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MattTuck
08-24-2016, 01:08 PM
The Sachs thread got me thinking.

Watches have their Holy Trinity, namely Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet.

Do custom frame builders have a similarly superlative group of three that we can beknight as holy? Among the requirements would be a long history of exemplary work, a commitment to the highest quality craftsmanship and a willingness to progress with the times as technology and our understanding of cycling continues to evolve.

icepick_trotsky
08-24-2016, 01:12 PM
No, because no matter whom you suggest, some paceliner will come on and cryptically gripe about how terrible their experience was with builder X, never do business with them

FlashUNC
08-24-2016, 01:14 PM
http://static.comicvine.com/uploads/original/11114/111142536/4610679-4047060909-end-w.jpg

Kirk007
08-24-2016, 01:14 PM
Every time I come up with three someone else comes to mind. A top ten, maybe....

gdw
08-24-2016, 01:16 PM
The last requirement kills off quite a few of the players.

cadence90
08-24-2016, 01:16 PM
.... ..

MattTuck
08-24-2016, 01:24 PM
The last requirement kills off quite a few of the players.

Depends how you interpret it. I don't think every builder has to transition to carbon to remain up to date (Though John Slawta at Landshark would fall in this camp). At the same time, if your methods and approach are unchanged since the 80's, that would probably rule you out. Experimenting with new ideas could take many forms: different formats (all road, cyclo-cross, discs), geometries, materials (new types of steel tubing, stainless, Aluminum, carbon), etc.

I interpret that requirement to just mean they are able to evolve with the times, not that they are necessarily at the cutting edge.

Kirk007
08-24-2016, 01:31 PM
While no one would think of him as a custom builder as he doesn't fit the mold I can't help but thinking of Ernesto Colnago at the top of the heap given these criteria.

Arabesque, Master, C-40 and its progeny....

ergott
08-24-2016, 01:40 PM
I think David Kirk checks all those boxes and has been around for quite some time. His builds are 10/10, customer satisfaction seems to be 10/10 and his bikes continue to progress.

His love for auto sports doesn't hurt either!

If you look at more recent builders the list that I would consider expands too much for the scope of this thread. Lot's a excellent builders in the last 10 years.

edit - Geez, my Zanconato is over 10 years old now! If 10 years is a good indicator of an established builder then I would put Mike right up there too. You guys think 10 years is a good minimum for a builder to work out the kinks?

eak12
08-24-2016, 01:56 PM
I generally think of lugged or fillet brazed steel when I think of iconic frame builders. I also think of this as sort of a lifetime achievement award of skills learned and great work produced. And customer service has no role in this designation to me. Talent and results make no apologies. Ultimately, for me, it's Sachs, Pegoretti, and Nagasawa.

However, I would order from David Kirk or Tom Kellogg, because a positive interaction is very very important to me and I think they're the gold standard for that, along with their incredible talents.

crankles
08-24-2016, 02:03 PM
Dinucci, Dinucci, and um, Dinucci.

One day, when I stop beating the snot out of my bikes, I will find away to get one.

seriously though, there are always a few that float my boat, all for slightly different reasons.

sevencyclist
08-24-2016, 02:12 PM
I think it's personal.

Here are my personal trinity. Among them, they can help me cover 90% of terrains in my area at decent speed for the type of road or trails.


https://c3.staticflickr.com/6/5313/14128762290_de8860f71f_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/nwvAMQ)2014-05-31 10.39.24 (https://flic.kr/p/nwvAMQ) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr
https://c3.staticflickr.com/6/5819/23281252330_c1f8915737_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/Bthvdf)2015-12-06 13.25.42 (https://flic.kr/p/Bthvdf) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr
https://c7.staticflickr.com/4/3698/11238013206_ff7b7132f2_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/i84KNo)image (https://flic.kr/p/i84KNo) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr

Kirk007
08-24-2016, 02:15 PM
My current trinity of Kirk, Kellogg and Pegoretti works ok for me.

gdw
08-24-2016, 02:23 PM
The late Bryan Baylis would be on my list of top builders but he certainly would not meet the third requirement. His designs, materials, and production methods were far from innovative but his workmanship and finished product was top notch. He also was one of the top frame painters in the country.

foo_fighter
08-24-2016, 02:28 PM
Great rides....slightly OT, but friend of mine pointed out something wrong with that street sign that I never noticed in many many years of riding Tunitas...looks like it's been fixed. Is that a recent picture?

I think it's personal.

Here are my personal trinity.

https://c3.staticflickr.com/6/5313/14128762290_de8860f71f_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/nwvAMQ)2014-05-31 10.39.24 (https://flic.kr/p/nwvAMQ) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr
https://c3.staticflickr.com/6/5819/23281252330_c1f8915737_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/Bthvdf)2015-12-06 13.25.42 (https://flic.kr/p/Bthvdf) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr
https://c7.staticflickr.com/4/3698/11238013206_ff7b7132f2_h.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/i84KNo)image (https://flic.kr/p/i84KNo) by sevencyclist (https://www.flickr.com/photos/38629387@N08/), on Flickr

d_douglas
08-24-2016, 02:46 PM
I couldn't definitively answer this question, but adding Dave Kirk in there is clearly the correct choice. I have seen a couple in my life, and quite honestly, I think his frames exemplify the complete mastery of the trade plus a willingness to try new things.

No, not carbon frames, but when you see him building a fatbike, because, well, he wants one - that is a sign that he is comfortable in any realm of the industry - not just classic looking road bikes.

To be honest, his name isn't at the top of my dream bike list, but it easily could be. It's in the top 5 for sure, and if I were to buy another steel frame, it would likely be a disc braked Kirk.

54ny77
08-24-2016, 02:48 PM
My bucket list trifecta, in this order:

Kirk
Llewellyn
[someone else, haven't decided yet]

quauhnahuac
08-24-2016, 03:00 PM
Bike building and wheel building and stuff like that isn't like making watches. Mechanical watches have huge numbers of intricate parts that are painstakingly assembled. Bike building is more like, here are 8 tubes, put them in a jig and weld them together. Yeah it takes some experience to get good at it, but not the same level of mastery required. In the same way that anyone with some patience can build a wheel given the parts.

It's the same way people at starbucks get all high and mighty about making your cappuccino look good and being called "baristas." Yeah, takes a little experience, but it's not rocket science.

Because of this, master watchmakers can differentiate themselves. In the same way, there are tons of good bike builders because it's not a skill that takes a lifetime to learn. So there will never be any way for a "top three" bikebuilder to differentiate themselves. Any competent builder can build a, say, Richard Sachs bike, if given the same tubes and told what angles/measures to use.

I think this is proven when looking at NAHBS and the associated blogs like redkiteprayer. The top bikes are all so ridiculously close in terms of skill/craftsmanship, the difference between the winner and last place is certainly just a subjective measurement. You can see this when you see that one particular builder loses because one tiny piece of weld isn't 100% even and that costs the first place prize.

It just comes down to a matter of skill, really, and how hard it is to obtain that skill. Watchmaking: Takes a a lifetime of painstaking effort; Bike/Wheelbuilding: Watch some youtube videos and practice.

54ny77
08-24-2016, 03:09 PM
what are watches?

i haven't used one since '93.

the bike, however, that got used this a.m. around 5 or so.

:D

Kirk007
08-24-2016, 03:16 PM
It just comes down to a matter of skill, really, and how hard it is to obtain that skill. ... Watch some youtube videos and practice.

Yep so easy even a caveman can do it, which explains of course why so many aspiring framebuilders have the economic success of cavemen.

crossjunkee
08-24-2016, 03:21 PM
I think Carl Strong should be at the top of the list too. He builds outstanding bikes. As well as Kellogg. I owned a ti Spectrum Super twice as long as any bike I've ever owned. So many builders, so little time.

Villgaxx
08-24-2016, 03:31 PM
Colnago, DeRosa, and Masi had an outsized influence from the days when they were doing the work themselves and through the growth of their brands.

In the USA, Eisentraut, Confente, and Ritchey were incredibly influential as the classic era blossomed.

Elefantino
08-24-2016, 03:37 PM
Do they still have to be building? If not, then Ben was one, particularly for the influence he had on others.

