Picking up where yesterday’s post left off, we’ve got our second and final gallery from the Philly Bike Expo, featuring track bikes, gravel bikes, commuters, and a high-pivot full suspension. Read on for John’s closing thoughts on the offerings from this year’s Expo and a reflective outro on the future of custom bike showcases…
When I lived in New York City, we rode our bikes to Philadelphia every year for the Philly Bike Expo. At the time, the event was hosted inside an old armory in the city, and featured a handful of framebuilders, makers, and companies with roots mostly in commuter cycling. Back then, the Philly Bike Expo felt like a family. I moved out of the Northeast shortly after and was really looking forward to reconnecting with old friends.
The last time I made it to an Expo was in 2012, and a lot has changed. While the same soul is still very much present, the venue, size, and impact of the Philly Bike Expo have grown. After a two-year pandemic hiatus and a relatively subdued 2021 year, it was back and bigger than ever for 2022. Cari and I flew to Philadelphia to get out of Santa Fe for a few days, soak in some big(ger) city food, and take in the Expo, so let’s get to it.
For our final feature from the 2021 Philly Bike Expo, we’re taking a look at this beautiful Town & Country all-road from LaMarche Bike Co. Tom LaMarche (yes, that Tom LaMarche) has been on and around bikes for a good chunk of his life. In addition to being a sponsored fixed-gear freestyle rider and professional stuntman, Tom recently added framebuilder to his resume. He’s currently offering two framesets – one is a rowdy-looking 27.5″ hardtail and the other is the uber-capable Town & Country. Continue reading below for details on the Town & Country Tom had exquisitely built up for the Expo, as documented by Jarrod Bunk‘s luxe photoset.
Jarrod Bunk referred to Guy Stone as a “bike superhero” following his time photographing Guy’s “New Trix” singlespeed mountain bike at the 2021 Philly Bike Expo. A tax accountant by day and framebuilder by night (and afternoon, early morning, lunch brakes, etc), Guy fabricates his own handmade lugs (sometimes handmade bottom brackets as well) and free-brazes frames without the use of a traditional fixture or jig. He also isn’t opposed to eschewing industry trends to achieve the perfect fit for his riders, allowing form to follow function. Below, we take a detailed look at Guy’s personal New Trix singlespeed, along with insights into his design process.
Since 2014, Dan Schaumann has been a full-time professor at University of Illinois at Chicago’s School of Design and runs a R+D lab within the Department of Ophthalmology. In addition to his teaching duties, various design-related past times, and riding/racing bikes, Dan has been building frames as Pachyderm Bikes out of the Chicago-based Bubbly Dynamics co-op workshop and now from his own garage shop space. Through peer and self-teaching at Bubbly, Dan honed his craft and has built race bikes for himself, teammates, and friends. He’s even started teaching others the art of framebuilding. Continue reading below for Dan’s description of the cyclocross bike he built for his friend Sam Scipio and displayed at the 2021 Philly Bike Expo, as documented by Jarrod Bunk‘s imagery.
Junkyard cats are notoriously difficult to wrangle, which is why we don’t have any portraits of Casey Sussman or Stephen Bilenky from this year’s Philly Bike Expo. What we do have, however, is a photoset documenting the duo’s new Tracklocross bikes from their collective endeavor Junkyard Cats. Paying homage to Junkyard Cross races of yesteryear, bikes that Sussman (Mars Cycles) and Bilenky (Bilenky Cycle Works) build together will feature the Junkyard Cats name, including a five-size, five-color run of handmade, lightweight steel, raw, un-filed fillet brazed Tracklocross bikes. Jarrod Bunk pulled one of these Tracklocross builds aside to photograph at this year’s Philly Bike Expo, which we’re looking at in detail below.
Stephen Wood, of Swood Cycles, has been making custom steel frames and racks in Richmond, VA for a couple of years now. At this year’s Philly Bike Expo, Jarrod Bunk linked up with Stephen to photograph his eleventh Swood frame, the “Irie” Road+. Below, Stephen offers a few insights into his trajectory of becoming a framebuilder and, paired with Jarrod’s photos, walks us through this stunningly detailed machine.
