We have yet to properly introduce Bastion into our family of frame builders, which is somewhat of a miss because we've known Bastion since the beginning. In fact, I rode what I believe was chassis number 002, and Mike, our famed sales expert, purchased number 007 back in 2016 when he was a client of ours before becoming a teammate.
But we didn’t really work with Bastion too closely in the early years. We chatted with them from time to time and kept our eyes on what they were doing but wanted to give them some time to work out the kinks that come along with starting a manufacturing company.
A little over two years ago, right before the you-know-what hit the fan, I really wanted my own Bastion. So Ben from Bastion and I chatted a bit and came up with a plan that involved us buying two framesets to learn the process and see what was involved in working closely with them. Turns out the timing was not so great, as Australia was hit especially hard by the pandemic, and the net effect was that the folks at Bastion were spending more time at home than at the factory. What was supposed to be a big push with a great new company turned into two-plus years of twiddling our (and their) fingers, waiting for the opportunity to be able to build some great bikes.
We'll be getting into all the different Bastion models and a little background about the company soon, but we're very excited that the frames are starting to arrive. I also want to thank our incredible and very patient clients for standing by through this process, which took longer than anyone had envisioned. Thankfully, we now get to dive into one of these long-overdue projects in the form of an exquisite Superleggera. Read on for all the details.
A Bastion Superleggera. The Superleggera is Bastion’s lightest road frame with a weight, size depending, between 950–1050g. The main tubes are a smaller diameter compared with the standard road model for a more comfortable ride for lighter riders and climbers or folks who live in areas with less than stellar road conditions.
We decided to build this one with a standard ENVE Road Disc fork and a traditional bar/stem instead of the new, in-house, fully integrated system that Bastion launched a couple of years ago.
Paint was worked out together with Charlie, who handles design at Bastion, and a deep burgundy was decided on for the base color. To help make the paint really pop, we went with the highly polished lugs and finished everything off with a blue, white and black stripe on the downtube and top tube with another touch of that on the bars.
We tried out the Schmolke bar and stem for the first time on this bike and really liked it. For something that weighs so little, it feels really stiff. These components will be something you will be seeing on a lot more builds here. For this Bastion, we used the EVO TLO bar and TLO stem. The frame uses an integrated seatpost, so it didn’t need one of those. The saddle is the Fizik Arione 00 that was beautifully recovered by Busyman right down the street from Bastion in Melbourne. Busyman also created the bar tape to finish up the bike’s look.
SRAM Red AXS. Pretty straightforward group with some nice additions. Quarq provided the power meter while Ceramicspeed smoothed out the bottom bracket, headset and hubs, all with their coated systems and the Oversized Pulley Wheels (OSPW) bolted onto the rear derailleur. Even the Look pedals come with ceramic bearings, so this thing is going to spin like a rolling pin over my grandma’s perfectly made cinnamon bun dough. And that, my friends, is smooth.
For a bike like this, we wanted the best performing wheels possible. That would be the brand new Lightweight Obermayer disc wheels. Light but stiff, these wheels jump when you press down on the pedals. And in our opinion at least, they are some of the best looking wheels out there. For grip, we added Vittoria Corsa tires in 30c with Schwalbe Aerothan super light tubes.
Tune bottle cages with titanium bolts securing them, EE bar plugs, and some nicely machined Ogle rotor lockrings.
All in, this bike weighed in at 15.7 pounds.
Thanks for taking the time to read, and stay tuned as we dive into all things Bastion over the next couple of months as new frames keep coming in.
Frame: Bastion Superleggera
Cockpit: Schmolke bar/stem, Busyman covered Fizik saddle and bar tape
Drivetrain: Sram Red AXS w/ CeramicSpeed OSPW and Bottom Bracket
Wheels: Lightweight Obermayer EVO