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On show: North American Handmade Bicycle Show, Part 9

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Dave Kirk showed this elegant purple road bike with beautifully curved seat stays.

Dave Kirk showed this elegant purple road bike with beautifully curved seat stays. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Retrotec principal Curtis Inglis said he hadn't done one of his proper cruiser-style mountain bikes for NAHBS for a while so it was time to revisit it.

Retrotec principal Curtis Inglis said he hadn't done one of his proper cruiser-style mountain bikes for NAHBS for a while so it was time to revisit it. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Loving the clean joinery on this Retrotec mountain bike.

Loving the clean joinery on this Retrotec mountain bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Retrotec finished off this townie with a matching pink chain guard.

Retrotec finished off this townie with a matching pink chain guard. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Retrotec proudly displayed this bright pink and grey town bike.

Retrotec proudly displayed this bright pink and grey town bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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A Schmidt dynamo front hub provides power to the front and rear lights on Retrotec's town bike at NAHBS.

A Schmidt dynamo front hub provides power to the front and rear lights on Retrotec's town bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The tidy front and rear racks also served as the mounts for the LED lights.

The tidy front and rear racks also served as the mounts for the LED lights. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Nicely scalloped seat stay caps on this Retrotec town bike.

Nicely scalloped seat stay caps on this Retrotec town bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The mixte-style frame makes for extra-low standover clearance but the curved tubes adds style, too.

The mixte-style frame makes for extra-low standover clearance but the curved tubes adds style, too. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven built this one-piece bar and stem combination for its gorgeous singlespeed town bike.

Six Eleven built this one-piece bar and stem combination for its gorgeous singlespeed town bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven shows off yet another split-stay variant for inserting a belt drive.

Six Eleven shows off yet another split-stay variant for inserting a belt drive. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven brought a number of showstoppers to this year's NAHBS including this green and stainless steel townie.

Six Eleven brought a number of showstoppers to this year's NAHBS including this green and stainless steel townie. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Stainless steel lugs nicely contrast with the two-tone green paint on this Six Eleven.

Stainless steel lugs nicely contrast with the two-tone green paint on this Six Eleven. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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S&S couplers make for easier traveling on this Six Eleven bike.

S&S couplers make for easier traveling on this Six Eleven bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven built this bike in collaboration with Roanoke Outside, a local nonprofit group.

Six Eleven built this bike in collaboration with Roanoke Outside, a local nonprofit group. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Cables are routed internally on this Peacock Groove.

Cables are routed internally on this Peacock Groove. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The custom front rack is perfectly sized for a six-pack.

The custom front rack is perfectly sized for a six-pack. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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KVA uses the special processing techniques used in its new stainless steel alloy make it much more ductile and formable, particularly at the weld seam.

KVA uses the special processing techniques used in its new stainless steel alloy make it much more ductile and formable, particularly at the weld seam. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Portland, Oregon builder Littleford specializes in touring bikes.

Portland, Oregon builder Littleford specializes in touring bikes. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The custom rear rack on this Littleford tourer includes a purpose-built spot for a mini U-lock.

The custom rear rack on this Littleford tourer includes a purpose-built spot for a mini U-lock. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Hand-painted pinstripes on this Littleford highlight the lugged joints.

Hand-painted pinstripes on this Littleford highlight the lugged joints. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Peacock Groove's signature dropouts allow for both geared or singlespeed drivetrains.

Peacock Groove's signature dropouts allow for both geared or singlespeed drivetrains. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Peacock Groove showed off this copper-hued 'cross bike complete with front and rear disc brakes.

Peacock Groove showed off this copper-hued 'cross bike complete with front and rear disc brakes. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Peacock Groove's unmistakable head tube badge.

Peacock Groove's unmistakable head tube badge. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Words of wisdom on this Peacock Groove rim.

Words of wisdom on this Peacock Groove rim. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The blinky dice on this Peacock Groove mountain bike may have been a bit gimmicky but they got the job done - show attendees definitely stopped in for a closer look.

