Category Archives: Feature Bikes

Here at Retrobike we love unique and classic bikes. Each month we give you a top pick within our feature bike section. Let us know what you think!

Fat Chance Yo Eddy

February 14th, 2014

Grello Fat Chance Yo EddyIn the early 1980s, Chris Chance, an American frame-builder who specialized in TT and criterium bikes, formed Fat City Cycles in Somerville, Massachusetts, and began building mountain bikes. He had an intuitive and prodigious talent, and over the course of the decade was building the best handling off-road bikes in the world, including the Fat Chance with a relaxed, upright position and the more responsive Wicked Fat Chance with quicker-handling geometry. For the 1990 model year, Fat City Cycles launched a new top-of-the-line racing model, the Fat Chance Yo Eddy! Team. Combining everything Chris knew about designing efficient, quick-handling bikes for criterium races with almost a decade of building the sweetest handling mountain bikes, his resulting effort was perhaps the finest handling mtb ever built.

The Yo Eddy was hand built in the Somerville, Massachussetts factory, and TIG welded from quad butted, heat-treated True Temper 4130 chromoly steel. The frame weighed 4lb 5oz, and the fork 1lb 12oz, and every bike was a work of art. All the major cycling magazines praised the Yo Eddy’s sublime handling characteristics, incredible climbing and descending abilities, and almost telepathic responses to rider inputs. Seasoned bike journalists were astonished by the craftsmanship, examples being the silver brazed cable guides, strengthening gussets around high-stress tube junctures, and frame alignment accuracy to within one thousandth of an inch. (more…)

Steve Peat’s 1993 Kona Hei Hei

June 4th, 2013

Steve Peat’s 1993 Kona Hei HeiSheffield born Steve Peat is without a doubt the UK’s most successful downhill racer. In the course of a career almost unmatched in length Peaty has taken numerous World Cup wins and British National Championships, along with the 2009 World Champs in Australia which is surely the highlight. At the start of Steve Peat’s career back in the early 90s he raced both Cross Country and Downhill when rider’s did that sort of thing for local shop Langsett Cycles. His success led to a ride with Kona and the 1993 UK Downhill Series aboard this rigid Kona Hei Hei which most ‘trail riders’ wouldn’t dare take round the red run at their local man made trail centre. The Kona features a front hope disc brake, Marzocchi forks, Ringle skewers, M900 groupset with Gripshift X-Rays and a massive USE seatpost.
The bike is featured in MBUK 291 along with Steve Peat’s 2013 Santa Cruz V10 Carbon. (more…)

1994 Pinarello Espada and Big Mig

May 30th, 2013

MigThe early 90s were a halcyon time for road bike development. The steel era was (sadly) drawing to a close and the use of many materials now considered common place was being pioneered. This innovation was also unhindered by over zealous governing bodies. One bike which still stands out from this era is the Pinarello Espada, four of which were custom made from carbon fibre for one Mr Miguel Indurain, former Hour Record holder and five times Tour de France winner. The bikes were designed in association with F1 Engineer Ing Giacchi. This particular example was photographed at the recent Campagnolo 80th Anniversary event with it’s former rider.
Fausto Pinarello can complete the story
“There were only four of these bicycles made: two for the road and two for the track – just for Indurain. We developed this bike in 1994 when there weren’t the UCI rules on bicycle design and you were free to create truly special bicycles. We developed this bike in collaboration with Ing. Giacchi, an aerodynamics engineer who has worked extensively with Formula One racing. We realized that we couldn’t make a bicycle with this kind of shape in metal so we decided to use carbon fibre. The first version was made for track, for the world hour record and then we modified it for the derailleurs and internal cable guides. Of course, this bike was made to measure for Indurain, so the carbon fibre molds still exist. The cost of each frame mold was about $5,000, not counting manufacturing costs. Indurain did break the world hour record on the Espada, but he had never done it before.” (more…)

Keith Bontrager Experimental

May 15th, 2013

Keith BontragerThe words rare and unique are used all too freely in the world of retro – few bikes deserve to be described as such and this is truly one of them. This Bontrager Experimental was built around 1995 at Bontrager’s Santa Cruz frame shop and currently resides with a well regarded collector here in the UK.
This particular Bontrager Experimental and the other six or seven completed around the same time were built out of a debate as to which frame material was best. Keith Bontrager’s take was that no material could be said to be best and each should be used in a frame to optimize it’s properties. This frame consists of
*Large diameter Aluminium main triangle = Lightest and Stiffest.
*Steel chainstays and dropouts = small diameter tubing so the tyre chainstays and chainrings have good clearance and the most durable dropouts.
*Carbon Seatstays = The lightest and stiffest for brake mount stability (flexi stays make the rear brake feel Mushy)

