Saturday, May 26, 2012

Woodn't it be nice...

Cycling World Mar-Apr 1991

Saturday, May 12, 2012


First try: the light industry simile.

Second try: the bullet-nose simile.

Third try: the minimalist geometric simile.

Chromed carbon De Rosa Cinquanta bars, Deda RS01 seatpost, Tune Fastfoot cranks.

Elvis, we're putting a band together.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Dazza’s first “Lucentezza”

Dazza has the misfortune of having the same dimensions as the troll. Short in the legs and long in the torso, the frames Darrell McCulloch builds for himself are perfect for a troll but for a proportionate (if vertically-challenged) humanoid it is an exercise in bicycling with a seriously stretched layout. Long and low it’s all about getting intimate with the top tube. 
Now Dazza’s a framebuilder. Traditional in many ways but he ain’t no stuck-in-the-mud. He moves on. And so do his bikes. One morning the troll smelt something. A vague smell but one familiar to a troll. Ahh, yes... 'Tis the smell of opportunity. 

Who nowadays rides a frame with a 52cm seat tube and a 54.5cm horizontal top tube? Well the troll does (the custom frame the troll flew half way round the world to teach Mr Bohm - see “frame building in Tucson” - measures a comfortably close 52cm ST/ 55cm TT with 73° HT & ST angles just like this specimen)

When Darrell McCulloch was ruminating about producing a frame with polished stainless steel lugs he first built one for himself. And this is it. Serial number 202, the first ever Llewellyn with the “Lucentezza” finish (Italian for “pimp my ride” chosen only because On-One had first dibs on “Il Pompino” which apparently means the same thing in Hebrew). 

This belongs to Mr D McCulloch.

Columbus Neuron main tubes: Dug out of the ground by Australians. Made into tubes by Italians. Put together into a bike by some(one of) European (descent). 
Take the time to reflect on them old days...

Check out them colours.

As will become clear, Dazza spent a fair bit of time hand-polishing, shaping and silver brazing every lug on this bike. And if he and long-time associate, Joe Cosgrove, had bothered to ask the troll what manly colour combination to use on such a fine specimen (remembering this is 2002 - a time before middle aged men in lycra became a social phenomenon and bicycles became all-black) then the troll would have recommended this:

But Darrell and Joe never bothered to consult the troll. Instead they went with this colourway:

Pink and green?! Purple fade?! Are you fcuking kidding me?!

Apparently not. Pink and green done right.

Liquid mercury. Not bad for a first try Dazza. Hope you’ve gotten better.

Pink and green with purple fade.

Made after the turn of the century but man is this logo like so nineties or what.. 

Nineties cool.

Shiny, hand-cut lugs. Hubba hubba.

I *heart* this bike.

Australia doesn’t have a manufacturing industry any more. We dig stuff out of the ground, send it off to be made into something, then buy it back. 
Ergo this is a vintage bike.

The very first stainless steel plate with heart motif that Llewellyn slots between the seat stays. Current ones are precision cut by laser. This one is hand-cut. 
Joe puts some paint inside it.

Modern take on Campagnolo’s Portacatena.

Henry James plug-in dropouts front and back. Current road models use plug-ons. Dazza don’t do de slotted derailleur dropout.

De troll generally prefers de slotted dropout but dees have a nice, clean transition.

Columbus Nemo chain and seat stays.

Who on earth polishes the bottom bracket shell?

Hey, I think I see my face! No it’s a frog.

Arty farty! Nyah nyah!

'Nuff said.

Dazza's first Lucentezza

It’s a privilege to own a Llewellyn. And a shiny one with a bit of history all the better for a troll unable to tear himself from bicycles built before the turn of the century. A time when the troll pranced around with the vigour of youth even if the recollection of past exploits become more implausible as the memories fade. More progressive types should check out Llewellyn’s website Joe Cosgrove painted this frame and also builds bikes (Frezoni) and restores/ repairs frames

If there is more to life than this then the troll doesn't want to know about it.