The Bike Company of "No"

(But some panels do look good…)

Here’s an old post from a couple of years ago – these things get buried and with all the new orders coming in this month I’d like to draw a little bit of attention to my need to be controlling and to cement my reputation as “The Bike Company of No”.

Working with a customer on a new frame can be a balancing act: will the customer accept the type of frame or whole bike we like to do or will they want something different? Will they “get” it? Will I understand what the customer wants? Our ideas change, the market changes, and what our builders are willing to do can change. With these points in mind:

Paint: we like single color paint jobs. We like the lug cutouts – if we’re using lugs – to be filled a contrasting color. We’re loving panels less and less as time goes by: hey, we’ll do it if you ask but we’re not wild about that look for Hampsten and Tournesol. And we don’t offer lug striping, we eschew fades and purple, and Team 7-Eleven paint is the only multi-color scheme we’re liking these days.

We don’t offer chrome or nickel plating of frames nor do we polish stainless – sorry. We don’t offer custom carved lugs: Sachs “Rene Singer” is standard for Tournesol; “Issimo” for Team Pro. Peter Weigle, Curt Goodrich, and Sacha White are good sources for frames with carved lugs if you can deal with the wait.

We’ve pretty much given up on shaped tubing (Columbus MAX being the exception) and carbon rears.

Like our decals? Great, ’cause that’s what we use and we have plenty of nice versions to chose from. We don’t make custom decals and we prefer to not use yours. We’ll put your name on the top tube if you kick and scream, maybe. Decals on head, down, and seat tube generally.

Boy, this makes me sound like a grump – sorry to be so negative but I’ve had a few cases over the years where I wish I had laid all this out before we started talking. Some builders ask you what you want and try to build it for you. Others say: “This is what we do. We build great bikes and if you can work within our parameters then we have a deal.”

We’re the second type of builder. We have a vision and we want customers who understand that vision. There is nothing wrong with wanting something else, whether that be shiny lugs, purple-to-gold fade, or carbon chainstays; we’re just not going to be the builder you want in that case.

Hey, thanks for reading!

3 replies
  1. frescova
    frescova says:

    It’s why you’re the expert and I’m not; and why I deferred lots of the decisions to you 🙂

    Can’t wait for my bike to arrive, I know it will be great!

  2. Ed H
    Ed H says:

    “We have a vision and we want customers who understand that vision.”

    exactly why you should be in business! keep up the quality and focus.

    plus- seriously who needs all that extra stuff?


  3. Boedie Cycles
    Boedie Cycles says:

    I’ve been thinking lately that a “bike nazi” style shop, ala Seinfeld, would be fun. No service for you. Next!
    Thanks for writing this, it has been quite entertaining. Go get em tiger.


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