In today’s edition of Bikes of the Bunch, Melbourne-based cyclist Steve Demchinsky tells the story of how (and why) he came to be the owner of a new Curve Cycling titanium Belgie.
I sold my 2007 Giant TCR about a year ago and had been commuting around on a heavy steel touring bike. It was definitely time for a new bike and I wanted whatever I got to be a long-term keeper; my ‘dream build’. I’ve always been a fan of titanium and I love the custom work coming out of the States (Firefly, Seven, Moots) and locally (Baum) but the cost has been a little out of my reach.
I knew Curve Cycling built up awesome wheels, as reviewed by CyclingTips some time ago, and that the brand was endorsed by several local high-profile riders. But I didn’t know about their frames until Jesse Carlsson won the Trans America race back in June.
I called into Curve’s Northcote factory and Steve Varga and Adam Lana talked me through the background of the company, how they chose their supplier, and the ordering process. I could even test ride Jesse’s Trans Am bike. One ride on that and I was hooked. Better yet the cost was (sort of) within my budget.
The ordering process was a breeze. I’m taller than Jesse and his Large frame was a touch small so it was an XL frame for me. I could bring whatever parts I wanted to the build — whatever else was required, Steve could quote and order for me.
All in all it took about eight weeks from original contact to bike in the shed and I couldn’t be happier with the service or the bike. Steve and Adam would keep me in the loop during the build and send me ‘teaser’ pics of the build along the way.
The bike is built up to the following specs:
Frame: Curve Ti Belgie Road Disc XL
Seatpost and Headstem: Curve Ti
Saddle: Brooks Cambium C15
Fork: ENVE Carbon Fibre Road Fork Disc 2.0
Handle Bar: ENVE
Headset: Chris King
Bottom Bracket: Chris King
Groupset: Dura Ace 9000 Mechanical with Shimano RS685 road disc brakes/levers
Wheels: Curve CC 38s built on Chris King Navy Disc hubs and Sapim CX Ray spokes
Tyres: Specialized Turbo 25mm
Bottle Cages: King Ti
Total weight of the bike including pedals and cages is 8.8kg — not a featherweight, but not bad for an XL frame with disc brakes.
I went with DA mechanical mainly for price-saving but also because I have not found the electric version to be compelling enough for the extra money. During test rides, yes, it is nice, but I do not miss electric when returning to mechanical shifting. We decided upon disc brakes to save wear and tear on the carbon rims.
I love my Brooks leather saddle on my daily commute and chose the Cambium C15 to tie in with the ‘industrial’ look of the bike.
The contrast between my old 2007 Giant TCR Advanced 0 (which was no slouch) and this just puts a smile on my face. The bike feels so dialled in. It is comfortable. It is quiet. I go faster on descents and corners than ever before. I couldn’t be happier with the bike and to support a small local business just adds to the satisfaction.
This will be a very long-term bike.