2018 Handmade Bicycle Show Australia: KUMO RADdonneur Dirt Tourer

2018 Handmade Bicycle Show Australia: KUMO Dirt Tourer
Photos and words by Andy White

It wasn’t that long ago that Kumo first took his flame to the flux and gave birth to steel machines. Keith has always had a distinctive style, and while early framesets focused on road and track, the frames he is most passionate about producing are a reflection of his first true love. Riding out into the bush, self-supported and free of distractions.

While this activity has become popularised as ‘bikepacking’, Keith told me about his first jaunt as a 14-year old which ignited a fire for longer and more challenging conquests.

Keith rode his pre-production Radonneur from his workshop in the industrial burbs of Canberra via the high country of NSW to show it in the flesh at the recent Handmade Bicycle Show Australia in Melbourne – the center of Australia’s cycling universe!

Keith’s had this to say about it:

“This bike is a prototype that I built to test a theory, to make a backcountry bikepacking rig that approached the niche from the direction of a rugged french randonneur style, rather than adjusting an MTB to make it bikepacking capable. I call it the RADdonneur.

I wanted to keep the bike nimble in tight techy stuff but still fast if you are lucky enough to hit smooth surfaces. This prototype has done approx 10,000km of testing over the last two years, rough nasty tracks, some of the harshest high country walking trails, management tracks and lumpy tussock punctuated alpine fields.

This frame takes a 650b wheelset, 2.4 front, 2.2 rear. 68mm threaded BB shell, 1 1/8″ HT. It features a custom massive platform rack with studs for direct mount bags, a custom stem and top cap. The fork is custom and has the SON SL dynamo system where the fork is a part of the circuit and there are no wires to snag when you remove the wheel. This design has gone through 4 prototypes and ~30,000km of cumulative bikepacking testing, I’ve now distilled what I want in a backcountry rig to offer a production RADdonneur frameset.

The production frameset is made by hand, by me, fillet brazed with Columbus tubing. The main changes from the prototype are 12mm through axles front and rear rather than QR, t47 73mm BB to boot the rear tyre clearance up to 2.4″ and a few changes in cable routing.

Production RADdonneurs will be available starting September this year and will be built in batches which can be purchased once they are built, you can then choose your paint colour and from a few extra features like custom stem, nameplate on the TT and some mounting options on the fork.”

Keith’s bike is adorned with bags by Oveja Negra and Andrew the Maker and one cockpit bag neatly conceals his Mavic Air drone. The Jones bars allow him to fix the controller to the bars and use follow me mode relatively securely. Anyone who has tried filming themselves with a drone will know this issue well!

Follow Kumo one bike at a time on Instagram.


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Our coverage from the Handmade Bicycle Show Australia would not be possible without the hard work of Andy White from FYXO. Follow FYXO on Instagram and visit FYXO‘s online store to pick up some goods. Thank you, Andy, and thank you to all the makers in Australia for putting together such an amazing showcase. There’s more to come!

  • boomforeal

    that is one rugged-ass looking bike

    i realize it would be a PITA for the photographer, but i would love it if an “unencumbered” profile shot were included in this type of gallery

    • Yeah, I wanna see the same thing. He rode the bike to the show in Melbourne from Canberra and is riding it back. 650km. I’d imagine taking everything off the bike, only to put it back on would be a PITA.

    • BurnDawg

      Crikey! Knew this bike looked familiar after checking out his website. Stoked to hear about someone coming back from something like that and still doing what they love.

  • nothingfuture

    Dingle-dangler: check.

    (this bike is rad and i love it even though I don’t do this sort of riding at all)

    • Nathan Fenchak

      Mug dangles are great for giving yourself the bad poops while you’re living in a tent.

      • Kumo Cycles

        Danglin’ boots the mineral content of your morning Coffee

  • Jared Jerome

    That seat lug and head tube are gonna be in my dreams tonight.

  • Matt Karwoski

    the skull is a nice touch

    • Kumo Cycles

      Found it in the middle of nowhere on the way down to the show, apparently a feral cat

  • Eldiente

    Love the RADonneur, looks like the bike equivalent of a land cruiser. Check out Keith’s Instagram page, his craftsmanship is amazing.

    • Kumo Cycles

      Cheers! Original inspiration for the bike was the Landrover Defender, hence the Kesswick green colour

      • Lewy

        That’s what I was going to say Swampy ;-)

  • Alex

    Reminds me a lot of how I built up my Rawland Ulv! https://www.instagram.com/p/BYUofVHhCDJ/?taken-by=amdennig

  • Jamie McKeon

    Meat pie koala drop bear fixie spin on my Icarus stem… how good is this mate!

    This bike is way beastlier in the flesh too. G’day Keith!

  • Alex Steadman

    God people who aren’t short have it so easy for packing stuff on bikes.

  • Kumo Cycles

    “It wasn’t that long ago that Kumo first took his flame to the flux and gave birth to steel machines”

    I’ve been at it for nearly 8 years John! Time flies I guess

    • Bas Rotgans

      @kumocycles:disqus how is your Sinewave mounted to the front loop of the handle bar? I’ve been trying to find a nice way to mount mine to 22.2mm, but am coming up short so far.

  • Peter Chesworth

    Most people would not even attempt that route Canberra to Melb. Devil’s in the detail and care, and Kumo bikes loaded with that. Great to see this coming out of my town, source of all this nations’ derision.

  • TOM

    I know that weight is not the utmost important thing here but how much does the Bike weigt without bags and stuff?? Thank you

    • Kumo Cycles

      No bloody idea. Blasting around the backcountry thinking about grams isn’t my style

      • That’s my take. I guess he’s just wondering if this is Surly weight (a tank) or more light-weight. My guess is the latter for sure.

        • Kumo Cycles

          The frameset is no beefcake, It’s a balance between durability and weight but it’s certainly not Surly level heavy.