Tales from the Tarmac: The Never-Ending Bike Build

I’ve been building up my bike for two years now. No, I’m not inept at turning a wrench, and while the bike is certainly rideable—it’s got two wheels, a groupset, and all the other bits—it’s just not finished.

In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever had a bike that was strictly finished per se. If you’re like me, (and odds are if you’re reading this, you are) there’s always something to swap out, a subtle tweak to be made. Sure, the bike doesn’t need that $500 carbon saddle, but boy would it just look great. And so it goes.

A bike build isn’t simply a one-and-done undertaking, it’s a process—heck, let’s just be upfront about it; it’s a full-blown relationship. Although this relationship may not constitute as cheating on your significant other, it’s certainly at odds with your checking account. But, what’s 20 bucks for color-coordinated stem spacers? And so it goes.

For some, a bike is simply a bike, a tool for a job. But for others, it’s an amorphous canvas just waiting to be adorned with shimmering bits and shiny doodads, all color-coordinated to a tee. Sure, that wheelset is perfectly fine as-is, but a new set of decals to match the frame color would really tie the whole bike together.

So, for 2014 here’s to finally finishing that bike build. Well, save for that new titanium hardware kit you’ve been eyeing that will save you 20 grams—let’s not get ahead of ourselves. And so it goes.