The blinky dice on this Peacock Groove mountain bike may have been a bit gimmicky but they got the job done - show attendees definitely stopped in for a closer look. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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This Peacock Groove mountain bike featured a dice theme and was definitely Midwest-friendly with its singlespeed drivetrain and rim brakes - and yes, that's Peacock Groove builder Eric Noren in the background in a suit and tie.

This Peacock Groove mountain bike featured a dice theme and was definitely Midwest-friendly with its singlespeed drivetrain and rim brakes - and yes, that's Peacock Groove builder Eric Noren in the background in a suit and tie. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Peacock Groove also displayed this clean white 'cross bike.

Peacock Groove also displayed this clean white 'cross bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Peacock Groove retasked a seat stay brake housing stop for use as a fender mount on the chain stays.

Peacock Groove retasked a seat stay brake housing stop for use as a fender mount on the chain stays. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The fork crown includes mounts for a mini-rack should you decide to turn this into a rando machine.

The fork crown includes mounts for a mini-rack should you decide to turn this into a rando machine. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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This Peacock Groove looked virtually purpose-built for one function.

This Peacock Groove looked virtually purpose-built for one function. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven's serial numbers highlight its small builder status.

Six Eleven's serial numbers highlight its small builder status. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Six Eleven also showed off this shiny lugged track bike built with newly introduced KVA stainless steel tubing.

Six Eleven also showed off this shiny lugged track bike built with newly introduced KVA stainless steel tubing. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The down tube logo uses real metal flake on Yipsan's town bike.

The down tube logo uses real metal flake on Yipsan's town bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan took the time to polish a Shimano crankset and even the cast Greenfield kickstand.

Yipsan took the time to polish a Shimano crankset and even the cast Greenfield kickstand. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The rear light is attached directly to the rack on this Yipsan townie.

The rear light is attached directly to the rack on this Yipsan townie. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan's custom rear rack features a wooden deck.

Yipsan's custom rear rack features a wooden deck. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan incorporated some beautiful detailing on its town bike at NAHBS.

Yipsan incorporated some beautiful detailing on its town bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan's custom stem included a bell mount - one of the bigger trends at this year's NAHBS.

Yipsan's custom stem included a bell mount - one of the bigger trends at this year's NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Lots of lugwork visible on the front end of this Yipsan.

Lots of lugwork visible on the front end of this Yipsan. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan also showed off this metallic yellow randonneur bike.

Yipsan also showed off this metallic yellow randonneur bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Lugged stems were still popular at NAHBS this year, as shown by Yipsan.

Lugged stems were still popular at NAHBS this year, as shown by Yipsan. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Zullo stuck a reverse brake lever on the end of a drop bar at NAHBS.

Zullo stuck a reverse brake lever on the end of a drop bar at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Zullo displayed this somewhat unusual track bike at NAHBS, fitted with wooden rims, a Brooks leather saddle, and a single reverse-pull brake lever fitted to the end of the drop bar.

Zullo displayed this somewhat unusual track bike at NAHBS, fitted with wooden rims, a Brooks leather saddle, and a single reverse-pull brake lever fitted to the end of the drop bar. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Zullo also showed off this striking dark blue TIG-welded steel road bike.

Zullo also showed off this striking dark blue TIG-welded steel road bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Once again, the versatile 44mm head tube makes an appearance at NAHBS, this time on a Zullo.

Once again, the versatile 44mm head tube makes an appearance at NAHBS, this time on a Zullo. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Gorgeous paint work on this Zullo.

Gorgeous paint work on this Zullo. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Cables routed internally through the dual top tubes on Yipsan's town bike.

Cables routed internally through the dual top tubes on Yipsan's town bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan's townie was one of the most talked-about at the show.

Yipsan's townie was one of the most talked-about at the show. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Sycip was yet another builder who was quick to jump on to the disc-equipped 'cross bike bandwagon.

Sycip was yet another builder who was quick to jump on to the disc-equipped 'cross bike bandwagon. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Long a Sycip signature, the stays on this 'cross bike are capped with coins - in this case a US dime.

Long a Sycip signature, the stays on this 'cross bike are capped with coins - in this case a US dime. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Sycip opted for a slim segmented seat stay wishbone on its disc-equipped 'cross bike matched to sliding Paragon dropouts.

