The Green Man Rides: Elliff ‘All-Weather Fast Bike’

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'

Even the masters had teachers. It’s a good point to remember, when you’re learning something new, that knowledge is a continuous path and even those with great experience are still learning themselves.

Living legends like Richard Sachs and Dario Pegoretti had to start somewhere. This elf-green forest racer is the first frame by Joshua Elliff, from Leeds, built under the tutelage of Darren Barber of Phoenix Hotworks, a master frame builder in London.

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'

Darren himself learned how to build frames from Tom Board, master builder at Condor and director and partner at the Paris Lightweight Cycle Company Ltd. A small amount of research reveals how entwined the English frame building family tree is.

For a novice embarking on a frame building course, a traditional lugged frame is the ideal starting point. It’s best to leave curved tubes and elaborate lug work for more than a few frames down the track, but a straight-up design leaves less room for mistakes.

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'

Just over a year ago, Josh spent a week in hospital after being hit by a car, and he didn’t want that to ruin his love for riding. The money accrued from the insurance settlement didn’t feel like he’d earned it, so he signed up for a frame building course with Darren.

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'

Darren, who exhibited his own work at Bespoked Bristol in 2015, instructed Josh in how to put together this ‘All-Weather Fast Bike’ — built completely from a Columbus Zona tube set. They’re not the lightest tubes, but are stiff and reliable.

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'

Once the frame was complete, Josh built it up with Shimano’s 105 group, a H Plus Son Archetype/Hope Pro 2 Evo wheel set and a Ritchey finishing kit. It turned out well, and Josh is hooked. Hopefully we’ll be seeing more of his frames on Cycle EXIF in the future.

Darren’s frame building course is open to new students. Get in contact with him through his website and Facebook page.

The Green Man Rides: Elliff 'All-Weather Fast Bike'