Bucky – R. Buckminster Fuller – 00s Motobecane Fantom Cross flat bar cross bike – Spoken for
R. Buckminster Fuller was born on July 12, 1895 to Richard Buckminster Fuller and Caroline Wolcott Andrews in Milton, Massachusetts. He was a lecturer, architect, author, environmentalist, designer, inventor and futurist who lived much of his life in Chicago.
As a child Fuller was constantly experimenting, inventing his own tools, and designing things with items brought home from nature hikes. Quite bright, Fuller was in no way conventional, nor very tolerant of convention. He was twice kicked out of Harvard, once for depleting all of his money while partying with a vaudeville troupe. By 1927 R. Buckminster Fuller’s life had sunk to its lowest depths. He was unemployed, broke, living in public housing and his daughter Alexandra died from complications from polio and spinal meningitis. This was a period of heavy drinking, contemplations of suicide and self-destructive behavior. Eventually Fuller stood on the shores of Lake Michigan and vowed to create a life-long “experiment, to find what a single individual [could] contribute to changing the world and benefiting all humanity.”
Amongst R. Buckminster Fuller’s inventions was a home built on and suspended by a single mast that could be mass-produced inexpensively and a 12 person Dymaxion Automobile, but he is perhaps best known for re-inventing the Geodesic dome. The Geodesic dome is the strongest, lightest and most cost-effective building type ever made, a structure that can sustain its own weight with no practical limits. This was much a re-invention in that it was an improvement on a design of Walther Bauersfeld, that Fuller brought to mass awareness. Fuller died on July 1, 1983 at the age of 87 while visiting his wife Anne in the hospital while she was in a coma . His wife passed away 36 hours later.
Bucky’s frame is a Motobecane Fantom Cross bought through Craig’s List. The original bike was in fine condition and still features the brakes, seatpost, stem and saddle of the original. The rest of the parts were repurposed. There was no frame work to do whatsoever, so the bike was coated with a silver undercoat and a blue coat with little bits of silver flake. The sparkle is quite excellent in sunlight.
This was the first Cross bike I had ever started to build, though I ended up finishing a different Cross frame before this one while waiting for the headset. The FSA integrated headset worked perfectly without having to ream the head tube, and the stem worked fine with the flat bars. The original shifters I sourced for the build up turned out to be kaput, so Alex Wilson at West Town Bikes was able to find me a new set of integrated 3/7 speed shifters combined with Shimano V-brake levers, which work quite fine with the cantilever brakes.
Bucky’s drive train features a Campagnolo Athena triple crank on a Shimano BB-UN54 sealed bottom bracket, a Shimano 105 front and rear derailleur and a SRAM 7/8 speed chain. I kept the Tektro Onyx black cantilever brakes and added blue Oury grips, to the generic aluminum flat bar, all with Jagwire black housing. I built the wheels using Salsa rims laced with DT Swiss spokes to New Old Stock Shimano Deore XT 7 speed hubs and cassette. This was my first wheelset, built with the assistance and tutoring of Alex Wilson. He also was vital in helping me learn how to maneuver all of the cross bike’s housing in an elegant array, vs. what I would have had otherwise.
Bucky’s owner is Tim Rausch, my buddy, bandmate and advisor on marketing in this crazy modern world!