Words and Photography by Jen Abercrombie
At PDF, we were a little sad we couldn't go to the North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Sacramento ourselves. We both own handmade bikes (Anna Maria a Mars Cycles and Tayler a Zanconato) and love to see what builders put out year to year. Thankfully, we were able to send out fellow hand built bike enthusiast Jen Abercrombie to cover the event. Here are some of her highlights.
This year at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show was a good one for women’s bikes. We spotted something cool in just about every category: Road, track, cross, touring, city, bikepacking, and a Mountain Bike with clearance for oh-so-hot-right-now plus size tires.
One of the coolest bikes on display was Jocelyn Gaudi’s bikepacking machine made by Breadwinner Cycles, with double bend handlebars fabricated in titanium by Portland’s Ti Cycles for a smooth ride.
Rob English’s 650B custom gravel road bike was a beautiful example of how custom framebuilders address the needs of smaller riders who are traditionally underserved by the mainstream bicycle industry. Plus it just looks great.
The only female framebuilder we saw was Danielle Schön, with her “Jelly Donut” Track bike. She used Stainless Steel tubing and hand-carved the steel lugs, as well as the head tube, which was then inlaid with stainless to make the headbadge.
The most fun idea at the show was from Squid bikes, co-owned by shredder Emily Kachorek. The “Rattlecan” cross bike comes unfinished with a set of decals, and they customer gets to spraypaint and customize to her heart’s content. A video on the Squid site offers painting tips and the frame is available with disc or canti brake mounts.
Hunter Cycles’ Country Squire Camp Wagon is made for Randi Jo Smith and her family camping excursions. It was shown with a beautiful set of bags made by Randi Jo herself. We especially love the rabbit detail on the large bag.
“Lainie’s Holy Roller” from Soulcraft features clearance for a true 3” tire.
Bina Bilenky‘s “le Petit Graveleur” made a return to the show, a bike she designed for herself to ride Tour D’Afrique in 2014.
Breadwinner Cycles “Arbor Lodge” mixte took home the award for Best City/Utility Bike. It was part of a his-and-hers set.
Details, details, details: A bike is a good place to start but the accessories are the icing on the cake. These are some of the best we saw at the show.
Chris King’s Olive color, introduced to celebrate their 40th anniversary is anything but drab. Matching hubs, stem, headset? Yes, please.
The PDW Bindle Rack comes out this Spring and attaches to the seatpost which makes it ideal for riders who are using bikes without braze-ons for bikepacking or who lack rear wheel clearance for other seatbags.
Artist Dustin Klein was live painting in the Silca booth, and also designed the pattern on this tool roll, made by Los Angeles-based Yanco customs. There’s a matching cap by Cadence to complete the set.
The throwback SimWorks “Homage” tire is a collaboration with Panaracer and comes in 700C and 650B sizes.
Spurcycle was assembling bells in their booth at the show. They are made in the USA and give you a jaunty way to say “get out of my way!”
Hip Bag, Fanny Pack, call it what you will. These bags from Hunter will tote all your stuff with ease out on the trail.
Epiphany Couch was helping out in the Breadwinner Cycles booth and sporting these vintage headbadge earrings she made. Love!