Back in September 2015, a friend of mine, Baudh, came to me to help him get his full steel rigid Diamondback Sorrento MTB (Circa 1990) a full service. He needed to use it for his 5 mile commute to work. The service was done and needed some advice on clothing and how to ensure he will keep using the bike all year round. At this point I was pretty sure he already had made up his mind on using the bike most of the year round.
Sure enough, after helping him with the bike and some clothing, he was well on his way. After a year of riding to and from work, I can see how much fitter he got. The usual early tiredness did hit him, and also the autumn and winter weather was something to overcome, but because he prepared himself well with good clothing and took spare clothes with him to work, also we got him a good set of Schwalbe Marathon plus tyres, the bike was well up for the all year round riding. Albeit a strong heavy ride.
Roll ahead a full year to autumn 2016, and Baudh came back to me to start talking about a new bike, a road bike. During the summer I took him out on a 10 mile ride to help me test out the Tifosi Andare, full carbon bike, read about the Tifosi Andare here. I think that ride sowed a seed in his mind that a road bike was more comfy and easier to ride for longer rides compared to his Diamondback, I guess the lightweight carbon helped that thought too.
So he wanted a new bike, but which one?? He started off by talking about the Tifosi Andare, but felt it would be too much of a jump from his steel MTB to a Carbon Road bike. Then we talked about a budget and he was keen to keep it below £800. So I thought of Aluminium, good on weight and good on budget. Sort of in between steel and carbon. He came back to me via WhatsApp on a Genesis Delta 30, which is a lovely aluminium bike, online it was the right price bracket for him, so I showed him some alternatives I had in mind. First I showed him the Genesis Equilibrium Disc from Reimagine bikes. But he didn’t want to spend that much on the bike and it may have been a little small for him anyway. Then it was the Tifosi CK7 Gran Fondo, which came is a variety of cool classic colours, which he liked alot, but wasn’t so sure of Campagnolo, and wanted to stay with Shimano groupset.
The Tifosi CK7 does have some in Shimano setup, but was a little limited on colours.
So I looked further and found the Tifosi CK3 with alu frame and carbon forks with a modern look compared to the retro look of the CK7.
As we looked through the CK3 colour schemes, he was still unsure of the Campagnolo groupset, I showed him the Veloce groupset from the Rikulau Mondrian reimagine bike build. But it was not enough to convince him.
Eventually we noticed the Black Tifosi CK3 with Shimano 105 groupset and when I showed him the price he was had a big grin on his face. And so we ordered the bike for him the next day.
As usual my supplier, Chicken Cycle Kit, delivered the bike very quickly, and so I began to do the unboxing.
As I opened the box I was as excited as my friend was, he was at work and I took some choice photos to show him progress, there is some assembling to do, but not much. Saddle, seatpost, wheels and handlebar, as per usual really from most bike manufacturers.
As I hooked up the wheels and seatpost, something was playing on my mind, and it took me to the unwrapping of the frame that I noticed why, The bike was not in black red, but it was basically all red. I hadn’t fully noticed the strong flashes of red with the amount of protective cardboard wrap on the frame.
I duly sent pictures to my friend and asked if he was OK with it. He was rather shocked and surprised, but not against the idea, needed some convincing though. Thing was the CK3 with 105 groupset was suppose to be only in black/red and not any other colour. I called up Chicken Cycle Kit and they were very helpful indeed, after apologising, they provided a couple of options. If he wanted to keep it, they would throw in a couple of bottle cages and Tifosi drink bottles made by Zefal. Or he can of course return it and swap for the black/red model. So I conveyed their message and managed to convince Baudh to keep the now unique red CK3 with 105 groupset. As I took more photos of the assembly and done the shakedown ride, he was getting more excited and came the night I finished my shakedown for a measure up and look at his new bike. The shakedown ride was very straightforward, I adjusted the brakes and gearing during the assembly and so it was minor changes to seat height and handlebar angle only. Also Baudh wasn’t sure of clip in pedals, so got a set of MTB flat pedals, will suit him for his commute, however I have a feeling he might well move towards SPD or even KEO types in the future.
The bottles and cages came a couple of days later, so he kept the bike at our workshop a few more days. Also he had to secure his garage/shed with new locks and doors anyway. He’s now had the bike since November 2016, the winter is attracting him to ride it much yet. But he still has a big grin on his face when we talk about the Tifosi CK3. So all is good, think he’s waiting for Spring to really start using it for his commute. Will try and entice him out for a couple of night rides in the wintry evenings!