Archives of stories on Portland Framebuilders

Velo Cult to host big used bike sale and a final goodbye from local framebuilders

Posted on August 7th, 2018 at 3:21 pm.

(Image: Velo Cult on Instagram)

You didn’t think Velo Cult would go quietly, did you?

The legendary shop, tavern, and community event space sadly announced the closure of its brick-and-mortar retail operations last month.

If you missed the farewell party and still need one last fix of the bike-loving vibes this place was famous for, there are two events you should put on your calendar right now: A used bike sale this Friday through Sunday and a big bike show on August 18th.
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“Low levels of interest” leads to cancellation of Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show

Posted on August 6th, 2018 at 1:50 pm.

Fans of great bikes stroll the aisles in the 2012 Oregon Handmade Bike Show held at the Vigor Industries shipyard on Swan Island.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus)

“Our hope is to remake the show with an eye toward the future.”
— Dave Levy, Oregon Bicycle Constructors Association president

Organizers of the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show have called off their marquee event — for the first time since it began 11 years ago.

In a message to vendors, fans, and sponsors, Dave Levy, president of Oregon Bicycle Constructors Association, the nonprofit trade association behind the event, wrote, “It is with a heavy heart we have decided to cancel the show… 2018 has been the year we have seen the lowest level of interest in the OHBS, the number of builders who have chosen to sign up is so low the OBCA board feels we cannot put on a show we can be proud of, and allow the builders to present well.” Levy said the organization will refund vendor fees that have already been paid.

Last year when the event was held in a warehouse just north of the St. Johns Bridge, over two dozen vendors shared their creations with an appreciative crowd. But excitement about the event has tapered in recent years as the local framebuilding scene has cooled considerably since its heyday in the mid-to-late 2000s.
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Two bikes stolen in smash-and-grab theft at Breadwinner Cycles & Cafe

Posted on July 3rd, 2018 at 7:52 am.

(Photos: Breadwinner Cycles)

Be on the lookout: Breadwinner Cycles in north Portland was broken into last night and the thieves stole two bikes.

Co-owner Ira Ryan contacted us with the news this morning. He said someone smashed through their glass front door, waltzed into the shop and took the bikes and a company laptop.

According to Ryan the bike that was taken is a red, Lolo model road bike with the name “J. Daugherty” on the top tube. To make matters worse, the bike belonged to a customer from Washington that was planning to come to Portland this Thursday to pick it up. The other bike that was stolen is a blue, prototype dirt-jumper model. Scroll down to see both bikes…

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Breadwinner, the bike company formerly based out of Ryan’s garage, opened in this new location and expanded into a cafe last winter. Ryan says the cafe and shop will be open for business today once all the broken glass is cleaned up.

“We are bummed, but determined to carry on of course,” Ryan said via text this morning.

If you see either of these bikes, please contact Portland Police non-emergency line at (503) 823-3333 and/or drop us a line and we can put you in touch with Breadwinner.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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Circling back to Portland bike builder Circa Cycles

Posted on June 14th, 2018 at 11:07 am.

Rich Fox in his Circa Cycles studio in northwest Portland.
(Photo: James Buckroyd)

Contributor James Buckroyd writes about products and the people who make them. He previously visited Misia Pitkin’s Double Darn cycling cap studio.

BikePortland first caught up with Rich Fox and Circa Cycles about four years ago, when the company was new on the Portland scene. Since then, there have been several interesting developments and we thought it’d be fun to circle back.
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Introducing the Bicycle Showcase: A place to promote and learn about great bikes

Posted on May 16th, 2018 at 4:33 pm.

We have so many great local bike shops and builders in Portland, and one of our main goals has always been to support them by spreading the word about their business and products.

Today we’re launching a new tool that will take that one step further. We call it the Bicycle Showcase. It’s a paid listing service ($150 per bike) and it’s a simple way for local bike builders and bike shops to spread the word about bikes they have for sale. Similar to our Job Listings, the idea is to get that triple-win we always strive for around here: Help local businesses thrive, support our work, and provide a helpful resource the community.

I personally love visiting bike shops and checking out the latest-and-greatest bikes. My hope is that this new service gives you the information you need to make a good choice about your next bike and/or just gives you an opportunity to ogle something cool during your lunch hour.

