The 2012 edition of the North American Handmade Bicycle Show (NAHBS) is coming to Sacramento, CA on March 2-4. The Mtbr and RoadBikeReview crew will be there conducting as many builder interviews as we can during those 3 days. If you have never been to a handmade bicycle show, you should definitely check it out. The saying “the devil is in the details” is no more true than the pieces of art on display at this show. The craftsmenship and passion is evident in each frame, fork, component or accessory. Sure, there are the over-the-top show bikes that are built just for their “flash” factor, but if you take the time to look closely at the intricacies of the bikes you start to gain an understanding of what is going on with the bike under the surface.
My education, learning and appreciation of the fine art of hand made bicycles began in 2006. After it’s inaugural year in Houston, TX (2005), Don Walker (creator, mastermind and organizer of NAHBS) brought his traveling show to the Bay Area for two years. I remember feeling overwhelmed at the size of the show and was happy to see such locals like Sycip, Phil Wood and Soulcraft getting some good exposure for their brand. It was at this show that I found out about Sacha White and his cult-like following. My experience and understanding would increase in 2008 when Mtbr traveled to Portland, OR for the biggest NAHBS show to date. It was our first time filming video at this event and we learned a LOT in regards to how much works goes into shooting videos for our online coverage. It was also at the Portland show that I got to take Mtbr founder Francis and RoadBikeReview Site Manager Thien’s photo with none other than Lance Armstrong! Also in attendance was actor/comedian/cyclist Robin Williams.
The show moved too far for our travel budget in 2009 (Indianapolis, IN) and 2010 (Richmond, VA). But last year, we broke open our piggy banks and covered the Austin, TX edition. And we were glad we did. The Austin show broke all the records that the Portland show had set 3 years prior. Recession or not, we were happy to see a huge turnout and even more builders than ever. We tried to cover as many of the new/small builders as possible as well as some of our old favorites.
In preparation for the forthcoming show, I’d like to take a look back at some builders and bikes from last year’s Austin show. These are presented in no specific order and if you should really check out ALL of our coverage from NAHBS here>> And, if you get a chance to come out to the Sacramento show, stop by our booth and say “hi”!
A Look Back: Black Cat Bicycles – steel 29er singlespeed
Todd Ingermanson is a local builder for us. He is based in Santa Cruz, CA and here he shows us the highlights of his lugged steel 29er singlespeed. Todd makes the lugs himself.
This frame features:
-Swing style dropouts
-Curved seattube for shorter chainstays
For more info: www.blackcatbicycles.com
For more general info about the North American Handmade Bicycle Show: 2012.handmadebicycleshow.com