Dave’s Rinko Romeo

Dave swung by the shop a couple of months ago with this stunner of a Romanceür in tow. He walked into the shop and immediately set to pulling the bike apart. Why you may ask? He was giving us a demonstration of all of his nuanced build choices he made in order to create his ideal “Rinko” bike to gift to his son. What is a “Rinko” bike? Originating in Japan: it’s a bike that can be easily broken down and packed in a bag that fits a certain set of dimensions for the purpose of traveling by train. Here is a more in-depth explanation.

Dave started his demo by pulling his front and rear wheels off. This process was made simple thanks to the quick release skewers and the easily removed straddle cable of the canti brakes. Next, he loosened and pulled his stem out. The Romanceür’s 1″ quill stem slid right out with the brake cables and straddle cable hangers in tow. He utilized downtube shifters to keep pulling the bar nice and simple. He followed this up by pulling the fork. He had a nifty little pocket sized headset wrench to loosen the lock nuts up and spun them off by hand. He’s got a 24 Palms headset in this bike, which means it has sealed bearings. I’d say sealed headset bearings are crucial on a bike that will be having it’s fork pulled at train stations. Finally, he popped the quick release pedals off, and revealed to us that the rear fender was in-fact a split fender! I would have never noticed the split fender without him telling me, the joint was so clean and so well hidden.

Dave chatted with us a bit about gifting this bike to his son for his train travels while he reassembled the Romeo. All-in-all I’d say the whole process took about 15-20 minutes to get it down to pack-size and back into a rideable bike. He was kind enough to let me shoot the full photoset of this build you see above after all of this. I really wanted to try to highlight how smart and deliberate his parts selection on this build is. I like how he squeaked some classic parts on there such as: the Mafac levers, the well worn Brooks B17 with hand hammered rivets, and SunTour Mountech front derailleur; but still kept it simple, tried and true with the Sora hubs, Alivio rear derailleur, and Sugino Triple. He even made some of his own parts like the custom decaleur holding the handlebar bag steady!

This bike was a treat to see. It was the first “Rinko” experience I have had, and kinda makes me want to build one of my own and start boppin’ around via train! Thanks to Dave for bringing this thing by and giving us a demo! I hope you and your son have been able to get out and enjoy some rides together.

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