Category Archives: frame builders
Firefly Bicycles: Lefty 29’r
Firefly_MTB-04

Let’s see, Barzo 2.25 tires, Lefty, Ti stem to match the sweet Ti frame, segmented stays, Industry Nine. Yep. This is probably one of my favorite Firefly MTBs to date. I can’t stop looking at it!

See more for yourself at the Firefly Flickr. Coincidentally, this is #360 from Firefly! Full-circle indeed guys. Congrats!

Oct 6, 2014 11 comments
Baum Cycles: A Cubano for a Cuban
BAUM_02

Baum Cycles’ endless drive to deliver 100% customized frames to their customers culminates in this Cubano for a Cuban gentlemen. Non-drive chainstay etching, special top tube logo treatment and a choice selection of colors. See more at the Baum Flickr!

Oct 3, 2014 Comments are OFF
Farewell Review: The Cielo Road Racer Di2
The Cielo Road Racer Di2

Reviewing bikes like the Cielo Road Racer is easy. Well, sort of. Isn’t the whole idea about a bike review to critically assess its potential for the market? That means looking and discussing honestly the strengths and the weaknesses.

Luckily, for Cielo, these were apparent after the first ride and continued to hold strong throughout the several weeks that the Road Racer Di2 was in my possession. Some of my critiques are merely aesthetic or tied in with the build kit on this particular bike.

Whatever my thoughts are, I can tell you, it’s gonna be tough to send her home.

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Oct 2, 2014 29 comments
The Festka ONE Road
ONE_04

Czech builders Festka recently completed the development of their newest frame project, simply titled, ONE. Boasting a 60% stiffer layup process than previous Zero models, these custom road frames will be available shortly, with custom geometry and paint, at Festka.

See more below.

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Oct 2, 2014 5 comments
Good Things Don’t Change at Mercian Cycles – Jim Holland
Good Things Don't Change at Mercian Cycles

Good Things Don’t Change at Mercian Cycles
Photos and words by Jim Holland

Sometimes good things don’t change, Mercian Cycles is one of those things.

The current workshop has sat in the same spot since 1965, watching as modern industrial buildings crop up around it and other older workshops disappear. Underneath the steeped, church like ceiling, little has changed and the intermittent clang of tubes and scraping of files ring out as they have done for the last 50 years whilst one by one, men make bicycles by hand.

Frames are still brazed free hand on an open hearth, as they have been since day one, amongst the very last practitioners of this method, Mercian believes it to be gentler on the tubes, which contributes to the longevity of the frame. Die hard Reynolds stalwarts, they don’t often stray from Birmingham steel and have a good stock of 531 for the true nostalgist.

One of just a handful of England’s traditional shop based builders that remain, the torches are still firing brightly and the benches are seldom dormant as the orders keep pouring in, one of them mine, I’m counting the days.

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Follow Jim on Tumblr.

Oct 1, 2014 5 comments
Sparse Lights and Icarus Frames
Sparse_Icarus

Some of the cleanest lines in cycling lighting teamed up with some of the cleanest fillets in framebuilding for Interbike this year. While I covered Sparse + Icarus in my Interbike coverage, Sparse took the time to photograph this beautiful road bike.

Head over to the Sparse Flickr for more!

Oct 1, 2014 Comments are OFF
Majaco Singlespeed Cross Bike with White Industries
Majaco True Temper SSCX

What I said yesterday about Austin seeping with cross bikes stands true and I haven’t even begun to cover them. Mark from Majaco recently built up this sick singlespeed cross bike from True Temper OX Plat, specifically for the forthcoming Philly Bike Expo. His component choice is well thought out, putting the extra money where it counts and maintaining the aesthetics throughout.

Case in point: White Industries cranks and freewheel with Surly hubs. He then went with Paul and Thomson, resulting in a frame that by my judgement, weighs in around 16 or 17 lbs. It’s incredibly light!

I love the classic red to white livery and stainless head badge. For those interested in a similar frame, expect a pricepoint around $1400 for standard geometry or $1750 for fully custom.

Sep 30, 2014 10 comments
Peter’s Richard Sachs Team Bike with Campagnolo Chorus 11
Peter's Richard Sachs Team Cross Bike with Campagnolo 11

It’s almost cross season here in Austin, with the first race of the season coming this weekend, everyone’s dialing in their race rigs. So it goes without saying that everywhere you ride these days, you’re being bombarded with balleur bike builds. Take for example, Peter from Mellow Johnny’s new (to him) Richard Sachs team cross bike.

While I’m not sure of the exact year, knowing Richard’s internet presence, I’m sure he’ll be able to chime in – especially with that fork crown detail.

Peter went with Campagnolo Chorus 11 speed on this bike, with matching Zipp bar, stem and post, topping it off with Chris King R45 hubs, laced to HED Belgiums. When you photograph a Richard Sachs, you end up just hitting all of his logos and lug work, both of which were given meticulous presence by none other than Joe Bell himself.

I gotta say, riding bikes to shoot them is fun, but this was a pleasure…

Sep 29, 2014 24 comments