While going back through my pics from the show, I was trying to figure out who this was cause the logo on the downtube is not very clear. Luckily Bike Rumor published this excellent interview with Hernan Montenegro today so the mystery was solved. Hernan does these carbon frames in Los Angeles and you can learn more on his website.
I lived in San Francisco for most of the 90s and left when things starting getting kinda crazy with the first dot com thing. Well things have gotten A LOT more crazy there since, so I was very happy to discover that a framebuilder was making a go of it in my old home town. The other cool thing is that Andrew Low is focused on aluminum, a material that seems to have been largely forgotten. Finally, Low Bicycles are no-nonsense, purpose-built race machines. I talked to Andrew for a while and he is a super cool guy. He’s only been doing this since 2010! Anyway, more pics after the jump, plus a video of Andrew talking at Mission Workshop.
I just read this opinion by Richard Sachs in Handbuilt Bicycle News twice and I’m still not sure what his point is. Toward the end he seems to conclude: “My observation is that the average person wants a fast(er) track to the workbench, one that bypasses a true learning and mentored experience.” This may be true. Seems like everything is speeding up these days. Just watch this 14 year old girl kick Eddy Van Halen’s ass on YouTube. So yes, the world is changing, things are different now, all kinds of information is more widely available, and people find different ways to learn a skill or trade. But I also wonder: is a “a true learning and mentored experience” available today in the way it once was? And if you go to UBI or similar, go slow, build 20 or so quality frames for friends and family, is there a reason you shouldn’t hang out your shingle and try to make a go of it? Also, it seems to me that the world of framebuilding has changed a lot less than many other areas–just ask a musician or a writer. Mostly his article reminds me of this scene from Gran Torino.
I’m not super happy with the way my pics came out from the Victoria Cycles booth but this black and tan (yes, beer) 650b mtb was one of my favorite bikes at the show. In fact, of all the bikes I saw at NAHBS, this is the one that most made me want to just get on and ride away. These frames are built by Dave Hill in Salida, Colorado and the company is named after Dave’s wife, who I talked to briefly while snapping these pics. You can see a few more after the jump.
Ritchey brought several California-built bikes to NAHBS this year, all sporting the $450 “heritage” paint option (done by Rick at D&D Cycles in San Lorenzo, California). Love this camo paint–like the 80s Ritchey Commando. Check out the snow camo and orange/yellow fade after the jump!
And the purple award goes to Shamrock Cycles for this cool track bike!
Hard to beat a classic track bike in red! Love that fork! Check out the Caylor Cycles website for more info!
Breadwinner Cycles had one of the bigger displays at NAHBS this year. These babies are built with Columbus steel by Ira Ryan and Tony Pereira in Portland, Oregon. According to the website wait for a new custom frame is just 8 to 12 weeks. Not bad! Pretty cool little bike builder/configurator, too. Lots more pics after the jump!
Would you buy a wood bike? Here’s how Connor Wood Bicycles describes their bikes on their website:
STRONG – Steam bent, Kevlar reinforced and race tested
DURABLE – Protected with marine spar varnish
GREEN – Individually made from sustainable American hardwoods
BEAUTIFUL – Hand-sculpted ash and walnut woods
LOCAL – Made in Denver, CO USA
They are definitely beautiful and fun to look at! Lots more pics after the jump!
I have several hundred more pics to go through. Check back daily as I will be blogging two or three booths a day til done!