I can't decide which way to vote on this... it's really hard as the heart and the head swing different ways
Head - Merlin and Boulder due to rarity and drool value
Heart - Salsa and Kona due to the story's and obvious use and abuse these bikes have had over the years, and subsequently the joy they have given (and are still giving) the original owners.
Merlin - I also drooled over the Merlin when I saw it in the mags, but I remember the review was not as glowing as expected. Probably any other month this would walk it (except for the crime of the headset spacers - sort it out).
Boulder - I've ridden a boulder, not that impressed at the time but I know that it was really pushing the boundaries. A truly beautifull example and the work that went into it deserves for it to win, and it really should win any month.
Salsa - I love these, and the fact that this one still has original components and the owner saying it is still getting used is swinging me over in this direction. What's putting me off a little is that there are some things about that picture which look wrong if this bike has seen any real use. The pristeen white saddle and umma gumma tyres with tread show a lack of use, as does the paint on the stays which should be rubbed off? This makes me think this bike has not really seen a lot of use and perhaps it's more of a garage queen that the owner is letting on? (please don't take this too harshly as it's still very very lovely
Kona - it's a Lava Dome... but with a great story and pimpy components. Dare I say it's a bit "Chav" with such components hanging off what is a plain jane frame? But I can see why the owner has chosen to do this and if it were an Explosif or a Hot etc it would walk this. The return to the original owner who raced and loved this frame is such a great story that it would deserve to win even without the gold chains
Very very difficult to call - but I think I'm going to have to go with the Kona... I can't believe I'm going to vote for a chaved up Lava Dome against such fantastic bikes
He's not the messiah, he's a very naughty boy.
95 Kona Explosif Singlespeed/Fixie - 100% Thrashed since new and it's still very well loved (and it looks it).
Dave Lloyd C.A.T.S W.I.S.K.A.S - Built, ridden, loved, and sold.