We've collaborated on several custom bikes with our good friend Vincent. Vincent is a accomplished hobbyist frame builder and also the owner of Maps Coffee and Chocolate. Most custom builds involve acquiring a frame off the shelf and choosing parts to achieve the desired look and performance. But, Vincent starts from a blank slate and builds the frame first. Our job is to find the right mix of parts to make the frame shine and fit the personality of the bike. This is always a fun process that allows us to be creative. It's also a challenging process with the current supply chain issues. We love how this bike turned out.
Vincent started with a set of steel lugs designed by Kirk Pacenti. Vincent tells us he acquired these lugs years ago. They came in a box of tools and equipment Vincent purchased when he started his frame business. Vincent put the frame together and had it power coated and pin stripped. The frame then sat around for a few years until a friend asked him to build a bike for her. The frame was the perfect fit, so it was time to get it road ready.
Vincent had the frame powder coated at Groody Bros. Bicycle Restoration. He chose this beautiful Fire Engine Red color. Then, out of the blue one day Vincent had the opportunity to have the frame pinstriped by a local artist. The red and gold combination reminds us of a classic Fire Truck.
One of the highlights of the build is the Gilles Berhound Saddle. Vincent has used the saddle on other bikes, but it found it's final home on this bike.
The bike will be ridden as an every-day commuter. So all of the other parts on this bike were chosen for functionality rather than flare. After all, the frame is the star of the show, so the other parts just need to work.
The drivetrain consists of 10-speed Microsoft Advent shifters with a Shimano Sora rear derailleur. This is a modern, bullet-proof, system that's not too expensive. The brakes are modern Tektro cantilever brakes and the tires are Vittoria Randouneur in 700x38c. The bike shifts and brakes super smoothly and the frame provides light and snappy feel. We love the way these incredibly functional modern parts blend so nicely with the clearly retro style of the bike.