“Low levels of interest” leads to cancellation of Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show

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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Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show freshens up with new location for 2017

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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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Photos and notes from the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show

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(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

A big rain storm cancelled many events around Portland today, but not the sixth annual Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show. Inside the Sandbox Studio on NE 9th, dozens of exhibitors showed off their finest creations to an appreciative crowd.

While the show seemed a bit smaller than past years (both in the amount of bikes on display and the amount of people looking at them), there was still plenty to see and a few very nice surprises.

The first thing that caught my eye was the “CarGoAway” by Ti Cycles. This cargo bike has already been in the local news thanks in part to its second place showing at the recent Disaster Relief Trials competition; but I hadn’t seen it in person yet.

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Handmade Bicycle Show this weekend will showcase Oregon’s finest

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Immerse yourself in beautiful bicycles this weekend.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The sixth annual Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show (OHBS) is this weekend and if you love fine bicycles, this is an event you won’t want to miss. The OHBS promises to be a fantastic showcase of expertly executed designs, meticulous builds, and a chance to meet and hang out with the builders behind the headbadges.

The OHBS is put on by the Oregon Bicycle Constructors Association, a member-supported non-profit organization formed in 2006 with the aim to promote Oregon bike builders. The bike show is their largest annual event and its a great way to support the industry.

Organizers of this weekend’s event say we can expect about 30 exhibitors. Along with some of the local builders you’ve come to expect at this show, there are a few new ones that will make their OHBS debut on Saturday:

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Notes and photos from the Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show

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The show attracted a steady stream
of bike fans to Swan Island.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The fifth annual Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show kicked off Saturday at the Vigor Industries shipyard on Swan Island. The industrial setting served as the perfect backdrop for a showcase of talented welders and makers brought together by the Oregon Bicycle Constructors Association. As hail and rain pounded outside, the exhibitors enjoyed a solid turnout of handmade bike fans eager to see their latest creations.

The first bike that caught my eye was a new model in the growing Cielo Cycles line. The “Cross Classic” is a flat-bar cyclocross rig that comes with fender eyelets, making it the perfect bike to “Ride to work all week and then race on the weekends,” said marketing guy Dylan Van Weelden…

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Oregon bike industry on display at handmade bike show this weekend

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A scene from the 2010 show.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

After a stop in Bend last year, the Oregon Bicycle Constructor’s Association is bringing their annual show back to Portland.

This weekend on Swan Island some of Oregon’s finest frame builders will come together for the annual Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show. With 18 builders and 36 total exhibitors lined up, this is an excellent chance to see the latest creations from both well-known and up-and-coming bike makers. In addition to framebuilders, the show will include the legendary, made-in-Portland parts from Chris King Precision Components (fresh of their trip to the White House), handmade wooden helmets from Dan Coyle, the latest light creations from Beaverton resident Brian Engelen of Light On! Lights, and lots more.

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Builder notes from the Oregon Handmade Bike Show

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A big crowd turned out on Saturday.
(Photos © J. Maus)

Last weekend’s Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show (see my slideshow and mini-report here) made it clear that our region’s custom bike building industry is stronger than ever.

Below are my notes from conversations I had with builders who displayed at the show…

Tony Pereira / Pereira Cycles
Tony staffed his booth, proudly wearing the fantastic new suit that he won as a prize for winning the Constructor’s Design Challenge at the Oregon Manifest. Pereira sold the bike that won that competition (to help finance a move and setting up a new shop) and the centerpiece to his booth at the OHBS was its replacement.

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Oregon Handmade Bike Show (Slideshow)

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Watch the slideshow below
(Photos © J. Maus)

The Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show has once again shown that the bicycle building industry and craft is alive and thriving in Oregon. Despite steady rain, the aisles were full of people interested in meeting the hands behind their favorite bikes and getting up close and personal with some of the finest bikes in the world.

I caught up with many of the builders and have a lot of notes to share; but for now, sit back and watch the slideshow below. Check back later for an updated post with more details about the builders and their bikes… If you were there, leave a comment with your feedback about the show, your favorite bikes, etc…