Pete's Dynamo Polyvalent with Shimano Hydraulic Brakes

by Igor Shteynbuk

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars


Pete really liked the spec of our stock Polyvalent build and wanted full dynamo lighting for commuting year-round. We were happy to oblige. While we don't often do dynamo lighting for customer builds, I was happy to implement some new tricks I had learned and practiced prior to building up his stellar ride. Clean routing, upgraded hydraulic brakes, and proper lighting - to be honest, I'm pretty jealous. Let's jump into the build details!

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

The best dynamo routing is the clean kind: connectors are covered from dirt and water, wiring is secure yet flexible, and lights are unobstructed from baggage or fenders. This setup features a Busch & Muller IQ-X headlight and a B&M Secula fender-mounted taillight, all powered by a Schmidt SON 28 dynamo disc hub.

Starting from the front, the SON 28 hub is probably the best one you can get. Very low friction when the lights are on and when the lights are off, forgetaboutit, you won't even know it's there.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

The neat thing about the IQ-X headlight is that it uses a mount that can be rotated without messing with the beam pattern of the light. So if a Porteur Rack is in Pete's future, the light can be mounted upside down, inside the rack's cone of safety.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

The Secula taillight is mounted securely, directly to the fender. Wiring is sneakily routed along the rolled edge of the fender, and then passes through a drilled, grommeted hole by the kickstand plate.
Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

I tried to limit the zip ties used, but a few were required to keep things tidy. One is obscured by the seattube and the other by the crankset.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars
This stuff, literally called Goop, is super. You put some goop on each thing you're trying to attach, let them get tacky, and stick them to each other. I delicately put goop on the edge of the fender, set the wire in place, let it do its thing for an hour or two, then liberally put more goop on top of the wire. I laid the whole assembly on it's side on the workbench for the weekend. By Monday, it had fully cured and was ready to be tested and re-mounted to the bike to button up the rest of the build.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars
For the front, you want to make sure you leave extra wiring length for turning the handlebars - just like brake and shift housing. Instead of having excess just hanging around in the air, use a heat gun to achieve a nice coil to the wiring.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

Wrap the wiring tightly around a fender stay or similar, fan a heat gun for a minute or so, and let it cool down while still coiled. Don't keep the heat in one place for too long. You risk melting the wire's coating. Wear work gloves, too. Do as I say, not as I do.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

We also upgraded the brakes from cable actuated to Shimano Deore hydraulic. The lever feel is superb.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

We added a Campeur Rear Rack for commuting and weekend trips. I lopped off one hole to lower the rack a bit.

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

Also custom bent the stay so that everything lines up without putting any stress on the connections.
Velo Orange Polyvalent with Son dynamo lighting, hydraulic brakes, and upright handlebars

All in all, this is a super build and would be perfect for any commuter or weekend tourer. You can check out the full build list here: https://velo-orange.com/pages/polyvalent-build-list-dynamo-with-hydraulic-brakes

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