L’Avecaise: The Finished Build

The L’Avecaise build is complete, except for the front rack which is as of this writing on the Left Coast undergoing a bit of necessary surgery so that it fits this bike. What follows is a detailed build sheet.

Handlebar VO Gran Cru Chris’s Rando 46
Stem Nitto Technomic Tall, 26.0/120 length
Brake levers Dia-Compe AGC-250 Aero Compe
Brake calipers Tektro CR 720 Cantilever, black
Bar wrap Brooks Cambium Tan Wrap
Bar underwrap Cotton
Headset VO Gran Cru
Bottom Bracket UN-55, 121 length
Crank set Luxe 46/30, 50.4BCD/175
Pedals Shimano M-324
Front derailleur MounTech
Rear derailleur Microtek
Seat pin Sakae 6061-T6 TCO Sport, black
Saddle Brooks Pro, vintage large copper rivet model
Fenders VO Zeppelin 52mm Noir
Front rack VO Pass Hunter v1, cantilever, decaleur fork receiver
Cable and housing Jagwire black
Shifter Microtek
Tires Grand Bois 650b x 42 Hetre
Wheels 650b 32hole box section rim, high flange hub, 10sp/130
Chain SRAM  PC1051
Cassette Microshift 10s 12-28

Gear Inch Chart

46 30
12 99.7 65
13 92 60
14 85.4 55.7
15 79.7 52
17 70.4 45.9
19 62.9 41.1
21 57 37.1
23 52 33.9
25 47.8 31.2
28 42.7 27.9

Seat and head tube angles: 73 degrees

Rake: 67mm

Bottom Bracket Drop: 71mm

Chain Stay Length: 43.5mm

Down Tube: 31.8mm True Temper Platinum 858

Top Tube: 28.6mm True Temper Platinum 747

Seat Tube: 28.6mm Columbus Zona 861 .2mm external butt

Chain and Seat Stays Columbus Zona .7mm


13 thoughts on “L’Avecaise: The Finished Build

    • I have a Boulder Brevet, which is 700c. It is far and away the best riding bike I’ve ever owned. And frankly, when I decided I wanted a 650b to complement that bike Boulder was my very first thought. Despite numerous messages and emails, I never got a return call. I wound up getting a Cycles Toussaint instead, with no regrets about doing that. It was a relatively economically way to get into the 650b pool to see if it was all hype or something I wanted to ride. I do like the ride quality of the wide, supple tires but I wanted something a bit livelier than the CT. I sold that frame, but kept the components to use on a 650b frame that better matched the 700c experience I get with my Boulder…so I called Boulder again – and once again never got a return call. They must really be busy! Now I don’t mean to imply that Jeff Lyon was my second choice – I just hadn’t realized I could afford one of his frames. The BQ review of the L’Avecaise a couple years ago was enticing, and I remember thinking at the time that Jan Heine was describing a 650b frame that sounded a lot like what I wanted. So when the time came that I had a bit of extra cash in my bike fund I decided to give Jeff a call. He’s a great guy and easy to work with, and I’m pretty pleased with his work. Oh, and it turns out I can afford his work also!

    • Jeff builds fillet brazed frames. Much as I love lugs, the joins on this frame are really terrific. I love craftsmanship, and he has it in spades. Check out the rake of that fork…just beautiful, right? I also wound up with the wet paint option, which is pretty sharp looking.

  1. John Hawrylak says:

    I see the TT and DT are OS. Does that affect the planning??? What tubing diameter is your Boulder 700C?

    Are you the same guy from Bike Forums, Classic and Vintage?? I cam across your site searching for L’avecaise to get more info on it and the Rando/Touring model. I got the fact the L’avecaise does not have the same perfection as the custom Lyons, but your description seems to say the L’avecaise has adequate good workmanship.

    John Hawrylak
    Woodstown NJ

  2. John Hawrylak says:


    Was your L’Avecaise a custom or an ‘off the peg’ frame? Is there a difference in ‘planing’ between your 700C Boulder and the 650B L’Avecaise?