Having never ridden any other of the top contenders, I'll defer to you all.

thunderworks
08-24-2016, 03:40 PM
There are many, many truly excellent builders in the world. Some have achieved a degree of economic success and have positioned themselves as "known quantities" in the bike marketplace . . . Sachs, Peg, Serrotta, Sasha White, etc. . . they are good at what they do, but I really think that there are many "unknown" builders, who are every bit as good or better, but for a variety of reasons, only have a very local following and the broader market is unaware and indifferent to them . . . Jeff Bock is an example who comes to mind. He's been building stunning bikes in Iowa for nearly 40 years - but very few people know if his work and he sucks at the business side of self promotion.

I'm a furniture maker and one of my mentors (now deceased) was a man named James Krenov. He once wrote a book called the "Impractical Cabinetmaker." The basic premise of the book is that some of the best work being done was by amateurs who could afford the luxury of unlimited labor required to make the most beautiful and meticulous furniture possible without the pressure that economic need created. It's a topic that is quite interesting to me and could be discussed endlessly . . .

So, I don't think there can ever be a "holy trinity" of builders. There are simply too many, truly skilled and knowledgeable builders to narrow a list much. If you're only asking for the economically viable names, well, the list does get much shorter, but only 3 . . . nah . . . there are many.

Villgaxx
08-24-2016, 03:59 PM
Cinelli

BobbyJones
08-24-2016, 04:11 PM
Among the requirements would be a long history of exemplary work, a commitment to the highest quality craftsmanship and a willingness to progress with the times as technology and our understanding of cycling continues to evolve.

With this in mind, I suppose there's the question of what is a "custom" builder vs "handmade" builder. Some of the names mentioned will hand build you their bike with minor geometry adjustments and other one will build you a truly custom bike.

I think that line of thought is pretty clear. Not that i have personally shopped any of these, but I suppose examples would be someone like Sachs or Weigle who build more or less the same bike vs. someone like Firefly who I consider a full custom builder.

gomango
08-24-2016, 04:19 PM
I'll get around to all of these in due time.

Chris Kvale- I already have two.

On deck:

MAP Cycles
Chris Bishop

I have interest in many others, but I see them for sale here on the forum occasionally. Patience will reward me, I'd reckon...

bikingshearer
08-24-2016, 04:29 PM
The Holy Trinity for builders, in alphabetical order: Ron Cooper, Ugo De Rosa & Albert Eisentraut.

Cino Cinelli is a special case, as he made his mark as a designer and innovator, not a builder. But he deserves to be on that same pedestal, so make it a Holy Fab Four.

The fact that these are the ones I am lucky enough to own has nothing to do with my totally objective, clearly-the-only-correct-answer selections. :D

quauhnahuac
08-24-2016, 04:31 PM
Yep so easy even a caveman can do it, which explains of course why so many aspiring framebuilders have the economic success of cavemen.

You sound offended, but of course you're smart enough to realize that how easy or hard something is to do doesn't usually have too much to do with economic success. It's more about how many people want what you're selling.

pdmtong
08-24-2016, 04:36 PM
Ive seen and ridden seven's JPW, RS and Coco around the block and they are indeed mind blowing.

the OPs question has no answer. but fun discussion.

I will post though that the custom build inflection point came via Sacha - he was the first to intersect fabrication craft, performance, innovative functionality and aesthetics across multiple genre's - road, town, tour, kid, rando, cross....

sure, you might say JPW can make a better rando than Sacha. or Dave (K and W) can make a better lugged road than Sacha. Or Eric can make a better townie than Sacha. etc etc etc.

but who is on the list who does this across multiple genres?

I get that folks may be tiring of the endless SV marketing and it's hard to rally behind a brand which no one can actually buy anymore (vanilla). still, I can only think of one or two frames in the past twelve years that have come out of the "workshop" which did not make me sit up and look closer.

54ny77
08-24-2016, 04:39 PM
vanilla's no more?

their paint...exquisite.



I get that folks may be tiring of the endless SV marketing and it's hard to rally behind a brand which no one can actually buy anymore (vanilla). still, I can only think of one or two frames in the past twelve years that have come out of the "workshop" which did not make me sit up and look closer.

Villgaxx
08-24-2016, 04:41 PM
I'll get around to all of these in due time.

Chris Kvale- I already have two.

On deck:

MAP Cycles
Chris Bishop

I have interest in many others, but I see them for sale here on the forum occasionally. Patience will reward me, I'd reckon...

From a pure skill and craftsmanship standpoint, custom-building by hand start-to-finish including painting in a legit one-man shop and creating steel frames as fine as any ever made, Chris Kvale might be the ultimate custom frame builder.

pdmtong
08-24-2016, 04:49 PM
vanilla's no more?
their paint...exquisite.

I think there are 500+ on the list...and at 15 units or so a year (vanilla, not SV) the math is depressing for any hopefuls.

54ny77
08-24-2016, 04:53 PM
Ahh, gotcha.

Well, that's a high class problem.

I think there are 500+ on the list...and at 15 units or so a year (vanilla, not SV) the math is depressing for any hopefuls.

providence
08-24-2016, 05:08 PM
From a pure skill and craftsmanship standpoint, custom-building by hand start-to-finish including painting in a legit one-man shop and creating steel frames as fine as any ever made, Chris Kvale might be the ultimate custom frame builder.

If more people got to see his work up close, not to mention see how he works, he'd be talked about in the same light as many of the popular custom builders. An artist in every sense of the word and can't wait until I have mine.

As far as the 'willingness to adapt to trends' mentioned in the opening post, ya, he's about as far away as you can be from that... :D

gdw
08-24-2016, 05:19 PM
Another top builder who gets no love here is Mark Nobilette. He's built mountain, road, cross, tandem, and kids bikes, as well as the occasional tricycle over the years and can fillet braze, tig, or work with lugs.

FlashUNC
08-24-2016, 05:21 PM
The Holy Trinity for builders, in alphabetical order: Ron Cooper, Ugo De Rosa & Albert Eisentraut.

Cino Cinelli is a special case, as he made his mark as a designer and innovator, not a builder. But he deserves to be on that same pedestal, so make it a Holy Fab Four.

The fact that these are the ones I am lucky enough to own has nothing to do with my totally objective, clearly-the-only-correct-answer selections. :D

I'd lean this way and argue you could swap around any of a couple Italian names for Cinelli -- Pinarello and Masi being the others -- and still have a pretty solid list.

I'd also throw Roland Della Santa on the woodpile -- I'm inevitably biased -- but the guy has been building baller bikes for a long, long time.

beeatnik
08-24-2016, 05:34 PM
Bike building and wheel building and stuff like that isn't like making watches. Mechanical watches have huge numbers of intricate parts that are painstakingly assembled. Bike building is more like, here are 8 tubes, put them in a jig and weld them together. Yeah it takes some experience to get good at it, but not the same level of mastery required. In the same way that anyone with some patience can build a wheel given the parts.

It's the same way people at starbucks get all high and mighty about making your cappuccino look good and being called "baristas." Yeah, takes a little experience, but it's not rocket science.

Because of this, master watchmakers can differentiate themselves. In the same way, there are tons of good bike builders because it's not a skill that takes a lifetime to learn. So there will never be any way for a "top three" bikebuilder to differentiate themselves. Any competent builder can build a, say, Richard Sachs bike, if given the same tubes and told what angles/measures to use.

I think this is proven when looking at NAHBS and the associated blogs like redkiteprayer. The top bikes are all so ridiculously close in terms of skill/craftsmanship, the difference between the winner and last place is certainly just a subjective measurement. You can see this when you see that one particular builder loses because one tiny piece of weld isn't 100% even and that costs the first place prize.

It just comes down to a matter of skill, really, and how hard it is to obtain that skill. Watchmaking: Takes a a lifetime of painstaking effort; Bike/Wheelbuilding: Watch some youtube videos and practice.

https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8597/28587966584_d9047c93c1_o.jpg

bfd
08-24-2016, 05:36 PM
I'd lean this way and argue you could swap around any of a couple Italian names for Cinelli -- Pinarello and Masi being the others -- and still have a pretty solid list.

I'd also throw Roland Della Santa on the woodpile -- I'm inevitably biased -- but the guy has been building baller bikes for a long, long time.

If you're talking about old-school Italian builders -Cinelli, DeRosa, Masi and Pinarello are a must, but then you can't forget to throw in Sante Pogliaghi!

