All posts in Beautiful Bicycles

  • Salsa Mukluk Ti Fat Bike

    MJ5L2537

    If there’s one thing that makes me homesick, it’s seeing a happy bike like this Salsa Mukluk Ti out in its natural habitat. I may have sold my fat bike a while back, but that doesn’t mean I’m already scheming to build another in the future. It probably won’t be as blingin’ as this one, but seeing this Mukluk sure is inspiring.

    XTR bits, brakes and rotors, MRP carbon fork and a set of Hope Fatsno hubs help to step-up an already outstanding rig. Big ups to Cycles In Life on the upgrades!

    -Brian

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  • My Factory Five F550 Track Bike

    factory five f550

    When I first found out that I was moving to Shanghai a little over 6 months ago, the first thing on my mind (other than the countless immaculate skate spots this city possesses) was “what am I going to do for a bike?” Bringing one of my bikes out wasn’t exactly an option, especially after only having two days notice as to when my flight was booked. Two days…48 hours notice before moving 8,000 miles away.

    My last two days in the states were spent scrambling to scrap some parts together to stash in my checked baggage. Knowing that Shanghai is completely flat, I decided I’d cut the hubs out of the wheels on my Gan Well Pro (tear tear) and start piecing together another track bike.

    Anyway, I’d heard of the guys at Factory Five through the WWW and after John Prolly paid them a visit a while back, I knew that I’d have to drop in and check them out. What a good call that was. I stopped in about month after landing, put a deposit down on a 56cm F550 and grabbed a few last minute items to complete the build. Once my frame arrived, I spent a couple hours in the shop meticulously piecing it together while enjoying a couple ice-cold Asahis.

    After not riding a bike for nearly a month-and-a-half, my ride home had me feeling like my 10-year old self; spinning out the 16” coaster BMX, grass stains on my jeans and ripping coaster brake skids. The frame fit me perfectly and had the most synergistic feel right out of the stand. Usually getting a bike this dialed takes a few tweaks after the initial build, but I really lucked out here. No measurements, no real fit adjustments needed.  Just a suitcase of random parts and solid 7005 series aluminum track frame.

    In terms of the parts and build, I took the Suzue Pro Max hubs I had and grabbed some 32h hard anodized H Plus Son Archetype rims, laced them up 3-cross and slapped some super cheap 23c tires on them. I usually don’t like to skimp on tires, but the cost of moving across the world had me on a bit of a budget. I picked up a track crankset from the guys at the shop and set it up with their signature Factory Five Lattice Chainring in hard ano. This chainring goes! It feels stiff as anything, is very very light and also looks amazing. On that crankset are a set of MKS pedals, Soma double cages and All City double straps.

    The only other piece I needed was a seat post. I somehow grabbed a 27.0 post from home, thinking it was a 27.2 and needed to find something reasonably priced. The shop had a swap meet one day and I lucked out by coming up on a Miche seatpost. Atop the post, I hung a nicely worn-in Fizik Arione saddle.

    For the cockpit, I brought over a 100mm Ritchey WCS 4 AXIS stem, a set of Truvativ mountain bars with a slight rise and a VP-Comp headset. Enough with the build though…

    This bike rips. It’s all you need here and nothing you don’t. As a big fan of aluminum bikes (most of the time), I knew what to expect with the F550. Stiff and responsive, yet not overly aggressive as far as track geometry goes. This was just what I needed; something that is equally at home either thrashing through traffic or moseying on over to the bar.

    I’ve been riding this for just about 5 months now and still feel as happy as the day I set it up. Sure, I miss riding road and mountain bikes, but having a city track bike in a place as wild as Shanghai has yet to get boring. Having a brakeless track bike here is akin to mountain biking, except the trees here are on gas scooters and have a mind of their own.

    I’m gonna stop rambling though and give the guys at Factory Five a strong shoutout. Thanks for everything dudes! Be sure to check out the rest of the Factory Five frames and other products. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to send me an email or get at me on IG or Twitter. Check out the rest of the photos below!

    -Brian

    Continue reading “My Factory Five F550 Track Bike” »

  • A Solid Surly Steamroller

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    photos: Kim Heikkinen

    This is one ripping Surly Steamroller! Aside from the royal blue paint, this track bike is the perfect blend of beauty and functionality. That may sound cliche, but I really mean it. Between the Dura Ace crankset, Gatorskins, the comfy wide riser bars and simplicity of a single fixed drivetrain, this bike is ideal for day-to-day thrashing…just like my F550 (more on that this week, promise).

