How a shop uses their retail floor and what they display there says a lot about their business model. I’ll go out on a limb here and say that most shops reserve the floor for items which are for sale and they’ll hang or display specialty, not-for-sale items outside of the consumable area. Well, that’s not the case at Cape Town, South Africa’s Woodstock Cycleworks. Nils and his team are literally swimming in bikes, both complete and in framesets. As we saw in our Shop Visit, the space is made by the bikes, not vice versa. Some shops’ spaces are made for the bikes. Here, you move throughout a myriad of frames, museum pieces and yes, items for sale.
After an initial walkthrough, two bikes that really resonated with me were these: a Hansom Track and a strange, BMX designed to incorporate a shovel. One is what many would consider a pristine example of a South African frame and the other, well, I dunno what it’s purpose is or was.
Nils, or perhaps it was someone else, discovered this bike in a dumpster, outside a school. It seems it was a project of a student and aside from its obvious metaphor of working on bike trails with a shovel, it serves no current purpose at the shop, other than to cause inquiries by people like me.
Hansom Track R5000
Hansom is one of the most distinguishable South African builders and in his day as a builder, Gotty Hansom built a number of road and track bikes from Tange, Reynolds and Columbus tubing. This bike, in particular, was made from 531 and sports some very tight clearances. Currently, it’s listed on Woodstock’s for sale page…