Of course, if you're going the religious route with the Holy Trinity thing, then it may just be Colnago. After all, who else has built a bike for the Pope:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_atrK-jBKJKY/TRtI1b-oiwI/AAAAAAAAOW4/1JQkwo_eUx8/s1600/colnago%2Bpope.jpg

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_atrK-jBKJKY/TRtI1Qp5aZI/AAAAAAAAOWw/oe-XhsGbuAY/s1600/Colnago%2BPope%2B1.jpg

Good Luck!

fuzzalow
08-24-2016, 05:40 PM
I think there are 500+ on the list...and at 15 units or so a year (vanilla, not SV) the math is depressing for any hopefuls.

500+ on the list? That's not a list, that's purgatory.

It calls to mind when I called GEICO to get a quote on motorcycle insurance for a Ducati superbike. They responded with a quote for something like $5,000 for a 6 month policy - which was just their way of saying GEICO doesn't insure sport motorcycles.

On the list to get a Vanilla bike? Same thing.

With the way the market has developed in artisinal goods, I don't think there is such thing anymore as a "holy trinity" because the product of bicycles and the diversity of the market and its niches has already been largely developed and is mature. Hence the innovations are finer, more nuanced and do not lend themselves to either being recognized by the buying public or legitimized as performance advances by the pro racing ranks. The pro ranks have long ago gone to manufactured carbon fiber molding from the brazed tubes of yore - a carbon F1 monocoque out of the autoclave versus the Maserati birdcage. There's no going back - there was once the romance of human craft but which was superseded by the cold mathematics of industrial process.

I am an Italian bike fan, so there can only be a holy trinity that harkens back fron the golden, halcyon days of cycling from the age of Merckx and DeVlaiminck: Faliero Masi, Ugo DeRosa, Cino Cinelli and Ernesto Colnago. All deserving, none should be excluded in choosing only three to fit the motif of divine imagery.

gone
08-24-2016, 05:58 PM
Not to go too far off topic (though it's come up a couple of times in this thread) but I totally don't get waiting in line for a Vanilla. 500 on the wait list / 15 frames per year means whomever is last will get theirs in 30 years .

I can't think of anything that I wanted 30 years ago that I either don't already have or no longer want. Not.a.single.thing.

Whatever floats your boat and all but seriously, 30 years?


Greg

SPOKE
08-24-2016, 06:00 PM
Since I haven't seen or owned frames/bikes from all the builders I can only comment on the ones Ive spent my hard earned dollars on. For the sake of this thread I'll limit this to multiple purchases from these builders.....

Serotta
Richard Sachs
Dave Kirk
Kelly Bedford

My experience with all of these builders have been outstanding. (I know that Serotta probably should be excluded since they were more of a production production shop but they got me started and hooked on the custom stuff)

SlackMan
08-24-2016, 06:01 PM
Bike building and wheel building and stuff like that isn't like making watches. Mechanical watches have huge numbers of intricate parts that are painstakingly assembled.
...

Huge numbers of intricate parts like the ones in the $29 Chinese mechanical watch movements at this link (http://www.ofrei.com/page1119.html), right?;)

Lionel
08-24-2016, 06:01 PM
I seriously doubt there are 500 people on the Vanilla list.

acoffin
08-24-2016, 06:02 PM
I am comfortable declaring that there is no Holy Trinity for frame builders.

However, if I had to pick the top three I wanted to order from today it would be.
M. Dinucci
J.P. Weigle
C. Kvale

With E. Estlund (Winter) just behind them.

In a few months my list could be completely different. We are fortunate to be riding bikes in this time with so much quality innovation and craftsmanship.

AngryScientist
08-24-2016, 06:07 PM
of course there is no correct answer,

fun to pick three maybe.

for me

dario+serotta+weigle

Aaron O
08-24-2016, 06:07 PM
There are so many good ones, but if forced to pick...

Weigle, Sachs and TK. Really hard passing up BG and Mr. Kirk. Tom Ritchey is obviously a living legend.

I think my Marnati is as nice as anything around to be honest.

sg8357
08-24-2016, 06:15 PM
I'll play by country......

Rene Herse, Camille Daudon, Alex Singer

Jack Taylor, Claud Butler, Bates

Bruce Gordon, Art Stump, Charlie Cunningham

Mostly dead, but worth finding examples.

pdmtong
08-24-2016, 06:19 PM
500+ on the list? That's not a list, that's purgatory.

Not to go too far off topic (though it's come up a couple of times in this thread) but I totally don't get waiting in line for a Vanilla. 500 on the wait list / 15 frames per year means whomever is last will get theirs in 30 years .

It's probably less than 30 years since there will be attrition due to time and price. For instance there were a few folks here who were next in line for the last group of classic lugged road but declined once the pricing was finalized. I forgot the exact number but it was enough higher over alternative builders that folks decided to pass. I'm are there are plenty of folks with their name on the list because it didn't cost anything to get their name on the list and why not.

if we aggressively chop the list in half you are still looking at 10+ years which is still a loooong time considering alternatives.

cnighbor1
08-24-2016, 06:23 PM
Chris Kvale is one

The Sachs thread got me thinking.

Watches have their Holy Trinity, namely Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet.

Do custom frame builders have a similarly superlative group of three that we can beknight as holy? Among the requirements would be a long history of exemplary work, a commitment to the highest quality craftsmanship and a willingness to progress with the times as technology and our understanding of cycling continues to evolve.

fuzzalow
08-24-2016, 06:51 PM
I'll play for the sake of fun, don't wanna seem like a spoil sport for what is a fun topic to bat around.

My pick of three modern builders each of which are still building:
Pegoretti - Dario Pegoretti
Vanilla - Sacha White
Bruce Gordon - Bruce Gordon

I have a custom bike from each and have been a client. Each has a slightly different process. Each builder delivers a peerless product in an exceptional result. Pardon the inherent contradiction in my hyperbole.

El Chaba
08-24-2016, 06:53 PM
If we are talking about the present time, nobody has mentioned Doriano DeRosa....

54ny77
08-24-2016, 06:53 PM
Do either of them practice erudite pastiche?

I'll play for the sake of fun, don't wanna seem like a spoil sport for what is a fun topic to bat around.

My pick of three modern builders each of which are still building:
Pegoretti - Dario Pegoretti
Vanilla - Sacha White
Bruce Gordon - Bruce Gordon

I have a custom bike from each and have been a client. Each has a slightly different process. Each builder delivers a peerless product in an exceptional result. Pardon the inherent contradiction in my hyperbole.

fiamme red
08-24-2016, 07:02 PM
Huffy
Murray
Ross

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5284/5341826680_3d65e5b25a_b.jpg

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-iK6HbvtPIdA/UmWId0FYqWI/AAAAAAAAPKc/w9VSdqonTB8/s1600/PhilChinMurray.JPG

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3Hxq0Q5YmME/TySODQnu-kI/AAAAAAAAAGk/9uYT_S1k2ng/s1600/Screen%2Bshot%2B2012-01-28%2Bat%2B5.36.10%2BPM.png

rodcad
08-24-2016, 07:45 PM
Pretty impossible to pick just three as there are just too many. Kirk and Ellis come to mind because of the obvious AND they ride my size bikes so I think this gives them an edge and some insight into building a large frame. Sachs, yes. Columbine oh yeah. Erickson. The ONE that really rings my bell though are the "older" Argonaut Max frames. I want one BAD. You know who you are, PM me. And I want a mint Jack Taylor. I'm willing to arm wrestle bicycletrycycle for it :)

jtakeda
08-24-2016, 07:49 PM
The pic of the 7/11 huffy is mine-- I'm like 99% sure it's my pic at least

Maybe not actually. I wouldn't take a non drive side photo

fiamme red
08-24-2016, 07:52 PM
The pic of the 7/11 huffy is mine-- I'm like 99% sure it's my pic at least

Maybe not actually. I wouldn't take a non drive side photoI got the photo from here (http://forums.thepaceline.net/showthread.php?t=84398).

jtakeda
08-24-2016, 07:53 PM
I got the photo from here (http://forums.thepaceline.net/showthread.php?t=84398).