Sycip opted for a slim segmented seat stay wishbone on its disc-equipped 'cross bike matched to sliding Paragon dropouts. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Sycip's take on a two-piece travel bike used two low-profile collars borrowed from Ritchey's Breakaway system.

Sycip's take on a two-piece travel bike used two low-profile collars borrowed from Ritchey's Breakaway system. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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You can always count on Sycip to bring a pretty townie to NAHBS.

You can always count on Sycip to bring a pretty townie to NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Sycip built custom front and rear racks for its townie but supplemented the rear with standard foldaway grocery bag-sized baskets.

Sycip built custom front and rear racks for its townie but supplemented the rear with standard foldaway grocery bag-sized baskets. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The extra arrow may just be for show but it's an interesting feature nonetheless.

The extra arrow may just be for show but it's an interesting feature nonetheless. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Winter Bicycles had one of the prettiest head tube badges of the show.

Winter Bicycles had one of the prettiest head tube badges of the show. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Winter Bicycles displayed this purple touring bike at this year's NAHBS.

Winter Bicycles displayed this purple touring bike at this year's NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The custom stem complements the rest of this Winter Bicycles 'cross bike nicely.

The custom stem complements the rest of this Winter Bicycles 'cross bike nicely. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Winter Bicycles built its own stem to go along with its touring bike, complete with a front brake housing stop directly attached to the bottom.

Winter Bicycles built its own stem to go along with its touring bike, complete with a front brake housing stop directly attached to the bottom. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan's take on a go-anywhere mountain bike used a snow bike front wheel and tire matched to a more normal-sized rear.

Yipsan's take on a go-anywhere mountain bike used a snow bike front wheel and tire matched to a more normal-sized rear. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Disc tabs on Yipsan's fork extend far up the back of the blade to distribute stress.

Disc tabs on Yipsan's fork extend far up the back of the blade to distribute stress. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Yipsan's clever front rack isn't asymmetrical - it uses interchangeable parts to accommodate different storage needs.

Yipsan's clever front rack isn't asymmetrical - it uses interchangeable parts to accommodate different storage needs. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Zullo includes big steel stays on its road bike at NAHBS.

Zullo includes big steel stays on its road bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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If Dave Kirk puts this much effort into something that will invariably be covered in paint and never seen again, you can only imagine how well crafted everything else is.

If Dave Kirk puts this much effort into something that will invariably be covered in paint and never seen again, you can only imagine how well crafted everything else is. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The Ritchey seatpost is nearly completely hidden by the extended seat tube on this Dominguez track bike.

The Ritchey seatpost is nearly completely hidden by the extended seat tube on this Dominguez track bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The Bon is Bronto's do-all 26" steel hardtail.

The Bon is Bronto's do-all 26" steel hardtail. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The 44mm head tube on Bronto's Bon frame will accept either straight or tapered steerers depending on what headset is used.

The 44mm head tube on Bronto's Bon frame will accept either straight or tapered steerers depending on what headset is used. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The Reverend is Bronto's geared 29" steel hardtail.

The Reverend is Bronto's geared 29" steel hardtail. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Bronto builds its bikes with True Temper OX Platinum tubing with the exception of the forward section of down tube, which is made with a more ductile alloy then brazed together.

Bronto builds its bikes with True Temper OX Platinum tubing with the exception of the forward section of down tube, which is made with a more ductile alloy then brazed together. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The curved seat tube on the Bronto Reverend helps keep the rear end tight.

The curved seat tube on the Bronto Reverend helps keep the rear end tight. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The Willy is Bronto's singlespeed 29er.

The Willy is Bronto's singlespeed 29er. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The rear end of Cinelli's stainless frame is finished with these tidy dropouts.

The rear end of Cinelli's stainless frame is finished with these tidy dropouts. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Logos on Cinelli's XCR are produced by selective masking and blasting.

Logos on Cinelli's XCR are produced by selective masking and blasting. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Cinelli showed off this gleaming stainless steel road bike at NAHBS.

Cinelli showed off this gleaming stainless steel road bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Beautiful. Just beautiful.

Beautiful. Just beautiful. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Dominguez built the computer mount right into the front of this stem.

