Remember that DeSalvo dream bike NAHBS contest? Well, here’s the winning bike concept. Mike’s offerings each year are usually clean, minimal road bikes but this year, it was a special treat seeing a bike like this in the DeSalvo booth. This dirt drop frame features the Fox AX “gravel” fork, a KS LEV dropper, Sim Works To Smile dirt drops, color-matched PAUL and White Industries. A few builders brought bikes like this to the show and personally, I’m into it.
What McGovern Cycles is bringing to the carbon fiber road bike market is not necessarily a new concept, but seeing it made in California is a first for me. His 27.5 carbon fiber road bike will fit a 27.5 by 2.1″ tire or a 700 by 45mm, is light as hell, features beautiful details, and has the stance of a race thoroughbred machine. These frames are built using tube-to-tube construction, not a mold, so a completely-custom geometry is possible. The 3T Luteus 2 fork gives ample clearance, without drastically increasing the ATC measurement. Last but not least, can we talk about that paint job? Outstanding work by John Slawta of Landshark!
Down on Rando Alley here at NAHBS is an entire lane dedicated to the randonee constructeur. Right there, next to J P Weigle is Chapman Cycles, the Rhode Island-based builder with a knack for creating both highly elegant, yet functional machines and exceptional drillium. Brian Chapman went the distance on this machine, drilling just about everything he could, down to the SRAM Red shifter paddle, yet the detail that really piqued my interest is the rim generator device, that’s able to be switched on via the non-drive side downtube shifter…
I say this a lot at NAHBS, but when I saw this big and beautiful Northern Frameworks single speed MTB in their booth, I exclaimed “HOT DAMN!” This bike is for a tall rider and I love seeing how builders balance the proportions of large bikes with modern MTB geometry. The client spec’d all brown anodized PAUL and White Industries, to complement the rich, copper paint.
A few weeks back, around the time of the Giro x Radavist collection drop, Mosaic reached out, saying they had the perfect bike to display the goods with at NAHBS. I was into it, Giro was into it and I think you’ll be into it. This GT-2 build by the Colorado-based builder features a geometry more tuned for long day dirt rides and lightweight bikepacking, custom Spectrum-powdercoated decals with matching OD green King Kages, and a set of custom bikepacking bags from Colorado’s JPaks Bags. The beauty of the JPacks frame bag system is the nesting frame bag that fits under this partial frame bag, allowing you to either run bottle cages, or an additional bag for storage. You can see this bike for yourself at Houston’s Bicycle Speed Shop.
Brookyln’s Weis Manufacturing first made an appearance here on the Radavist not too long ago. With their asymmetrical seat stays and robust dropout design, the look and feel of their framesets felt very unique to me. After seeing their bikes in person, it further solidified this. While their construction is top-notch, I couldn’t help but be drawn into their Splatter Track finish, which was executed perfectly, in my opinion anyway, by the paint shop at Horse Cycles.
Breismeister Bicycles is a frame builder out of Queens, New York and for this year’s NAHBS, Doug, the owner brought along this beautiful 650b road bike made from Columbus Max and featuring a bi-lam head tube, Pacenti fork crown and a loud, vibrant paint job. The colors on this bike are just too good!
The team from Stinner Frameworks brought one of their most outrageous paint jobs to this year’s NAHBS. I always find it ironic that disruptive patterning attracts so much attention, but that’s what happens when you cover a single speed mountain frame entirely with Splittermuster 31-inspired graphics. It was an all-hands-on-deck situation leading up to NAHBS at Stinner, with the paint job alone taking four days to complete. Each layer of patterning took 5 hours to just peel and apply the mask. I’m not usually one for fancy paint jobs on a mountain bike, but this bike is complete insanity. Then, to up the ante, the same pattern was used in the custom Yanco bags.
Let’s not get too caught up on the finish, however. Even though this bike is shown with a rigid fork, it can be converted to a hardtail configuration with the Cane Creek Angleset headset, which adjusts the head tube angle between .5º and 1.5º, enough to allow the use of an appropriate travel fork. For now, however, the Whisky fork and cockpit, Whisky rims, Chris King hubs, along with the Thomson dropper makes this a lightweight and completely capable single track assault vehicle.
Kris Henry from 44 Bikes knows how to craft a beautiful, functional tig-welded machine that will live by the brand’s mantra of “Swear to Shred.” This Huntsman road bike features clearances for WTB Nano tires, Shimano flat mount brakes, the powerhouse group that is Ultegra, and a geometry tuned for road riding of all substrates. With a paint job by Jordan Low of Hot Tubes Paint, it’s got plenty of pop!
Where do I even begin here? A bunch of awesome brands working together on a unique concept, featuring unique products and a lot of uniqueness. Is that even a word? Sklar and Benedict, aka Ultra Romance teamed up to build the ultimate bicycle. It’s so ultimate that I don’t even know what to call it. Is it a road bike? A touring bike? A mtb? Who knows. Right now, the consensus seems to be just “Nutmegger,” so that’s what I’ll call it. Before I go any further here, I’ll just say this bike begs for more than the brevity associated with copywriting of my NAHBS galleries and maybe one day we’ll dive in deeper, until then, I’ll give you the gist.
This is a part fillet, part tig welded steel frame in a nickel finish, with a custom stem by Hubert from Madrian Fabrication. It’s got a long wheelbase, mid-trail and a truss fork design, along with a double top tube to support the massive head tube. When you ride this thing, you’re really IN it, not on it.
The 66.6cm wide Crust bars are mated with a custom Swift Industries bag and nestled in that top tube space is an Andrew the Maker Bag. Those perty Paul and White Industries bits are custom annodized brown. There’s even a Connecticut State Coin as the top cap! It was assembled in Benedict’s mom’s kitchen and is still kinda sorta being built up as I’m writing this. Yes, the derailleur cable is long, there are no brake cable crimps and I had to stop Poppi from shallacing the tape as I was photographing it.
So what is the Nutmegger? I honestly have no idea. It’s a bicycle that embodies Benedict and that’s all it needs to be. Will Adam from Sklar make you one? Helllll nahhhhhh.