I just returned from my first trip to Austin Texas, and it is no coincidence that I spent at least one hour of each day I was there in Mellow Johnny’s. It might be one of the best shops I have ever been to. They have the right balance of product, space and coffee (they serve Stumptown our favorite), all rounded out with some of the best and most helpful staff you could hope for. The space is in the old warehouse district and used to be a beer warehouse if I remember right. They have rides pretty much leaving the shop every morning with a mixture of levels. We were lucky enough to have our very own personal Mellow Johnny’s guide in Russell, who may well be the tallest cyclist outside of Holland (he is 6′ 7″ and his custome Land Shark has the largest headtube I have ever seen). He took us out into the Austin farmlands onto the “Flemish Loop” on a damp and hazy moring. Sitting behind Russell on a 25mph wind in your back return leg, is like sitting behind a Vespa motorpacing. There is no wind. Nothing. Just a hole that pulls you along with minimal effort. He is a “Super Dom” of pure quality, who to quote him “loves being second in command“. I wish I could have spent more time there, the riding seems great, plus I met two riders proudly sporting Elcyclista kit. That brought a smile to my face. It is so nice to see the kit out there and meet fellow riders who love design.
This is my first time seeing the Dekerf bikes, this shot from Bike Radar at the currently running NAHBS show. Super simple and clean Ti. Loving that pinstripe decal.
Photographer and owner unknown
Our friend Nigel Mason surely means to travel in style with what has become affectionally known as “Bike No.3″. A gorgeous custom steel Serotta all coupled up and ready to get on a plane. I can remember looking at colored brakes in the past and wondering if they could ever look good on a build. Well I think this build pretty much nails it, the perfect accent contrast to a masterfully crafted Serotta blue grey frame. Finishing kit Campy Super Record, Deda, PMP, Carbon Ti, amongst others, pretty classy. You will have to be out on the lanes of the south of England to see this one in the flesh. Or maybe the Alps later in the year….
Our new friend Joachim Baan from the great blog Another Something made us very jealous this morning. He pointed us in the direction of his new custom frame by the Dutch frame builder Elian. Joachim is a relatively new convert to the sport, but like most of us appears to have caught the “Bug“. After meeting Elian on local ride, it sounds like they spent most of their time in the saddle talking about what would be the perfect ride, and here it is. Made from a rare Ishiwata Gallant steel, and with some pretty unique angles, Joachim has certainly got himself a true original. A minimal stealth like paint job, with the only sign of a decal being the original Ishiwata CrMo Tubing sticker. Also a nice touch with the vintage Campagolo Biothermal aero bottle to finish of a nice retro looking road bike with a lot of sourced vintage parts. Make sure to check out Elian’s site, he has made a great collection of unique custom builds of all types.
In his own words:
“The handlebars are from Kiprim, an old French factory, found in the same factory as the tubes. The seatpost is from the Taiwanese company Kalloy (now known as Uno Kalloy) and is from the early 80′s. The saddle is something I really like. It is made by the Dutch company Lepper, but the production of this model was ended long time ago. Elian saw the old molds and asked if they wanted to make a special series for him only, and they agreed. It was made in a thicker leather as the original, with a newly developed ‘chassis’ and in a lovely black leather, specially made for me”.
What a nice way to celebrate your 80th birthday, by creating your own limited edition bike. The C59 Ottanta, decked in a classic gold Arabesque paint job, and 50s decals, it is in a limited edition of only 80 frames. I have no idea how much this costs….
Race geometry. Tapered headtube. Bi-oval down tube. Rolled top tube and a BB30. What’s not to like.