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Marty’s tandem approaches completion

December 15th, 2011 Hugh

 Hugh has been hard at work on Marty’s new S&S equipped tandem


With the bulk of the frame complete, all this is left is for Hugh to mitre and weld in the chainstays.


Complete and ready for braze-ons.


Here is a shot of the fork moments after the canti bosses were brazed on. Following this, the fork will be soaked to remove the flux and then the finishing work begins.


While the tandem is soaking, it’s time to begin work on the next frame.


We received a new-to-us mill this week. We already have one of these older Adcock-Shipley horizontal mills and are quite happy with it. The move to the country has afforded us the space to have a few more mills. Each mill can now be dedicated to a single task, like mitring chainstays; this means less down time as we don’t have to switch the mill from one task to another.


Lots of Titanium this month.

December 7th, 2011 Hugh


We just finished up two new Ti bikes this week that couldn’t be further apart on the fit spectrum.


Rick’s new frame is going to look and feel awesome out on the roads next year. It is compatible with long-reach road brakes which means he can run up to a larger high volume tire or a 28c with fenders.


Little touches like hourglass eyelets, welded down tube cable stops and a replaceable derailleur hanger make this a versatile frame that will last Rick many years.


Our friend Jay Filer owns the Winterbourne Bicycle Institute, for those who don’t know Jay, he is also very tall. His new Titanium 29er will fit perfectly and a perfectly fitting bike rides better, handles better and inspires confidence on the trails.


Much like Rick’s bike, Jay opted for hourglass eyelets on the seat stays so he can run a rack if he chooses. He opted to have his name etched on the top tube and for our engraved head tube.


Frank Foglin has been coaching both elite and amateur cyclists in Canada for over 30 years. Most recently he coached Leigh Hobson to the top North American finish at the Women’s Olympic road race in Beijing. Of course we were honored when Frank reached out to True North to build his new road bike.


Frank’s bike features full Campy Chorus, Zonda wheels and an Enve fork.


Graydon’s Ti mixte is slowly starting to take shape.


We started work on Marty’s S&S coupling equipped tandem.


And of course no custom tandem is complete without a matching custom fork.


Hugh is hard at work in this photo on the seat tube collar insert for the tandem.


Here is a close up of the insert being turned on the lathe.


Just in time for the holiday season, we thought we would mention that we now offer a new option on all our frames. Custom headtube badges made for us by Jen Green. They are available in both sterling silver and bronze.


Here is a picture of the new head tube badge on Rick’s frame. Engraved Ti head tubes and our decal are still available.

Enjoying Country Life.

November 17th, 2011 Hugh


One of the benefits of True North’s new location in the country is the ease in which we can enjoy the world around us. Being located in Canada, we are far enough north that gazing into the night sky sometimes yields a little more than just stars. Check out this amazing photo of the Aurora Borealis taken from the front door of the workshop.


We’ve been busy as of late, both refining and organizing the new shop and of course, building lots of beautiful bikes. Elise’s flat bar road bike features long reach brakes which will allow her the ability to run larger tires and fenders, but still retain the sporty and effortless ride quality of a road bike. Her bike features a 3×10 Shimano SLX drivetrain and durable hand built wheels.


Frank’s new road bike is optimized for his height and will fit better than any off the rack option. Frank’s new bike features a Campagnolo 11 speed drivetrain, Campagnolo Zonda wheels, ENVE fork and Alpha Q Stem and Post.


George’s new bike is another road bike designed around long reach brakes; a very popular option here at True North. George’s bike features  a slightly upright geometry which will allow him to attain a comfortable position while riding. His bike features a trusty Brooks saddle, Shimano 3×10 105 drive train and of course hand built wheels shod in Cadence rubber.


June’s new road bike features S&S couplings to allow it to pack down easily for travel. The beautiful paint job comes courtesy of our friend Noah at Velocolour. June’s bike features 3×10 Shimano 105 shifting, Mavic Ksyrium wheels, as well as a Thomson post and stem.


Melanie’s road bike is another bike making use of long-reach brakes. The extra clearance allows her the room to run the slightly larger Grand Bois tires we are so fond of here at True North. Not only does the extra volume smooth out even the roughest of roads, but the tan sidewalls look amazing! Melanie’s bike features a 3×10 Campagnolo drivetrain, hand built wheels featuring Campy hubs and Ambrosio rims and of course, a venerable Brooks saddle.


Richard’s new bike is another road bike optimized for use with a flat bar. Many people enjoy the efficiency and speed of a road bike, but prefer an upright position. With a custom bike this is never an issue, as you can have your cake and eat it too! Richard’s bike features a 3×10 drivetrain that boasts a mix of Shimano SLX and XT components. Again, this bike is built with long reach brakes which allow for the larger volume Grand Bois tires as well as fenders.


One of the best things about building custom bikes are the bikes we build for people who really do require a custom bike. They could be too small to fit on a stock bike or in Jefferson’s case, there is no bike on the market big enough to fit his large proportions. Those are 29er wheels to put things in perspective. Jefferson’s bike features S&S couplings to allow it to break down for travel, a Shimano 3×10 105 drivetrain with Pauls  ‘Thumbie’ shifters and Avid cable actuated disc brakes for powerful and reliable braking. A Thomson post, Brooks saddle and Chris King headset round out this very nice (and very large) bike.


With custom bikes there is the potential to build very complicated and ornate bikes, but in John’s case, there is also the ability to build a very beautiful and simple bike. John’s single speed features handbuilt wheels, Conti Contact tires, a Shimano SLX crank and a Brooks saddle. John has the ultimate do-it-all city bike, but retains the ability to toss on some more aggressive rubber and hit the trails if he desires.


We’ll leave you with a parting photo of the construction of Graydon’s new mixte-style frame. In case you’re wondering; yes that is a mixte made from titanium.

Stay tuned…..

Touring, Travel and Tradeshows.

September 13th, 2011 Hugh

One of the best things about a bicycle is the different places it can take you. Whether on a long self-supported tour through South America or for a weekend out east, a bike is simply one of the best tools for exploring the world around us.


John’s new touring bike is both comfortable and reliable; perfect for long rides through remote locales. The bar end shifters provide consistent shifts and the Shimano 105 drivetrain is reliable and boasts a wide gearing range suited for both long grinding hills and quick descents. The Avid BB7 disc brakes provide surefire braking in all conditions and the Tubus racks will allow John to carry large panniers loaded with clothes and equipment.


James’ new Ti S&S coupling equipped road bike is a travel bike of another sort. Perfect for bringing along on a business trip or for a spur of the moment weekend escape; the great thing about S&S coupling equipped bike is that it can be packed up into a bag small enough to avoid excess airline luggage charges. This bike features a Campagnolo Chorus 11 gruppo, an Eriksen ‘Sweet Post”, Enve Fork and Campagnolo Zonda wheels.


Every fall, members of cycling industry meet at various trade shows around North America. This year Shimano decided that it wanted a unique manner in which to provide all of their industry friends with a cold refreshment at the end of a long day on the show floor.We worked with Shimano Marketing and Technical Specialist Ben Pye to create the perfect solution. Ben stopped by the other to pick up the new Shimano Beer Delivery Bike and judging by the smile on his face, I think he’s happy with his new bike. This bike features lot of the latest Shimano and Pro components and just in case you were wondering, that is a Dura Ace 7900 handle for the tap; I think the Campagnolo corkscrew may have just met it’s match!