Unfortunately, I can’t make it to Louisville, but, by a happy coincidence, I am working in Boulder this week, and was able to attend the 2nd annual Colorado Custom and Vintage Bicycle Expo, which took place Sunday near Denver. It’s an example of the smaller regional handmade shows that are popping up due to the popularity of the NAHBS.
The Colorado show was put on by Michael Kone of Boulder Bicycles and Fat Kitty Cycles bike shop. Boulder Bicycles specializes in randonneuring frames and bicycles and vintage racing bicycle components, and mainly sells through their online store. Fat Kitty also does used and vintage bicycles and parts, plus maintenance classes out of the “newest shop in Boulder.”
Along with those companies, some of the best bike builders in the Boulder area presented their goodies, like Rivet Cycle Works and their exquisite leather saddles, Mark Nobilette with his magnificent framesets (he’s the builder of Boulder Bicycles’ Rene Herse frames), the incredibly versatile Gangle Custom Cycles that can seemingly build anything and Yipsan Bicycles with their NAHBS award-winning city bikes with built-in locks, lights and dreamy finish work.
Bicycle Display Solutions’ lovely wood display stands
Bicycle Display Solutions also caught my eye. And I enjoyed meeting local legend and 82-year-old John Crump, who rode to the show to enter his 1953 Rotrax (see photo above) in the Concours (keep reading). His first race bike, and still among his favorites, he brought it as equipped to ride to races, with his race wheels carried in special holders on either side of the fork. Here’s a complete list of exhibitors with links.
Like other bike shows sometimes do, the Colorado Expo also held a swap meet and a Concours d’Elegance. I took the opportunity to show off 3 of my retro rigs (see photo), a 1974 Schwinn Paramount, a 1971 Rex English Racer 3-speed and a 1975 Rene Herse randonneuse.
They joined about 40 other dust-collectors including a spectacular 1967 Rene Herse tandem and a sweet selection of Tasshi Dennis of the Vintage Mountain Bike Workshop’s historic mountain bike collection (many people don’t know that early MTBs were strongly influenced by road bikes and riders, like Joe Breeze, Tom Ritchey and Gary Fisher).
Overall, a grand time was had by all, as you can see from the photos. If you can make the Louisville show, I’m sure you’ll love it.
Jim Langley is RBR’s Technical Editor. He has been a pro mechanic and cycling writer for more than 40 years. He’s the author of Your Home Bicycle Workshop in the RBR eBookstore. Check out his “cycling aficionado” website at http://www.jimlangley.net, his Q&A blog and updates at Twitter. Jim’s streak of consecutive cycling days has reached more than 8,000. Click to read Jim’s full bio.