By Bruce Buckley
Classic styling and veteran builders rose to the top at the 2010 North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Richmond, Virginia., Feb. 26-28. Over three days, approximately 6,800 attendees scoured nearly 150 booths packed with frames and components that are equal parts artisanship and eye candy.
Although the offerings ran the gamut between cutting edge and throwback, NAHBS judges gave many of its highest honors to the tried and true. Ellis Cycles of Waterford, Wisconsin, took Best of Show with a bike that was big on polished bling, but at its core retained classic design and exectution.
Bilenky Cycle Works of Philadelphia wowed many attendees with its restoration work on vintage frames, but it was the shop’s French-style tandem that earned Best Road Frame. Tandems have been a big focus for Stephen Bilenky for nearly 30 years.
Richard Sachs showed the new builders how it’s done, garnering the Best Track Frame award in a crowded field.
Among contemporary materials, Kent Ericksen won Best Titanium with his clean and elegant approach. Nick Crumpton of Crumpton Cycles earned Best Carbon Fiber frame with a design built on Edge Composites tubing and finished off with a decoupage of scrap carbon fiber pieces that gives the frame a one-of-a-kind look from any angle.
Cherubim won the President’s Choice award with a heavily-polished museum-quality piece that combined a narrow-tubed chromoly frame with a mix of vintage ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘80s components.
Renold Yip of Fort Collins, Colorado, garnered the People’s Choice award his “sunflower town bike” design, which includes a custom steel front rack with ribs that form the outline of a flower and stained wood to complete the look. Yip cleanly routed the cables into each of the two downtubes, which extend all the way to the rear dropouts.
2010 NAHBS Winners:
Ellis Cycles – Best of Show
Bilenky Cycle Works – Best Road Frame
Richard Sachs – Best Track Frame
Crumpton Cycles – Best Carbon Fiber
Kent Eriksen Cycles – Best Titanium
Kirk Frameworks – Best Fillet Brazing
YiPsan Bicycles – Best City Bike
Six-Eleven Bicycle Co. – Rookie of the Year
Engin Cycles – Best Off-Road
Calfee Design – Best Tandem
Spectrum Tandem – Best Steel Frame
Dinucci Cycles – Best Lugged Frame
DeSalvo Cycles – Best TIG welded Frame
Llewellyn Custom Bicycles – Best Paint
Cherubim by Konno – President’s Choice
YiPsan Bicycles – Peoples Choice [album id=16 template=extend]