Category Archives: Beautiful Bicycles
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!
LoveBaum is a framebuilder pairing from Denver, Colorado started by Chad Lovings and Bryce Baumann. The two initially met in Rifle, Colorado at Yamaguchi’s framebuilding school. Shortly after leaving, they decided to begin building together under the name LoveBaum.
The two bikes at NAHBS bearing the LoveBaum name immediately caught my attention in the rookie builder hallway. The first being this curved seat tube track bike. Made from a mix of True Temper and Columbus Life tubing, Bryce intends to put its stiffness and design to the boards at his local velodrome.
White Industries hubs laced to no-name carbon rims and Challenge Pista tires are powered by the AARN chainring and Dura Ace cranks, polished to a shine. With custom leather work by Carson Leh, the contact points on this bike are different than your average track bike.
A Leh top tube protector keeps the custom fillet brazed bar and stem from chipping the top tube’s beautiful pearlescent paint. This is probably one of the most elegant track bikes at the show and has won me over.
He’s back. Eddy’s back. Well, Fat Chance is back and the by-product of a successful Kickstarter launch, Yo Eddy! has returned as well. The spirit and soul of Fat Chance has been resurrected and the modern rendition will leave you all antsy.
A lot has changed since Chris Chance shut down his company. Full suspension, dropper posts, disc brakes, hell, steel has been forgotten by the industry – for the most part. When beginning to understand what the market wanted, Chris kept the modus operandi the same as it’s always been: build bikes that are fun to ride and still highly shreddable.
That’s where we’re at with the Yo Eddy!
Dropper post, 44mm head tube, tight rear end and ample tire clearances. This model in particular is 1x thanks to SRAM and is stiff at the feet with WTB’s first ever carbon, tubeless rim. I’m in heaven! Fluoro, trail illuminating heaven. I don’t know about you, but I’m stoked to see this brand making a comeback.
A few notes: this bike is the first sample. The 433mm chainstays are the same as the 27.5 bike. For production, they will be lengthened. Also, Fat Chance is waiting on custom drawn stays for production, so they’ll change a bit as well.
Hopefully you guys got on that pre-order… I’m kicking myself!
Say, for argument’s sake, that you’re the owner of Henry James Bicycles, the main supplier of True Temper tubing, various lugs and tools. You know just about every framebuilder in the USA and have seen their work in great detail. So when it comes to select a builder to construct your dream bike, who do you call?
For Hank from Henry James, he looked to Santa Barbara’s Stinner Frameworks. When he found out about the beloved Mudfoot cyclocross bikes, he wanted in, but not being on the team, Aaron and painter Jordan Low designed Hank his own paint job.
Arguably my favorite from Low, this bike has pizzaz. With matte and glossy notes, a pearl top coat and yes, stripes with fades, Hank’s bike is a show stopper. SRAM Red 22, Chris King, ENVE and cyclocross tires with minimal tread will take on the fire roads, trails and tracks surrounding Henry James’ facilities in SoCal.
In fact, this bike looks so damn good, I might have to visit them to see it in the wild… If you’re at NAHBS, swing by the Henry James booth at #636 to see it in person.
Each year, NAHBS presents challenges. Both to frame builders and believe it or not, me. As “media” it’s my job to document these bikes and deliver delicious galleries to you, the readers. Now, don’t interpret that in a negative light, because truthfully, it’s my favorite time of year.
Over the past few years, there have been plenty of spaces to photograph bikes, especially outside. This year however, mother nature dropped a blanket of ice and snow on NAHBS’ host city of Louisville, Kentucky. Which presented me with a problem…
Backtracking a bit… For the past few weeks, I’ve been checking out Google street view and photos of the convention center only to realize, I’d spend a lot of time photographing bikes indoors. Luckily, I’ve come prepared and while I don’t think everything is completely dialed in just yet, I’m a lot more confident with my setup.
Tonight, the kind people at Henry James allowed me to experiment some on their two beautiful Stinner Frameworks Disc Cross Bikes. The first one being Ryan from Henry James’ wife’s bike. Jenny’s an avid mountain biker and this will be her first “drop bar” bike. To give her confidence, Ryan decided to go with disc brakes and SRAM’s CX-1 group, the closest thing to her MTB kit. From there, Boyd‘s disc cross rims and Chris King’s components topped off this bike with ease.
As for the paint, there’s only one man who paints bikes like that: Jordan Low. His paint design and execution really brought Aaron from Stinner Frameworks’ craftsmanship… and those colors!
Everything in this photo represents the highest of high end: EE brake calipers, Lightweight Meilenstein Scharz edition wheels, on a JPS-inspired Baum Corretto frame. Head over to Above Category for more photos.
Photos by Chris Raia
It’s framebuilder’s week here at the Radavist. Each year, I immerse myself into the world of custom bicycles for the week leading up to NAHBS in an attempt to psyche myself up for the workload that awaits at NAHBS. Covering the world of custom bicycles and framebuilders stems from a love for the industry. An obsession for details, an eye for proportion and the story each bicycle tells without uttering a word.
While NAHBS is all about the exhibition, it’s most importantly a venue for the public to connect to the private world of the framebuilder. These artists spend their time behind lathes, torches and files for most of their days. NAHBS gives them a moment to share their hard work with you, their potential clients.
For builders like Nao Tomii at Tomii Cycles, his work is displayed to the public via his Flickr and other social media outlets. While Nao won’t be at NAHBS this year, it doesn’t mean his work is any less worthy of a spotlight. Case in point is his latest build: Annie’s road. Built with modern Campagnolo, made in the USA White Industries crank, made in the USA Camillo brakes and a mesmerizing paint job by Jordan Low, this piece of art is sure to bring Annie many miles of joy.
Custom frames like this are examples of an artist’s work, but most importantly, they’re vessels that bring clients miles of joy. Well, that and pretty photos for us to ogle. See more at the Tomii Flickr.
Personally, I can’t wait for NAHBS. It’s my favorite event of the year.
Repete Cycles have been featured here on the Radavist before. Their handmade in the Czech Republic, custom frames are simple machines with clean, austere lines. That is, until you start to really examine their cyclocross bike, the Grizzly. Subtle elegance can be found in the bent Columbus Spirit HSS stays and the matte brown finish. Details that make this bike as fierce as the alpha predator from which it formed its namesake.
Oddly enough, this Czech company will be at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Louisville this week and I’m not complaining! You can see more of Repete’s work at the NAHBS Exhibitor Feature website.
There’s something so boss about an oversized titanium frame, especially with Baum‘s own unique selection. It looks like you can throw anything at it. Dirt rides down fire roads and cross races beware! This Turanti from Above Category fits the bill, right down to that blue paint and red anodized components. Check out more of this Bike of the Week at Above Category.
When the team at Pedalers Fork became a dealer for Argonaut Cycles, they needed a bike that would operate as both an advertisement and a floor model / test bike for interested clients. While I love my matte-black Argo, stealth is not the best at advertising for the brand, so Gideon at Pedalers Fork cooked up a purple, flashy, chevron-inspired design for painter Eric Dungey to get to work on.
Since this particular model will be a test bike for inquiring customers, Pedalers Fork chose the traditional seatpost spec, rather than an ISP. The result is a flashy, yet classic stance with the brand’s name in bright silver on the downtube. With a painted PRO stem, a blue King, a purple seatpost collar, Mavic 125ans wheels and Dura Ace throughout, every detail has been considered… It’ll be sure to turn heads.