Our friends at Joe Bike (SE Lincoln and Cesar Chavez Blvd) jumped at the chance to create the first listing. Check out their very cool rendition of a Soma Wolverine below…

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Framebuilders expand as Breadwinner Cafe opens for business

Posted on December 19th, 2017 at 5:57 pm.

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Customers sit at the bar of Breadwinner Cafe with the framebuilding workshop visible through a big window.
(Photos: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

The story behind the new Breadwinner Cafe is Portland at its best.

The two guys behind it — Tony Pereira and Ira Ryan — started over a decade ago as bicycle builders toiling in their garages on frames bearing their own names (Pereira Cycles and Ira Ryan Cycles respectively). Then in 2013 they joined forces to form Breadwinner Cycles. That brand and business has matured nicely over the years; but the duo was still cramped for space. Last spring they leased a building on North Williams Avenue and Page Street and have been working all year to renovate the space.

Today they took a huge step forward with the opening of Breadwinner Cafe, which is directly adjacent to the workshop where they build the 10 different models they currently offer. Tony and Ira have gone from framebuilders to community builders.

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Industry news: Urban Arrow in Portland, Framebuilder Supply’s grant, Velotech expands, Left Coast makes house calls

Posted on November 14th, 2017 at 2:39 pm.

Who’s ready for some local industry news?

Here are the latest tidbits we’ve come across from Portland’s ever-changing bike business landscape.
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Portland-based Chris King ceases production of Cielo frames

Posted on August 16th, 2017 at 3:59 pm.

Chris King Cielo Cycles factory  -48

An employee puts finishing touches on a Cielo frame at the factory in 2013.
(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

If you were waiting to order a Cielo, it’s too late.

Portland-based Chris King Precision Components (CKPC) announced yesterday that they’ve ceased production of all Cielo frames, forks and stems effective immediately.

In a statement, the company said, “After reevaluating marketing and sales goals for the coming years, Cielo unfortunately did not fit into our plans. We are quite proud of the product that the brand has produced over the years, but will be focusing our attention and resources on our core product families (headsets, bottom brackets, and hubs).”

Cielo was started by Chris King in Santa Barbara California 1978. By the mid 1980s King’s headsets had become so popular that he stopped making bikes to keep up with the demands of his fast-growing company. As his headset (and later hubset and bottom bracket) business grew he added staff and moved his business from Santa Barbara to Redding (CA) and then ultimately to Portland in 2003. Once settled into a large manufacturing facility in the northwest industrial district and with a healthy business (the company now employs over 130 people), King rekindled the Cielo brand in 2008.
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Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show freshens up with new location for 2017

Posted on August 3rd, 2017 at 11:41 am.

Handmade Bike & Beer Fest-33.jpg

Coming to St. Johns August 12-13th.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

It’s been 10 years since the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show burst onto the scene. I can still recall the buzz and optimism in that room. There was a collective realization that we had something special here. Today the show is stronger than ever and organizers have announced a new location, new vendors, and a lot of new reasons to check it out.
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The Portland connection behind the limited edition ‘Sequoia Merz’ bike from Specialized

Posted on May 24th, 2017 at 1:36 pm.

The Sequoia Merz from Specialized.
(Photo: River City Bicycles)

One of the most well-known bike brands in the world has just released a limited edition model (only 200 will be sold) that has a Portland framebuilder’s name on the downtube.

The new Sequoia adventure road bike from Specialized Bicycles has the name “Merz” emblazoned on the frame in honor of the work of Jim Merz. As you might recall in a story we shared of a bike tour Merz took in 1972, he was one of the first custom framebuilders to set up shop in Portland. After getting his start here in the early 1970s his work caught the attention of Mike Sinyard — the man who started Specialized. It was 1982 and Sinyard needed help building his “Stumpjumper” mountain bike frames which were taking the country by storm.

When “The Big S” wanted to bring back their Sequoia road bike to capitalize on today’s big adventure riding/gravel bike market, they contracted with Merz on the design. Below is an excerpt form an interview with Merz recently posted on the River City Bicycles website. In it, Merz explains how he first met Sinyard:
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