What a long strange trip it’s been...
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  1. #1
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    What a long strange trip it’s been...

    Ups downs...

    Lefts rights...

    Anywho...

    So yeah, in the middle of new bike build itis...

    And thought I’d share...

    But first a little cliff notes background...

    Fell in love with all things on two wheels when I wuz like 5 or so....

    Had a life changing experience in August ‘73.

    Used the bicycle as a key rehab tool...

    Got into racing in the 80’s...

    Nothing much, citizens open stuff, was a crash 5 for a while...

    Ah, those were the days, reading about Greg in The NY Times... only way you could get daily tour results back in the day...

    Early 90’s

    Raced a little MTN bike cuz, shyte... most of those dudes were out of shape and fell apart on the ski slope climb. Until that is, I moved up to masters and found... yeah, old dudes like me hammer... and those of us with the cojones to do it for REAL later in life, (Take THAT you millennial wussy’s) take it VERY seriously.

    In 2003, with my trusty Bianchi showing its age, I grabbed a Lemond 853 Alpe D’Huez. Spent another 1.5k on upgrades and ended up with a bike I called “The Unfare Advantage” there wuz Dura Ace, Mavic, Reynolds, and Chris King involved, among others.

    Then I dove deep into the road bike world...

    Colnago, Campagnolo Record, Dura Ace, carbon fiber, titanium... oh how I “invested” in my fitness.

    My right hip began to degenerate from a lifetime of hammering on it. (No cycling events were involved in the hip degeneration, well, there was that one crash...)

    As I became almost a cripple, I paid farewell to all of my trusty steeds but one, my faithful ‘06 Epic, which became my base for recovery from total hip replacement.

    Six months out from total hip replacement the lack of hip pain is ASTONISHING.

    Prepped the Epic as an “Urban Assault Bicycle”, fenders, smooth tires, lights and rack n such...

    But...

    My last visit with my surgeon, he told me he wanted me to work on strength.

    I’m off the trails for the foreseeable future. I’m one of those no fear ass hats. I do shyte on skis and bikes that would make, well EVERYBODY say WTF is wrong with you dude...

    But I’m old and I digress...

    So...

    Nobody can build strength on a full suspension mtn bike on Pave...

    I have kept track of my builds over the years, and I tried desperately to get the Lemond back. Long story, but it became a go to bike for a few triathletes I know.

    No avail...

    On my (OMG I’m so effing OLD) birthday last Saturday I tried to pry it lose, and well... that didn’t happen...

    Won’t get into the details but after an eBay search I found the EXACT bike, and all I could do was thank baby Jesus that Nirvana was soon approaching.

    So...

    Found a 2003 Lemond Alpe D’Huez 853 in 55cm on flea bay.

    OMG! What an AMAZING steel frame...

    I’m trying to capture the magic this frame had for me back a few years ago...

    2003 Lemond Alpe D’Huez 853 55cm.

    Reynolds Ouzo Pro 45mm rake fork.
    Chris King 1 1/8 No Thread Set
    Ultegra 172.5mm triple crankset 30-42-52
    BB-6500 118.5 x 68
    Ritchie WCS 110 84/6 stem
    Ritchie WCS Classic Bar 44m
    Look Keo Carbon pedals
    Dura Ace 11-25 9sp cassette
    Ultegra R8000 Calipers
    Koolstop Salmon Pads
    105 Brifters 9X3
    105 3sp FD
    Neugent A220 CW Wheelset
    Ultegra 6600 Long Cage RD
    KMC X10SL chain
    Vittoria Corsa Control 2.0 700c X 25
    Cinelli Tape
    Specielized Alias 143 Ti-Railed Saddle
    Nitto 83 seatpost
    Nitto SS bottle gages
    Hope 31.8 SP Clamp
    (Those with sharp eyes will notice in the pic the R8000 aren’t on yet)
    This is as close as I can come to my original spec I had on this bike.

    Up dates to come, but I haven’t been this excited about a build in years...

    Cheers

    Rd
    Last edited by rdolson; 09-04-2019 at 08:27 PM.

  2. #2
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    And so it begins...

