Category Archives: Beautiful Bicycles
2017 Philly Bike Expo: Skwisgaar The Waterford Track Bike
Words and photos by Jarrod Bunk
Some bikes bear their owners names, this is something a little bit different, what started in 2010 covered in a black glove of paint, has changed after it sat over the years lying dormant while it’s owner wasn’t able to ride it (due to contractual obligations) and emerged as something a bit more vibrant, Skwisgaar, born of speed and metal. From the Fleur de Lis stainless lugs brazed by EJ Muller to the beautiful paint from Roger Krueger, both of Waterford Precision Cycles, this is anything but black now.
A mix of polished components including SRAM Omnium cranks, an All-City Pursuit Special chainring, and a Chris King headset tie the lugs together and are sure to provide years of service for this heirloom quality bicycle. Zipp wheels hand painted by Eric Baar of Ground Up Speed Shop, give it, even more, flare. There’s something fast looking about this bike just standing still, which was proven recently as it was raced to a Bronze at Madison Track Nationals in Colorado Springs, under its pilot, Anna Schwinn.
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Is it one’s riding that evolves first? Or is it the bike that is the catalyst for evolution? Bicycle design, much like one’s riding style, evolves over time, triggered by a series of environmental or equipment changes. Perhaps your everyday singletrack just gets tiresome and you’re looking for a way to change it up, or maybe your road bike gathers dust during ‘cross season. At some point, riders look for excuses to shake things up, as a break from the painful monotony of riding bikes by the rules and luckily for us, the offerings from companies follow suit, evolving their lineup in the same sequence.
A number of brands have taken a look at their ‘cross bikes and asked what the next step in evolution would be, or perhaps, what it should be. What seems like ages ago, we were all riding singletrack and fire roads on 32mm tires, burnin’ brake pads as our cantilever or v-brakes smoked our sidewalls. Then came disc brakes, which offered more control, options for larger tires and other benefits. All the while, frame builders were experimenting with multiple wheel size options, brought along by the popularity of disc brakes. Soon 27.5″ (650b) wheels began popping up on drop bar ‘cross bikes, yet these weren’t really “cross” bikes anymore. They had evolved past that.
Ibis recently took a long hard look at their classic ‘cross frame, the Hakkalügi. These frames started out as steel, cantilever bikes, marked by classic Ibis stylings and most notably, the Mike Cherney fabricated “hand job” cable hanger. Like Ibis’ mountain bikes, once carbon fiber became the preferred material, the Hakkalügi went through the motions, too. Carbon canti, then carbon disc but the whole time, these bikes stayed true to classic ‘cross frame tire clearances and geometries, always feeling like outliers in the brand’s catalog. Ibis knew it was time for a change. (more…)
2017 Philly Bike Expo: No 22 Bikes Stock Complete – Drifter
Photos by Jarrod Bunk, words by John Watson
For those looking for a stock-sized, titanium, made in the USA frame, check out No 22’s latest offering: complete bikes in two weeks. Since 2014, No 22 have been building ti frames in their Johnstown, NY factory and now, you don’t have to wait months for one of these frames. No 22 is offering up frames where no detail has been spared, no corner has been cut, with the only difference being the 8-10 week waiting period has been shorted to two, and as a complete build.
These completes utilize a No. 22 full carbon fork and aluminum stem, both custom painted by Velocolour, No. 22 titanium seatpost, custom finished to match each frame, Complete Ultegra 8000 groupset with mechanical shifting, Reynolds carbon tubeless wheels and Schwalbe tubeless tires and a high five. I added in that last part. The models available are the Great Divide in raw finish for USD $5,999, Great Divide Disc in raw finish for USD $6,799, or the Drifter in raw finish for $6,799.
If you want your No 22 anodized, they do that in house. For paint, they go to Velocolour. Each of their bikes are available in a choice of raw or two different anodized finishes, with the fork, stem and their new titanium seatpost finished to match.
If you’ve got questions, send them to No 22 or drop them in the comments.
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Photos by Jarrod Bunk
135mm, 142mm, boost and now “super” boost. What gives with all these rear hub standards? I just wanna shreddd! Well, Kris from 44 Bikes knows a thing or two about shredding and frame design, so he tackled explaining superboost in his latest blog post:
“Earlier in the year, I put together a post just after completing the next iteration of the Marauder in a titanium prototype. You can read that post here. What is special about this bike is I used the pre-existing 157mm TA standard paired with an 83mm shell width. This is technically an existing DH standard which Pivot tweaked by adjusting the flange spacing of the non-drive side to move it outboard a bit more to stiffen up the rear wheel build and subsequently re-marketing it as “Superboost”. Which I think took some by surprise as a “new” standard. It’s quite the contrary. And when paired with that 83mm shell width (another existing standard) you get perfect chain line and a critical area of the bicycle is literally opened up to so many opportunities as tires gain more volume and width. ”
Keep reading at 44 Bikes!
