Whew! Finally, the bike that put all those commuter/townie/randonneur nancy-boys to shame at the 2011 North American Handmade Bicycle Show. Tall, slender 29ers are all very well and good, but in some rock gardens and downhill trails, 9 inches of rear wheel travel is the only way to fly.
Enter Bicycle Fabrications. Run by Hank Matheson and based in San Francisco, they seem to have picked up where Brooklyn Machine Works left off. This neon behemoth is called the Candyman, and it’s the flagship model in a new range of tailored downhill rigs designed to the customer’s individual geometry. While it’s the most muscle bound frame I’ve encountered since BMW’s Race Link, the Candyman has certain refinements and a sense of style completely lacking from today’s downhill and all-mountain scene. The range will feature, apparently, titanium and carbon-fiber construction, and a range of adjustability that should appeal to the off-roader serious enough to open his wallet wide enough to afford one.
Bicycle Fabrications debuted the Candyman in Austin, hopefully we’ll be seeing more of them in the future. All photos from the NAHBS site.