We were honoured again this year to be asked to award some, er, awards at this year’s Bespoked Show in Bristol. Some 70 or so of the UK (and beyond)’s framebuilders and building schools were on show in Bristol Temple Meads Engine Shed, along with hundreds of bike fans, fellow framebuilders and would-be framebuilders. The range of bikes, from practical town bikes to custom titanium fat bikes was enormous and choosing three winners was a hard job, but we made it.
Curtis Bikes Full Suspension
Gary from Curtis bikes showed this lovely, single pivot 150mm full suspension bike. With some of the neatest fillet brazing at the show, hidden by nothing but a clear-coat, we had to give it the nod. Gary had spent many hours building different swingarms until he reckon he’d got the balance right between weight and strength and stiffness.
University of Iowa, ArrowHED.
Steve McGuire runs the framebuilding course at the University of Iowa https://www.facebook.com/IowaDBR and brought his own bike, dubbed the ‘ArrowHED’ that he used for the Arrowhead 135 race (a bonkers, mid-winter race that sees snow and seriously cold temperatures). The bike is actually a two-speed – the bike shares front and rear wheel sizes to allow the differently-geared front wheel to swap with the back if conditions change. The super long wheelbase apparently gives great traction and a ton of room for snow/mud. It also leaves a handy space behind the seat tube for big Thermos flasks or other luggage.
Dear Susan Beachcomber
Petor Georgallou is the colourful character behind Dear Susan bikes. Despite the scruffy looks of the bike and the verdigris paint job, there was a lot of thought that had gone into this beachcombing hardtail. Based on the late-80s bikes beloved by Geoff Apps (and featured in the History of British Mountain Biking film) it features a high bottom bracket and a short top tube, in contrast to the low and slack mountain bikes that are currently in-vogue. Petor had accessorised the bike with suitably nautical nick-nacks, including fishing nets, a fabric bucket for shell-collecting and a display stand that featured live fish, happily swimming around the plus sized tyres…
We’ll have more from the Bespoked Show during the week as we finish sifting through all the photos. Congratulations to all the winners.