Mike’s handsome gentleman’s bike

I hope Mike enjoys riding this bike as much as I enjoyed building it. I’m always trying to use the customer’s input to visualize what they’re seeing in their mind and helping them get to that vision though components, paint, construction details, etc. This is a case where both of our visions came to fruition. This is Mike’s second Circle A and a big change from his cross bike that I built almost exactly one year ago. This is reminiscent of the cruisers of the 60’s and 70’s but with modern, lightweight components. The new Dia-Compe 610 centerpull brakes with their CNC’d aluminum arms are modern looking up close but resemble the classic Mafac brakes of times past. The same goes for the Campagnolo inspired IRD aluminum crankset and Mavic single speed wheelset. Many of the components on this bike were purchased from the Velo-Orange line that is fulfilling the needs of classically inspired cyclists everywhere. The complete bike with leather saddle, rack, and fenders weighs in at 23 pounds. And with a 46-18 around town gearing, Mike should have no problem getting this one up to speed.

See the full slideshow.

This Richard Sachs repaint was rusted and weather beaten when it first came in the shop. EVERYTHING was seized on there. Especially the bottom bracket and rear dropout alignment screws which were eventually drilled out and then re-tapped. There were even markings on the chainstays from someone bolting a Greenfield kickstand on there! Well, this one has been saved. New paint and love have brought this one back to life.

See the full slideshow.

This next frame was brought to the shop by our friend Billy who said it was built by Dave Hartranft of Lincoln, MA. If anybody has any information on him, I’d like to learn more. This frame needed a seat stay replacement in a bad way. There were no vent holes near the rear dropouts and the unconventional fastback attachment at the seat cluster allowed for a lot of water to get in there and it rotted out. I mitered a new stay in the same fashion and now it’s good to go again.


It has been a while since I’ve written anything here and realized that I haven’t mentioned the Bilenky junkyard cyclocross race that happened last month. It’s a non-competitive (for most) cyclocross race through the junkyard that’s in back of their shop in Philly. It was a damn good time and recommend it to any cyclists within driving distance.


In other news, we’ve been experimenting with matte clearcoats and got to test it out finally on a bike. This fillet brazed Icarus was requested to have a matte finish. So here it is! It isn’t something that I’m personally a fan of because it will get dirty fast. Maybe for a sunny day rider it’s perfect but as soon as it gets mucky out, you’d better hop on the beater.


And something special is coming together at the shop right now. I know everything we make or paint is special but this is my first foray into drillium! I was inspired by the rear dropout of the Hartranft that was at the shop and of course the stylings of Peter Weigle. And anyone else whose drilled out a dropout for that matter. These dropouts are going on a fillet brazed frameset for our new friend Dan. More about that one soon!