The Nua we’re presenting in this post has a big personality, and it’s been a similarly big pleasure to watch it come to life and to welcome it into the growing family of Nua bikes which populate planet earth.
Yukka wrote to us from Finland. Like other clients who live in the frozen north, he was interested in the combination of titanium frame and belt transmission; a combination which can cope with the adverse riding conditions in his country, where snow, ice, salt, and gravel form a cocktail which often proves lethal to lesser bikes, which struggle with rusted frames and chains.
Yukka is used to riding fixed gear bikes, and had been in love with the Nua Floc de Neu (our take on the fixie genre) for some time. But he needed to add certain components which are obligatory by law in Finland, such as lights and a kickstand. It was a challenge keeping the minimalist aesthetic of the Floc de Neu intact, but I think we did pretty well!
The wheels are laced by hand, and the rear one sports two Gates sprockets, one fixed and the other single-speed, so that Yukka has only to flip the wheel to change between the two.
For the front wheel, we opted for a super-light Shutter Precision hub, which powers a discreet and powerful LED light from Supernova, the E3 Pure. This light is held in place by a custom-made bracket screwed directly into the fork, which has been given some special eyelets for the purpose.
For the rear light, we went with a LightSKIN seat post with integrated battery-powered LEDs.
The front brakes are our old favourites, the Tektro R559 Long Reach, the only rim brakes on the market which fit around wide tyres while maintaining the same braking power as a good short-reach brake. And to operate them, a very pretty and super strong Paul brake lever, with metallic cable housing from Velo Orange:
The headset is titanium, a rare breed. It has a brushed finish which combines nicely with the sand-blasted frame, the lovely green of the stem, and the natural colour of the bar tape.
The saddle and bar tape, both in natural coloured cotton, are from the Brooks Cambium range.
The tyres are by Compass: wide, comfortable, and super fast-rolling.
By this time you will have noticed that we painted some of the bike’s components a pretty green colour. Here, for example, the F-Gimondi crankset, powered by MKS Japan pedals.
To sum up, a very personal bike, practical, but at the same time elegantly simple and exceptionally beautiful. And if Yukka’s comments are anything to go by, it’s adapted very well to its icy new home.
“The bike is very light, responsive (I drive fixed) and fast compared with my older steel fixed gear bikes. The wide Compass tires are really comfortable. Today we have about 5 cm fresh snow and icy ground, but the tires handled it well. I’m more than happy with my Floc de Neu, it really flies over ice and snowy sleet. I will surely treasure and cherish my Nua.”
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Safe and happy cycling!