When I’m in Melbourne, I usually set up my desk at Shifter Bikes and it’s not just because I enjoy shooting all of the Beautiful Bicycles that come through the door. I really enjoy Dan’s company and being able to rant with someone about life’s little difficulties… Blah blah blah bicycles.
With the Melbourne Cup coming this weekend he’s closing shop, so today will be the last day I’ll be there working. If you’re out and about, or you’ve got a bike to share, swing by!
The owner of this Gangsta track has been hanging around Shifter Bikes since he was in his early teens. Now, years later and he’s got an itch to ride his bike out from the city on a big, weekend ride. Before he could do so, he needed Dan to add bottle braze ons to the frame.
Now, the technique Dan used didn’t involve a torch, but it did involve a drill and a device called a Nutsert. More on that later. For now, let’s check out this rad Gangsta Track!
I swear, when I’m in Melbourne, it’s like classic steel roadie overload. Normally, I’m content with my modern steel but after a day at Shifter Bikes, I’m ready to start piecing together an Italian race machine. Dan has so many amazing builds coming out of his shop at the moment, but my favorite is this Colnago Decor with Campagnolo Record. Why? See for yourself in the Gallery!
I can really appreciate builds like this: vintage steel with a mix of modern componentry, especially when you add a tubeset like Columbus MS into the equation. This bike rolled into Shifter Bikes while I was in Melbourne and it was one of those bikes that didn’t like to sit still. It kept wanting to roll. Was it the legacy of Greg Lemond that was trying to establish a forward momentum? Who knows… but the Campagnolo Centaur 10, Zipp wheels, Thomson cockpit and Rolls saddle probably have something to do with it.
It’s hard to be around Shifter Bikes and not want to document what Dan does each day. Over the years, he’s become not only a mechanic for many of his customers, but a consultant. There’s only one way to gain knowledge and that’s through experience, something few people have the time for. While many people have naive opinions, Dan has callouses…
Tools of the trade:
Leica Summicron f2 50mm / Zeiss f2.8 28mm
Fuji Neopan 400
Commuting, for most anyway, can be a fairly boring and mundane experience, even on a bike. But for those who grew old in the wood, taking the “long way” into work as important as a cup of coffee. My Melbourne mornings usually began slightly hungover, no coffee or breakfast (sorry, brekkie) and immediately hopping onto the bike to ride into the city with Dan from Shifter Bikes. We’d always end up in the same place, but we never took the same route. The Yarra Trails quickly became my new favorite locale in Melbourne.
Check out more narrated photos in the Gallery!
Tools of the trade:
Fuji Neopan 400
When I’m in Melbourne, it’s always a pleasure to meet new people and see some incredible bikes. This go round, I walked almost everywhere with my Mamiya, shooting portraits and other bits of randomness. I finally got all my negatives scanned and they came out great. So let’s waste away the lazy Thursday afternoon with a full-loaded Gallery… Also, a lot of these are sitting in print form at Shifter Bikes, so if you’re in there, swing through a pick up your print.
Check out some narrated photos in the Gallery!
I don’t think I’ve shot a better photo of Dan from Shifter Bikes before. Out of all my Mamiya 7ii photos from Australia, this might just be my favorite. There’s a full set coming soon, once I finish scanning…
Regular scanning will commence today. I’m trying to wrap my head around jetlag and emails.
Malachi’s Northside Wheelers porteur is one of the best examples of how you don’t need to spend a lot of money to have a classy ride, just a little creativity and insight. It doesn’t hurt to have Danny Hale of Shifter Bikes on your side though…
This bike is very similar to Dan’s own singlespeed porteur (which was stolen last year). It’s a Taiwanese frame, painted matte black but has some sneaky detailing. A coaster brake keeps the bike’s silhouette clean, while a Shimano Nexus 3-speed hub aids in scaling Melbourne’s hills.
How the bike shifts is one of the most clever details: a Campagnolo downtube shifter is mounted to the seat stay, allowing Mal to “suicide shift” this sleek beauty. Other details include a Northside Wheelers saddle, crafted by Mick Peel of Busyman, pinstriping on the hub / rims, pink nipples, Campagnolo Strada cranks and custom painted fenders. It’s a sleeper! See for yourself in the Gallery.
Well, we’re all back from Shifter Dan’s 40th Birthday Bush Bash. After two days, 180 miles and over 31′,000 of climbing, we’re all a little sore. That said, if there was an HC for stokedness, we’d all be there. More to come, but for now, here’s Dan finding his inner spirit animal while climbing into the birthplace of the Necronomicog.