Here is the second of the UK Continental videos, with Sam and myself both on Donhou’s. You can read about Sam’s here and mine below. It was an awesome ride, starting from the pebbly south coast in Dorset and riding cross country to the sandy shores of ‘Sunny Hunny’ (Hunstanton for those outside of Norfolk!). Best to let the film do the talking as we travel through time and trace the changes along Britain’s oldest road – The Icknield Way.
November 21.12 – My Continental Build
If you follow the website you’ll probably be aware of the Rapha Continental build that I did for rider Sam of Look Mum No Hands. You may have also noticed that I was invited to be a rider as well as a builder, so naturally I had to build myself a Continental bike.
I loved Sams so much that I pretty much made another. There are a few differences so you can tell them apart and we each still have our own bikes, but the main concept is there – Disc brakes, Wound Up fork, sweet detailing and of course the black and white paint job.
Mine’s built from a mix of oversized Reynolds 853 and 853 Pro Team, has custom Donhou rear disc dropouts and a really neat slashed and sleeved seat cluster detail. There’s also an internally routed rear brake cable through the down tube and through the non drive chainstay and the bike has the capacity to run larger diameter tyres with mudguards and a rack for some fast touring.
The bike was literally built up the morning of the second UK Continental and after a quick shake down ride up and down the street out the back of LMNH, I went out and rode it from Weymouth to Hunstanton – a fast 600km in 3 days. Needless to say the bike felt amazing and I can confirm Sams feedback from his bike – “This thing f**king descends!”
More pics in the gallery.
November 1.12 – Made in England
Come along to Look Mum No Hands on the 9th of November for the launch of Made in England, a brand new book showcasing the best Britain has to offer in the world of frame building, including Donhou Bicycles. I got a sneak peek at the book a couple of weeks ago and the authors have done an incredible job.
On the night will be builder playlists, so you can get a feel of the soundtrack behind the bikes, there will be bikes on display and large framed prints for sale, with all proceeds going to charity. Hope to see you there…
October 21.12 – Peter’s 931 Track Bike
When Peter first entered the workshop he knew exactly what he wanted – His dream track bike that would give him the freedom to ride it both on the road and on the track, so that’s what we built for him…
Peter had a clear idea of the paint job he wanted in his head, we realised it for him in the visual prior to build and the Rasta fade paint came out looking great!
This was constructed using Fillet Pro high strength/low melt brazing rods to join the hand picked Reynolds 931 stainless tubes. The result is a light, strong and responsive frame which will ride great, both on the road and on the boards…
Higher res pics in the gallery.
October 11.12 – Custom Pantographing
This is something new that Donhou Bicycles can now offer, custom pantographing on your stainless dropout faces. Always such a neat touch, there’s something about knowing there’s a cool little feature hidden away on your bike somewhere, you’re own little secret!
You can see here some custom faces for one of the Rapha Continental builds… Maybe you’d like your name, maybe your club, I want some Love/Hate ones…
September 10.12 – Katherines Tourer
This is my first replica, well kind of. Katherine came to me with a metallic green, fillet brazed frame with a crumpled front end. She’d had a collision with a car, luckily Katherine was ok, but the frame was a write off. It was quite an interesting frame and had significant sentimental value as her brother had built it for her many years ago. He wasn’t a frame builder, but decided he wanted to build his sister a bike and its served her well on many a shopping trip and on various tours.
Where I say replica, its not quite an exact replica, I brought it up to date for her using Reynolds 631, 1 1/8th threadless forks, proper rack mounts, stainless dropout faces, clearance for larger tyres and mudguards and finished it in a stunning deep green pearl. This will build into a great tourer and I hope Katherine and her brother are pleased with its new incarnation!
July 29.11 – Hins Di2 Road Machine
Hin wanted a road bike, he wanted Ui2, he wanted it light, but durable, it needed to last him and it needed to be usable. This was going to be Hin’s best Sunday bike, one that would take him out past the rough roads of London and out into the rolling country of the Downs or Surrey Hills.
Like all Donhou’s this bike rides amazing; fast up the hills, falls into turns perfectly, tracks like an arrow and is still comfortable to ride all day, Hin will proudly testify to it.
We ran with 853 Pro Team tubing, Ui2 with a Calfee internal battery and full internal routing, keeping the bike looking clean and uncluttered. ENVE forks, HED rims and a top end finishing kit from Chris King and Thomson complete the build. Local wheel building legend Phil Saunders built the wheels, having built for national and world cup racers he’s the top man for the job. He also has a very fast daughter, CX racer Helen Wyman. So Hin knows every part of his bike has been built by people that live and even breed cycling!
Many happy miles Hin…
July 15.12 – Made in England
There’s a new book due out later this year showcasing frame building in the UK, featuring intimate conversations between the authors (both builders themselves) and 12 frame builders all building in the UK. From what I’ve seen so far its going to be a great book with some fantastic images taken by Kayti Peschke. They are now taking pre orders to raise some cash for the print run with the first 400 customers getting a signed copy from the authors along with a personal hand written message, as well receiving their copy before the book hits the shops! The book will be launching in late October, but get your pre order in here.
July 8.12 – Ben’s Track Frame
Ben’s a ride anything kind of guy, he has is own BMX company, Fatality BMX, but rides MTB’s, and road bikes too. He’d been dreaming up a sweet track bike for a while and had some really specific ideas. When him and his friend came to visit the workshop for the first time to discuss his bike he had a sketch book full of ideas – All the horizontals had to match; horizontal tube tube, horizontal drops, horizontal stem. Ben wanted a seat stay seat binder bolt, he wanted lugs, but something smooth and understated.
So I took the files to some long point lugs and removed just enough, filled the windows in the fork crown to get that super smooth look and fillet brazed the seat cluster to allow the super minimal seat binder bolt (dead ended so you cant tell how the seat post is held in place from non-drive side). And then to finish it all off and get all those horizontals Ben wanted finished it off with a custom bar/stem.
Super subtle with just a stainless Donhou head badge and Donhou bridge, finished in Molteni Orange, often referred to as Merckx Orange, this frame, fork, bar/stem combo looks stunning, and I know there is a great build kit with a mix of old and new waiting for this as soon as it gets home. Many happy miles Ben.
More pics in the gallery.
June 24.12 – Winner Bespoked Bristol Exhibitors Peer Award
I was really pleased and honoured to receive a phone call last month from Phil at Bespoked Bristol – UK Bespoke and Handbuilt Bicycle show, saying that Donhou Bicycles won the Exhibitors Peer Award 2012. With all the exhibitors busy with the job in hand at the show this was a post show vote and I’m very honoured to have received the award. It means a lot, so thanks to every one that voted for us!