    John Hawrylak
    Woodstown NJ

    • I pulled the trigger with Jeff last Christmas when he was running a “sale” on some of his frames that he had built up on hand. He got my measurements from me to make sure that the frame he had on hand was going to work. Then a few months went by. And a couple more. And, as it turns out, he wound up building me a frame rather than pulling it “off the peg.” Kind of a similar story with what was supposed to be a powder coat. He didn’t like the finish and I wound up with a wet paint job. Basically, I wound up coming out way ahead all the way around.

      Does it plane differently then the Boulder? I would have to say yes, absolutely. There is a point in time – especially on flats – when I hit a certain speed on the Boulder and all of a sudden it feels like a rocketship. It just wants to take off. And, quite frankly, I’m not speedster enough to fully take advantage of that! Bearing in mind that I have a slightly different component selection on my L’Avecaice, I’ve yet to feel that sudden burst of acceleration. Perhaps it’s there and I just haven’t found it yet. That’s a distinct possibility because I don’t have that many road miles in on it yet. Most of the time I just feel like I’m at cruising speed

      …which makes this a good time to tell you the story from yesterday evening.

      I did something I don’t normally do, which is head out on an evening group ride. I found myself in with some of the “fast boys.” I’m not one of them, and I knew I’d get dropped pretty quickly, especially since I was just piddling along at “cruising speed” on my L’Avecaise. Well, long story short, over about 18 or 20 miles or so, with a few hills thrown in for good measure, I was at the front of the group for the entire time. Heck, I felt like I was at cruising speed and not really exerting myself all that much for the entire ride. There was a point in time where our route got interrupted when we ran into a flooded road. And while we were stopped at that spot staring out across the vast lake of road water, I mentioned to the guy next to me that I thought the group was holding back. He said maybe, but he was clocking us at an average speed of 20+ miles an hour. Well I never go an average of 20+ miles an hour unless I’m heading downhill for several miles! Could be I was just having a great night. Even for me, that happens every now and then. I don’t carry a speedometer or a computer or use anything to track my speed because I’m just not really all that interested in that sort of data. And it leaves me wondering if I’m going faster than I think on this particular bike. Perception is a funny thing.

      And I realize that leaves you with no especially good answer to your second question.

  3. john hawrylak says:

    seems like the L’avecaise adequately planes, not quite as much as the Boulder, but not bad.

    I see the L’avecaise uses OS main tubing. Does the Boulder??? I know you can get the Boulder with either.

    John Hawrylak
    Woodstown NJ

    • One thing I will add – if you read Jan’s review of the L’Avecaise you’ll note that he found a difference between riding on 38’s and 42’s. He felt like the 38’s were a lot zippier. I have some old 38’s with a little life left in them. I may try them out to see if I notice a difference. Maybe. I’m pretty happy with the cushy ride of 42’s.

      • john hawrylak says:

        The 38’s fit the 52mm fenders with the 140% rule, but that does not explain the zippiness.

        I have not read the BQ article other than what was posted on Jeff Lyon’s site.

        What about the Boulder tubing: OS or STD?

  4. John, OS tubing. I’m not certain the larger Boulder sizes are available in the super light skinny tube option. And at a solid 6′ 2″, I’m not sure I’d be happy with that tubing option either. I’ve owned and ridden two 1984 Centurion Turbo bikes (two decades apart), both with what I would describe as “extremely light” tubing … and frankly I scared myself riding them.

    • john hawrylak says:

      Ok, understood. The Boulder sloping TT made the frame seem small. Your Paramount, with level TT, looks big, like a 59 or 60cm frame. At the larger frame sizes, the OS tubing makes sense, rigidity but less weight than heavier wall STD. At my 5’7″ and 21″/54cm frames, the OS does not make sense at a 0.8/0.5/0.8mm wall.

      John Hawrylak
      Woodstown NJ

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