The 2023 Bespoked Handmade Bicycle Show just wrapped after three action-packed days of talks, parties, and drooling over heaps of amazing craftsmanship on display. Josh was on the ground at the Dresden, Germany airport where this year’s event took place, and, below, shares his second gallery of bikes and a couple of interesting components. Let’s get right into it!
Here we are with another gallery of amazing bikes and some really cool components. There’s a lot to get through again today, so I’ll save my additional commentary on what a great show this was and leave you to check out these lovely builds!
Auguste Cycles first appeared on my Radar in Petor’s Concours de Machines coverage last year with Victor’s detailed touring frame and wild moto-inspired suspension truss fork. For Bespoked this year, they had a few interesting creations on display, but this modded 1940s French tandem caught my eye.
Victor’s goal was to make this a more modern adventure bike that could accept contemporary components like disc brakes, cranks, and touchpoints. This required reinforcing the fork and rear end. He was able to retain the bottom bracket shells but with standard fat bike bottom brackets that matched the original width of the frame and, of course, two left cups to work with French threading. The drivetrain was modernized from the original left-side transmission using a rear eccentric BB and Cane Creek double chainring up front. Bags are made by Tangente Atelier in a congruent style with the bike, using leather and complementary colored material.
See more at Auguste Cycles
Talk about German precision engineering and manufacturing. WOW. It was a pleasure to finally see Simon Metzner’s work in person. The attention to detail, tooling paths, and overall presentation of both ACTOFIVE models are incredible. The I-Train is the newer shorter travel counterpart to the original enduro-focused P-Train. The I-Train is a versatile platform that can run from 105 to 135mm of rear travel and up to a 140mm fork. Reach is dependent on size (from 400-500mm), it’s mullet-ready, made in very small quantities, and designed for long shreddy days.
This is the first to have chainstays also fully designed and made by ACTOFIVE. Previously, the entire rear triangles were made by fellow German fabricators Nikolai Bicycles. Still a relatively young brand, Simon wanted to ensure everything was dialed in with his bikes and production so waited until just recently to begin machining these additional components. ACTOFIVE is also offering two varieties of cranksets and chainrings, as seen on this purple anodized I-Train. If you’ve been lucky enough to throw your leg over one of these beauties, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
See more at ACTOFIVE
Bididu is an old Luxembourg-based bicycle club and Bididu Cycles is Ante’s hobby framebuilding passion project, making a limited amount (just one or two) of super swoopy tubed frames each year. All Bididu bikes are fillet-brazed steel with mostly internal cable routing and stainless lettering. This one in particular has a custom stainless pipe holder and custom in-house designed laser-cut case for the pinion gearbox.
This build was for a customer also living in the area of Luxembourg bordering Belgium and Germany where the hills are plentiful and a plus-tire hardtail helps negotiate the varied terrain. Each Bididu customer gets to spend at least one day in the shop participating in the build process so they have an idea of how extensive it is. To achieve such wild bends, tubes are filled with water and then frozen to avoid any unwanted kinks. To see more about the process and bike examples, head over to the Bididu IG.
See more at Bididu
We’ve featured a few Manivelle projects here in the past, including a review of their basket and bag collaboration with Wizard Works and 2022 Concours de Machines build. This is builder Silvin’s personal commuter and, while it appears simple at first glance, there are many cool details.
Built around a low trail geometry with a half-truss fork, the intent is to carry loads around the city. While Silvin had the frame for a while, he revamped it for the show with internal routing and built a new fork that seamlessly holds the Manivelle/Caddie basket with one of their new special bags that also fits right in the basket. The seatpost is a special collaboration with French manufacturers StarBar who typically make jet ski handlebars like the one featured on this build, in addition to other marine products.
See more at Manivelle
It wouldn’t be a Bespoked show without a strong showing from London-based Quirk Cycles. Now building bikes for over a decade, Quirk has developed a super clean style which is exemplified in this stainless steel Durmitor ULTRA. Built to take advantage of the latest trends in additive manufacturing, Quirk developed unique 3D-printed stainless steel parts to overcome the traditional limits of the fabrication process.
Along with printed dropouts and seat cluster, a fully 3D-printed head tube was designed to allow for seamless integration of the front end, with a custom printed top cap for compatibility with the Enve In-Route system. Using Columbus XCR stainless steel, the build was finished to show off the beauty of the raw material with translucent candy colors that shift in hue and intensity. Terrazzo islands scatter the rear end, drawing the eye along the unique lines of the frame. Rob claims this is the world’s only stainless steel 3D-printed road bike.