I had the same size 7/11 and took a photo against the same color wall. I'm gonna try and find it now

Black Dog
08-24-2016, 07:56 PM
Pretty impossible to pick just three as there are just too many. Kirk and Ellis come to mind because of the obvious AND they ride my size bikes so I think this gives them an edge and some insight into building a large frame. Sachs, yes. Columbine oh yeah. Erickson. The ONE that really rings my bell though are the "older" Argonaut Max frames. I want one BAD. You know who you are, PM me. And I want a mint Jack Taylor. I'm willing to arm wrestle bicycletrycycle for it :)

Kirk, Ellis (Dave Wages), and Bedford. :D

jtakeda
08-24-2016, 07:58 PM
As far as the holy 3

Ritchey-- Pegoretti--Kirk

93legendti
08-24-2016, 08:06 PM
For open queues and reasonable wait times I would go to:

Dave Kirk
Tom Kellogg
Carl Strong

Kirk007
08-24-2016, 08:13 PM
You sound offended, but of course you're smart enough to realize that how easy or hard something is to do doesn't usually have too much to do with economic success. It's more about how many people want what you're selling.

more that I think there are different skills sets involved equally valuable and your first post while appropriate for a welder seems less so for someone who is considering bike balance, rider issues etc.

By different skills - you might not want the best orthopedic surgeon removing a brain tumor nor that nuerosurgeon doing your total knee replacement. But both are equally talented seems to me.

steveandbarb1
08-24-2016, 08:15 PM
Firefly
Crumpton
Baum

Aaron O
08-24-2016, 08:19 PM
Not sure how, but I left off possibly my favorite builder...Peter Mooney.

pdmtong
08-24-2016, 08:21 PM
Kirk, Ellis (Dave Wages), and Bedford. :D
KB is a multi-material, multi-genre master no doubt. He designed the KGSN Ottrott I once had. Beautiful go-fast ride. What I have trouble reconciling is how none of his frames (since he went out on his own) have made me sit up.

I often sit up and lean forward when the Dave's (K and W) show their work. Just goes to show plenty of choices for all.

Drmojo
08-24-2016, 08:57 PM
Not sure how, but I left off possibly my favorite builder...Peter Mooney.

Seriously underrated
Zero marketing
Gorgeous, great riding bikes

saab2000
08-24-2016, 09:02 PM
Next time I need a custom I'm going to either:

Mike Zanconato

or

Independent Fabrication

Both have produced bicycles I own and enjoy regularly.

Can't say enough about either. The Zank inspires me every time I get on it but it probably needs a session in the dry dock. New cables and chain at the minimum and maybe a new groupset.

The Indy Fab was a bit of a surprise a few years back but was built to my specs and was on time and on budget. No surprises. No games. Same applies to both builders. The difference is that IF is a business with more people and Mike operates much more as a solo operator. Both are excellent.

I hope I can ride my Zanconato to its full capabilities again soon. I feel I've been ignoring this one of late.

rustychisel
08-24-2016, 09:03 PM
Llewellyn
Baum
Teschner

xeladragon
08-24-2016, 09:35 PM
I'll play.

Three builders who are... iconic: Sachs, Pegoretti, and... I dunno. Paul Sadoff maybe?

Three builders I'd love to have bikes from: Firefly, Crumpton, Vanilla/Speedvagen

Three builders who build great no-nonsense bikes and seem to have the highest customer satisfaction: Zanconato, Hampsten, Kirk

bfd
08-24-2016, 09:45 PM
Not to go too far off topic (though it's come up a couple of times in this thread) but I totally don't get waiting in line for a Vanilla. 500 on the wait list / 15 frames per year means whomever is last will get theirs in 30 years .

I can't think of anything that I wanted 30 years ago that I either don't already have or no longer want. Not.a.single.thing.

Whatever floats your boat and all but seriously, 30 years?


Greg
Is this for real? Sasha White only makes 15 framesets a year? At what $7k per, that's only $105k of revenue generated. Doesn't he have employees? Hope he sells a ton of SV....I also agree, the wait is way too long. Who here is going to be even riding in 30 years?! Not many...

Good Luck!

jr59
08-24-2016, 09:50 PM
Just 3? A bunch of you guys are cheating!!:p

Ok, I'll play;

I'll take the Daves, both Wages (Ellis) and Kirk and Tom Kellogg from Spectrum.

I don't ride off road, or my guy Steve Garro would be in there somewhere. Not just for his great bikes, that he makes from his wheelchair, but for all the help he has given me when I thought my shoulder would never heal. He really inspired me to do my best to get better every day. For someone I have never met, he went a long way to make sure I was ok.

pdmtong
08-24-2016, 10:43 PM
Is this for real? Sacha White only makes ~15 framesets a year? At what $7k per, that's only $105k of revenue generated. Doesn't he have employees? Hope he sells a ton of SV....I also agree, the wait is way too long. Who here is going to be even riding in 30 years?! Not many...Good Luck!
[BOLD=mine]
yup, emphasis on SV now...

R3awak3n
08-24-2016, 10:51 PM
I love how these threads always pop up but under different titles.


my top 3 at the moment:

JP Weigle
Bishop
Hunter

honorary mentions aka best alum

Rock Lobster
Frank the Welder

hainy
08-24-2016, 11:28 PM
Llewellyn
Baum
Teschner

I think you will find that Teschner is now the The Carbon Doctor here in Sydney, Australia. Repairing plastic bikes is a booming business.

For me I have only owned steel bikes and currently in the garage is a Baum and Robin Mather. Just placed an order for Llewellyn and can't wait. I would love to own a Vanilla, Ellis, Kirk and 49 others.

Cheers

Hainy

Doug Fattic
08-24-2016, 11:51 PM
Interesting game. My colleagues I most admire can do it all extremely well from start (be a fitter and design the frame around the customer’s contact points) to a beautiful finished paint job. Those requirements eliminates a lot of candidates. It has to be good looking as well as functional which means it must be steel with lugs. Tig welded frames are boring to me (even the steel or ti ones I make myself). I would expect that the basics are all without flaws like alignment and mitering but of real importance to me is exquisite filing. A super job takes a lot of time and few do it really well.

The best builders take a lot of time making each frame and those smaller numbers limit their national exposer and recognition. Some of the most financially successful know how to make a frame faster to increase profits and meet deadlines but those compromises keep me from wanting one of their products. It has to be more than just how they ride to me.

Two I would be happy to buy a frame from that can do it all would be Jeff Bock near Des Moines Iowa and Rich Gangl in Golden CO. Rich has more skills in more areas than any other builder. And his shop is to die for. He can do steel in any way and tig weld ti and aluminum and finish them off with paint. He is a lifelong racer whose frames typically represent the performance end of the spectrum. Jeff is a master filer and painter. Like me he was trained as a high school teacher. Neither one goes out of their way to promote themselves.

A younger builder who is excellent that sometimes works out of my shop and helps me with my frame building classes is Herbie Helm. His frames are awesome and he can do everything from fitting to paint. He started with me 12 years ago and refined his brazing skills by building frames for pastors in Ukraine. Right now his is working on a frame with polished stainless lugs with a small mother of pearl inlay. Building a frame with racks and integrated lighting and special lugs takes soooo much longer than a standard racing frame.

And I would like to give special shout out to the late Brian Baylis. Our lifestyles could not have been more different but we always hung out together at events where frame builders gathered. He knew how to make a lug look good by shaping and thinning and covering it with paint.

fogrider
08-25-2016, 12:04 AM
The Holy Trinity for builders, in alphabetical order: Ron Cooper, Ugo De Rosa & Albert Eisentraut.

Cino Cinelli is a special case, as he made his mark as a designer and innovator, not a builder. But he deserves to be on that same pedestal, so make it a Holy Fab Four.

The fact that these are the ones I am lucky enough to own has nothing to do with my totally objective, clearly-the-only-correct-answer selections. :D

Show me your Cooper! I got one a few years ago and was surprised how well it rides!

Steve in SLO
08-25-2016, 12:06 AM
The Sachs thread got me thinking.

Watches have their Holy Trinity, namely Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet.

What?!? No A Lange and Sohne?
Clearly a substandard thread :butt:

fogrider
08-25-2016, 12:18 AM
Firefly
Crumpton
Baum

I like...I think you're the first to post 3 without a steel builder!

fogrider
08-25-2016, 12:26 AM
Is this for real? Sasha White only makes 15 framesets a year? At what $7k per, that's only $105k of revenue generated. Doesn't he have employees? Hope he sells a ton of SV....I also agree, the wait is way too long. Who here is going to be even riding in 30 years?! Not many...

