The annual North American Handmade Bicycle Show headed to Austin, Texas this year with the usual roundup of the exquisite, beautiful and the bizarre.
Organisers of the show also hosted the NAHBS Awards, picking the best examples of bicycle design across several categories. Here’s a roundup of the award winners.
For Best TIG Welded Frame one of RCUK’s favourite brands, Independent Fabrication, scooped top honours. The company showed its Ti Factory Lightweight road bike that has been turning heads, and which we got a close look at during the Bike Show earlier this year. IF also showed a couple of interesting new additions to its range, but more of those later.
The highly coveted Best in Show gong was picked up by DiNucci Cycles. Building his first frame in 1972, Mark DiNucci then went on to set up his own shop producing frames under the DiNucci Cycles in 1985. Interestingly DiNucci designed the frames, tubes and lugs for some Specialized bicycles, including the early Allez, during the early ‘90s.
Best Road Frame went to Ellis Cycles, which honoured the company’s randonneur model. Built for randonneur events, it uses a Schmidt SONdelux front hub to power the Edelux front light which is mounted to custom front rack, with the wires routed internally for a clean look. Also on the Ellis Cycles stand was a unique frame made from a collection of Reynolds 953, True Temper S3 and Dedacciai tubes – check out this video of the frame being made here.
People’s Choice went to Naked Bicycles for its street-ready slick-tyred single speed. Notice the one-piece handlebar and stem and the novel seat clamp arrangement, and the beautiful curved top tube flowing seamlessly into the seat stays.
While the show does tend to focus on bicycles made out of mostly steel, it doesn’t mean there wasn’t a strong showing of carbon fibre. Taking the Best Carbon Fibre Frame award was Strong Frames, from Bozeman, Montana with its beautiful carbon frameset, fighting off stiff competition from some highly regarded brands to take the honours.
The awards in full:
- Rookie of the Year: Rosene Hand Built Bicycles
- President’s Choice: Anderson Custom Bicycles
- Best Paint: KirkLee Bicycles
- People’s Choice: Naked Bicycles
- Best City Bike: Signal Cycles
- Best TIG Welded Frame: Independent Fabrication, Inc.
- Best Fillet Brazed Frame: Dominguez Cycles
- Best Steel Steel Frame: Bishop Bikes
- Best Lugged Frame: Bilenky Cycle Works
- Best Titanium Frame: Kish Fabrication
- Best Carbon Fiber Frame: Strong Frames
- Best Tandem Frame: Eriksen Cycles
- Best Off-Road Frame: Black Sheep Fabrication, Inc
- Best Track Frame: Six-Eleven Bicycle Co
- Best Road Frame: Ellis Cycles
- Best in Show: DiNucci Cycles
Check out all the bikes in question in the photo gallery at the bottom of this article.