You all might know that famous quote by Lao-Tzu: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. Well it not only applies to journey’s, something similar goes for building bikes.
For those of you who have no idea what that thing in the picture is, it’s a BTP downtube shifter. It was a gift from a friend of mine called Timo. I got to know him ten years ago or so. Back then I was a rookie when it came to building bikes and my budget was tight (it still is by the way..). I remember how amazed I was by his bikes: a beautiful Merlin Extralight and a Kinesis CX bike with parts I could only dream about. Thanks to Timo that I got to know about finding the right geometry and lightweight bike parts.
While others have conversations about bike races and results, Timo and I can spent a whole afternoon talking about the smallest details on a bike. On one of those afternoons we talked about my dream build and how similar it would be to his Merlin. Hours flew by and before we knew it, it was time for me to catch the train back home. While I was putting on my coat, Timo searched through a box with parts. “For you” he said, while held a BTP downtube shifter in his hand. It was the first step into building my dream bike.