Category Archives: frame builders
Ride in Peace Jacob Smoller: A Tribute Jacobs Track Bike – Kyle Kelley and Billy Sinkford
Ride in Peace Jacob Smoller: A Tribute Jacobs Track Bike - Kyle Kelley and Billy Sinkford

Ride in Peace Jacob Smoller: A Tribute Jacobs Track Bike
Photos by Kyle Kelley and words by Billy Sinkford

Preface: Jacob Smoller recently passed away in Boston. Coinciding with this unfortunate event, Kyle came across a Jacobs track bike in Los Angeles. To celebrate Jacob’s life and work, we reached out to Billy Sinkford, a good friend of Jacob to write a memorial piece:

Try Harder. That was Jacob Smoller’s motto. His creed. Jacob would have turned thirty a few weeks ago and passed just a few days before his birthday. He was a Boston bike messenger, frame builder, beloved member of the international messenger family, and urban cycling community at large.

Be it music, racing, building bikes or riding them, Jacob was an artist with a strong creative drive. His commitment to the cycling community even stronger. Over the past 10 years Jacob had a hand in organizing countless cycling events and races, all with the emphasis on fun and inclusion, he was happiest bringing folks together.

Jacob loved this community, he loved bikes, and he loved Boston. Try Harder, never settle and give your all. He gave everything to the messenger community, his friends and family and we will miss him all the more for it. As everyone does, Jacob had his demons. It’s important to remember our friend for the light that he shined and not the shadow that he cast. He was a beautiful man who didn’t ask of anyone and stood tall with his decisions.

Jacob and I met over a decade ago during my transition from messenger life in Boston. I had some of the best times of my life with him, late night antics, exploring the country by bike, and candid conversations over the years. He is a friend that I hold close and his loss has rocked my world. I miss him with all my heart, ride safe my friend. I will miss our talks.

____

Follow Kyle on Instagram and Billy on Instagram.

Jun 22, 2015 7 comments
Bishop Bikes: Henry’s Road
HenrysRoad_02

Lugged, exceptional paint and a classic stance with modern technology propelling it onto banked roads. Henry’s road bike is a elegant example of the work Chris Bishop is capable of. See more at the Bishop Flickr!

Jun 10, 2015 7 comments
Chas’ Legor Cicli Track Bike
Chas' Legor Cicli Track Bike

In the world of beausage and bicycles, you’d be hard pressed to find a better catalyst than a street-racing track bike. Or even a bike messenger’s work horse. When you combine the two…

This Legor Cicli track bike was first featured here back in 2011 at NAHBS in Austin. Originally owned by John Taki and was just recently passed down to Chas, it’s seen its share of street wear and tear. Fit with Omnium cranks, a 44RN camo chainring and Essor wheels, it has the mean stance of a race machine, with a lot of that special pista patina we’ve all come to admire.

Chas was in London to do a panel with Oakley at their In Residence space, so in-between his busy schedule, I took this bike outside to document it. There’s something special about a track bike in a city like London… and I love it! Oh and that cup in the spokes? Chas didn’t want to litter when he finished his beer.

Jun 4, 2015 16 comments
Speedvagen: What is the Urban Racer?

Quite simply put:

The Urban Racer is the latest offering in the Speedvagen line, lightweight with nimble handling and dialed race fit geometry. Designed as a super commuter, getting you around town as fast as possible. Minimal, modern and shred ready, the Urban Racer is the answer for the discerning cyclist who wants to go fast and take chances in the city.”

Great video Field Theory Pictures!

Jun 2, 2015 26 comments
Introducing the Speedvagen Urban Racer
Kickstart

The Speedvagen Urban Racer. How can I even begin here? These bikes are… uh. Well, they’re kinda completely ridiculous. They’re not a traditional commuter bike, a cruiser, or a touring bike. They’re not meant to be loaded down with gear, or to be casually ridden around a park. Like a cafe racer of the bicycle world, these rigs are stripped down machines, meant to be ridden like a rocket… on 27.5 wheels and 43mm tires. Skids anyone?

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Jun 2, 2015 173 comments
The Black Cat Bicycles Operation Thunder Monkey 29r MTB
The Black Cat Bicycles Operation Thunder Monkey 29r MTB

Todd from Black Cat Bicycles knows a thing or two about mountain bikes. Living in Santa Cruz provides a more than ideal testing ground for everything related to dirt. Over the years, he’s dialed in the geometry on his hardtails and recently, this process culminated in what he’s dubbed the Thunder Monkey.

A few months back, Todd emailed me asking if I wanted to review a production bike he was making. His description was right up my alley “slack and low 29r with a tight rear end.” Some time passed and this incredible frame showed up at Mellow Johnny’s to be built up with various SRAM and RockShox products.

Since then, I’ve been putting this bike through the hell that is Central Texas limestone. How does a bike designed to conquer Santa Cruz bide in Texas? Damn well. Check out more below.

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May 27, 2015 57 comments