Good Luck!

so if he sells 5 SVs a month, that's 60 bikes at 5,385 ea, 323,100 plus he takes 500 bucks upfront.

I agree with many of the builders named...but with certain builders, you take what they build and I think that's the way it should be. If you want a Peg, you better not want a gravel grinder with disc brakes! Same with Della Santa.

Wakatel_Luum
08-25-2016, 12:59 AM
I think you will find that Teschner is now the The Carbon Doctor here in Sydney, Australia. Repairing plastic bikes is a booming business.


He's the Carbon Doctor! Might explain the $1800 quote for carbon repaint...

rustychisel
08-25-2016, 01:53 AM
I think you will find that Teschner is now the The Carbon Doctor here in Sydney, Australia. Repairing plastic bikes is a booming business.

thanks for that. I'll add I own a Teschner Euro Elite (Scandium alu) welded by Peter, and that it is a gem. It's one of those 'never to sell' bikes, which is okay since I knew he was no longer building.

Cheers

bikingshearer
08-25-2016, 03:56 AM
Show me your Cooper! I got one a few years ago and was surprised how well it rides!

Oh, okay. If you insist.

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u46/bikingshearer/Ron%20Cooper/photo22.jpg (http://s165.photobucket.com/user/bikingshearer/media/Ron%20Cooper/photo22.jpg.html)

gomango
08-25-2016, 05:40 AM
Oh, okay. If you insist.

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u46/bikingshearer/Ron%20Cooper/photo22.jpg (http://s165.photobucket.com/user/bikingshearer/media/Ron%20Cooper/photo22.jpg.html)

Such a handsome bike.

One of my favorites on the forum.

marciero
08-25-2016, 05:59 AM
...Building a frame with racks and integrated lighting and special lugs takes soooo much longer than a standard racing frame.



Indeed. The entire bicycle conceived as an integrated whole, with custom racks, etc. This involves a range of additional skills around problem solving, design, and execution, and eliminates all but one or two of the builders mentioned here. Most Paceliners dont seem to be interested in such bikes. But Perhaps we should have a constructeur list. It would be very short.

oldpotatoe
08-25-2016, 07:51 AM
Another top builder who gets no love here is Mark Nobilette. He's built mountain, road, cross, tandem, and kids bikes, as well as the occasional tricycle over the years and can fillet braze, tig, or work with lugs.

I know Mark well, have owned 3 of his bikes, sold them for a while at Vecchio's..he is at the very top of bike craftmanship..just kinda unknown.

BUT except for some of the 'art work' made specifically for NAHBS, it's a bicycle, not a piece of art, IMHO..Maybe cuz I'm older but wait 4-5-10 YEARS for a bike frame? Insane..it's a bike frame..IMHO, of course.

NO 'holy trinity' of bikes or watches, again, IMHO..Love my kinda beat up MXLeader...:)

rwsaunders
08-25-2016, 08:12 AM
Show me your Cooper! I got one a few years ago and was surprised how well it rides!

For you Ron Cooper fans...cool interview and story on TheBikeShow.

http://thebikeshow.net/ron-cooper-on-ron-cooper

MattTuck
08-25-2016, 08:24 AM
What?!? No A Lange and Sohne?
Clearly a substandard thread :butt:

Haha. When I google "watch holy trinity", the first link that I get is this one: http://wristreview.com/?p=20606

Which is an article saying that the holy trinity needs updating, and the new 3 are:
A. Lange & Söhne – Glashütte – Saxony – Germany.
Breguet – Paris – France (now located in Vallée de Joux, Switzerland)
Vacheron Constantin – Geneva – Switzerland.

For me personally, the A. Lange & Sohne 1815 up/down is the best looking watch I've seen, and would be the one I would buy if I came into some serious dough. :banana::banana:

FlashUNC
08-25-2016, 08:25 AM
Rouleur issue 19 or 20 did a phenomenal profile of Ron, a couple years before he died. Got some great photos of his workshop and, of all things, a really striking photo of his hands.

Ralph
08-25-2016, 08:31 AM
I know Mark well, have owned 3 of his bikes, sold them for a while at Vecchio's..he is at the very top of bike craftmanship..just kinda unknown.

BUT except for some of the 'art work' made specifically for NAHBS, it's a bicycle, not a piece of art, IMHO..Maybe cuz I'm older but wait 4-5-10 YEARS for a bike frame? Insane..it's a bike frame..IMHO, of course.

NO 'holy trinity' of bikes or watches, again, IMHO..Love my kinda beat up MXLeader...:)

Agree.....I have a custom steel frame, made by my son....a one time Doug Fattic student. It rides very well, and he wants me to use it hard. He says he made it to use.....not admire. They are just bike frames he says. If I use it up....he'll make me another....no big deal.

Aaron O
08-25-2016, 08:32 AM
This is probably coals to new castle, but Peter Mooney started under Ron Cooper. I know it's silly, but the Cooper graphics/font really hurts the bikes to me. Still - a Cooper is towards the top of my list of brands I want to try.

Bob Ross
08-25-2016, 08:33 AM
Ultimately, for me, it's Sachs, Pegoretti, and Nagasawa.

Given the initial premise by OP (this thread seems to have drifted more towards "Who Would I Order A Bike From?"), that triumvirate resonates with me.

...but I think that's mostly because it reminds me of my first day in grad school when Professor John Heiss drew a hasty map of the world and then traced a triangle that connected Vienna Austria to Paris France to Danbury Connecticut (!) and announced "There is the epicenter of innovation in early 20th Century music." (He was indicating the locations where Arnold Schoenberg, Igor Stravinsky, and Charles Ives wrote the bulk of their early works.)

I think the triangle connecting Sachs, Pegoretti, & Nagasawa geographically would be an equally fertile epicenter.

Villgaxx
08-25-2016, 09:20 AM
With a history, influence & peerless craftsmanship: Della Santa, Richard Sachs, and Chris Kvale.

Climb01742
08-25-2016, 10:21 AM
If you start from the premise that there's no 'correct' answer, it gets interesting when you work through what your criteria are. Because your answer is based on your lens/filter.

For me, an important criterion is their experience, the breadth and depth of the frames they've built. It's subjective I know, but it's like Gladwell's 10,000 hours leading to expertise. I think there's something to be said for the sheer hands on number of frames someone's built...not because if the number itself, but because of the knowledge gained...I do this and this is the result...I tweak this and this changes.

Through that lens, Dario's history resonants with me. Again, it's subjective, but the knowledge in his mind and hands is, perhaps, pretty unique. Though building something like 20 frames in a single season for Marco must have been pretty frustrating.:rolleyes:

mg2ride
08-25-2016, 10:22 AM
Based on units sold it would be as follows:

Huffy
Murray
Schwinn

rwsaunders
08-25-2016, 10:30 AM
One more for the Cooper fans...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALNsQpCL8LY

William
08-25-2016, 10:33 AM
Naming builder's with stellar builds and attention to detail...I'm surprised Nao Tomii hasn't been mentioned yet? Speaking of that, you might want to check out the new Builder's Spotlight. :)

http://forums.thepaceline.net/showthread.php?t=177251








William

bikingshearer
08-25-2016, 11:14 AM
This is probably coals to new castle, but Peter Mooney started under Ron Cooper. I know it's silly, but the Cooper graphics/font really hurts the bikes to me. Still - a Cooper is towards the top of my list of brands I want to try.

I, on the other hand, love the older block "Ron Cooper" font (the later, more curly graphic font is kind of meh to my eyes).

Neither of us is wrong. Just another example of "YMMV."