Dominguez built the computer mount right into the front of this stem. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Likewise, the sensor mount is directly integrated into the fork of this Dominguez track bike - no zip ties needed.

Likewise, the sensor mount is directly integrated into the fork of this Dominguez track bike - no zip ties needed. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Dominguez displayed this bright yellow track bike at NAHBS.

Dominguez displayed this bright yellow track bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Vincent Dominguez certifies every one of this bikes with a "rabbit-proof guarantee".

Vincent Dominguez certifies every one of this bikes with a "rabbit-proof guarantee". (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Bronto also offers its own Udo segmented rigid steel forks with nicely scalloped tops and reinforced upper legs.

Bronto also offers its own Udo segmented rigid steel forks with nicely scalloped tops and reinforced upper legs. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Sliding Paragon dropouts are featured on this Bronto.

Sliding Paragon dropouts are featured on this Bronto. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Wiring for the front light is run through the fork leg on this ANT.

Wiring for the front light is run through the fork leg on this ANT. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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ANT showed off this simply mint green townie at NAHBS.

ANT showed off this simply mint green townie at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Check out the unique looped stays on this ANT townie.

Check out the unique looped stays on this ANT townie. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The beautiful lugged stem on this ANT is complemented by a rarely seen (and incredibly sweet sounding) Sogrent bell out of Denmark.

The beautiful lugged stem on this ANT is complemented by a rarely seen (and incredibly sweet sounding) Sogrent bell out of Denmark. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Even the decals on this ANT throwback emulates that old Peugeot.

Even the decals on this ANT throwback emulates that old Peugeot. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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ANT founder Mike Flanigan built this bike for himself, modeling it after an old Peugeot PX10.

ANT founder Mike Flanigan built this bike for himself, modeling it after an old Peugeot PX10. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The seat tube cap, clamp-on cable guides and retro-style tubing decal scream yesteryear but the seat stay caps give away ANT founder Mike Flanigan's Fat City Cycles roots.

The seat tube cap, clamp-on cable guides and retro-style tubing decal scream yesteryear but the seat stay caps give away ANT founder Mike Flanigan's Fat City Cycles roots. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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ANT went with a pierced stem instead of the usual lugged setup.

ANT went with a pierced stem instead of the usual lugged setup. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Black Cat's singlespeed mountain bike featured these keen pivoting dropouts.

Black Cat's singlespeed mountain bike featured these keen pivoting dropouts. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Black Cat showed off this gorgeous lugged singlespeed 29er, complete with a matched lugged rigid steel fork and gracefully curved seat stays.

Black Cat showed off this gorgeous lugged singlespeed 29er, complete with a matched lugged rigid steel fork and gracefully curved seat stays. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Also included on Black Cat's 29er hardtail were singlespeed chainrings custom machined by RCR Fabrication to fit directly on SRAM's latest crankarm splines.

Also included on Black Cat's 29er hardtail were singlespeed chainrings custom machined by RCR Fabrication to fit directly on SRAM's latest crankarm splines. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Black Cat built its own lowrider and rear racks for this touring bike.

Black Cat built its own lowrider and rear racks for this touring bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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This Black Cat touring bike caught many a wandering eye at NAHBS.

This Black Cat touring bike caught many a wandering eye at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The tall lugged head tube on this Black Cat tourer is nicely accented with baby blue and cream paint plus Ritchey's silver 'Classic' components.

The tall lugged head tube on this Black Cat tourer is nicely accented with baby blue and cream paint plus Ritchey's silver 'Classic' components. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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This Reynolds 953-tubed hardtail was built by Christopher Igleheart using 650b wheels.

This Reynolds 953-tubed hardtail was built by Christopher Igleheart using 650b wheels. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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BB30 bottom bracket shells aren't exclusive to carbon or aluminum bikes as seen in this Don Walker steel road bike.

BB30 bottom bracket shells aren't exclusive to carbon or aluminum bikes as seen in this Don Walker steel road bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Groovy included its own cranks for its mountain bike at NAHBS.

Groovy included its own cranks for its mountain bike at NAHBS. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Great paint work on this Groovy mountain bike.