    Since moving to Shanghai about 6 months ago, I’ve been riding a very similar setup to this Steamroller pictured above & below. My buddies at Factory Five held onto a 56cm F550 track frame for a couple weeks while I gathered cash after moving here. Since then, it’s been my daily rider. Hell, it’s the only bike I’ve got out here and I couldn’t be more hyped with it! I’d be lying though if I said I didn’t miss each and every ride in my stable back in the states…

    Stay tuned for more on my F550 this week and be sure to check out the rest of Kim’s Steamroller below.

    -Brian

    Continue reading “A Solid Surly Steamroller” »

  • VANDEYK VDX Cyclocross Bikes

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    VANDEYK is always taking things to the next level and their latest cyclocross bike is no exception. While it’s still stupid hot here in Shanghai (and probably will be for the next two months), the rest of the world is preparing for summer to come to an end and for fall to begin. I can’t wait for it to cool down around here. Anyway, VANDEYK just sent some photos of the VDX, their brand new cyclocross machine, and it sure does look good.

    For the development of the VDX, VANDEYK partnered up with up with Cyclocross authority Crema Cycles around ex-professional racer Ken Bloomer. Being handbuilt (TIG welded) from a well-selected blend of Columbus Spirit and True Temper Platinum OX high-end steel tubing, the frame is the timeless and racy core of this mud machine. The creative approach for the graphic design work is built around the “X” as a central theme, which is translated into the VANDEYK signature ‘machine code’ on the top tube and fork legs. Options include a Cantilever or Disc brake version, both built around the stellar carbon fiber forks from our friends over at ENVE Composites. Head tube options are 44mm or a more classic 1 1/8″ version. As usual at VANDEYK, the paintwork is executed in highest-grade liquid paint. The VDX is available as frameset including frame and fork.

    Be sure to check out this beautiful bicycle in full detail below and also head over to the VANDEYK website for more info.

    Previous:

    VANDEYK Machine For Riding

    VANDEYK Rapha Continental Bike

    VANDEYK Purple Blast Road

    -Brian

    Continue reading “VANDEYK VDX Cyclocross Bikes” »

  • Folly x Bryant FaTRoB

    Fatrob_by_JW www.chrisbebout.com

    Man oh man, this is good. The homies over at Folly teamed up with Joshua Bryant (aka Cycles J Bryant) to create a small line of bicycles designed for whatever you can dish out. These are definitely the definition of a #getradmachine. The FaTRoB lineup includes three frames with three wheel sizes: 700c, 650b and 26″ and have clearances for tires up to 45c (or 1.9″). Huge congrats to you guys – these are some incredible made in the USA machines. Head on over to the Folly Bigcartel for more info!

    -Brian

  • Cannondale & Death Spray Custom 2014 TDF Bicycles

    2014 Tour de France - Cannondale Custom Bikes

    Death Spray Custom teamed up with Cannondale this season to create their lineup of 2014 Tour De France bicycles and man, do they look good. Each bicycle is even personalized with their rider’s spirit animal! See more over at DSC.

    -Brian

  • Sizemore Phin City Bicycle

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    Damn, this is one killer city bike. Sizemore created this incredibly practical 26″ city cruiser for a client named Helen. Not only is it the perfect marriage of minimal yet functional, it’s also got a ton of character. Details like the tri-tube custom stem and theft resistant seat mast are some of those understated details that really set this bike apart. Be sure to check out some more shots below!

    Also, I’ve been slacking on the beautiful bicycles as of late and I’m sorry for that! I’ll be sure to get back to the regularly schedule flow of blingage you’ve come to expect over the years.

    -Brian

    Related: Sizemore Off Piste

    Continue reading “Sizemore Phin City Bicycle” »

  • Sycip Hardtail Mountain Bike

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    It’s been a minute since I’ve posted a beautiful bicycle…my apologies. With my new gig (skateboarding all day), my internet surfing has really taken a downward spiral. I simply haven’t had quite as much time to drool over pretty bikes all day.

    Anyway, this Sycip from Alan Tansey is beautiful. There really is nothing like a 1×9 steel hardtail mountain bike. Check out some more of Alan’s shots on his Flickr. The paintjob reminds me of an old-school Bianchi Grizzly…so rad.

