Saturday, 4 June 2011

Unicorn 2 Final Build

Those of you that follow the blog will know that I've sent one of my frame/forks away for a re-spray.  The bike colour scheme, which I'd had in my head for a bit, was based upon the stealth black colour of the McLaren Specialized Venge combined with the powder blue on the Team Sky Pinarello Dogma.

The primary purpose for the re-spray, was to design a bike, which promotes my blog.  So, that when I'm out on a sportive, people will know it's me.  Most importantly, I wanted a paint scheme that was personal to me.

The sprayer - Chris at Performance Race Art in South Wales - has done a fantastic job.  The work quality is fantastic.  He's a perfectionist no doubt.  We've spent many an hour talking on the phone about little bits that he's thought of.  Some of the best features, we've done on the fly as Chris has been working on the bike.  The culmination of it all, is a one-off paint job.

So, here's some pictures.

Built Up
Stealth Matt Black Paint
Powder Blue on Inside Front Fork
Blue inside rear chainstays with Unicorn2 logo
Blue stripe on downtube with logo
Headtube with Double Stripe Accent
Double Stripe runs down fork exterior
Nice bikepure spacer added by Mike the Spanner
Seat Tube Logo
View from the Front
View from the Rear
View from Underneath
Looking down
From the Offside
 The bit of the design which was an outcome of an initial idea from Chris, which I'm really chuffed with is the top tube.  It has the names of 126 cyclists on it.  Every TDF jersey winner from 1903-2010, Yellow, Polka-Dot and Green.  In addition, other cyclists who have meaning to me - for example, Wouter Weyland, Tom Simpson, Graeme Obree.

I thought it would be fantastic to be out on your bike, looking down at some of the legends of the sport.  So, in that moment of suffering, you could just dig deeper, as you know they would.  I'll do another blogpost on the names in bold, they are the people that have motivated me in my short time in cycling. You can see below, how that looks: -
126 of the greatest cyclists on the toptube

The Finished Article

Bringing it all together, I'm one happy cyclist.  I've got a bike to my own design.  Something that means something to me.  With a colour scheme to my taste and a top-tube which I think is a work of art.

A few people have asked me what does Unicorn2 mean?  This bike was always tagged "The Unicorn" by the guys in the cycling club, as they said "it was hardly ever spotted out".  It was Andy Whyte that started it.  The label stuck and it felt right to carry on the legend with the re-birth and to make it official.  My own little joke to myself.

Chris at PRA did an awesome job. He's a small business getting off the ground in South Wales with aspirations to paint all the pro-teams bikes.  Please give him your support as a guy trying to get going in cycling.  He does frames, TT helmets, you name it.  Cracking guy and cracking job.


  1. Hi there Phil,

    I have just been reading your story in Cycling Plus, and decided to follow your blog.
    That sir, is one amazing bike! I love the idea of the names on the top tube, and as you said, you can dig deeper in those times of uncertainty.
    Brilliant work, and looking forward to reading the rest of your blog.



  2. Many thanks for coming to the blog Mike and the comments about the bike, much appreciated. Phil

  3. Fantastic graphics. I know that it's not so relevant to ask in this space, but what gear ratio are you using in your crankset and cassette? Cheers.

  4. Hi Kostas,

    It's a compact up front 50/34 and 12/27 at the back.


  5. Thanks. I was alerted by a post seen on your blog about the gear ratios. My new bike (Orbea Aqua) has a 53x39 and 11-25 combination, which I think might be a bit too demanding when I'll have to ride a tight uphill. But I haven't tested it to the extremes yet. I wanted a more speed like setup, which originates from triathlon bikes and avoid running out of gears when hit by a strong tail wind on flat terrain.
    Great posts, especially the one with the pedalling technique graphs.
    Keep up the good work, cheers.

  6. Thanks Kostas, consider swapping your rear cassette for something like an 11-28, which will give you that little more range on the hills or for when you want to keep the cadence high.