Brooklyn’s Deluxe Cycles – Cooper Ray

Brooklyn’s Deluxe Cycles
Words by Wilis Johnson and photos by Cooper Ray (unless noted otherwise)

Deluxe was born from the experience of the mechanics and riders who work in the shop. The business itself is built around building deeper, more intimate relationships with the customers, the suppliers, and everyone down the line. Every bit of the shop has more effort and thought put into it: The focus here is quality over quantity. Being confined to a studio space improves the quality of the work and attention to detail of what is being produced – this is possible without the distraction of the storefront and what that entails. You walk into Deluxe and you realize how intimate the space is. Located in Bed-Stuy in Brooklyn, the lofty studio feels more like someones living room than a traditional bike shop.

Brooklyn's Deluxe Cycles - Cooper Ray

The passion runs way deeper than just new products or services, it’s stuff we’re genuinely excited about and want to associate with. Everyone at Deluxe is exceptionally knowledgable about what they do and take pride in how they do it; basically they take the time to do things right way and un-rushed. There’s thought and reasoning put into every detail of what the shop carries and what it offers, from how the No.22 titanium bikes are hand crafted in upstate New York, to the in-house products the shop designs or brands, to why you should use a specific rim and tire combination on that custom wheel build for that application. The vision of Deluxe is based on years of cumulative experience throughout the cycling community and culture, cycling industry, and the multidisciplinary riding and racing surrounding it.

Brooklyn's Deluxe Cycles - Cooper Ray

Everyone involved with the shop is a rider at heart: they live and breathe riding and racing bicycles across disciplines and backgrounds. There’s a reason behind why the shop carries what it does: From climbing a mountain pass in the south of France and descending at 50mph, pushing everything to the limit through frozen mud and snow during the last minutes of a cyclocross race, to splitting lanes on a highway in the pouring rain in Mexico City with less space than your shoulder width on a track bike with no brakes. The guys at deluxe have a multitude of experience in the saddle, and reasoning for why they use the bicycles and components they do. Theres a lust for riding, racing, and exploration that demands the highest quality and most reliable products available – this is reflected in what you’ll find in the shop. Nothing makes them happier than getting people on the right equipment, and hearing positive feedback on the projects they’ve worked on with their customers after they’ve put them to the test.

Brooklyn's Deluxe Cycles - Cooper Ray

While Deluxe offers top-notch bicycles and mechanical service, these services are provided at the highest possible level of workmanship possible without the ego or intimidation factor that they are often associated with in some high-end shops. They are more interested in educating and working with their clients along the way, which goes back to the idea of fostering relationships and trust within their clients. Deluxe encompasses all the services of a traditional bike shop, but takes their standard to the next level. From drilling a frame for custom internal Di2 routing, to high polishing vintage componentry: theres a deeper theres a depth of knowledge and experience available. Every single wheel that gets built in the shop goes through multiple tension balance checks on a P&K truing stand and between Wilis and Brian, literally thousands of wheels have been built throughout their years of building wheels. The same goes for custom fitting: doing full assessments on people, their bodies, and history of physicality before even looking at their bikes. Complicated or adaptive fit for professional racers to people with physical limitations are welcomed. Simply put, the guys at Deluxe know how to do those things your typical bike shop might not be willing to do – and they do it well.

Deluxe was founded in July 2014 by Wilis Johnson, which was also the first season of Deluxe Cycles Racing along with Cooper Ray, Jack Kitching, and Wilis himself. Look for the No. 22 Factory racing team this 2015 cyclocross season and more Deluxe Racing in the future.


Follow Deluxe on Instagram and Cooper on Instagram.