See more at Quirk Cycles
Another of the SRAM Inclusity Scholarship awardees, Tore Jørgenson of Star Fish Bicycles presented this excellent zippy mixte. Tore typically builds bikes that are counterpoint to predominant trends of fast, carbon, macho attitude to bikes seen throughout mainstream bicycling. Focusing then on comfortable and stylish bikes – with thin tubes and decorative aspects – is the alternative approach for Star Fish; “soft bikes for soft people.”
Mixte bikes were originally a French concept to serve any gender and, as a non-binary person building for the Inclusivity Scholarship, this type of bike made sense for Tore. Beyond this, it’s Tore’s interesting take on a racing bike equipped for long rides on tarmac but also the thick tires and low-trail geo also make it fun on dirt roads and trails. The handmade bartape was done by a traditional weaver friend and the handpainted logos were from Tore’s sister who is a professional sign painter. Make sure to scroll through the gallery above because there are TONS of wonderful small details on this bike.
See more at Star Fish Bicycles
Jean Michel of Tim Tas+Rek is primarily a maker of bicycle touring bags and racks but also builds his own personal bikes too. So everything you see here – bikes and bags – were all made by Jean Michel. The whole project started with the dotted orange cap he designed and expanded from there. Jean Michel and his son do a lot of tours and they weren’t happy with their previous bikes, so decided to try building their own to get what they wanted. This hardtail can be split in two via the bolting system at both points where the two triangles connect. He had used the thin chainstay design on lighter-duty bikes in the past so tried it here too, but he commented they might be too thin. But the cool thing here is that he can just bolt on a new rear triangle rather than build a completely new frame.
As a bag maker, this hardtail chassis is a perfect way to display Tim Tas+Rek custom capabilities. With the dotted hat as inspiration, Jean Michel cut out an extensive dotted grid pattern in the bags, all color coordinated with the frame. Jean Michel is a fairly tall fellow so had ample frame space to work with here. As with the two-toned panniers, this project was for experimentation with a molle attachment system for bottle bags and accessory pouches. Jean Michel will take these out soon for a tour, so stay tuned to his channels to see if this system makes it to production!
See more at Tim Tas+Rek
This understated yet elegant gravel bike is emblematic of everything I’ve seen from Polish builders True Love Cycles (remember this Heart Breaker?!). This bike has a fairly standard gravel geometry with 70° head angle and 73° seat tube with a lower bottom bracket. It’s built specifically for 29″ wheels with long reach, short stem, and wide/shallow bars.
The build kit here is something special and most of it was found affordably through lots of time spent scouring eBay. It uses mostly European components, starting with the Sachs rear derailleur down to the Polish-made Dandy Horse Wheelset. The front derailleur is controlled by a downtube shifter, which builder Jan says is quite a pleasant experience in practice. Other custom touches include the in-hoise machined HS spacers and etched top cap. Hailey is currently working on a project with True Love, which we’re super excited about, so stay tuned for more!
See more at True Love
Made in the Czech Republic, the Joy Seat from Posedla is reportedly the first fully custom 3D-printed saddle. Using a fancy algorithm, Posedla calculates a “perfectly fitting” saddle based on a rider’s sit bones shape, flexibility, size, and style of riding. This process starts with a custom imprint of a rider’s rear end – along with other related pertinent details – and is completed around six weeks later when the saddle arrives in the mail. Beyond a perfect fit, Posedla claims the Joy Seat alleviates pressure on soft tissue and nerve endings due to the center channel and rider-dependant padding thickness. Are they worth the hefty €490 price tag? A few of us will be working on Joy Seat reviews, so stay tuned to see how they fare after we put in some serious mileage!
See more at Posedla
Our friends at Gramm and Allygn are regularly dreaming up efficient solutions for carrying gear on bikes. Coming later this year, the brand duo will be releasing small front and rear racks (the rear are called Wing Racks and fronts are Micro Riders) that will carry Micro Pannier bags.
The accessories use Fidlock magnetic snap attachments for a simple and secure fit. The panniers will be 3L and kept stable by the parallel rack mounting points rather than a single line. Micro Rider racks will be available for any fork with 3-pack mounts, while the rear Wing Racks are specifically designed for Fern and Allygn frames. These will likely be available around the holiday season and we’ll be sure to share an update when they are!
And that’s it for today! We’ll be back with another full gallery from Bespoked tomorrow!