Great paint work on this Groovy mountain bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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All of the painted bits on this bike were built and finished by Groovy, including the frame, cranks, rigid fork, and one-piece bar and stem.

All of the painted bits on this bike were built and finished by Groovy, including the frame, cranks, rigid fork, and one-piece bar and stem. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Groovy also showed off this ultra-compact steel road bike, designed to fit a little easier into an S&S travel case.

Groovy also showed off this ultra-compact steel road bike, designed to fit a little easier into an S&S travel case. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Chris Igleheart welded a housing stop on to the front of this tall headset spacer.

Chris Igleheart welded a housing stop on to the front of this tall headset spacer. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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If this segmented fork crown reminds you of the old Fat City Cycles Big 1", it should - creator Chris Igleheart is a former Fat City employee from back in the day.

If this segmented fork crown reminds you of the old Fat City Cycles Big 1", it should - creator Chris Igleheart is a former Fat City employee from back in the day. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Christopher Igleheart displayed this somewhat unusual randonneur bike equipped with both integrated and bar-end shifters.

Christopher Igleheart displayed this somewhat unusual randonneur bike equipped with both integrated and bar-end shifters. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The switch for the integrated lights on Igleheart's randonneur bike is located atop the stem cap.

The switch for the integrated lights on Igleheart's randonneur bike is located atop the stem cap. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Igleheart incorporates an extra set of bottle braze-on mounts on the non-driveside seat stay to accommodate modern mini-pump brackets.

Igleheart incorporates an extra set of bottle braze-on mounts on the non-driveside seat stay to accommodate modern mini-pump brackets. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Cable doublers on Igleheart's randonneur bike allow the use of both integrated and bar-end shifters, though he says the system still needs some refinement.

Cable doublers on Igleheart's randonneur bike allow the use of both integrated and bar-end shifters, though he says the system still needs some refinement. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Kooka cranks! Christopher Igleheart says these were supplied by a customer to complete a build.

Kooka cranks! Christopher Igleheart says these were supplied by a customer to complete a build. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Tucked in the corner of the Igleheart booth was this shiny road frame built with Columbus XCr stainless steel tubing.

Tucked in the corner of the Igleheart booth was this shiny road frame built with Columbus XCr stainless steel tubing. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Also on hand in the Winter Bicycles booth was this silver 'cross bike.

Also on hand in the Winter Bicycles booth was this silver 'cross bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Gorgeous brass cable adjusters on this Kirk road bike.

Gorgeous brass cable adjusters on this Kirk road bike. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Groovy crafted this neat one-piece sweptback bar and stem for its Rohloff machine.

Groovy crafted this neat one-piece sweptback bar and stem for its Rohloff machine. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Groovy says this triangular lobed interface offers better surface contact and better reliability than any spline.

Groovy says this triangular lobed interface offers better surface contact and better reliability than any spline. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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NAHBS show director Don Walker showed off this striking steel road frame complete with a 44mm head tube, BB30 bottom bracket, and tapered Columbus full carbon fork.

NAHBS show director Don Walker showed off this striking steel road frame complete with a 44mm head tube, BB30 bottom bracket, and tapered Columbus full carbon fork. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Carrying through the painted-on stripes from the head tube into the fork blades makes for a nicely integrated look on this Don Walker.

Carrying through the painted-on stripes from the head tube into the fork blades makes for a nicely integrated look on this Don Walker. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The stubby Thomson seatpost is secured within an extended seat tube on this Don Walker machine.

The stubby Thomson seatpost is secured within an extended seat tube on this Don Walker machine. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Don Walker says he created this keirin machine in full compliance with Japanese federation rules.

Don Walker says he created this keirin machine in full compliance with Japanese federation rules. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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NAHBS show director Don Walker says even ancillary bits like this top tube protector are officially legal for Japanese keirin racing.

NAHBS show director Don Walker says even ancillary bits like this top tube protector are officially legal for Japanese keirin racing. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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According to Don Walker, even the tied-and-soldered wheels use the proper number of winds for keirin.

According to Don Walker, even the tied-and-soldered wheels use the proper number of winds for keirin. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The Soyo Gold star tubulars on Don Walker's keirin rig use silk casings.