Maybe you’ve been there — you’re sitting at a buffet, you’ve overloaded your plate, and you’re thinking “what am I going to do now?” Well, Beth Morford of Frontier Bikes has a voracious appetite for work and her plates have been pretty full balancing Olympic level massage with bike shop ownership for some tome now. More recently, she’s added in frame building to her repertoire and managed to put this singlespeed gravel time trial bike together just in the nick of time to be displayed as part of SRAM’s Inclusivity Scholarship Program this year at Philly Bike Expo
Leave it to Rivendell to create a new genre of bike design that harkens back to a simpler time in cycling history, while also employing modern production methods and componentry. The Susie W. Longbolts/ Wolbis Slugstone and it’s heavier-duty cousin, the Gus Boots Willsen, are what Rivendell refers to as “hillibikes.” Their design is modern, but their overall concept is influenced by early mountain bikes ridden on Mt Tamalpais, north of San Fransisco, in the ’80s. And, by the way, their names are all anagrams of each other. Rivendell had a decked-out Wolbis at this year’s Philly Bike Expo where Jarrod Bunk caught up with them to photograph the build and learn more about these hillbikes from Rivendell’s Will Keating.
Bryan Hollingsworth of Royal H Cycles has shown bikes at each Philly Bike Expo since its debut in 2009. And he always brings the heat. This year, Bryan returned with another stunning creation, the Bed of Roses, which blends classic randonneur elements with modern accouterments. Bryan walks us through the design impetus for this artistic build below, along with Jarrod Bunk‘s illustrative imagery.
Philly local, Drew Guldalian of Engin Cycles, is renowned for his titanium bicycle fabrication (recall his beautiful Gilded Ti Hardtail from the 2019 Philly Bike Expo) and machining precision componentry like CNC stems and seat collars. Drew also produces various framebuilding tools like the Engin Wheel Tool and the Process Frame Fixture. Jarrod Bunk connected with Drew at this year’s Philly Bike Expo to photograph the frame fixture Drew had on display at the show. Continue reading below for Drew’s take on how nearly one-hundred years of combined framebuilding expertise culminated in the development of the Process Frame Fixture, along with Jarrod’s always-detailed imagery.
The Philly Bike Expo often has a good mix of seasoned builders and others that are beginning to hone their craft. Sam Scipio just started building frames earlier this year under the moniker Jubilee Manufacturing and already had a beautiful cyclocross bike (her second build) ready to show off at the Expo. Today, accompanying Jarrod Bunk‘s detailed photos, Sam talks about her bike and why she’s inspired to be building frames.
Based in Pawtuxet Village, RI, Brian Chapman builds intricately detailed bikes blending classic design and vintage parts with a modern approach. Brian is no stranger here, as we’ve documented a number of Chapman Cycles over the years. Jarrod Bunk linked up with Brian once again at this year’s Philly Bike Expo to photograph the Basket Commuter bike Brian recently built for a customer that wanted to carry a dog on-board. Continue reading to learn more about this bike and to see all of its exquisite detailing!
It’s not all bike frames and parts at the Philly Bike Expo. Jarrod Bunk caught up with a couple of framebuilding fixture-makers at the show and the first one we’re showcasing is the Creator Fixture Frame from Joe Roggenbuck of COBRA Framebuilding.
Where do I even begin here? At first, I thought Chris brought back the 2013 NAHBS track bike I photographed, and then I thought it was his personal blue track bike, stripped raw since it has the same Drillium Revival stem. Upon closer examination, this is true-to-form Chris Bishop doing his thing with the simplest form of bicycle. I just got off the phone with Chris Bishop where we spent a good forty-five minutes discussing this bike. There’s a lot going on with this “simple” machine so let’s get to it!
Zach Small’s Amigo Frameworks in Nashville, TN recently announced a preorder for the new uber-adaptable Bug Out gravel bike. Featuring the ability to run one speed or twelve, flat bars or drops, adjustable headtube angle, modifiable wheelbase, and room for up to 700 x 50c tires, the Bug Out is designed to handle pretty much anything thrown at it. Zach had one built-up and on display at this year’s Philly Bike Expo where we were able to take an up-close and detailed look.
2021 brought about the return of the Philly Bike Expo after a year-long hiatus due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. We’ve got a lot of coverage on the way sporadically, thanks to Jarrod Bunk of Hope Cyclery but we really want to share the People’s Choice Winner: Jaqueline Mautner from Untitled Cycles‘ Sophie Taeuber-Arp homage gravel bike with SRAM AXS EXPLR, so read on below for a synopsis of this project by Jacqueline Mautner and plenty of beautiful compositions by Jarrod!
Hanford Cycles calls Philadelphia their home and as home town heros, at this year’s Philly Bike Expo, they brought a subtle and subdued fendered road bike, when compared their ornate and attention-grabbing classic randonneur bike from last year’s show. Simon of Hanford Cycles worked for Bilenky for 14 years, before leaving to launch his own enterprise, Hanford Cycles. As you can see from the lugwork on this and all of Simon’s bikes, it appears to be working out for him just fine.
The details on this long distance road bike are stunning! It’s equipped with a SON hub for a generator lamp eventually, fenders, cantilever brakes for extra clearance around the fenders, and a geometry tuned for the long road ahead.