Category Archives: Beautiful Bicycles
Parker’s A-Train All Road
Parker's A-Train All Road

This bike, upon first glance, might just seem like a cross bike with some flashy paint and while that is mostly true, the thing that struck me the most about Parker’s A-Train all road is the drivetrain. Well, the drivetrain and that killer paint!

Knowing that he wanted to ride this bike on more dirt than sealed road and being a fan of Shimano, Parker mixed his Di2 with XTR and Dura Ace, relying on not only the clutch of the XTR rear mech, but its cage length, allowing him to wrap a big cassette around his chain. You don’t see this a whole lot, but it makes total sense, especially if you like the idea of SRAM’s 1x system but the feel or ergonomics of Shimano. Is it working out for Parker? You bet. While he was visiting Los Angeles from Minneapolis, where he works at Angry Catfish, he took full advantage of steep frontage and fire roads…

Mar 31, 2016 63 comments
Jonathan’s Rivendell Joe Appaloosa Touring Bike
Jonathan's Rivendell Joe Appaloosa Touring Bike

If the Greek god Zeus rode a touring bike, it’d be a Rivendell and most likely, it’d be a Joe Appaloosa. Rivendell is straight forward with the Joe Appaloosa. First off, it’s named after a rather unique breed of horse, then, they took their two most famous touring bikes, the Sam Hillborne and the Hunqapillar, combined them and made one bad-ass road touring bike. These bikes are confidence-inspiring works of art, chiseled from stone and as timeless, or legendary as mythology. Ok, maybe that was too much… They’re just damn sexy!

Those frames scream fully-loaded confidence with a fist-sized gap between the rear tire and seat tube, ensuring that even if you want to dive into a turn, this frame will take its own, secure and smooth line. Which is great for a touring or city bike. Loaded on descents, this long wheelbase makes for a predictable and comfortable ride.

Or, to be more concise, the Appaloosa is:

“It’s not for stunts, boulder-bouncing, or loaded expeditionary off-road touring, but as a trail bike for sober non-yahoos who weigh less than 215lb, it’s ideal, perfect.. That 215lb isn’t a scientifically-derived number, just a hipshot suggestion based on the Joe having a heavier fork than Sam’s and lighter one than Hunqapillar’s.”

So, when Jonathan was looking for a new bike, meeting the above description, he went with a complete Appaloosa. After a few upgrades, namely Paul skewers, Paul brake levers, a Brooks Cambium saddle, SOMA rack, Swift saddle bag and a Tomii bell, this bike is ready for anything… For $2,600 complete, this is the best looking complete touring bike on the market. Find out more at Rivendell!

Mar 30, 2016 44 comments
Brooks Celebrates 150 Years with Dashing Bikes
Brooks_Canyon

There aren’t many cycling companies that have been around for 150 years. In fact, Brooks is the only one I can think of off the top of my head. It’s quite a feat. Especially when you consider that they’re not only still around, but they’re still making saddles in the UK. To celebrate, they’ve teamed up with a number of bicycle companies around the world to build limited edition bicycles, available to the public in small numbers, based on the copper rails. These “Dashing Bikes” are something else. One of which is Germany’s Canyon

See more at Brooks!

Mar 30, 2016 4 comments
Peter’s Geekhouse All Road
Peter's Geekhouse All Road

Taking a more “mountain bike” approach to fitting in terms of reach and fit has been a successful design characteristic of bikes like the AWOL. Shorter stems mean the top tube can be longer, giving the rider less overlap and the sensation of sitting “in” the bike, rather than “on” it. When Peter first contacted Geekhouse, he wanted a straight up ‘cross bike. Then he talked to a few people and he realized he wouldn’t be racing a whole lot. Rather, he wanted to take this bike up into the mountains of Los Angeles and disappear for hours on end. The triangle would be big to fit a frame bag and the bottom bracket a little lower to make it more predictable on descents.

It’s funny how the desire for a custom race bike is quickly quelled by the necessity for a vehicle to inspire escapism.

Fast forward to the bike’s completion. It just took a leap across the country to follow its owner as he relocated from Los Angeles to Austin, Texas. Essentially he and I swapped places… His relocation came at such a moment that the frame was shipped to Los Angeles first, before being packed back up and delivered to Mellow Johnny’s, where I photographed it this afternoon on a brief visit.

It’s great seeing a bike like this alive and well in a new and exciting city for its owner to explore. Enjoy this thing, Peter!

Mar 29, 2016 46 comments
Darrel’s Foundry Super Record Commuter – Morgan Taylor
Darrel's Foundry Super Record Commuter – Morgan Taylor

Words and photos by Morgan Taylor.

For the five or so years I’ve known him, Darrel has been obsessed with achieving slam with his bikes. Personally, I’ve never had the flexibility for it, so I live vicariously through those who are willing to cut their steerer tubes within millimetres of being rendered useless. The single 3mm spacer has become Darrel’s hallmark, though he’s given up on 17º stems for commuting.

