Chris Bishop cleaned up shop at the 2012 NAHBS with a trinity of gorgeous frames. He won best fillet construction, best lugged construction and this frame brought home the best steel bike. That’s the second year in a row that he’s won that for a track bike and this one isn’t messing around. There’s nothing to hide here. Each builder was urged to bring an unpainted bike for this years show, prompting Chris to complete this frame rather quickly.
This haste doesn’t show in his craftsmanship however, as each 1970′s Prugnat pressed lug was painstakingly carved and reshaped with brass. The bottom bracket was hand carved, the track ends drilled, fork crown shaped and when he completed everything, nothing but classic track geometry was left. Steep angles, tight clearances and a complete Dura Ace 10-Pitch group set this apart from the rest. I had the pleasure of photographing it in an back alley on the final day of the show. See so yourself in the Gallery below, or perhaps you’d like to buy it? Check the details out below.
Just a few weeks ago, we got an in-depth look at Baum Cycles‘ facilities in Geelong, VIC, Australia. While at their shop, I got to see this bike in its perfect raw form. The welds were buttery smooth and the construction was impeccable, something that is often covered by paint. At the 2012 NAHBS, Darren Baum showed off his finest work, on a sleek, black backdrop, reminiscent of his photo studio back in Australia.
The two show-stoppers were Darren’s own Baum Corretto road bike, sporting brand-spankin’ new SRAM Red and the Rapha-inspired Baum track bike, complete with Busyman saddle and matching bar tape. The entire bike just oozes cool, right down to the black Campagnolo Record cranks from MASH SF. But what you weren’t expecting was that killer cockpit. Darren teamed up with Luescher Teknik to mold 3T track bars to an ENVE stem, resulting in a dark form that’s only at home in one of Melbourne’s velodromes.
Like a shark, when you see this approach you from behind, you know you’re in trouble. Check out more in the gallery.
To help break-down the doses from a few of these builder-specific NAHBS posts, I’ve began grouping three builders in together. The first one is comes from Rock Lobster, Cherubim and Igleheart. Each of these builders had something special to offer. Whether it’s experience, experimental design, extravagance or a mix of the three, they work quite well together.
Igleheart‘s booth was impressive. Chris displayed a few framesets with rather unique details, a dirt-kicking expedition bike and a rather clever step-through city bike with a top-cap switch for the high-power lamp, powered by a SON hub. It was one of the more compelling bikes at the show and not for any over-the-top finishing (aside from that Keith Anderson carbon-weave downtube decal on the road frame), just plain functionality.
Cherubim, once again wowed the crowds with their swooping and seductive lines. Their track bike was the Best in Show and the President’s Choice for the 2012 NAHBS and it’s easy to see why. Classic lines were exaggerated and yet, we can still see the track bike’s form present.
Rock Lobster‘s owner, Paul Sadoff brought a time-capsule of the work that he has made in his 30+ years of framebuilding. Present was the original Rock Lobster, a PBP rando, a modern cross bike, a road bike with a rather interesting drive-side downtube and many others. Walking into Paul’s booth was an experience in of itself. Each bike had a placard, telling its story.
The Gallery speaks for itself.
This bike has been floating around the Bishop Bikes Flickr for months. The amount of time that builders spend on randoneur bikes goes above and beyond the normal price for a frame. Not to mention the pain of getting Shimano Dura Ace to work with Suntour, Campagnolo and TA. All of this was precisely fused together in one complete Beautiful Bicycle, with more details than three or four frames combined. Did I mention it has a Campagnolo Portacatena? Talk about a show bike.
Each of Chris’ bikes at the 2012 NAHBS were painted by Bryan Myers in his wet paint shop, Fresh Frame and Ahmet’s 650b randonneur was the prize of the booth. It won best lugged construction bike and was in the running for the best in show. As I wheeled it out of the 2012 NAHBS, I could barely take photos without someone coming over to ogle it. This has to be Chris’ finest work yet. Shear beauty! Check out the gallery for more details.
Last year, one of my favorite bikes at NAHBS was the Shamrock cross / lightweight tourer. Let’s be honest, there isn’t a huge difference in the two bikes and if you could combine them, why not? This year, they returned with a few old tricks and some new ones. A mint-green city bike sat front and center, sporting a carbon Gates drive, quick-release racks and single-sided fender struts to facilitate the presence of disk brakes during wheel removal. This bike was oozing with style and well-branded style at that. Check out more from Shamrock in the Gallery.
Now, when you look at this Moth Attack track bike, I’m sure the first thing you noticed was the incredibly large head tube. That or the bright-ass paint. Whatever it was that first caught your eye, it’s working. There weren’t a whole lot of performance track machines at the 2012 NAHBS but this bike had enough beef for the whole show. Now all it needs is a BB30 Dura Ace pista spindle. Someone needs to get on that, ASAP. Looking at you Shimano! Check out more in the Gallery below.
Reminiscent of the Porsche Gulf race car liveries of the 1970′s, the newest addition to the Cielo cross family totes a bit more punch than your standard ‘cross frame. With a I8 Chris King headset, this steel beast is approved for UCI-sanctioned races and even a bit of off-road weekend fun. The retail on these are set at around $2,500 for frame and painted to match ENVE fork, with the headset. But that’s not the only bike to get a few upgrades in the Cielo line. Their 29′r MTB has an in-house, Cascade mountain-inspired paint job, curvier stays and won’t break the bank at around $1,900 (frame and headset). Check out the gallery below.
Hunter Cycles‘ work has always had that utilitarian, yet practical design sensibility. No matter what the wheel size or tire tread is, they look better well used and broken in. Hell, I was surprised none of them had dirt or mud on them, but I guess that’s NAHBS for ya. Every singe bike in the booth looked incredible and resilient. Basically, these bikes are meant to take a beating. At the 2012 NAHBS, I saw a lot of big-tire’d bikes but the Hunter dirt tourer kicked so much ass. Bolt-on frame bag, multi-layered paint, one massive yolk and a design to get some #campvibes. This bike rules. See for yourself!
Ever since last year’s NAHBS, I’ve been watching Eric at Winter‘s brand grow. I’m not exagerrating when I say that his bi-lam head tubes were some of my favorite details at this year’s show. His Jack Taylor-inspired, Keith Anderson-painted and box-lined touring frame was completely stunning. Other bikes in his booth included a simple, yet elegant road frame, a charcoal and mint track machine with a seat tube cleave and a killer commuter, ready for night rides through the Portland streets. All of which you can see in the below Gallery.
I haven’t spoken with Mark from Majaco since my Shop Visit to his Austin studio but when I saw his purple track bike sitting on his table, I had to chat him up. After he sold his Keirin frames to go to UBI, Mark was wanting to build a classic and clean pista to replace them. This purple beauty was painted in house and fades from light to dark. Check out a gallery below.