    -Brian

  • My Factory Five F550 Preview

    factory five f550

    I’ve been meaning to get out and shoot some detailed photos of my new Factory Five F550, but as some of you probably know, working for a small business is a time commitment and a half. Our shop has been so busy lately. We’re also slated to open the first indoor skatepark in Shanghai towards the end of next month, all while continuing our after-school programs and getting ready for summer camp. So yeah, things have been crazy.

    Amongst all the chaos, I’ve still been finding time to skate and have finally gotten back to shredding a bicycle daily! And damn, does it feel good to be back. Here’s a little preview shot of my latest build, the F550. Despite my limited budget, I managed to piece together a pretty decent build…especially when my goal for this bike was for it to be a sleeper.

    I took the Suzue Pro Max hubs from my Gan Well Pro, laced them up to some hard anodized H Plus Son Archetypes. In terms of drivetrain, I splurged a bit on the Factory Five lattice chainring (which I highly recommend) and fitted it to some standard black track cranks with some MKS pedals, Soma cages and All-City double straps. Up top, I’ve got a well-loved Fizik Arione saddle from my road bike, a Miche Super Type seat post, Ritchey WCS stem, Truvativ risers and a VP headset. It’s a pretty solid build and I’m very happy with the ride so far. Stay tuned for some detailed shots and if you’re in Shanghai and want to ride hit me up!

    -Brian

  • Introducing Wraith Handmade Road and Cross Frames

    wraith fabrications bicycles

    You probably know Adam Eldridge from Stanridge Speed and the number of winning track bikes he’s built over the years. Well, Adam is pioneering a new project and expanding his repertoire with Wraith Fabrication, focusing on road & cyclocross frames. Make sure to have a look at the Hustle Road Frame and the Paycheck Cross frame!

    Adam Eldridge started building high performance custom bikes 5 years ago in Columbus, Ohio. His bikes have stood at the top step of the podium at the Red Hook Crit, as well as numerous road and cross events around the country. Wraith Fabrications is a new project, removing the barriers and obstacles for many customers. The wait time is gone, shipping is free, fit is free and stock sizing allows us to hand produce the frames with best possible Columbus tubing. We’re building these amazing machines right here in the USA and offering them for a fraction of the cost of not only upper tier far east pacific production steel frames but also every other made in the USA bespoke production frame made from comparable steel.

    “We want to have fun. Shred. It doesn’t matter what kind of bike you’re on. It doesn’t matter what you’re wearing. Our machines are made here in the USA by hand. We’re celebrating the brotherhood. It’s about the ride. It’s about getting more folks on a crazy nice frame. We want to see where you ride. We want to hear about your adventures. It’s an honest, sincere desire to fit folks on the best bikes possible. No over design, just simple items made from the best materials available”. – Adam Eldridge – Owner of Wraith Fabrications -

    Both Road and Cross models are available, The road frame is complete Columbus Life with upgraded Life S-bend stays. The CX main triangle is Life and the stays are Zona S-bend. Both bikes include the newly released Columbus FEL 1.5 in tapered forks. Triple butted where its counts, Sexy where it matters, no corners are being cut in production. Closer examination revels industry firsts, such as, the specific bespoke aluminum internal cups in the Head tube. The price reflects Wraith’s commitment to the customer and not the margin, other brands charge twice as much for a similar frame. We are removing the ego and putting the rider first, building a production bike that performs all day long and performs like the custom bike built just for you.

    For more info, and to keep up with Adam & his projects:

    Facebook

    Instagram

    -Brian
  • Death Spray Custom & Saffron Frameworks


    A short featuring the work of Death Spray Custom and Saffron Frameworks – two of London’s best, collaborating on a sure-to-be beautiful bicycle. That fork is electric!

    -B

  • Salsa Cycles Bucksaw – Full Suspension Fat Bike

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    Salsa Cycles is absolutely killing the fat bike game! I was already a huge fan of their Mukluk series and knew it was only a matter of time before someone put out a production full-suspension fat bike, enter the Salsa Bucksaw. The Bucksaw is ready to swallow any trail or obstacle thrown its way with a 6066 T-6 aluminum front triangle & chain stays, carbon seat stays and Split Pivot rear suspension with 100mm of travel. Man oh man would I love to get my hands on this! Check out all the details at Salsa Cycles.

    -Brian