It’s kind of nice living two miles from Icarus Frames‘ shop in South Austin. When Ian gets in a frame from paint, I can just cruise on over and shoot a few photos. When he gets a frame in like this singlespeed road however, I spend a little more time documenting it.
This is a custom bicycle. It’s a NAHBS-worthy bike, although Ian has never shown at NAHBS. The detailing is above and beyond your average frame. Everything is shaped, carved and sculpted to perfection. Stainless rear, stainless lugs, internal routing, polished everything, immaculate shorelines, covered by a wild wet paint job, courtesy of Fresh Frame.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen something so dialed come out of Ian’s shop and to think, his queue has a quick turnaround. I just wish I could have photographed the complete bike!
Last summer, after I watched my mom cross the finish line of her first century, I went over to congratulate her and took her bike away so she could sit down. She has been riding mostly flat routes back home in coastal North Carolina but that century packed in 5,000′ of elevation. After watching this woman fight against all kinds of internal struggles on that ride, I promised that I’d set her up with a proper road bike this year.
It seems that I always go to Ian Sutton of Icarus Frames when it comes to building custom bikes for the women in my life (Lauren’s Commuter), so I contacted Ian for this one.
Keeping it simple, we went with True Temper OX Platinum, an ENVE fork and a Paragon removable hanger. It just got back from the painters at Circle A and I couldn’t be more pleased with the results!
See some more below and hopefully, I’ll be able to post the bike post-build.
I had the wonderful opportunity a few weeks ago to introduce Brian Vernor to Ian Sutton of Icarus Frames, where he took some photos of Ian’s tiny shop in South Austin. This being my favorite. I’ve shot this photo before, but there’s just something about seeing it in 35mm format… See more at Vernor’s Flickr.
Today I took Brian Vernor over to Ian of Icarus Frames‘ shop. Those two individuals have inspired me to continue to support small, local frame builders consistently over the years. Their work embodies the craftsmanship and creativity that I look to for inspiration during the daily grind, so I was stoked to introduce them.
While Brian was getting to know Ian, I took a few photos of this unique track frameset that just so happens to be for sale. This is no “street fixie”, it’s a tough-as-nails, stiff, true track sprint machine, complete with inverted 29r chainstays, a 44mm head tube and all oversized tubing. It’s a sprinter’s dream machine!
Since moving to Austin, Ian from Icarus has been making custom steel frames for my friends. Many of which have requested an all-arounder of sorts from him. Ross already has a pretty deep stable of frames. A Richard Sachs cross, a Speedvagen road and now this Icarus light tourer.
I say light tourer because Ross is a bit of a camping weight weenie. Usually a bivy sack will do the trick on top of his titanium Tubus rack. For the front end, Ross chose a Wound Up fork for its fender mounts and tire clearance. He didn’t want ‘cross clearances’, just room for a 28c and fenders. Right now, he’s got it set up for a few weekend outings and just the other day, he put over 300 miles on it.
Other highlights are the split-paintjob chevrons, precisely finished by Bryan Myers at Fresh Frame and full Campagnolo gruppo. Personally, this is one of my favorite Icarus frames, mostly because it’s so tailored to Ross’ idiosyncratic tastes. Check out more below!
Ian Sutton of Icarus Frames is no stranger to uniquely-constructed bicycles. His Leviathan is still, to this day, one of my favorite concept bikes I’ve seen. When Josh from Sparse lights contacted Ian about doing a fillet steel and carbon tubed road bike, Ian took the challenge… and the result is amazing. After fillet brazing the sleeves and shaping the ends, he bonded ENVE carbon tubes to complete the frame.
The final result was painted by Brian Meyers at Fresh Frame, with Sparse branding and fit with Mad Fibre wheels. Personally, I think it’s one of the most unique frames to come from Ian since the Leviathan… See for yourself in the Gallery!
Blue Lug Japan has been supporting Ian from Icarus Frames for some time now. It all started with a few track bikes, then a road bike here and there, but this frame in particular really resonates with me. With a little more casual geometry, a SON generator light, custom stem and pretty balleur parts selection, you can’t help but think of all the rad rides and roads this thing will see.
When Ian at Icarus moved to Austin, Texas, I don’t think he anticipated working on this many local frames. Or that Chris would put down two deposits at once: a lightweight road bike and a fendered, touring / commuter. This is the first out of the queue, a modern, steel road bike with a matte paintjob and a few clean details. Nothing extravagant, but also nothing simple.
Chris is a father and he works full time, so riding is always a last minute, unplanned endeavor. He was looking for a little inspiration to sneak in an hour or two when he could and Ian built him just that. With a Zipp cockpit, seatpost, Chris King R45 to HED Belgium, Fizik Kurve saddle, Campy Chorus 11 speed and King Cage bottle cages, it’s up there in the “dream bike” category…
… and that’s a dirty, new Icarus. Chris has been putting miles in on his new Icarus road and I shot some photos of it yesterday. This one was particularly difficult to photograph. Matte on matte, grey on black with silver accents. I’m not sure if I’ll be posting the photos, or if I’ll retake them but I am digging how this one came out.
I love how Austin is embracing Ian’s work. Support your local frame builder!
My Icarus Viking MAX track bike was incapacitated for a few months while the fork sat en queue at Fresh Frame. After a lot of surface rust started to form around the shorelines, I felt it best to just get it painted, if anything, for the longevity of the bike. Since this bike has one of the uber-rare Chris King stainless steel headsets, I got Bryan Myers from Fresh Frame to polish the stainless crown to match and he even added a little bit of wood inlay in the lug window. I have to admit, I wasn’t completely stoked on the wood inlay but It’s growing on me.
This bike has proven to be one of my favorites in the stable and why wouldn’t it be? It’s a classic track bike with some very unique detailing…
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Prolly is not Probably started in 2006 in Brooklyn, New York. For over 6 years it has thrived as John Watson, the sole author, documents multiple facets of cycling. With the boom of urban cycling, Prolly is Not Probably has grown to be the number one blog for the culture surrounding it. In recent years, a large push for original content has spawned a steady flow of photosets, profiles and portraits.
Known for his A Day in 10 Photos, Merckx Mondays, Recent Roll, Shop Visits, and Beautiful Bicycles features, John continues to document bicycles of all kinds and his daily life through photos. Over the years, Prolly is Not Probably has been cited in the New York Times, COG Magazine, Urban Velo and other notable publications. In March of 2011, John moved to Austin, Texas where he continues to cover a cross section of cultural influences.