Sunday, August 7, 2016

Dreamin'....Soma San Marcos

Jan 2011 Rivendell HQ

Back in 2008 when I had my "Steel awakening" one of the first places I stumbled across on the Web was the Rivendell cycles website.  And while I was in love with their frames my pocketbook wasn't very willing which is why I bought and built up the more affordable Handsome Devil in 2009.  The fact that I am still riding and loving the Devil 7 years later is a testament to how great that bike has been but the lust for lugs has never really left.

lovely lugs
In January of 2011 I was fortunate to find myself with some time on my hands at the end of a business trip to San Francisco, so I hopped the Bart to Walnut creek and got to see and ride a San Marcos prototype, I recall having a big goofy grin on my face when I got back from the test ride.  And ever since that bike has been in the back of my mind.  Note: although sold by Soma the bike was designed by Grant Peterson of Rivendell cycles- a joint venture.

Then not too long ago when I was visiting the Soma blog I read that although they loved the bike they just didn't sell enough to keep making them.  The version two with the different blue and the "Frenchier" fork with rack braze-ons would be the last of the line.  I had a flashback to when I was thinking of buying my first Steel frame and really liked the Rivendell Bleriot, I hemmed an hawed over the, at that time, odd 650b tire/wheel size and should I spend that much? and by the time I got serious they really weren't available anymore.  Eight years later its happening again with the San Marcos.  I just happened to peek online and there is an ebay reseller, a brick and mortar bike shop, that has a few in stock in my size (54cm) with a single top tube (not a fan of the double) and sized for 650b wheels.

very cool down tube decal

I don't know that I can really justify the cost of the frame let alone the build but its got me thinking.  I have about six bike projects in the queue that I think I can make incremental money on and while not covering the cost of frame the haul would put a dent in the purchase price.  I also have a collection of parts; derailleurs, shifters, saddle,  crankset etc. that would look good on this bike but a new 650b wheel-set and all the other stuff would cost as much as the frame set.  In other words allot of ifs and buts, allot of money to build a bike for a guy who isn't riding much and already has two bikes and yet..

Like a siren calling me onto the rocks- damn its gorgeous! Until next time Ride.Smile.Repeat and dream of lugs.

Addendum:  From the Somafab blog my build if I ever do pull the trigger would look something like this..


  1. Replies
    1. I'm not sure you should be encouraging me Annie lol.....has your Riv arrived yet?

    2. Clementine has not arrived. I'm still awaiting their contact before the bike is shipped.

    3. Well I wish you a very happy new bike day when it does arrive -looking forward to pics and your review. I was reading bikelovejones and she had a nice write up of a visit to Rivelo in Portland that included pics and a shout out to the Clem

  2. That is indeed a gorgeous bicycle in the final picture. So many bicycles, so little time...