Dominic Darko must have invoked a higher power to breathe life into this Liberia frame, a French marque that existed from 1918 to the early 1990s. If you’ve ever tried restoring a French frame and you’re not French or live in France, the fractional difference an English and French thread pitch can be enough to drive you to distraction. Fortunately, Dominic has the patience of a saint and an angelic eye for detail and divine photography.
Liberia were made by MFC (Manufacture Francaise Cycles) in the arrondissement of Grenoble, also producing motorcycles. While they managed to escalate their scale from the artisan to industrial, it still wasn’t enough to save them from the onslaught of Taiwanese frames into the country. This frame was resurrected by Dominic and combined with a Peugeot PX10LE to produce the elegant and Provincial gentleman’s bike you see here. The frame has been gun-blued and clear coated, and in a master stroke, the fork copper plated and matched with a copper-railed Brooks B-17. The entire parts list is predominantly French: Maillard hubs, Stronglight cranks and headset. Velo Orange provided a French-threaded bottom bracket, with Cinelli supplying the Priest handlebars and stem.
Dominic made the leather bar wrap, which, combined with the multitude of textures found elsewhere on his bike, result in a heavenly ride. His photography perfectly captures its rustic ambiance.