The Soyo Gold star tubulars on Don Walker's keirin rig use silk casings. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Don Walker says he was challenged to do a fillet brazed tandem in time for NAHBS - and he delivered.

Don Walker says he was challenged to do a fillet brazed tandem in time for NAHBS - and he delivered. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Tandems pose special challenges for fillet brazing but Don Walker looks to have tackled them nicely here.

Tandems pose special challenges for fillet brazing but Don Walker looks to have tackled them nicely here. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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NAHBS founder Don Walker is also a frame builder himself and is best known for his track bikes.

NAHBS founder Don Walker is also a frame builder himself and is best known for his track bikes. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Geekhouse's sparse booth contrasted nicely with its display bikes.

Geekhouse's sparse booth contrasted nicely with its display bikes. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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The stout disc-only fork on Geekhouse's bicycle polo machine included this brilliant disc protector.

The stout disc-only fork on Geekhouse's bicycle polo machine included this brilliant disc protector. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Geekhouse built this bicycle polo machine for Brad Quartuccio of Urban Velo magazine.

Geekhouse built this bicycle polo machine for Brad Quartuccio of Urban Velo magazine. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Geekhouse included a curved seat tube for a tighter rear end on this bicycle polo rig along with S&S couplers for easier transport.

Geekhouse included a curved seat tube for a tighter rear end on this bicycle polo rig along with S&S couplers for easier transport. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)
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Dave Kirk won last year's NAHBS award for "Best Fillet Brazing" and after seeing this sample of his craftsmanship, it's no surprise why.

Dave Kirk won last year's NAHBS award for "Best Fillet Brazing" and after seeing this sample of his craftsmanship, it's no surprise why. (Image credit: Jonny Irick)

Just as in years past, steel was still the predominant material at NAHBS thanks to its wide range of available sizes, shapes, alloys, and gauges, the ease with which it can be manipulated, and the multiple ways in which it can be joined. Stainless alloys continue to grow in popularity, too, with Reynolds and Columbus increasing their inventory of sizes for their respective 953 and XCr alloys but also a newcomer to the scene, KVA.

According to KVA, a special heat treatment process lends greater ductility to the weld area (stainless tubes are usually seam-welded) than competitors' products, suggesting more flexibility in terms of bending and forming and better long-term durability especially for TIG-welded frames. Moreover, builders we spoke to at NAHBS who were already using KVA tubing cited the greater availability of bike-specific sizes and shapes.

Newcomer Bronto MTB Co. hits the floor

Bronto is a relatively new builder out of central Oregon specializing in steel hardtails. Included in the four-model range is the Bon 26" do-all cross-country rig, the Reverend geared 29er, the Willy singlespeed 29er, and finally the harder-hitting Paycheck designed around a longer-travel 140mm fork and with room for up to 26x2.5" tires.

All of Bronto's bikes share several key features, including True Temper OX Platinum tubing - with the exception of the forward section of curved down tube - a 44mm-diameter head tube for use with straight or tapered steerer tubes, optional geared/singlespeed Paragon slider dropouts, and curved seat tubes on the 29ers that allow for shorter chain stays.

Bronto is also offering a slick-looking rigid fork called the Udo for 26" or 29" wheels, both with sleeve-reinforced upper legs, a segmented crown a la Fat Chance's old Big 1", straight-bladed chromoly legs, and stout hooded dropouts.

Don Walker does steel with a modern twist

With all that goes into planning something like NAHBS, it's a wonder that show director Don Walker had time to build much of anything, let alone pack his booth with finished rigs as he did yet again for this year's event.

Nevertheless, one of the highlights for us was a bare road frameset that used some of the latest tech features: a true BB30-compatible bottom bracket shell, a semi-integrated seat mast, and a 44mm-diameter head tube fitted with Chris King's latest mixed InSet and a full-carbon Columbus tapered fork. Finishing things off was a neat two-sided red, blue, and black paint job.

Sitting at the other end of the spectrum was Walker's decidedly traditional-looking keirin racer. Not only was it styled like the real thing, though, Walker says every aspect of the build complies with official NJS technical guidelines with many of the parts imported especially for the project such as the top tube protector, Soyo Gold Star tubulars with silk casings, and even the helmet that was hung over the bars.

