Category Archives: 2015 NAHBS
This bike is a wedding gift for a woman named Sarah from her husband Josh, who coincidentally bought a Shamrock cross a few years back. Sarah and Josh met at a cross race, and there were exactly 585 days from the time they met, until the day they got married.
Individually painted paper airplanes each represent a day and you guessed it, there are 585 of them on the bike. Sarah wanted a bike that was a race machine during the season and a commuter the rest of the year. Throw some race wheels, swap out a few parts and you’ve got a bike ready for mud.
One of the best new products I saw at NAHBS this year were these Enduro Bearings 24mm outboard pista cranks. You might ask why these somewhat simple looking cranks would have piqued my interest and guys like Trackosaurus Rex so much and the answer is easy: why not!?
Made in the USA, with 144bcd chainrings in the works as well, these outboard bearings and cranks will retail for approximately $800. Guess what? Road cranks are on the way! What’s old is new again, just way, way better.
In the meanwhile, follow Enduro Bearings‘ Facebook.
Andrew Low has been building aluminum frames in San Francisco since 2010. While he’s best known for his track frames, in recent months, he’s branched out into cyclocross and now, road bikes. It’s been a long path for Andrew to get this point, but after many months of design, he felt ready to enter the road market.
This particular frame is a working prototype. The aluminum tube diameters, angles and measurements for production are still being worked out but you can expect a tapered fork and a GXP-style BB. This frame in particular is a 55cm.
SRAM Red 22 and ENVE’s made in the USA rims really vibe with the custom Cadence paint treatment, which was a collaboration between Dustin Klein of Cadence and Andrew himself. I have to say, while this bike wasn’t an official NAHBS bike (it was part of the Cadence clothing booth), it was one of my favorites at the show. Available this summer from LOW.
“The bike is just a vessel in a sea of play” is Machine Cycles’ mantra. Builder Kyle Ward is left-handed, an architect and an artist who happens to enjoy building bicycle frame. From the few moments we spent discussing design and custom bicycles, I could tell Kyle has that special spark that motivates people to do great things. Or at least really beautiful things…
This bike wowed me at first and continued to with each new detail that I discovered. That paint? Inspired by a pair of socks Kyle was wearing the day he painted the bike. The navy blue fork and saddle are beautiful touches and the turquoise notes accent the matte brown. For tubing, there’s a lot going on: True Temper OX Platinum with stainless stays and a custom titanium stem.
Days get long photographing bikes at NAHBS, but this one was a pleasure. That bike has a mean stance, yet a soft and playful demeanor. Machine Cycles has a really great website, so head on over and check it out.
Max Lundbeck brought a rather unique bike to NAHBS this year. A cross bike for himself, this vibrant rig represents his Swedish heritage. His family has a tradition, a heritage box, which represents each male in their family that has had a son. This box dates back to 1797 and its latest entry is Max’s own son.
These names are painted on the seat tube and the frame itself is adorned in the Swedish flag’s colors. For the build itself, Max wanted a cross bike that he could commute on. Hence the fender stand-offs, eating up some of that extra clearance.
Campagnolo Chorus with a Shimano top pull, Brooks Cambium saddle and bar wrap, along with Ruffy Tuffy tires mean this race-ready rig will be rolling smooth year round.
For it being LoveBaum Bicycles‘ first year at NAHBS, I’d say it was a successful one. Winning the “Rookie” award is quite the honor for the framebuilding pairing from Denver. While their curved seat tube track machine was very much about performance and style this bike is all about customization. Chad Lovings, the other half of LoveBaum, recently completed this build, an all-road bike that oozes that ever-present NAHBS panaché.
For starters, the client’s initials have been carved from the seat tube cluster lug. A bold, cursive KP with crisp lug lining is the highlight of the frame, while other details like the internal routing and custom stem are equally as pristine, yet flow so well, they disappear in the overall package.
Built from a True Temper S3 and Nova, Chad used Fillet Pro to create smooth transitions, tube to tube. Finally, a rust orange and forest green sparkle paint job makes this bike pop with gold lug lining and dropout cell fill. For the build kit, the client went with Ultegra Di2, ENVE, Challenge Almanzo tires and Chris King.
Does this bike deserve the “Rookie of the Year” award? Oh yeah…
Curtis Inglis’ company Retrotec is located in Napa Valley, California. Not exactly full fat territory, but as we all know, riding fatbikes can be fun in any terrain. For Curtis, building countless plump-tire bikes finally wore on him, resulting in not only the Best Mountain Bike award, but a new steed in his personal stable.
With a custom-painted Pass and Stow rack, PAUL Klampers, PAUL thru-axles and XTR, it has all the bling of a show bike and the stance of a trail beast. This is my personal favorite fatbike in the show…
I’m not even going to tell you what GRD stands for, because I’m sure you can guess. The newest prototype fork from ENVE is not what it appears to be. Cross fork? Nope. Road fork? Not really. The GRD is a new axle-to-crown dimension, offering a little more clearance than a road fork, yet not as much as a cross fork, at a rake more friendly for road bikes.
It’s that nuanced, middle ground that enough frame builders have requested from ENVE and after a good amount of internal discussion, they’ve finally responded to their demands. Thru-Axle compatible and an integrated, yet removable fender to keep your downtube, feet and legs clean while you’re tearing through muddy, wet roads.
This particular Moots has a few nifty prototype items on it, which I’ll be covering later next week. Detail oriented readers will spot that thru-axle, disc, Chris King hub though…
For Alchemy Bicycles developing a new frame takes time. With a busy production schedule, an in-house paint department and juggling the day to day operations, there isn’t much time for R&D. So you can imagine how long this bike has been in the works. As their first carbon MTB frame, the Oros translates to mountain in Greek. Naming it was easy, developing it was not. The Denver based brand had to completely rethink construction.
Because Alchemy is using a unique tube-to-tube technique, they’re able to visualize the frame as a whole, while engineering and developing each section of the frame individually. The stays are shaped and continue to flow with the top tube, ending in a beefy head tube. While I can’t go into to much detail about their technology, I am eager to take it for a spin. Moves like this aren’t easy for small frame builders, but it’s evident this bike has a promising future ahead of it.
Fit with Shimano’s Di2 XTR, Fox suspension, ENVE carbon and Maxxis tires, this bike is a trail ready machine. While I don’t have a scale, the Oros feels well balanced and yeah, pretty damn light. The geometry is still in the prototyping phase, so we’ll omit those details. Once the Oros is ready for production, I’ll post updates. For now, see it in person at NAHBS, booth 501.
Aptos, California’s Black Cat Bicycles is a jack of all trades and a master of them all. Fit, frame construction and paint are all done in house by Todd Ingermanson, the self-described one man dance party. His bikes are purpose-driven with elegance. Todd will always fit a bend or two in one of his bikes.
Having been shredding a mountain frame from him over the past few weeks, I can attest to how they ride.
For NAHBS this year, Todd brought a couple of gems with him. An Operation Thunder Monkey rowdy 29’r hard tail and this all-road disc bike. Fitted with Clément X’plor USH tires, a Brooks Cambium, Shimano from head to toe and a custom fillet stem it’s hard to overlook this cherry red beauty. Oh and that paint, yeah…
While we’re on the subject, head over to Black Cat Bicycles to see Todd’s brand new website and follow him on Instagram!