What a day.
This morning I left the house in driving, cold, rain. A few hours later, I was pedaling in blue skies and California sunshine.
So far, my Tikit has been great. It only took about 20 minutes to go from baggage check to mobility, and few minutes later, I was at the San Jose Convention Center.
Today was opening day at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show (NAHBS) and Portland builders were out in force.
Show rookie Ira Ryan somehow scored a booth right near the main entrance. His new “Cupcake” porteur bike captured a steady stream of eyeballs. It’s white powder-coated, front-loader rack is especially sweet. When I looked more closely I noticed some other nifty touches.
Ira brazed the brake leavers directly onto the bars. No clamps. Nice. He also integrated the thumb shifter mount. The result is a very clean, distinctive rig.
Just across from Ira was the guy he drove here with, Tony Pereira. Tony had a great day. His 1920’s cruiser-inspired mountain bike has been called a show favorite by more than one passerby.
But for me, the coolest thing in Tony’s booth is his randonneuring bike. Tony has mixed the old and new into a gorgeous combination that includes a “suicide shift” front derailleur, a carbon Campy crankset, and hand-painted pinstripes. I’ll get some close-ups of this thing tomorrow.
Down the aisle a ways was the Vanilla Bicycles booth. If there was a “Best in Show” prize for best booth, it would win hands down.
I cornered Sacha before he got too busy to ask him about his new Speedvagen model. It represents a new direction for Vanilla and I’ll share more details about the bike, and Sacha’s philosophy behind it tomorrow. Here’s a few teaser photos:
Stay tuned because here are the stories I’m working on for tomorrow:
- The story behind the new Vanilla “Speedvagen” cyclocross bike
- Photos and the inside scoop on Joseph Ahearne’s “Ms. Michaels’ Mixte” (ladies, you will love this bike!)
- A tour of the Vanilla booth
- Photos and info on the Sycip long-bike, equipped with Todd Fahrner’s Portland-made Stokemonkey, with comments and insight from Todd himself (he’s here too!).
- A chat with Chris King
- More tidbits from Ira, Tony, Joseph and Sacha