P.S. I don't think it's "silly" at all. A bike's/frame's appearance has never been enough by itself to make me buy it, but it has been enough to make me pass. If it doesn't fit well, I don't want it (with one exception - I grabbed a 70s Cinelli that is a bit small because there are precious few available in my size); if it doesn't ride well, I don't want it; if it is an color I don't like, I don't want it (although that can be fixed); if I don't like the graphics, I don't want it. For me, it has to be fun to ride and fun to look at, whether I'm on and off the saddle. The esthetics are an important part of the equation for me. And since I'm not a racer, am in no way a "performance" rider and Lord knows I don't have to answer to a sponsor, I can be picky.

bfd
08-25-2016, 11:16 AM
Naming builder's with stellar builds and attention to detail...I'm surprised Nao Tomii hasn't been mentioned yet? Speaking of that, you might want to check out the new Builder's Spotlight. :)

[William

I may have missed it, but I'm surprised nobody has named Rob English! He had arguably some of the hottest bikes at NAHBS this year:

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/qp16cs7HXHkBVspi47pZ-pd_YM53zHt1S-aCustsvBElHAwWJemWc2Uleiaa7yShdNdHlgWdRtIn=w1000-h667-no

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/lja5OBV8kmZ19ekAnIl2rK8eeIjsXU5JJ2mYY2Og1fBPGICKuJ 78PTCrN4eCkz_2oCbAY5iqc7eM=w1000-h667-no

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Nalluf0YR0c/VthaIaggr6I/AAAAAAAAJXE/9TYMIGfDL7I/s1600/english%2Blightweight.jpg

https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-OUuS6xO0Ulg/VthaIlECyrI/AAAAAAAAJXA/7meNO_lmJPA/s1600/english%2Bseatstay.jpg

The weight of the last bike was a whopping 9.9lb for stainless tubing....simply amazing!

Good Luck!

Aaron O
08-25-2016, 11:27 AM
I, on the other hand, love the older block "Ron Cooper" font (the later, more curly graphic font is kind of meh to my eyes).

Neither of us is wrong. Just another example of "YMMV."

P.S. I don't think it's "silly" at all. A bike's/frame's appearance has never been enough by itself to make me buy it, but it has been enough to make me pass. If it doesn't fit well, I don't want it (with one exception - I grabbed a 70s Cinelli that is a bit small because there are precious few available in my size); if it doesn't ride well, I don't want it; if it is an color I don't like, I don't want it (although that can be fixed); if I don't like the graphics, I don't want it. For me, it has to be fun to ride and fun to look at, whether I'm on and off the saddle. The esthetics are an important part of the equation for me. And since I'm not a racer, am in no way a "performance" rider and Lord knows I don't have to answer to a sponsor, I can be picky.
:beer:

Chocolate and Vanilla.

I'd like a cooper mostly for the Mooney connection, but Mooneys do more for me on the hawt front.

EDS
08-25-2016, 12:00 PM
My personal list is Strong, Parlee and Firefly.

Tickdoc
08-25-2016, 12:22 PM
Too many good ones to narrow down to just three Imo, or ATMO;~)

New builders, old builders, techno savvy ones, traditionalists, artistic ones, innovative ones.

Nope, can't do it.

biker72
08-25-2016, 12:27 PM
David Kirk and Nick Crumpton.

jruhlen1980
08-25-2016, 01:01 PM
Don't ask me why I got interested in certain Canadian builders, but I have lusted after Marinonis for years. I have never, ever seen one in the Midwest, but a couple years ago I lucked into a Jocelyn Lovell-built bike that is my size. Lovell learned how to build frames under Marinoni. After he was paralyzed, he sold his business to Mike Mulholland and it became Cyclops Custom Cycles.

Since I have the Lovell (recently upgraded with silver Veloce bits and still fast and fun as ever), my trinity would be Lovell, Marinoni, Cyclops.

I Want Sachs?
08-25-2016, 01:14 PM
Looking at OP post about the three watch companies, they continue to exist under some larger corporation management and does not die out with retirement of one master.

I would say

Colnago
DeRosa
Pinarello

Others under consideration would be

Bianchi
Masi
Merckx (don't know what would happen when Eddy gets out though)

FlashUNC
08-25-2016, 01:21 PM
Looking at OP post about the three watch companies, they continue to exist under some larger corporation management and does not die out with retirement of one master.

I would say

Colnago
DeRosa
Pinarello

Others under consideration would be

Bianchi
Masi
Merckx (don't know what would happen when Eddy gets out though)

Eddy is out. Sold his stake in the Merckx name a while back.

Waldo
08-25-2016, 01:25 PM
Baum Ristretto is a steel bike.

I like...I think you're the first to post 3 without a steel builder!

Firefly
Crumpton
Baum

Waldo
08-25-2016, 01:34 PM
Kirk, Ellis (Dave Wages), and Bedford. :D

But not Serotta? :-)

MattTuck
08-25-2016, 01:47 PM
But not Serotta? :-)

Sadly, Serotta is no longer a going concern.

Aaron O
08-25-2016, 01:52 PM
Sadly, Serotta is no longer a going concern.

I'm prepping the audit exam as we type...so this comment was funny to me :p

Substantial Doubt.
Going Concern.

choke
08-25-2016, 03:15 PM
It's so hard to narrow it down to just 3 builders that I'm not even going to try. What I will say is that if I was to order a frame today, Ulrich Vogel would be the person doing the work.

FWIW, these were Tullio's choices for the top 5 builders in Italy back in the day...

http://cycle.ciocctoo.com/shirt.jpg

William
08-25-2016, 03:21 PM
So hard to choose...but definitely one of these builder's! (http://forums.thepaceline.net/forumdisplay.php?f=17)

Actually, revisiting Icarus Frames and looking at Tomii's work has me drooling. DK and Eric Estlund, Yamaguchi...




William

Web1111a
08-25-2016, 05:24 PM
Sante?

Which last name is that one referring to

sharkboyrob
08-25-2016, 05:27 PM
Pogliaghi

dancinkozmo
08-25-2016, 05:34 PM
Don't ask me why I got interested in certain Canadian builders, but I have lusted after Marinonis for years. I have never, ever seen one in the Midwest, but a couple years ago I lucked into a Jocelyn Lovell-built bike that is my size. Lovell learned how to build frames under Marinoni. After he was paralyzed, he sold his business to Mike Mulholland and it became Cyclops Custom Cycles.

Since I have the Lovell (recently upgraded with silver Veloce bits and still fast and fun as ever), my trinity would be Lovell, Marinoni, Cyclops.

YES !

i grew up around the corner from the lovell/cyclops shop in west end toronto. never met mr. lovell but mr. mulholland was a super nice guy.
how about a picture of that lovell , if its not too much trouble ?

MarkC
08-25-2016, 06:47 PM
All Time: Bill Boston, Jim Redcay, Albert Eisentraut

In their Prime Today: Dazza, Weigle, Wages

Aaron O
08-25-2016, 06:58 PM
All Time: Bill Boston, Jim Redcay, Albert Eisentraut

In their Prime Today: Dazza, Weigle, Wages

Boston is so under appreciated. Replace Eisentraut with a young tom Kellogg and I'm with you!

http://i936.photobucket.com/albums/ad205/aolk67/Tom%20Kellogg/9C744645-3B52-4525-903B-83F48527F5F3_zpso7lw1nm9.jpg (http://s936.photobucket.com/user/aolk67/media/Tom%20Kellogg/9C744645-3B52-4525-903B-83F48527F5F3_zpso7lw1nm9.jpg.html)

http://i936.photobucket.com/albums/ad205/aolk67/redcay/2DDE4972-C2D4-49B0-ABF5-7A981AC1998A_zpsljjp5rxn.jpg (http://s936.photobucket.com/user/aolk67/media/redcay/2DDE4972-C2D4-49B0-ABF5-7A981AC1998A_zpsljjp5rxn.jpg.html)

vav
08-25-2016, 07:41 PM
My 3+ :cool:

Lugged: R. Sachs / Kvale
Fillet: D.Kirk / Landsharks
Tig: Peg
Carbon: N. Crumpton / E. Colnago
Alu: Zank / Zetti
Ti: Serotta / FF / Eriksen

echelon_john
08-25-2016, 08:07 PM
Lugged: Weigle/Columbine/Anderson (Dave)
Fillet: Coconino/Landsharks/Winter
Tig: Peg/IF/Strong
Carbon: Crumpton/Calfee/Aegis
Alu: FrankTW/Paul Sadoff/Cunningham
Ti: Merlin/Eriksen/Firefly

My 3+ :cool:

Lugged: R. Sachs / Kvale
Fillet: D.Kirk / Landsharks
Tig: Peg
Carbon: N. Crumpton / E. Colnago
Alu: Zank / Zetti
Ti: Serotta / FF / Eriksen

Black Dog
08-25-2016, 08:17 PM
But not Serotta? :-)

They are the Serotta legacy and still active.

unterhausen
08-25-2016, 08:20 PM
All Time: Bill Boston, Jim Redcay, Albert Eisentraut

In their Prime Today: Dazza, Weigle, Wages

The first Eisentraut I saw back in the '70s was a revelation. Made all the European builders I had been lusting after up until that point look like hacks. Maybe it would be different nowadays, I haven't seen one in a long time and the state of the art has long been up to the level he achieved back then. It's funny how that works with revisionist history. I wish I knew he taught framebuilding classes then, definitely would have figured out how to get in one.

