Vanguard Yura

Vanguard Yura

Shaun and Jacinta Sonja run Vanguard Designs, a studio in Singapore who create one-off bicycles assembled from a vast array of genres and styles. The latest machine borne from their workshop is a copper-plated frame that has taken the ‘Less is More’ maxim to heart.

Yura‘, which means ‘Dream’ is Japanese, began life as a 10-speed Panasonic frame that was stripped and simplified by removing all brake bosses, shifter guides and derailleur hangers. Originally designed for 27″ wheels, the entire frame was modified to accommodate a 700c diameter wheel. The dropouts were replaced with laser-cut track ends and, while the grinder was out, the seat tube disappeared completely. Structural inspiration was drawn from K-truss bridges, adding struts to restore rigidity. The frame was then copper-plated, kitted out with a Milano stem and bars, a vintage MX lever and a Brooks Swift saddle.

The final result certainly assures us the custom scene is alive and well in Singapore. Yura is for sale, and Vanguard ship internationally. The last of their bikes featured on Cycle EXIF, Biscotti, proved to be extremely popular, and there’s more of Shaun and Jacinta’s designs on their website, including a shaft-driven all-terrain bike named Béton, that I’d like to see in my own garage.

Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura
Vanguard Yura

  • Nice look, but I wonder how the frame will age…without a seat tube, is it more likely to warp or what? BTW, the Beton shaft-drive bike is really cool, too!

    • BigHank53

      Without a seat tube, it’s going to break. It’s only a question as to when it happens.

  • Matt

    Lordy!

  • area man

    why start with such a dog? if your going this far, start from scratch or something not built from water pipe. such cheap parts on such a statement seems very wrong as well. the frayed out brake cable sort of says it all, come on, its a cable end, they cost nothing. is anybody else really buying this junk?

  • DouglasWright

    been living in Singapore for the last six years and to most people, it’ll be the last place that you’ll think of where bicycles are being made! and from the lack of industry resources and an almost non-existent culture of hands-on craftsmanship on this island traditional based on the finance and service sector, these guys have really pulled it off! If they stick to their guns and do what they do, they’re going to rock the custom scene!

  • NFK

    LOVE IT! OSU!

  • I like the “recycled” frame concept. And the copper plating. Nice work.

  • Jmodeler

    That’s a piece of art, not a bike.

    I don’t mean that as a compliment. This bike will hurt someone.

    They’ve cut away the most essential load-bearing section of the frame and added reinforcements which do nothing replace what was lost. 

    This bike is a ticking time bomb between your legs. I only hope that when it breaks, the owner is the only one killed in the resulting collision. 
    It’s a shame that there’s really no facility for keeping bikes like this off the road. 

    • NFK

      Jmodeler; haven’t you seen bikes like these out there (Waldmeister / Cherubim / Yamaguchi) hello??

      Its definite rideable art! 

    • Douglaswright

      welcome to cycleexif…guess you must be from a car forum? do check out the splendid Icarus Leviathan & Vanhulsteijn while you’re at it 😉

  •  So cool . I like the  color .