  3. #3
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    I think
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  4. #4
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    Oh yeah,

    $1,317 so far

  5. #5
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    One one thousand...

    I’ll put up more pics as parts arrive

  6. #6
    Sooper Dooper Moderator!
    Reputation: il sogno's Avatar
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    This is gonna be great.

  7. #7
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    Just wow

    She’s all done.

    Exceeds at every level.

    Steel, plus other materials...

    19.4lbs all in...

    Rides like butter...

    Just barely enough room for the 25mm Corsa tire and 24mm rims.

    May flip the +84/-06 stem, feeling like I can pull it off... old bones and joints will tell.

    1,300 vertical, and 12.7mph for 28mi. Not too bad for 60+ after full hip replacement.

    Looking to go 15mph on that loop before the snow flies.

    There are a couple of +12deg climbs in the offing as well.

    Yay!

    Cheers,

    RD
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    Last edited by rdolson; 08-27-2019 at 07:43 PM.

  8. #8
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    The kewl thing about this little project is that I was able to build a KILLER steel bike for about $1,300.

    Parts were sourced mostly used, a few new, on flea bay and amazon.

    Special shout out to John Neugent for the OUTRAGEOUS wheelset he built up for me. Hats off to you, John.

    Sum surprise finds digging around in the ol parts box were...

    Dura Ace 11-25 Ti/CrMo mix 9sp cassette. (Major score!)
    Look Keo Carbon pedals. Need I say more?
    Nitto Tig Welded wire SS bottle cages.
    Specialized Alias 143 Ti-railed saddle
    Ultegra Triple 172.5 crankset 30-42-52

    Those little tid bits prolly dropped her below 20.

    Figure there’s another couple hundred grams here or there I’ll pare away.

    Goal?

    Get back to at least a metric century a year, if not an English century.

    Rinse repeat til I can’t walk no mores...lol.
    Last edited by rdolson; 09-05-2019 at 06:56 PM.

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Congratulations on the bike. I have been looking for a 2007 LeMond Sarthe 58 or 60cm steed for years. It was the last steel bike they made. No luck. Most LeMond owners don't want to give them up, especially steelies.

  10. #10
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    The key thing to remember is that the 853 steel LeMonds basic frame was always the same. If you find an 853 LeMond Alpe, Sarthe, Reno, and it has the 1 1/8” head tube... all the frames were the same, just painted different with different component groups. Which is why you can find a lower end bike that fits and just upgrade components. Kinda like I did. The basic frame is sweeeeeeeeeet, and I upgraded just about everything and now have a bike that makes most other steelies under $3,000 jealous.

  11. #11
    I love to climb!
    Reputation: Jwiffle's Avatar
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    Nice looking ride. Thanks for sharing!
    Stop in at Element Sports. www.elementsport.com
    Get Out! Have Fun!

  12. #12
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    And I’m also quite proud of the fact that I have an American handmade steel frame, an American handmade carbon fork, an American handmade wheelset, and an American handmade headset. Plus some pretty schweet Japanese goodies. And it wuz built by an ‘murrican too.

    Cheers,

    RD
    Last edited by rdolson; 09-05-2019 at 07:45 PM.

  13. #13
    Two wheels=freedom!
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    I’ve named her after the last ride (13.6avg) on my 28 mile loop...

    Seeing as “The Unfair Advantage” wuz already taken...

    I be ridin’ “Rocket” these days...

    Cheers

    RD
    Last edited by rdolson; 09-05-2019 at 07:25 PM.

  14. #14
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdolson View Post
    The key thing to remember is that the 853 steel LeMonds basic frame was always the same. If you find an 853 LeMond Alpe, Sarthe, Reno, and it has the 1 1/8” head tube... all the frames were the same, just painted different with different component groups. Which is why you can find a lower end bike that fits and just upgrade components. Kinda like I did. The basic frame is sweeeeeeeeeet, and I upgraded just about everything and now have a bike that makes most other steelies under $3,000 jealous.
    Thank you. That's good to know. However, I really like the paint scheme of the 2007 Sarthe in particular. I love the silver frameset with yellow logs with black lettering. I haven't seen one in years.

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