I agree with your list of current framebuilders. Everything I see by Weigle and Wages makes me want to get out my checkbook. Firefly also makes me want to get out the checkbook. With two kids in college, not going to happen right now though.

jtakeda
08-25-2016, 08:22 PM
https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1678/24885687100_4f51ce7006_b.jpg

MarkC
08-25-2016, 08:29 PM
For tig Al caterpillar fans, Joe DePaemelaere has to get a nod. For his Primus Mootry frames and for welding up Craig's early run of frames.

Aaron O
08-25-2016, 08:31 PM
https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1678/24885687100_4f51ce7006_b.jpg

That's a sweeeet looking bike.

Web1111a
08-25-2016, 11:43 PM
Pogliaghi


Thanks for the answer

oldpotatoe
08-26-2016, 05:45 AM
Agree.....I have a custom steel frame, made by my son....a one time Doug Fattic student. It rides very well, and he wants me to use it hard. He says he made it to use.....not admire. They are just bike frames he says. If I use it up....he'll make me another....no big deal.

Yup, tools not trophys. A really nice 'riding' frame is a dream but I don't get all weepy if it gets dirty or nicked up a bit..

gomango
08-26-2016, 07:40 AM
Boston is so under appreciated. Replace Eisentraut with a young tom Kellogg and I'm with you!

http://i936.photobucket.com/albums/ad205/aolk67/Tom%20Kellogg/9C744645-3B52-4525-903B-83F48527F5F3_zpso7lw1nm9.jpg (http://s936.photobucket.com/user/aolk67/media/Tom%20Kellogg/9C744645-3B52-4525-903B-83F48527F5F3_zpso7lw1nm9.jpg.html)

http://i936.photobucket.com/albums/ad205/aolk67/redcay/2DDE4972-C2D4-49B0-ABF5-7A981AC1998A_zpsljjp5rxn.jpg (http://s936.photobucket.com/user/aolk67/media/redcay/2DDE4972-C2D4-49B0-ABF5-7A981AC1998A_zpsljjp5rxn.jpg.html)

Those bikes are beauties Aaron.

I'd like to add a name if I may.

I've been a big fan of McLean Fonvielle's work for many years. Within the last two years I've been able to track down two incredible examples of his craft. I'm curious about what he would be building if he were alive today.

I'll just have to guess..........

weisan
08-26-2016, 08:15 AM
Matt pal, you started it, I didn't, so.... If we gonna use the Holy Trinity as a metaphor, then we need to understand that the father, son and holy ghost exist before time memorial. In other words, in order to know which framebuilders exist today, past and present that can be put on the pedestal, you almost need to be...as old as spud. ... Oh well anyway, this is all for fun and actually I felt like I am taking a history class in the school of framebuilders, getting to know who's who, I mean some of the names mentioned, I have never even heard of, which is not surprising, becoz A) I have only been riding for the last 31 years and B) the world that we live in is HUGE! stretches well beyond the shores of North American continent.

This is similar to the question that I posed here before about which bike would you get if money is no object.
I am stumped... I dunno. But if I am forced to give an answer, I will probably pick the ones that had been mentioned here with some degree of regularity and consistency.

Mr. Squirrel
08-26-2016, 08:25 AM
golden squirrels cycles rooled of course. squirrels and wheels. nuk nuk nuk!

mr. squirrel

bikingshearer
08-26-2016, 12:13 PM
https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1678/24885687100_4f51ce7006_b.jpg

Okay, I'll play along . . . .

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u46/bikingshearer/My%20Eisentraut/IMG_1055.jpg (http://s165.photobucket.com/user/bikingshearer/media/My%20Eisentraut/IMG_1055.jpg.html)
http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u46/bikingshearer/My%20Eisentraut/IMG_0987.jpg (http://s165.photobucket.com/user/bikingshearer/media/My%20Eisentraut/IMG_0987.jpg.html)

William
08-26-2016, 03:26 PM
golden squirrels cycles rooled of course. squirrels and wheels. nuk nuk nuk!

mr. squirrel


I'll bet that if you moved to France you could find many more of them (hint hint hint).






William

weisan
08-26-2016, 05:15 PM
http://forums.thepaceline.net/showpost.php?p=1929424&postcount=102


http://forums.thepaceline.net/showpost.php?p=1929417&postcount=101

54ny77
08-26-2016, 05:27 PM
oh. my.

:beer: :hello: :cool:

http://forums.thepaceline.net/showpost.php?p=1929424&postcount=102


http://forums.thepaceline.net/showpost.php?p=1929417&postcount=101

jruhlen1980
08-26-2016, 09:17 PM
YES !

i grew up around the corner from the lovell/cyclops shop in west end toronto. never met mr. lovell but mr. mulholland was a super nice guy.
how about a picture of that lovell , if its not too much trouble ?

I'm on the road this weekend and can't get to the computer with those pictures, but I will. So, the pics I have are a couple years old in the original 1982-ish configuration. I recently hung some silver 10 speed Veloce bits on it, I'm still dialing in the stem/handlebar situation & then I'll wrap the nice bar tape on it and get some proper pics. Might take a couple weeks though.

Nags&Ducs
08-27-2016, 05:14 AM
This is a fun thread!

So hard to pick just 3, but if it's in line with the watch example, I'd have to say Richard Sachs, Peter Weigle, and Dario Pegoretti. Why not Colnago or Pinarello? Because like the H3 of the watch world- none have less expensive models, none have mass-produced models, none have high tech models (digital, Quartz, computers in them). Colnago and Pinarello- they have their made in Asia frames, which are cheaper, mass produced, with ShimaNO on them!! :D:D

These 3 have been doing their thing for decades, and IMHO, time in the game and continuing to be in the game are big factors in being in the bike world's H3. That's why Ben Serotta or Sascha White isn't in my H3, even though, they are arguably just as renown and acclaimed as Richie, Peter, and Dario.

That being said, I doubt I'd ever buy a Sachs or Pegoretti. A Weigle is the only one of the three I would buy. Would just as readily buy a Dazza creation Llewelyn- I've never seen anything like his beauteous bikes. :beer:

paredown
08-27-2016, 06:05 AM
Seriously underrated
Zero marketing
Gorgeous, great riding bikes

Word.

Sold my Mooney in recession crisis mode. It went to a nice guy who even sent me his build pictures, but it was the most planted bike I have been on since I rode an early California Masi BITD. The irony was--I bought it for a friend (because it was a deal), and then he decided to go custom. Then I took it out and thought 'this one is staying!' Best laid plans and all...

This was confirmation to me that something almost indefinable happens with a highly skilled builder who has refined his craft.

oldpotatoe
08-27-2016, 06:09 AM
Word.

Sold my Mooney in recession crisis mode. It went to a nice guy who even sent me his build pictures, but it was the most planted bike I have been on since I rode an early California Masi BITD. The irony was--I bought it for a friend (because it was a deal), and then he decided to go custom. Then I took it out and thought 'this one is staying!' Best laid plans and all...

This was confirmation to me that something almost indefinable happens with a highly skilled builder who has refined his craft.

I would agree and mention that 'some' builders, who happen to work for the 'name' on the downtube, do excellent work as well..Just not the 'name' on the downtube. I know some go on to produce their own frames..but some did not.

Sean Walling(SoulCraft), comes to mind as does whomever built my MXLeader, Eddy never made anything personally..Best ride I have ever had, followed by a Mondonico(made by Antonio) and my Ciocc..made by 'unknown'...

El Chaba
08-27-2016, 11:06 AM
I would agree and mention that 'some' builders, who happen to work for the 'name' on the downtube, do excellent work as well..Just not the 'name' on the downtube. I know some go on to produce their own frames..but some did not.

Sean Walling(SoulCraft), comes to mind as does whomever built my MXLeader, Eddy never made anything personally..Best ride I have ever had, followed by a Mondonico(made by Antonio) and my Ciocc..made by 'unknown'...

