The Friday Cyclotouriste

a geo-photoblog chronicling my "excursions velo"

Gear Gallery……The Indomitable Ebisu

with 4 comments

Long overdue, here is the official introduction to the companion to my Guerciotti.  Heavily influenced by the designed of French cyclotouring machines of the 1940s, 50s and 60s, I commissioned this 59cm bike from Jitensha Studio in Berkeley.

I told Hiroshi, the proprietor, I wanted a versatile bike for light touring and brevets; I wanted the option of carrying 10-20 lbs. upfront on low-riding front racks; and, I wanted the frame based around the 650B wheel size (and 38mm tire width).

The build included both new and vintage parts including a SON front generator hub powering the headlight, integrated front and rear racks (including detachable low-rider pannier racks) and Honjo fenders, Brooks Team Pro TI saddle, Simplex retrofriction downtube shifters, TA cyclotouriste cranks, and Shimano Ultegra derailers. A Berthoud decaleur is used with the front handlebar bag, which was custom ordered from the Guu-Watanabe in Tokyo. I believe I was their first customer from outside Japan (more on that story here).

Now that I’ve been riding the bike for some time there are inevitably small tweaks I would consider: slightly more geometric trail so it handles better unloaded thereby making it more of an all-around bike (this would require a new fork), indexed shifters (to go with the 8-speed Shimano cassette) or a 6-speed freewheel (to go with the current Simplex shifters), and maybe some slight changes to the gear ratios (currently 47×34 front and 13-27 rear). I’m also eagerly awaiting a true 38mm wide tire from Grand Bois as a replacement for the Panaracer Col de la Via which actually measure 2mm less than 38mm.

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Written by fridaycyclotouriste

July 23rd, 2009 at 8:20 pm

4 Responses to 'Gear Gallery……The Indomitable Ebisu'

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  1. Beautiful bike. I looked at the front bag story and did a quick calculation on the prices. Yikes! I hope you love it.


    24 Jul 09 at 10:29 pm

  2. Those were the salad days for sure. But the bike and the bag should last decades as has my Guerciotti.


    24 Jul 09 at 10:43 pm

  3. I am looking at a similar bike and was wondering if you would share cost for the completed bike?


    18 May 10 at 12:49 pm

  4. hi mark/ you’ll need to contact Hiroshi at Jitensha studio for current prices. they’ve probably changed along with the $/Yen exchange rate. in 2006, my frame and fork cost $1,500. the final price depends on what parts you choose to put on it. racks cost extra and can be expensive too ($200-$400). hope that helps.

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