Category Archives: commuter bike
Prolly is Not Probably’s Top 10 Beautiful Bicycles of 2013
A collage of my favorite details from each bike. Scroll to see the Gallery and read up below!

As I sat down to scroll through all of the Beautiful Bicycles I photographed this year, I quickly realized how diverse PiNP has become. Previous year’s lists never had a MTB, much less two and even though the site has begun to embrace dirt riding more and more, there are still three track bikes in the rankings. Most of these bicycles were made in the USA by small frame builders, but two overseas-manufactured bikes made the cut.

This year for the Top 10 list, I looked at site metrics, social media ‘chatter’ and my own favorites (which were remarkably in-line). All of these bikes got at least 100 Facebook likes and over 20,000 visits within the first week of posting. The latter two requisites were necessary to bring it down to ten bikes, from the dozens of my personal favorites. Also, I omitted my own bikes from this list.

I like to think of PiNP as a showcase for Beautiful Bicycles and how they get put to use. See the full Prolly is Not Probably’s Top 10 Beautiful Bicycles of 2013, in no particular order, in the Gallery!

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Dec 31, 2013 35 comments
Shinola Introduces the Runwell Di2
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If you paid attention during my Interbike coverage, you would have seen this before. Shinola has created one of the most balleur commuter bikes to date, the Runwell Di2. Here’s the scoop:

“Few urban bikes are better looking, smoother riding and easier shifting than our classically-styled Runwell. Our Limited Edition Di2 Runwell marries the enduring style and predictable handling of our American-made lugged steel frame and fork, with the latest performance technology of Alfine hydraulic brakes, Alfine dynamo front hub with Supernova E2 Pro bright light and 11-speed, internal Di2 electronic shifting.

Lightning quick, push button shifting, with handlebar-mounted LED control panel, and ondemand lighting makes the Runwell a classic bike that’s also incredibly convenient. We’ve built out the Di2 Runwell with our own aluminum front rack, black alloy fenders and fender-mounted super bright PDW FenderBot tail light. Cables, wires and Di2 battery are internally routed. Classic styling meets the performance benefits of race-proven shifting and braking technology.”

The Runwell Di2 is available now at Shinola.

Oct 30, 2013 28 comments
Blakey’s Splatter Kinesis Commuter Extravaganza
Stem, Cinelli confetti bar tape and a fat, tapered head tube!

Ok, look. This bike might just well be one of my favorites I’ve seen in months. Why? Campag and Shimano, tapered head tube, general trickery and yes, a DIY paint splatter paint job with a matte clear coat. Blakey’s Kinesis commuter even has matching pedals and helmet (of which weren’t present). This bike rules, I’ve had splatter paint bikes before and there’s something that’s just so photogenic about them – and horribly difficult to correct white balance. Check out more of this rare bird in the Gallery!

Oct 21, 2013 21 comments
Breadwinner Cycles: Arbor Lodge Porteur
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Ira and Tony at Breadwinner Cycles just recently announced the production of their Arbor Lodge porteur bike. While a porteur might not be for everyone, you’d have to find a pretty good reason to not want a ride like the Arbor Lodge. The integrated u-lock is such a rad detail. See more information at Breadwinner.

Sep 28, 2013 5 comments
YNOT: the Pan-Yay!

YNOT’s newest addition to their already plump line of cycling portage is one of the most tried and true bike bags: the pannier. Check out more information on the Pan-Yay! at YNOT.

Aug 5, 2013 Comments are OFF
New York #CitiBike

This is the only piece of journalism regarding New York City’s new CitiBike program worth the watch. Idiots exist on both sides of the fence and Jon Stewart goes a great job once again presenting this well-overblown story. Also, “Keep it up, keep that bitch in the air, keep that bitch in the air, yea, there you go, that’s how you do a CitiBike”.

I will say this: Gage + DeSoto hit it on the head:

Jun 10, 2013 12 comments
Rivendell Bicycle Works Pop Up in SF
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This weekend in SF, the world-renown bicycle company Rivendell opens its first ever pop up shop. There’s no official flier or anything, just this post on the Brooks England blog, which gives us these details:

Rivendell Bicycle Works SF
June 1st through 9th
12pm – 7pm
3156 24th Street San Francisco, CA 94110 ‎

May 30, 2013 Comments are OFF
Lauren’s Icarus Commuter
Beautiful Bicycle: Lauren's Icarus Commuter

Any guy will tell you that putting a bike together for his lady can be an emotionally taxing event. Luckily for me, Lauren knew exactly what she wanted when I proposed the idea of buying her a new bike for her birthday. She loved my Icarus and Ian’s work but wanted something practical to commute on here in Austin. I was pushing for a full-on touring bike but she doesn’t like the idea of bigger tires and wanted something zippier.

What we agreed on is a mashup of a few things: primarily a long-reach caliper, lower trail road bike. It’ll fit 28c tires and fenders or 32c without, it has rack mounts on the front and the rear for any sort of light touring or camping we’d do but most importantly, the front cockpit is by no means racey…

She liked the riding position of her Tokyo Fixed Dream Machine build but wanted the bars a little wider and better stopping power than her cantis. After finally wrapping my head around figuring out what she wanted, we met up with Ian of Icarus Frames, who measured her and went through the new frame procedure.

In the meanwhile, I started looking for parts. Rather than going all budget, I splurged a bit and went with a lot of American-manufactured products. Ian was making a stem to accomodate the back sweep of Nitto Albatross bars to which we’d run barcon shifters on. Chris King had these “ox-blood” Sotto Voce headsets at NAHBS, so I picked one up. Then, I consulted my friend PAUL and kinda went all out. Soon, I had purchased Canti Levers, polished Medium Racers, Moon Units, Polished Tall & Handsome seat post, Funky Money cable hanger and it didn’t stop there…

As with any commuter, gearing is a key factor. Lauren had been riding a single speed to work consistently but some of the hills en route to her teaching job were a bit tough. We also want to be able to do longer rides out to the hill country, so I chose the White Industries VBC cranks (46/30) with a mid-cage Shimano 105 rear derailleur and a 12-32 cassette. Shimano 105 hubs to H+Son TB 14s are bomb-proof, budget wheels. Topping the build off are Panaracer Paselas 32c, Brooks B 17 S saddle and tape.

The paint would be from Fresh Frame and the color we chose is an elusive one. Was it blue? Or green? It changes with the light. In the shade, it’s sort of jade but in the sun, it sparkles blue. Whatever it is, the final product is stunning.

While the bike is shown here, sans racks, we’re in the process of tracking down a good front basket and a rear rack for panniers. The bike is light, coming in at just a hair over 19 lbs and it “rides like a dream”. If it were my bike, I would have done a few things differently but that’s the beauty of a custom bike, you get what YOU want and trust me, there are few arguments I’m willing to engage in with this lady. She always gets what SHE wants… who can blame her? Further down the road, I’ll look into new panniers and maybe a porteur bag but for now, I’ve spent enough money on this thing!

Many thanks to Austin Bikes for the build, Bens Cycle for the assistance in the components, Ian Sutton of Icarus Frames and Bryan Myers at Fresh Frame.

May 6, 2013 39 comments