Archive | July, 2014

A helping hand…

The Bicycle Academy exists to stimulate and support the framebuilding community and to make framebuilding more accessible. We do that by providing courses, access to workshop hire and supply of equipment and consumables. I think we do a good job but sometimes it’s important to go a step further and really get behind an individual who shows promise.

A few months ago SaiTong Man attended one of our Classic Framebuilding Courses. He worked hard, was a great learner and had a great attitude. It was clear that he wanted to make a career from framebuilding and we felt that if he stuck at it SaiTong had a great chance of doing so. So together with our friends at Columbus, weldability-Sif , Saffron Frameworks and BikeCAD we decided to give SaiTong a bit of extra help by giving him enough kit and materials to get started…

We gave SaiTong a complete Oxy-Propane gas brazing setup courtesy of Weldability-Sif, a set of TBA Tube Blocks, a full set of hand files, a BikeCAD Pro licence from Brent Curry, a full set of Columbus Cromor tubing supplied from Columbus and all the other bits and pieces needed to make the frame from The Bicycle Academy and finally we also arranged for SaiTong to spend a week shadowing Matthew Sowter of Saffron Frameworks.

This isn’t a one off, it’s something we will do every year, when we feel that we can really make a difference.

Here’s what SaiTong had to say:

“In 2013 I did a U-turn on life and left my career in the video games industry to go back and follow my roots in engineering, my love of craftwork and my passion for bicycles.

I came to The Bicycle Academy with the idea to start my own framebuilding business and it was here at the Academy where I learnt the core process, skills and techniques to build bicycle frames and forks. 

Andrew even tailored the course to support me in my goals, ensuring I got as much relevant tuition as they could physically fit in during my time there, not only covering additional frame building skills but also jig design and advice on setting up my business.

We covered everything I’d hoped to, it was simply the best thing I could have ever done. To be awarded such a fantastic prize was just unbelievable, and  has really motivated me to get started and follow my dream

And here’s what SaiTong did with his new set-up and the tubes…

“The frame features two bi-laminate 4130 lugs, machined by hand, and brazed on to give the appearance that the rear end of the bicycle is holding onto the front end. The rear dropouts are also of a custom design, water jet cut from a sheet of 4130 steel. The bicycle is then finished off a Columbus Minimal 1” Carbon Fork with a blend of Campagnolo, Cinelli, HPlusSon, Nitto and Velo Orange components and topped off with a Brooks Limited Edition Cambium C15 Saddle.”

We’re super proud of SaiTong and will be right behind him as he continues to progress. Satoma Cycles will be exhibiting at the Yorkshire Bike Show this weekend, so go along and say hello.

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BTR Fabrications #pushforthepinner Kickstarter Campaign!

BTR Fabrications was just “two guys with a dream in a shed” working day jobs and building bikes in evenings and weekends. Since they started the feedback from their customers has been awesome and their frames have been featured in mountain bike magazines and selected as one of the best products of 2014 by the Dirt 100.

Almost a year ago Paul and Tam moved into a proper workshop and now spend almost all of their time working on BTR. Over the last few months they’ve been working on something really exciting; their first production full suspension frame. It’s a go anywhere trail destroyer with enduro style geometry, trail bike travel and DH bike strength. A bike to take on an uplift without worrying about it breaking, that you can fly around a trail centre on, or just ride for hours with a smile on your face. It’s the super fun full suspension bike they wished existed and daydream about riding, and it’s called the Pinner.

The Pinner is available to pre-order now through Kickstarter in either 26″ or 650b wheel sizes, and having ridden it we can say that it’s everything that they planned it to be and more, so much so that I’ve got one on order myself!

It’s great to see such brilliant work come out of a homegrown bike company so if you like what they’re doing then please get behind them and make a pledge!

Pinner 26"

Pinner 26″

Pinner 650b

Pinner 650b

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Academy Tools…

Over the past few months we’ve been working on a side project, Academy Tools.

We did a bit of a soft launch at Bespoked so that people could see what we’ve been up to, and we’re chuffed with the feedback.

We design every Academy Tools product in-house working closely with brilliant makers. We’ve worked with people from Turin, Dundee, Smethwick, Bristol and Frome and had a great time doing so.

We’ve designed workshop aprons, tube cutters, prints and tube blocks and a lot more. We’re not ready to launch yet, but we’re very proud of the results so far and look forward to Academy Tools opening for business very soon, so watch this space!

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