Readers’ Rides: Mathilda’s Pink Unicorn


Readers’ Rides: Mathilda’s Pink Unicorn

Today’s Readers’ Rides is a special one. Sent in by Mathilda and her father Chris, who built this bike for her from the ground up. Let’s check out this unique, like a unicorn, Readers’ Rides below!

Hi John!

I’m not really a “reader” (as I don’t know how to read just yet), but here is my “ride”. I thought you might like to see it.

Poppa (that’s my dad, in case you didn’t know) shows me photos from your website every week. We especially liked it when you posted that video of that guy named Danny doing funny tricks on that gymnastics equipment. Anyway, a few months ago Poppa decided to build me a pedal bike, too. I turned FOUR in February, so I’m a big-kid now and I needed a big-kid bike.

When Poppa asked me what color I wanted my bike to be, I said “Pink!”. (Pink and purple–or maybe rainbow–are my favorite colors, in case you didn’t know.) Then I added, “Like a giraffe!”. Poppa laughed and said he’d have to ask Rudi.

I’ve seen my dad build a few other bicycles (I think he’s built two maybe? Or six? I’m not sure–my math is so-so). This time, though, he let me watch more closely and help a little. I don’t like flux. Poppa says it gets under his fingernails and stings like when lemon juice gets in a cut. Yuck. Poppa also said he worked on my bike mostly when I was asleep. He goes down to his “shop” most nights, after he reads to me and feeds Zeus (that’s our dog, in case you didn’t know).

It took Poppa longer than he thought it would to build my bike. He missed my birthday by a few weeks, but it was ok because he gave me an extra piece of cake AND the cherry from his cocktail. Also, the bike is still a little too big for me. I need to grow an inch or two before I’ll really be able to SEND IT.

Oh right also, Poppa told me to tell you about the paint and the parts. Rudi and Evan painted the bike. When Poppa brought it home I belly laughed so hard. I couldn’t wait to show Nellie (that’s my stuffed giraffe, in case you didn’t know). The brakes were made by Paul (he’s from California, just like my aunt Cassie). The headset (that’s the turny purple part) was made by a KING named Chris. Tom’s son made the shiny seatpost (I don’t know who Tom is, though, sorry). The cranks and bars and brake levers started out black but Poppa said he couldn’t “let that shit stand”, so he “stripped and brushed” them. I’m not sure what any of that means. The hubs came from someone named Milwaukee. Poppa built the wheels, too! The seat has a big, garish (that’s fancy for ugly, in case you didn’t know) SDG logo on it, but I don’t know who made it. Poppa says nice kid saddles are unicorns. UNICORNS?! Who knows…

Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to ride my bike. Since the world is sick, I haven’t been able to go to school for a really long time. Cruising our quiet neighborhood streets with Poppa is going to be so, so, so fun. Poppa said we can even try some tricks like Danny! Momma said she doesn’t care what we do as long as I don’t fall. Poppa says I’m definitely going to fall, but that when I do fall, I should try to make sure the bike lands on top of me, so as not to “scratch the new baby”. He’s silly.



Parts Spec:

  • Fillet-brazed frame, fork, stem by me
  • Paint by Black Magic Paint
  • Chris King 1″ threadless headset
  • Paul Component Mini-Moto brakes
  • Spawn Cycles Crankset, stripped and brushed
  • Tektro mini-levers, stripped and brushed
  • Newbaums cotton bar tape
  • Chromag Radar mini platform pedals
  • Milwaukee track hubs and some no-name 16″ rims
  • Kenda tires
  • SDG junior saddle

If you’d like to follow along the build process, check out this thread on Velocipede Salon!

We’d like to thank all of you who have submitted Readers Rides builds to be shared over here. The response has been incredible and we have so many to share over the next few months. Feel free to submit your bike, listing details, components, and other information. You can also include a portrait of yourself with your bike and your Instagram account! Please, shoot landscape-orientation photos, not portrait. Thanks!