After another successful appearance at Bespoked, the UK Handmade Bicycle Show, Eric Estlund has returned to the Winter Bicycles workshop in Springfield, Oregon. He exhibited the constructeur-style bikes he is well known for, and also this track bike. It didn’t look out of place, but had a modern twist.
Eric has titled it ‘Velvet Hammer’ and its companions on the stand were a couple of light tourers built in the spirit of René Herse and Alex Singer — legendary French builders who looked at the finished bicycle as a whole, not just a collection of disparate parts. Every aspect was considered; from the rack to the stem and even the lighting.
Velvet Hammer was designed with a nod to those artisans, while maintaining a firmly modern stance. Built to ride with no quarter given, the geometry is contemporary, as is the tubing selection and performance. Track bikes are beloved for their simplicity, but what Velvet Hammer lacks in components, it makes up for in construction.
The head tube is bilaminate and tapered, holding a lugged and tapered 1.125″-1.5″ fork. The main frame has a teardrop top tube, the seat and down tubes are round, and the head tube, seat and chain stays are tapered. The windows on the wishbone seat stays are reflected on the fork crown and the head tube ‘lugs’ are echoed on the rear dropouts.
A one-piece steam and bar forms the cockpit, accentuated with the distinguishable Winter Bicycles ‘French point’. Springfield’s Custom Powderworks applied the paint, which could nearly be described as Plum Crazy. Thankfully, a lack of extraneous graphics enable Eric’s construction to shine.
See more on the Winter Bicycles website.