Chris King’s 1993 Yeti ARC

January 20th, 2012

Privateer magazine are currently in Portland visiting Chris King and others. Lucky them. Whilst with King they toured his factory (check the magazine for the full story I’m sure) and also managed to get some great pictures of King’s personal bike, a 1993 Yeti ARC soft tail. The bike has some great detail like loads of King trickery including a prototype adjustable bottom bracket. King apparently used this as his main ride up until ’08 – chapeau! Anyhow check the post in the forum for more pictures and detail of Chris King’s 1993 Yeti ARC.

doctorbond’s 1989 Team Peugeot / Roberts White Spider

May 24th, 2011

Roberts White Spider Team Peugeot Tim GouldMay 2011 sees a welcome return for the Feature Bike series. First up is doctorbond’s 1989 Team Peugeot / Roberts White Spider (click for original build thread). Enjoy!

I’ve always had a soft spot for old Peugeots. In fact, one of my earliest off road memories was as a kid, bouncing along a dirt track in the back of an ancient 404 estate. And when Peugeot turned their hand to producing off road bicycles during the MTB boom years of the 1980’s, it was a similar no nonsense sturdiness that typified the machines that they created: great for touring and recreation but not out-and-out racers.

Feature Bike July 2009 – Felixdelrio’s 1991 Funk Pro Comp

July 20th, 2009

Another month another outstanding bike. This 1991 Funk Pro Comp belongs to Felixdelrio aka Andreas, the site’s #1 purveyor of leftfield brands!

1991 Funk Pro Comp
Felixdelrio & 1991 Funk Pro Comp

As you all might know I am the e-stay maniac. This is my fav ecs bike the 1991 Funk Pro Comp with the quite rare Black/Magenta/Fluo-Green paint scheme and matching Big Fork. I bought this bike back in 2005 from a Berlin based collector. At this time the bike was unridden, a true virgin. During the last years I changed a lot of parts and now everything is perfect. Most of the parts are NOS. I rode the Funk mostly 1-2 times per week it’s truly a dream ride … FUNKY!

1991 Funk Pro Comp
1991 Funk Pro Comp rear end detail

1991 Funk Pro Comp
1991 Funk Pro Comp handlebar detail

Feature Bike June 2009 – retroking#1′s Ritchey Team Comp

July 7th, 2009

A class build from one of retrobike’s #1 builders. Over to retroking#1 for a brief write up on his Ritchey Team Comp

Ritchey Team Comp
Retroking#1′s Ritchey Team Comp

Like a lot of you when you find retrobike you start reading threads on bikes and parts you knew nothing about. As a result I got interested in building a early bike and when I met velomaniac at Cannock, riding the McSchwinn, and knowing al was advertising a Ritchey frame and fork I was hooked. A few PMs to al and I had got myself what turned out to be a Ritchey Team Comp frame and fork. Using the link from this site I found so now I knew what I had to find. So with the help of ebay I found the bars, rims, mechs, cranks, shifters, levers, brakes, saddle, seatpost and bottom bracket in the USA. Cassette, headset and rear hub came from Germany. Front hub was from Israel. Pedals, cables and tyres were from cycle jumbles here in the UK.

After putting it all together I added it to the readers bikes section and waited to be slaughtered by the guys in the USA. Instead I got a pleasant surprise so once again thanks to all!

And the best bit I get to use it………

Ritchey Team Comp
Retroking#1′s Ritchey Team Comp apres ride

Feature Bike May 2009 – Pete McC’s Doug Bradbury Manitou Full Suspension

May 30th, 2009

Bradbury Manitou
Pete McC’s Doug Bradbury Manitou Full Suspension

In the now standard start to a story I want you to wind the clock back 17 years – it’s 1992, Carter USM are riding high in the charts and playing on my ‘auto-reverse’ walkman, my Calvin Kleins are visible for all to see above the waistband of my baggy jeans and the MBUK Summer Special has just landed in WHSmiths.
This years Summer Special really lived up to it’s name as nestled amongst the pages of vital holiday reading was an article so special that it would get read with an amazed open mouth more often than a lottery winner rereads his winning ticket – the Superbike Test! Four bikes – all works of art, all utterly desirable and all far too expensive for a 17 year old on his way to University.
The Superbike test featured some of the years rarest and most individual bikes to hit our shores; bikes like the he Mountain Goat, the Alpinestar Almega, the Funk E-stay. But for me, one bike stood out in the review as the ultimate Superbike -the Manitou FS. With it’s eye watering £2,950 price tag for a frame-kit (in the days when £1500 would buy you a fully built Pace RC100), it was out of the reach of all but the most hardcore or most over-paid cyclist out there. It was the true embodiment of the term Superbike, it shone with new and exciting technology and was laden with unique and bespoke parts. It featured a 145mm rear axle that allowed a dish-less rear wheel and the 90mm width BB shell for the optimum chainline, it had amazing, cutting edge suspension forks with a full inch of elastomer travel and the additional set of forks where the seatstays should be, offering another bump-soaking inch of travel at the back. Unsurprisingly this bike scored a full 5 stars across the board and won the praise of all who rode it, all this praise was testament to the fact that it was designed by mountain bike design pioneer and Hall of Fame member, Doug Bradbury. This was the bike I told myself I would buy when I made my fortune.

