TCR

Currently got a 53/39 SRAM red / quark power meter on it.  However I am planning on using a compact 50/34 for the event.
That means no power data, (but I’ll be going slowly) but does mean I can spin up anything :-).  I think this is important going up alpine passes with a load of kit

Cost £ – nill

3 thoughts on “New Bike Build for tcr no3”

  1. Hi Rob, Awesome blog. Looking to do the TCR or another similair race here in North America. I was looking at the Salsa Collossal as a bike for said race and wanted to get your opinon on how it faired in the race and just in general as a bike. While primary function would be for the race still would like a bike thats fun for general and training rides. Cheers and good luck with your 4th tcr attempt.



    1. I really like it
      Comfy, predictable, sure footed (with good wheels/ 28mm tyres). However it’s still got a bit of zing when you want it
      The only slight downside is weight. But even that’s not too bad,
      I notice the difference between the salsa and my roadbike when climbing. The roadbike is like a wippet – it just goes.
      The salsa is a bit less responsive, the comfort means some flex somewhere

      See if you can test ride one
      I took a gamble and got away with it

      However, there is a lot more choice now for roadbikes with disks now…


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