Walker's area was expectedly also filled with various track bikes - seeing as how that's his specialty - but one other project also occupied a healthy chunk of his time before the show: a steel road tandem.

Built for a friend who lost his sight last year, Walker says he had just a single week to get the massive structure done. Further complicating matters was the chosen fillet-brazed construction.

Nevertheless, Walker got it done and with the help of other industry friends at Co-Motion, Rolf Prima, fi'zi:k, Continental, FSA, Ritchey, and SRAM, the bike was even fully built in time, too.

An assortment of quirky machines from Minnesota's Peacock Groove

Peacock Groove's Eric Noren made yet another return visit to NAHBS with an impressive collection of bikes, each with its own little quirks that set it apart from most other machines.

One glossy blue-and-white 26" mountain bike hardtail was normal looking enough what with its TIG-welded joints, standard double-diamond configuration and unicrown steel fork. The dice theme in the paint carried over to real dice that were threaded into brazed-on fittings at both the fork tips and signature Peacock Groove rear dropouts. Blinking LED lights inside the dice perhaps added to the gimmick factor a bit but they did their job - passersby definitely stopped and took a closer look.

Noren also showed off a few steel 'cross bikes that looked fit for racing with plenty of tire clearance and suitable angles. One was thoroughly coated in metallic copper paint - including the Campagnolo Record group and alloy clincher rims - and fitted with front and rear disc brakes while the other was a more sedate white affair with conventional cantilevers. Both included rack mounts front and rear for extra versatility, too, with the front ones being designed around randonneur-style mini-racks.

Finally there was the dual-purpose hardtail 29er/grocery getter - as long as your groceries consisted of nothing more than a six-pack of beer to fit into the dedicated bespoke front rack. Rather than use a curved seat tube, Noren instead carved out the backside of the straight tube to lend more clearance for the big 29" tires.

Six-Eleven's Aaron Dykstra - a new builder but with keen old-school style

Roanoke, Virginia-based builder Aaron Dykstra of Six-Eleven Bicycle Co. has only been building for a couple of years but has studied under one of the greats of framebuilding: the legendary Koichi Yamaguchi of 3Rensho. More importantly, Dykstra's bikes belie his relative lack of experience and have already earned him a "Best Track Bike" award at this year's NAHBS.

Dykstra won that award for a beautiful lugged steel machine built with KVA stainless tubing and vintage lugs and finished in a classic-looking black and red panel layout. Capping things off was a painted-to-match lugged steel stem.

More stainless steel was found in the polished lugs, fork crown, and rear-entry horizontal dropouts of a two-tone green town bike built with Columbus SP steel tubing. S&S couplers make for easy breakdown for travel while the split seat stay allows the latest-generation Gates CenterTrack belt to pass through. The finishing touch was a one-piece steel bar and stem combination complete with extra struts to prevent excess flex.

YiPsan Bicycles - artisan looks with an engineering backbone

Hong Kong native Renold Yip earned his bachelor's degree in engineering in the UK but now builds some of the most creative bikes of NAHBS in Fort Collins, Colorado.

One of the crowd favorites was a black-and-copper town bike with twin top tubes that took a quick detour at the seat tube to form the seat stays, front and rear disc brakes, internal routing all around, a full complement of polished aluminum bits (including a polished Greenfield kickstand!) and custom front and rear racks.

The front one in particular reflects Yip's mechanical chops with its modular design. The top extensions can be removed for use with lowrider bags and a small racktop pack or installed to provide a more cargo-friendly shelf with lots of surface area. The rear rack sported gracefully curved stays with a fixed wooden deck.

Also decorating the YiPsan booth was a yellow randonneur bike with color-contrast painted fenders and a matching lugged steel stem plus Yip's take on a go-anywhere mountain bike complete with a monstrous Surly snowbike front tire.

Countless other steel builders were on hand that we haven't yet mentioned as well, and while we can't quite fit everyone into this article, feel free to enjoy the accompanying image gallery from our continuing coverage. Also, stay tuned for one final installment before we call this year's NAHBS a wrap.

This article first appeared on Bikeradar here.