Now, with the scene set, let’s fast forward to this time last year – I no longer had that magazine, my dog ear-ed and ragged copy was lost in one of the many moves since Uni, but I still lusted after each and everyone of the bikes in that Superbike review, I was still promising myself that I will own a Bradbury Manitou when I am rich and famous. But little did I know that Karma has a special surprise in store for me, one that it had been storing up for me for those 16 years since I first opened that magazine.

Feature Bike Apr 2009 Archangel’s 1993 Klein Adroit ‘Tinker Juarez Replica’

April 30th, 2009

Klein Adroit Storm

Archangel’s 1993 Klein Adroit ‘Tinker Juarez Replica’

Ever since I saw a Sachs chain add featuring Tinker Juarez on his Klein Adroit EX in Team Storm paintjob on the pages of Mountain Bike Action magazine in 1993, I have lusted after a similar Klein. I remember drawing pics of Team Storm Adroit on my Physics exercise book during high school lessons. At the time, it was more exciting for a young man than learning about gravity!

Fast forward 12 years. After graduating from the University, I was able to get a good and well-paid job and my love for the bikes from my teen years began anew. Now I was able to buy those bikes I drooled after while reading the American bike magazines but never had funds to buy any of them. From the beginning of my retro bike collecting hobby, I knew I HAD to find a Storm or Nightstorm Klein for me some day.

Klein Adroit Storm

Archangel & Klein

A few of those appeared on eBay but I missed them due to bad luck. Then IT popped up on eBay in October 2007. A Klein Adroit in 19″ size and with Team Storm paintjob. But there was something different with this bike. It had old style Klein logos whereas all the others I had seen had the new MC2 era font type logos. The paint was somewhat different too compared to other Storm Kleins. The frame was used and had many scratches on it and on top of that, fellow Retrobike members started to call the thunderclouds as brains, mocking them as ridiculous. I thought, well, this might be my only chance to buy a correct sized Storm Klein even if it had a suspension fork and not my favoured rigid Strata fork. In a retrospect, several Storm Adroits have appeared since on eBay but none of them have sported the early paintjob.
I put up a large bid on eBay and got the frameset for a very expensive price. As it turned out, the seller was a really nice guy from New York, USA who happened to be a huge Klein fan with numerous Attitudes and Adroits, many of them NOS. Since the price was about 4 times more than he had paid for the bike some years ago, he gave me the other parts (wheels, drivetrain, etc.) for free and charged only the USPS shipping costs while he shipped it with FedEx. Quite nice thing to do even if he didn’t need to.


Feature Bike Mar 2009 sinnett177′s Team Raleigh Dyna-Tech 1993 (ex-Adrian Timmis)

March 28th, 2009

Raleigh Team Dyna-Tech

Raleigh Team Dyna-Tech

It all started back in ‘Ebay and Market Watch’ thread (October 2008)

Gravymonster had spotted it on Ebay and posted it up for fellow retro bikers to see. There seemed to be lots of interest but not a lot of bids, seemed like an opportunity not to be missed so I quickly sold off lots of bits in the ’For Sale’ thread to finance a bid. I was thinking it would go for well in excess of £700, but to my surprise when it came to bid with a few seconds remaining it was at just £252. The auction ended and as the screen refreshed the final total was revealed £362! I could not believe my luck.

    Research (October/November 2008)

The bike had been tinkered with over the years as parts wore out or broke. With a 1993 Grundig bike there was only one thing to do with it in my opinion, return it to it’s original specification. So where would you find its’ original spec, you ask the lads at retrobike and that’s what I did!


Feature Bike Feb 2009 is Elev12K’s Zieleman Type Special

February 18th, 2009

Welcome to the first in the retrobike ‘feature bike’ series. Each month (or so) the retrobike team will pick a different bike we feel deserves a place on the front page.

The Feb 2009 Feature Bike is Elev12K’s exquisite Zieleman Type Special ->

Zieleman Type Special

More details on this build can be found here in the forum.

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