2017 Philly Bike Expo: 44 Bikes Titanium Marauder SSMTB
Photos by Jarrod Bunk, words by John Watson
We saw earlier this week the announcement of 44 Bikes offering titanium as a new frame material for their catalog. This extends to their Marauder hardtail mountain bike frames. The Marauder can come in various configurations, including superboosted, plus, slack and rowdy builds such as this. To up the ante even more, Kris from 44 Bikes added some anodized bits from Wolf Tooth Components give the build some pop. Titanium is a great material for a mountain bike frame and this bike is sure to make its new owner very happy.
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2017 Philly Bike Expo: People’s Choice Winner – Bishop Bikes Disc Road
Photos by Jarrod Bunk, words by John Watson
The work of Chris Bishop continues to evolve and impress. For this year’s Philly Bike Expo, Chris brought something a bit different. Having teased this frame on his Instagram account prior, from the paint booth of Bryan Myers at Fresh Frame, we knew we were going to see something loud from the Baltimore-based builder. With a Stainless XCR Columbus rear triangle, Paragon Dropouts, a distinguishable Columbus Max fork and Vari-Wal tubing, this modern disc bikes carries many of the classic profile Bishop Bikes has been known for over the years, but the Fresh Frame paint not only coats this bike, it envelops it. The paint compliments the details, such as the stay integration with the Paragon dropouts and the intricate masking on the seat stays.
This has to be Chris’ magnum opus and the attendees of the Philly Bike Expo agree, voting it to a People’s Choice win.
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If you had the opportunity to have Dario Pegoretti paint one of your bikes, would you? When Jaybe originally contacted David Kirk about making him a classic road bike, he inquired about just that. At the time, Dario wasn’t interested. Perhaps he was too busy or just didn’t want to. For whatever reason, it didn’t happen, so Jaybe got his bike painted and began riding it every day. We even documented it here on the site. Months later, Dario finally expressed an interest in painting the frame, leaving Jaybe in a bind. Should he send it to him? Or just keep it as-is? I mean, it’d be a tough call for sure, especially with the uncertainty of how Dario would paint the bike. What if Jaybe didn’t like the final product? After much back and forth, Jaybe sent the frame to Pegoretti and a few weeks later, it arrived at his door. The crazy thing is, while Dario had the frame, Jaybe didn’t hear a peep from him.
It was a complete surprise and one that was well worth it, in my opinion…
Lady Crushers On Crustaceans: Amanda’s Team Rock Lobster CX
Words by Amanda Schaper, bicycle photos by Kyle Kelley, other photos noted.
“Alright ladies, this is the highest percentage turnout for women at a cyclocross race that we’ve ever seen! You represent 23% of the racers out here, and next year we’re shooting for 50%. Enjoy your race, watch out for the sketchy descent, and sorry about all the bumps. First wave starts in 10…” (more…)
Drop bars make any mountain bike hot. Now whether it’s a heat that you feel in your heart or in your stomach depends on your point of view. For Mike at Golden Saddle Cyclery, he wanted to do something new to his rigid Moots Mooto X RSL after growing tired of it with flat bars, so he converted it to a dirt drop MTB. By using a Wolf Tooth Tanpan, Mike was able to run Shimano road shifters with the MTB derailleur and cassette. That nifty piece of tech, gives you Di2 road / mountain compatibility with standard, cable-actuated shifting.
Mike’s been riding it to work at GSC, where he’s a mechanic, via the various dirt trails and roads in LA. When you think about it, a bike like this makes a lot of sense when you can ride dirt from your front door, that may not merit suspension but would benefit from a chunkier tire. Personally, I think bikes like this look damn good and are damn fun to ride.
Originally designed for road touring, Bombtrack‘s Audax has been reworked into a modern endurance road bike. The Audax’s geometry was tweaked, resulting in shorter chainstays, while maintaining clearance for tires and a double crankset, through the use of a custom yoke. Other features include investment cast dropouts, clearances for a 47mm road plus tire, a full carbon fork with mounts and the Audax frameset is made from Columbus Cromor tubing. Pricing is as follows: 2.199,99 € // 2.899 A$ // 2.100 £ // 2.529,99 $ // 2.779,99 C$ // 249,000 ¥ // 58.990,00 Kč
Be on the look out out for the new Audax in January of 2018. Check out frame specs and geo below. (more…)