Beautiful Bicycles

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Mark from Prova Cycles’ Ripido Prototype MTB, aka the ParTi Hardtail

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Mark from Prova Cycles’ Ripido Prototype MTB, aka the ParTi Hardtail

During the ENVE Open House framebuilder exhibit, one builder traveled further than the others: Mark from Prova Cycles in Melbourne, Australia. I’d never seen a Prova in person. Instead, I’ve had to check out his work via the lens of FYXO and the Prova Instagram. Mark learned at the Bicycle Academy in the UK and has been really putting in work on his brand. Let me tell you. It shows.

Trevor and His Cascadia Cycles Doug Fir Rigid MTB

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Trevor and His Cascadia Cycles Doug Fir Rigid MTB

Everything Trevor does seems to be dripping in story and lore as he comes from the homeland of mountain biking, Marin. He is the kind of person you just find stumbling out of the woods, shoeless, with the biggest grin on his face.  In fact, recently he finally gained the attention of the owner of Black Mountain Cycles, after years of visiting the shop, because Ted King ran into Trevor out on the trails and regaled the shop owner about his encounter with the barefoot forest nymph.

How to Burn Your Fingers: A Special Rossman for Paris-Brest-Paris

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How to Burn Your Fingers: A Special Rossman for Paris-Brest-Paris

Paris-Brest-Paris is a crucible, a pilgrimage, a quest. Paris-Brest-Paris is a cycling event. It runs 1200km (768 Miles) from Paris to Brest on the coast and back. Out and back. 6,000 people participate. They start in waves, pulsing towards the French Coast in a chrome-fendered murmuration of wool jerseys, Berthoud bags, and dyno lights. Racers have to finish their migration to the coast and back in 90 hours. 90 hours, on a bike – that’s little to very little sleep. That’s riding pretty much straight through.

Lael Wilcox’s 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race Specialized Fuse Bikepacking Setup

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Lael Wilcox’s 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race Specialized Fuse Bikepacking Setup

With the 2019 Silk Road Mountain Race beginning tomorrow, we thought we’d give a break-down for what Lael Wilcox will be carrying on her bike for the duration of the event. Lael is hoping to finish the 1700 kilometer course with 27,000m elevation in 7-9 days. In order to do that, she has her setup dialed. Check out the full list below for those curious as to what an ultra-endurance racer carries on their bike.

The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 02: Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion

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The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 02: Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion

ENVE has been supporting frame builders, both in the US and internationally for years now and has developed a symbiotic relationship with these artisans, who choose to put their forks, bars, and wheels on customer’s build kit lists. With this catalog of talent at their fingertips, they decided to have an Open House to celebrate not only their factory and offices in Ogden, Utah but the frame builders who choose ENVE to build out their complete bikes.

Continuing yesterday’s coverage are Beautiful Bicycles from Sklar, Falconer, Sarto, Sage, Argonaut, Moots, Retrotec, Legor, Bastion.

The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 01: Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, Allied

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The Beautiful Bicycles of the ENVE Open House Part 01: Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, Allied

ENVE has been supporting frame builders, both in the US and internationally for years now and has developed a symbiotic relationship with these artisans, who choose to put their forks, bars, and wheels on customer’s build kit lists. With this catalog of talent at their fingertips, they decided to have an Open House to celebrate not only their factory and offices in Ogden, Utah but the frame builders who choose ENVE to build out their complete bikes.

Over the next two mornings, we’ll look at a list of 20 frame builders’ bikes, in galleries filled with so many Beautiful Bicycles it’ll leave your mouth watering. Up first is Prova, Holland, Alchemy, Salt Air, Mosaic, Pursuit, English, Speedvagen, Bingham, and Allied.

Al Morris’ Occult of Cyclocamping Rivendell Sam Hillborne

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Al Morris’ Occult of Cyclocamping Rivendell Sam Hillborne

I’ve always jokingly called Rivendell Bicycles a Luddite cult of rim brakes lead by the charismatic Grant Peterson wielding his fistful of seatpost and wool undies. All kidding aside, I’d be honored to own a Rivendell, they are amazing and beautiful bikes made by great people, but as the first mechanic I worked under told me oh-so-many years ago, “Grant doesn’t sell his bikes to hipsters” as a response to my ogling of one of their bikes. So, I guess I’m outta luck. Anywho, when I pinged Al about his Sam Hillborne for some stories or insight into the build the first thing he said was, “The purple, white and black motif was inspired by the Heavens Gate cult of California when they left earth for the UFO behind the Hale-Bopp comet. That’s where the colorway came from.” Whelp there ya have it folks, a “bicycle cult” frame built around the color scheme of an actual cult, my low-hanging-fruit-esoteric-bike-nerd joke had come full circle.

John’s Falconer Chubby Road

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John’s Falconer Chubby Road

A few towns over from Downieville, California, where John works at Yuba Expeditions during the summer months, is Quincy, California where Cameron Falconer‘s workshop is. John and Cam knew each other back when they both lived in the Bay Area and since relocating to what is called the “Lost Sierra,” John really wanted a road bike that could handle the area’s veritable Sierra chunk.

Curtis’ Gold Rush Retrotec Funduro 29er

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Curtis’ Gold Rush Retrotec Funduro 29er

Downieville is a sleepy little town in the Lost Sierra. It was first known as “the Forks” due to its geographical location at the confluence of the Yuba and Downie rivers. Like many towns in the area, Downieville was founded in 1849 during the Gold Rush. Later, it was named after the town’s founder, Major William Downie. As you might imagine, this place has a sordid history during the lawless heyday of gold mining, including being the location for the only hanging of a woman in California history. Josefa Segovia was a pregnant Californio resident of the town and was lynched by an angry mob, accusing her of killing a miner in July 1851.