Darrel’s Foundry Cycles Auger was originally built with Campagnolo Record a few years back. After two seasons racing cross, and a move toward regular year-round commuting in Vancouver, it was time for a refresh. In its current state with Super Record, SON dynamo, and Reynolds carbon rims, Darrel clocks an average of 40 km a day taking the quick way to work and the long way home.

Do you need carbon rims to commute? Is it sensible to run open tubulars and latex tubes on a bike that gets ridden year round in an urban environment? When you’re spending 8 hours a week in the saddle getting to and from work, these questions matter not. You do what you want.

____

Follow Morgan on Instagram.

Mar 28, 2016 53 comments
Fuck Yeah Olive Drab Speedvagen ‘Cross
Fuck Yeah Olive Drab Speedvagen 'Cross

Fuck yeah olive drab! I love OD green bikes. In fact, I love anything OD green. There’s something so utilitarian about it. Take something completely ordinary and then paint it OD for it to be even more bad-ass. Even a Speedvagen. Not that Speedvagens aren’t already made from bad-assery, but the paint doesn’t hurt.

This one came waltzing in Golden Saddle Cyclery a few weeks ago, begging to be photographed. Seemed the current owner bought it from someone who maybe rode it two or three times. It’s immaculate and thankfully, now it’s being ridden a lot on Los Angeles’ fine dirt roads and trails.

There’s something so timeless about canti brakes on a ‘cross bike, especially with that seat mast-puncturing cable!

Mar 24, 2016 24 comments
Bonavia Cycles’ “Jackson Pollock” SSCX
Bonavia Cycles SSCX

Words by Morgan Taylor. Photos by Dylan Davies.

Ross Allan from Bonavia Cycles recently saw through a project that had been in the works for a while. Last year he built himself a single speed cyclocross frameset and sent it off to Vancouver custom painter Toxik Harald, asking for something “Pollock”. After a long wait, Ross’ patience paid off.

Check out a couple more details below, and the full set at Shred or Dead. (more…)

Mar 24, 2016 3 comments
Martin from Ertzui’s Indy Fab Planet X
Martin and His Independent Fabrication Planet X Cross-1

e r t z u i ° film make some spectacular videos and part of that lies in their love for the bike, while being able to document the importance of the ride. Over the years, I’ve fallen in love with their videos and it wasn’t until the Berliner Fahrradschau that I got to meet Martin, one half of Ertzui.

We actually first met on the King of Gravus ride, where he was pedaling his Indy Fab Planet X on Panaracer Pasela tires amongst a sea of cyclocross bikes. Now, you don’t see a whole lot of Indy Fabs in Europe, especially not well-used and loved rides like this. The bike has patina, character and functionality all over it. At the moment these photos were taken, it was built up as a light tourer, since Martin had just ridden it around 100 miles from his home town of Leipzig to the show in Berlin.

Some of my favorite details: the Tracko sticker, the tooth brush in his feed bag and his Edelux lamp mount (which was difficult to document.) Kristian and Martin from Ertzui have some exciting projects on the horizon and I for one can’t wait to see the final product.

Mar 23, 2016 14 comments
Fern Cycles Chacha Touring Bike with Gramm Bags
Fern Cycles Chacha Touring Bike with Gramm Bags

The two-man team behind Fern Cycles really impressed me. Florian Haeussler and Phillip Zwanzig craft frames in Berlin, designed to handle their specific style of riding. In 2012 they toured throughout Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Ukraine, Georgia and Turkey on two Chacha prototype frames. Their time on the road enabled them to dial in their preferences as to how a touring bike should handle and allowed them to design a line of bikepacking bags to compliment their custom racks.

This bike was built with Sugino cranks, Shutterworks generator hub, Supernova lights and Shimano Sora derailleurs but the standout products are the bags!

Gramm Bags are made in Fern’s shop and have some clever detailing, as well as minimal branding. Personally, I thought this was the best touring rig at the Berliner Fahrradschau and had a lot of fun documenting this bike.

Nice meeting you guys!

Mar 22, 2016 62 comments
Field Cycles Orange Road Bike with Dura Ace
Field Cycles Orange Road Bike with Dura Ace

Ever since the first day of the Berliner Fahrradschau, I’ve wanted to photograph this Field Cycles road. Built for a customer in San Francisco, this bike just pops against the dreary Berlin weather and will undoubtably do the same in SF’s foggy environment. The owner wanted a zippy race-worthy machine with Dura Ace and ENVE, which is coincidentally why this bike is in Berlin to begin with. It’s on display at ENVE’s European builder booth, where builders from all over the EU were selected to showcase their talents.

Talent is exactly what Field possesses. This two-man team is nestled in the hills of Sheffield, a steel city with a long heritage of handcrafting beautiful works from metals of all sorts. Yet with every metal masterpiece, paint needs to accompany it, which is why Field uses their in-house painter, Cromaworks to design flashy, yet complimentary designs. While talking to Harry about Field’s bikes, he made a special point to note their custom dropouts and investment cast headbadges, two details he’s very proud of, coming from a metal fabrication background…

See more of this beauty in the Gallery!

Mar 20, 2016 33 comments