Cycle Show 09: Demon Frameworks

The devil is in the detail

Demon Frameworks are a custom framebuilding business based in Southampton, UK. We found them tucked away in a secluded corner of the Earls Court exhibition centre at the Cycle Show in London.

Their retro-themed stand and the bikes they had on display were works of art, providing some welcome relief from the glitzier elements of the show.

Demon are mostly a one-man band: Dutch ex-pat Tom Warmerdam, who builds and paints the frames, and will deck them out with components if required.

His centrepiece at the Cycle Show was a Reynolds 631 frame finished in two-tone brown. The colour choice is to match the wooden Ghisallo rims, which are made from Slovenian beech and finished with several coats of lacquer. They're built up (appropriately) on Phil Wood hubs and are almost works of art.

The Ghisallo wooden rims are apparently still used by pros today

The wheel builder told us that these sorts of rims were popular in the 1930s, and some pros still use them today in races like Paris-Roubaix and the Monte Paschi Eroica, which feature long sections of rough roads. Apparently, the rims give a smoother ride while still being strong enough to withstand the pummelling of the pavé.

The sawn off messenger style handlebar was fashioned out of a lump of ash by Tom Warmerdam's neighbour

The wooden theme is extended to the sawn-off messenger-style handlebars, which were fashioned out of a piece of ash by Warmerdam's neighbour. They certainly look the part. Stopping power is courtesy of a Dia-Compe Shot Lever, which you can use with either hand.

We loved Demon's logo on the headtube...

... and on the brass plate on the seatstays

The lugwork is beautiful all the way down

Tom was proud of his Demon logo, which features on the headtube and on a brass plate that he silver soldered to the seatstays. The Nuvex lugs have been carefully sanded and painted, and there are no blemishes. It's impressive how much attention to detail there is on this frame.

A Brooks saddle and Nitto seatpost for your backside

Sugino cranks and MKS Royale Neuvo pedals

A Nitto quill stem and Campagnolo Record headset complete the cockpit, while the seatpost is also Nitto, topped by a Brooks saddle. The drivetrain consists of an elegant pair of Sugino cranks with a DID chain and a single sprocket, completed by a set of MKS Royale Neuvo toeclip and strap pedals.

Warmerdam says his frames take between one and two weeks to finish, depending on the nature of the build. Prices vary, although they don't usually come out at more than £3,000 for a complete bike.

He's been building frames for three years and has a three-month waiting list. From what we saw at the show, we think that list is going to get a lot longer.

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