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In Lovely Bikes

By Gavin Bannerman

From the start

On 30, Nov 2014 | No Comments | In Lovely Bikes | By Gavin Bannerman

Some builds are worth seeing for the parts list, others command your attention with their backstory. This build shapes to be something special. Suffice to say, this is an important artefact of Brisbane’s frame building history. More details will be forthcoming soon. I was very keen to document the bike “as is,” in an effort to record the history of what was and what will be.




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In Lovely Bikes

By Gavin Bannerman

Happy New Year

On 08, Jan 2014 | No Comments | In Lovely Bikes | By Gavin Bannerman

I learnt one of my biggest lessons of 2013 while playing cricket. It was the final of the Chronicle Cup, vying for this fine silverware.

I was facing the opening bowlers: a new ball with a bit of swing and seam. I saw off a difficult few overs, then I tried to up the scoring rate. I played a rash shot to a ball on leg, that wasn’t nearly as short as I thought. Bowled. I got out playing the wrong shot to the wrong ball. I’ve thought about it for a while now (and watched a lot of cricket since.) There is something magical about an appropriate response to a situation: just the right beer for a thirst, just the right tyre width on a gravel ride.

This bike build is a true example of propriety – it is done right. It’s not a slog to cow corner (or a horribly mismatched fixxay unsuited to its purpose.)

This Eric Hendren-built Hoffy track frame was bought direct from the first owner, Alan. Hoffy order books show that he had the frame made from 708 Reynolds tubing in Sandgate. The year was 1991.

I’ve done a bit of research on Hoffy Cycles, one of Queensland’s most significant bike manufacturers. You can see the interview I did with Eric Hendren here. Or flick through the order books here.

These hands made this bike.

Just recently, this frame has been built up by one one of Brisbane’s savviest bicycle mechanics. With a real feel for this piece of Brisbane cycling history, this bike has been put together with a mix of French, English, Japanese, Czech and Italian parts. While not an exercise in period correctness, it is an example of each piece exactly complimenting each other. Parts as follows:

Frame/fork: Eric Hendren built, Reynolds 708 tubing
Headset: Stronglight
Stem: Nitto Pearl
Bars: VO Porteur / VO Cork Grips
Seat Post: Campagnolo
Saddle: Brooks B17
Bottom Bracket: Campagnolo
Crank: Campagnolo Pista
Chainring: Sugino<
Chain: Izumi
Pedals: Campagnolo Pista / VO Leather Singles
Wheelset: Velosteel Coaster/TB14 & Campagnolo Pista/TB14
Tyres: Michelin Dynamic Gumwall

The paintwork, all original, is in remarkable condition. The pearl of the top-tube glimmers, the red and black positively radiates in the sun. This is a prime example of a locally made frame kept in good hands.

We photographed this bike in a West End factory. They factory had just been emptied. We were lucky to get in and utilise the brilliant light case through the windows. Two pieces of Brisbane history in one. You can read more about this bike on Cycle Exif and view more pictures on Flickr.

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In Lovely Bikes
The Big Day

By Gavin Bannerman

Made in BNE

On 05, Jun 2013 | No Comments | In Lovely Bikes, The Big Day | By Gavin Bannerman

One of the most closely contested show ‘n’ shine categories is the Made in BNE section. There is a tradition of local bike makers churning out great bikes. From Rockets, Tom Wallace Specials, Hoffys, Frezonis, Berrettos to Llewellyns, Brisbane has punched above its weight in its bike output.

Several enterprising individuals have asked what to do with bikes they’ve manufactured themselves. Not well-known brands, established industry types, these are enthusiastic manufacturers, often applying skills them developed elsewhere.

Mark Nurcombe is one such fellow. Sure, you could take the easy route and construct a steel frame in your backyard. Mark has stepped it up and made this carbon beauty. Made in BNE – it’s for everyone.










See the whole set here.

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