Nearby, in the Sierra Buttes, the largest gold nugget in California history was found in 1869. It weighed a whopping 109.2 pounds. Gold has always been on the lips of those who flocked to Downieville. Still, to this day, don’t be surprised to see active mining claims and people panning for gold at the confluence of the Yuba and Downie rivers.

Since 1995, the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship has thrown a special little event in this town. The Downieville Classic features an XC race on Saturday and a Downhill on Sunday. The terrain is rocky, steep, and silty, making for a tough day on the bike no matter what you’re riding. While they’re by no means rare, seeing people riding and racing hardtails always causes a stir. So this year, I set out to photograph some of these bikes, including Curtis Inglis from Retrotec‘s own Funduro, a shining, gold nugget of a bike.

Shooting the Sklar Sweet Spot 29er Hardtail in the Mountains of Bozeman

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Shooting the Sklar Sweet Spot 29er Hardtail in the Mountains of Bozeman

Bozeman, Montana is a magical place to mountain bike in the summertime. Last year’s trip was epic, so this year we wanted to re-visit this quaint little mountain town. While we were there last month, I was able to shoot Adam Sklar’s latest project, the Sweet Spot 29er MTB. While Adam usually takes on custom bikes, the Sweet Spot will be the brand’s first production model. The Sweet Spot is made in Bozeman, Montana, just like all Sklar Bikes. The aim here is to lower wait times, while not sacrificing quality. It also enables Adam to sell a model that is in-line with his philosophy on mountain bikes.

The Custom Bikes of Grinduro Scotland: Clandestine, Ted James, Spoon Customs, and The Bicycle Academy

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The Custom Bikes of Grinduro Scotland: Clandestine, Ted James, Spoon Customs, and The Bicycle Academy

Words by Jack Watney, photos by Adam Gasson

Grinduro Frame Builder Event Format

The Bicycle Academy (TBA) put the Grinduro Scotland frame builder competition format together 3 years ago as a way of creating a platform for frame builders to showcase what they do. It’s an opportunity for builders to work to a tight brief, but at the same time to be playful and creative with bike design. They get to make their own idea of a perfect bike, to keep for themselves, something that doesn’t happen as often as you might think.

Grav. Grav. And Double Grav! the Bicycle Academy at Grinduro Scotland

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Grav. Grav. And Double Grav! the Bicycle Academy at Grinduro Scotland

Words by Jack Watney, photos by Adam Gasson

And now here they are! The most daredevil group of daffy frame builders to ever whirl their wheels in the WACKY RACES. Competing for the title of Grinduro’s wackiest frame builder. The bikes are approaching the starting line.

First, is the TBA GXC driven by Tom Sturdy. Next is paratrooper Will Barcode on the TBA Splat Grav. Flying through the air is the Rad Roamer piloted by Ted James. Maneuvering for position is Andy Carr on the Spoon Customs Fat Tracker and right on his tail is Pi Manson on his Caledonian Carrier.

Sneaking along last is the unmistakable Petor of Dear Susan Bicycles riding his award-winning ‘Mike Rotch’…

“Grav, Grav. And double Grav!”

Golden Saddle Rides: Mick from 100 Tacos’ Crust Nor’Easter Dirty Tourer

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Golden Saddle Rides: Mick from 100 Tacos’ Crust Nor’Easter Dirty Tourer

A bike that’s perfect for its one imperfection. Mick hasn’t ever owned a new bike. Not new, new. Like pulling a brand new frame out of a box, new. It’s not that he was opposed to new bikes, he just never really found a company or a frame that fit his ideologies. Over the past few months however, Crust Bikes‘ offerings have really piqued his interest. He works at Golden Saddle Cyclery, a shop that churns out balleur Crust builds all the time. When he saw the new Nor’Easter, it strummed his heartstrings.

A Cub House Built Cannondale F-Si Hi-MOD Throwback XC Bike!

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A Cub House Built Cannondale F-Si Hi-MOD Throwback XC Bike!

Most cyclists, and even non-cyclists, who enjoy the type of bike racing that involves going up and down hills know the name Eddy Merckx and of course The Tour de France. Road racing, and the companies associated with it, do a great job of embracing its European heritage and consistently reminding us of how the sport evolved into what it is today. This makes it easy easy to get pulled into the romanticized parts of road racing when companies like Campagnolo, Colnago, and Bianchi do such a great job of celebrating their places in what makes the sport special.

Brian Baylis Painted this Insane Splatter Two-Tone Holland Track Bike

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Brian Baylis Painted this Insane Splatter Two-Tone Holland Track Bike

Our buddy Cicli Pucci rolled into the shop the other day on this Holland Track Bike, and all of our jaws just dropped. Which is actually quite normal when Pucci rolls through. He’s been painting with Joe Bell for many years now and always has the most fly of bikes, always hand-painted by himself. You all probably remember his Azuki Pro that was featured here about a year ago.

A Second Hand Falconer is Still a Falconer

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A Second Hand Falconer is Still a Falconer

It all began with an Instagram post: “why do I have to be Mr Pink?” Selling my road frame and fork, 74 head angle, 73 seat, 59cm effective top tube. Fits someone 6′ to 6’3″ or so. Frame is all True Temper S3 and has less than 3k miles on it. Paint has some flaws and cracking in it, nothing too bad. Frame clears a 27mm tire, fork a 25mm, could also substitute an Enve fork for better clearance for an upcharge. 1000$ with a King headset OBO, buyer pays shipping. Email me info@falconercycles.com with questions, no direct messages please.”