Definitely...this would be a great subject for a thread of its own...I can think of three from France who were among the very best ever. First Francis Quillon...he originally came up through the ranks at Meral eventually becoming the foreman/head builder. This brand is seldom seen in the US, but Francis definitely left his mark on the nice ones as they are quite special. He developed quite a following with the pros and when Meral closed, he opened up Maxi-Sports and developed that following further. Eventually the name was changed to Cyfac, but he is retired today....He was quite the builder and his career spanned lugged steel to custom carbon fiber....
Another was Bernard Carre....He also built plenty for pros and his shop was prolific...Often the nice models offered by Lejeune, Bertin, etc. were a breed apart from the rest of their line....because they were contracted out to Bernard Carre...I have seen a number of superbe Carre frames...and a few more average ones. This past winter, there was a "Lejeune" for sale that was built by Carre for Jan Jannsen...It was my size, but I passed on it because it had some rust...not seeing it in person, it's impossible to tell the severity, so I passed......I sort of regret it....He built some awesome bikes...
A third one was Raoul Jean d'Heure. He might have been the most exacting framebuilder in France in his day. He ran the service course "Prestige" shop for Peugeot that built bikes for the famous pro team. During his time, he built many of the bikes for Thevenet, Simon, Roche, Anderson, Millar, Duclos-LaSalle, etc....There were other builders at the Prestige shop and they turned out very nice work, but d'Heure's work was exceptional. Many of the bikes from the shop had drilled faces on the rear dropouts, but you can usually identify a d'Heure frame quickly by the holes being countersunk....as well as by the otherwise very clean work.

Cool subject....

bob heinatz
01-03-2017, 03:59 PM
Llewelyn, Weigle & Kellogg. All 3 build functional but highly detailed bikes and have been masters for a long time.

martl
01-04-2017, 08:31 AM
No love for the Japanese? :)
What about Kono, Tanabe, Kageyama and all the others?

https://fotos.rennrad-news.de/img/photos/2/0/9/0/_/medium/EFBE-2231.jpg?0 (http://fotos.rennrad-news.de/p/63510)

Bob Ross
01-04-2017, 11:25 AM
No love for the Japanese? :)

Nagasawa came up in Post #10

TMB
01-04-2017, 11:48 AM
I would agree and mention that 'some' builders, who happen to work for the 'name' on the downtube, do excellent work as well..Just not the 'name' on the downtube. I know some go on to produce their own frames..but some did not.

Sean Walling(SoulCraft), comes to mind as does whomever built my MXLeader, Eddy never made anything personally..Best ride I have ever had, followed by a Mondonico(made by Antonio) and my Ciocc..made by 'unknown'...

My old Rocky Mountain Turbo, "built" by Derek Bailey is in fact a fine example of Chris DeKerf's work.

vav
01-04-2017, 11:50 AM
1- David Kirk - whenever these threads arise, Dave's name is mentioned by lots of people. I also think of this as being a little bit of a homage to Ben Serotta. If I ever decide to go custom outside New England he would be my first and probably only choice.

2- CKvale - Like others mentioned and IMO, the most exquisite and refined builder.

3- Mike Z - personal bias and all that :D ;)

Fun discussion.

d_douglas
01-04-2017, 01:43 PM
Theres only one that I would say is clear: Dave Kirk.

There are several others that could be considered, but his work is exemplary.

mhespenheide
01-04-2017, 04:24 PM
I don't traffic in the "Holy Trinity" circles; I'm decidedly more down-market than that. But if I were to happen to be gifted a chunk of money for a new steel frame, Dave Kirk, Mark DiNucci, and Roland Della Santa would be at the top of my list. But that's a matter of opinion, and there's easily another 10-20 builders right behind them.

I am a little surprised DiNucci hasn't gotten more mention. I think of him as one of the modern masters, but -- as I said -- I'm probably not informed well enough to truly comment.

mbrtool
01-04-2017, 04:29 PM
There are only two builders that I have personal experience with:
Ben Serotta and Dave Wages
Each bike is very different and each is a joy to ride.

Ray

livingminimal
01-04-2017, 06:51 PM
I have a Pegoretti. Every time I ride it, I think two things:

A) Why do I ride any other bike*, ever? A bike could not possibly be better.
b) I want to order another one.

I wouldn't mind a Kirk, a Sachs, a Bishop, or a true Vanilla, but I think I would just be following some nebulous n+1 thing.

Right now I am more interested in a Poprad in my size that I can put some Paul-Mini-Motos on and a cheap SRAM group and cruise around than much else. Of course, if Richie let me on his list, I would do it in a heartbeat.


*on the road.

j1mm82
01-17-2017, 11:21 AM
I have a Baum Corretto and the work Darren and the boys put in down there to create the perfect bike is incredible.

I am very particular but the attention to detail they go to in that workship is inspiring and there is not much that can compete for custom ti.

gemship
01-17-2017, 01:52 PM
While no one would think of him as a custom builder as he doesn't fit the mold I can't help but thinking of Ernesto Colnago at the top of the heap given these criteria.

Arabesque, Master, C-40 and its progeny....

You are correct, I would not have thought of him but I agree. Ernesto Colnago fits the bill. He is so much more that than that as well. May I say mass produced some bikes for a small contingent of the masses as well?

gemship
01-17-2017, 01:56 PM
If this questioned were asked say I don't know....several not long years ago...Serotta.

gomango
01-17-2017, 04:47 PM
2- CKvale - Like others mentioned and IMO, the most exquisite and refined builder.


No argument here.

I've owned a CK tourer, two road bikes and a frameset that is hanging on the wall at this very moment.

Superb riders and the build details make me go nutso.

Special bikes, for sure.

Frankwurst
01-17-2017, 06:07 PM
Herse, Singer, DeRosa, Marinoni. :beer:

bicycletricycle
01-17-2017, 06:18 PM
they are always too small for me.

I want a CS hirose

No love for the Japanese? :)
What about Kono, Tanabe, Kageyama and all the others?

https://fotos.rennrad-news.de/img/photos/2/0/9/0/_/medium/EFBE-2231.jpg?0 (http://fotos.rennrad-news.de/p/63510)

Waldo
01-17-2017, 07:44 PM
The late Bryan Baylis would be on my list of top builders but he certainly would not meet the third requirement. His designs, materials, and production methods were far from innovative but his workmanship and finished product was top notch. He also was one of the top frame painters in the country.

Brian was very interested in tubing development, selected tubes in accordance with what he beleived would serve the customer's needs best. I think the willingness to use the latest and greatest, in addition to his unparalleled artistry, qualifies him as an innovator.

gdw
01-17-2017, 08:14 PM
Interesting. I seem to remember reading an interview, Torchbearers series at Redkiteprayer, where he stated that he used vintage tubing, Reynolds and Columbus, and classic lugs from Nervex and Prugnat.

Hilltopperny
01-18-2017, 12:35 PM
Dazza, Dario and David kirk are definitely my holy trinity of bespoke builders. I realize that there are tons of other talented builders out there, but these three are bucket listers. I've been fortunate to own two pegs and a kirk and will most certainly be getting a Llewellyn when the time is right:beer:

Waldo
01-18-2017, 10:24 PM
Interesting. I seem to remember reading an interview, Torchbearers series at Redkiteprayer, where he stated that he used vintage tubing, Reynolds and Columbus, and classic lugs from Nervex and Prugnat.

My 1981 Baylis is made from Reynolds 531 and my 1992 is Columbus EL-OS, which was cat's pajamas at the time, so I see evolution.

montagna_lunga
04-07-2019, 05:59 PM
I can't think of anything that I wanted 30 years ago that I either don't already have or no longer want. Not.a.single.thing.


Lots still catch my eye, but none have me searching

-dp

Bentley
04-07-2019, 07:19 PM
What?!? No A Lange and Sohne?
Clearly a substandard thread :butt:

Most folks don’t know A Lange, likely the top of the industry. I have a Patek and I would love an A Lange

tsarpepe
04-07-2019, 10:00 PM
No list that omits Richard Sachs (or Ben Serotta, for that matter) is worth much :bike:

R3awak3n
04-08-2019, 05:52 AM
My top 3 change all the time, and its not a -these are the best- but I want to try or have a bike from them.

Currently-

English - have a road, want a gravel
JP Weigle - had a road, want a rando
Yamaguchi - Want anything from Guchi, need to find something sooner than later in my size