2017 Philly Bike Expo: Winter Bicycles All Weather Commuter – Jarrod Bunk

2017 Philly Bike Expo: Winter Bicycles All Weather Commuter
Words and photos by Jarrod Bunk

Eric Estlund, master metal manipulator of Winter Bicycles makes beautiful frames, racks and stems by hand, one-at-a-time in his central Pennsylvania headquarters.  Designed around his concept that you should be able to ride all year long, in all weather this commuter bike was built with a matching set of Winter-built-racks front and rear, fillet-brazed stem and a color matched Ruth Works Ultralight Porteur bag.

With durability in mind for daily commuting, Eric built a White Industries/SON wheelset and mounted some fenders.  The frame was built with direct mount Paul Racer brakes in mind and finished with some beautiful top eyes, all filed by hand, coming into the Philly Bike Expo.  I think this bike is a great example of an everyday workhorse of a bicycle that is both utilitarian and elegant at the same time.


Follow Jarrod on Instagram, and Winter Bicycles on Instagram

  • Peter Chesworth

    Eric and Eli always a quality collaboration.

    • m f

      Ruth Works will get my order for the porteur bag. That sleeve over the porteur rack backstop eliminates my bike bag nemesis (velcro). Well designed bag – and bike too

  • Dr J

    It’s a beautiful bike, for sure, but from purely functional standpoint, I’m not sure that I agree with it.

    It may work great as an all-weather commuter somewhere in California, but here in Boston I would hesitate to use it as my all-weather bike. It’s just too nice. Just by looking at it I can imagine how much this bike would cost and for this money I could build something much more durable and appropriate for the usual Boston winter. So no fancy WI or Paul parts or SON hub but more like Alfine hubs with Gates belt, disc brakes, etc. Our streets are usually salted more than Portugese cod and no matter how fancy your bike is, corrosion is imminent.

    • Well yeah, but it’s a custom bike for someone else, who doesn’t live in Boston, so they spec’d it for their use.

      • cwoodesq

        Based on experience, I have to agree with Dr. J that this is not Boston ready, but not with his solution. I live in Boston and commute. I built up a a very similar cro-mo bike with Paul Racers, SRAM derailleur 1×10 set up, H Plus Son rims and fenders. Beautiful. But the winters salt ruins it every year. I spend every Spring bringing it back to life. If I had to do it over, I would definitely get an internal gear hub, a belt drive, Velocity or HED Belgium rims. Anything but polished metal.

    • Eric Hancock

      Good God, man. Every bicycle isn’t made just for you.

      • i bet he has a surly troll with giant panniers. on the rear. no front rack. and i bet he loves REO speedwagon.

      • Dr J

        Of course it’s not for me. Despite that, I like it. A lot.

        It just depends on what you call “all-weather”. This bike is pretty, functional, well-made, but more for all-Californian-weather where 40F is already “freezing”.

        • You don’t spend enough time in California to think 40º is the coldest it gets. ;-) A lot of the US has abandoned using salt on roads because of the environmental impact. I’d say this bike would be more than capable in any state without salted roads. Here’s a nice diagram of the “salt belt” where this bike might not be the best to use in the winter months. Turns out, there’s a lot more than California where this “fair weather” bike might be useful and you better believe it gets colder than 40º in each of those states, including TX, NM and AZ.

          • Andrew Squirrel

            “You don’t spend enough time in California to think 40º is the coldest it gets. ;-) A lot of the US has abandoned using salt on roads because of the environmental impact.”
            The opposite is actually true in Seattle. We used to ban the use of salt but now it is allowed.

          • That’s wild. I know some privately owned ski resorts are allowed in CA but Caltrans has moved onto other methods. Seattle of all places though… wild.

    • Philip Kim


      Very similar to my custom – Paul brazeons, WI rear hubs, Dyno front hub, fenders, etc. My only bike and I ride through rain, snow, sunshine in DC, which is not California.

      • DaymanDaryl

        Sweet bike! Who was the builder? Norther?

        • Philip Kim


          • Karl S.

            Do you happen to know the length of your seat tube? I’d like to use that tail light on a future custom and am wondering if the beam clears the fender well enough or if a chainstay mounted tail light would be better.

          • Philip Kim

            51-52cm c-t-c.

          • Karl S.

            Word. Thanks!

  • Robert Lamb

    Simply lovely. Quite literally makes me want to ride it to work. Chapeau.

  • Thanom Rafats

    All weather, you want a fat e bike like Moar. 4 inch tires for ice. Winter built racks?? I don’t understand how that would even help.

    • All weather is subjective, but no one is commuting to a desk job on the Alaska Highway.

  • Eric Hancock

    This is so good. Elegant build. I’d take one.

    Though, for some reason, I want this bike to have a frame pump. And I want to tighten the nut on that valve stem.

  • Nicholas Petersen

    #10 man. So good.

  • Jared Jerome


  • Bil Thorne

    I want to take some scissors to the bag’s straps.

  • AdamBike99

    Beautiful. Elegant. Understated (especially at a quick glance). Purposeful.

    These days, I struggle with putting rim brakes (even amazing Paul centerpulls) in the same sentence as “all weather.”
    I’d simply have spec’d it with Klampers (if it were MY build but I realize IT’S NOT MY BIKE). LoL!

  • Thomas Blak

    I saw the bike at the Philly bike show and loved it. So much so, that I decided Eric was going to build my next bike.

  • kermitonwheels

    That’s a super elegant bike.

  • Western Rapid

    I remember when a bike with discs was a rarity on here. Now, it feels more like a bike with rim brakes is a rarity. Love what I’m seeing. And, as a rider of a bike with PAUL cantis and levers, I can imagine how nice that rides…

    • meaty_urologist

      this is something that i keep revisiting. here in north tx, a rim brake bike is all you need- even when it rains it’s not a nuisance enough to require discs or really even fenders….
      for some bikes (mtb, fat tires etc) i’d call discs a necessity…..almost everything else i’d say a decent set of rim brakes are more than enough. i changed my thought process within the last year after exclusively riding discs for 6,000+ miles. the ONLY advantage i see with discs is not wearing out the rim prematurely, but i’ve seen so many rim, spoke and hub failures that had nothing to do with brake track wear, it almost seems like a non-issue.
      with kool stop pads and a machined brake track, a bike doesn’t experience much more (if any) reduced braking in the wet.
      just my .02

  • Kevin J. Smith

    Beautiful work. I also wanted to trim those straps and tighten that valve nut. But very inspirational.