One of the most innovative bikes seen at this year’s NAHBS was this single speed, single-sided road bike by Oregon’s Rob English. Already known for his prodigious frame designs and creative details, this green machine, which also features hand-painted artwork by Geoff Mcfetridge, surely must have exercised the boundaries of Rob’s engineering skills.
The frame was contracted by Fairwheel Bikes in Tucson for a customer who wanted something extraordinary, with completely one-of-a-kind paintwork, so the pairing of English and Mcfetridge seemed a natural one. Both have worked with Fairwheel Bikes before, but not on the same project. Rob’s engineering ability becomes more evident the closer one looks (there’s more detail photos on the English Cycles website): a custom-machined rear hub enables the belt drive to be placed on the outside of the frame — negating the need for a split in the frame. The fork leg actually clamps onto a one-piece stem and steerer tube, the front Avid disc brake has been modified to allow for mounting on the right and the rear caliper is mounted below the bottom bracket.
The rear end of the frame was completely designed in 3D CAD to check the chainline and, once fabricated and painted with a base coat, delivered to Geoff Mcfetridge. Himself a passionate cyclist, Geoff is a an artist who has collaborated with clients such as Nike, Patagonia, Chocolate Skateboards and Greenpeace. He was also the art director for Spike Jonze’s cinematic interpretation of Where The Wild Things Are and, as requested by Fairwheel’s customer, applied a design with a certain ‘Wild’ influence. Definitely a perfect finish to a striking bike.
Have a look at Rob’s website for his outline of the project. The Fairwheel Bikes website has the complete spec sheet and more background — contact them to help you achieve your dream bike. Special thanks to Tina Buescher for the photography and Trackosaurus Rex for the tip.