NAHBS 2014 - road bike highlights, part two

More road bikes, gravel grinders, and all-road rigs

You didn't think we were done with our coverage from the North American Handmade Bicycle Show, did you? Turns out there were far more noteworthy bikes and builders on display at the Charlotte Convention Center than could be presented in just a few days, so we've still got more to show you.

Here's a second round of road bikes, plus a little extra detail on some of the most interesting ones we saw. Click through the gallery at right for more detailed images.

Cicli Casati

Italian builder Casati has been in business for 94 years with Gianni Casati at the helm for much of it. Casati passed away recently but would have turned 80 years old in 2013. As such, Casati has decided to offer a special 80th anniversary bike and if you're into the classic aesthetic of fillet brazed steel road bikes, pictures simply don't do this one justice.

Casati builds the special edition bike with Columbus Nemo tubing and dresses it up with 24k gold plated lugs and dropouts, a gorgeous coat of pearlescent paint, internal cable routing, a hidden internal seatpost binder, and a wealth of special badging.

Casati dresses up this special edition with real gold plating: casati dresses up this special edition with real gold plating

Casati put its special bike on display at NAHBS with a Campagnolo Chorus group but at least in our humble opinion, there's really only one proper choice for this particular frameset: Campagnolo's 80th-anniversary Super Record group, of course.

Ellis Cycles

Builder Dave Wages decided to build himself a 'modern classic', featuring the aesthetics of a traditional lugged steel frame but with design features of a more contemporary steed. Wages used a mix of chromoly and stainless steel tubing from Dedacciai, True Temper, and KVA and arranged them with larger diameters down low and smaller profiles up top – not unlike how many carbon frames are done today.

Adding further juxtaposition between old and new were the fastback seat lug, slick internal routing, HED carbon tubular wheels, polished stainless steel stays, and the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 9070 group.

Ellis cycles builder dave wages' personal 'modern classic' uses a mix of dedacciai, true temper, and kva ms2 stainless steel tubing. wages specifically went with bigger tube diameters down low but more traditional sizes up top. claimed weight as shown here is just 16.2lb: ellis cycles builder dave wages' personal 'modern classic' uses a mix of dedacciai, true temper, and kva ms2 stainless steel tubing. wages specifically went with bigger tube diameters down low but more traditional sizes up top. claimed weight as shown here is just 16.2lb

According to Wages, the bike on display was light, too, at just 7.35kg (16.20lb) – with pedals.

English Cycles

Eugene, Oregon-based builder Rob English never fails to impress at NAHBS and even though he didn't even have a booth at the show, one of his bikes still took home the audience-selected "Best Campagnolo Bike" prize. Even more impressive, the bike was English's first stab at Campagnolo's new internal EPS battery and it wasn't even a complete Campagnolo build.

English built the steel frame with his trademark pencil-thin seat stays plus asymmetric seat stays to provide room for the post-mount TRP Spyre disc brake caliper. There was enough room inside the 44mm-diameter head tube to run the rear brake cable and EPS wire on either side of the tapered steerer, and English wisely opted for full rear brake cable housing in the event the bike's owner might want to upgrade to a hydraulic setup later on.

This sleek english cycles steel road racer won the people's choice award for best campagnolo-equipped bike: this sleek english cycles steel road racer won the people's choice award for best campagnolo-equipped bike

Capping things off was a striking baby-blue-and-black paint job on the frame, wheels, and seatpost by fellow Eugene outfit Colorworks. 

James Huang

Technical Editor, US
James started as a roadie in 1990 with his high school team but switched to dirt in 1994 and has enjoyed both ever since. Anything that comes through his hands is bound to be taken apart, and those hands still sometimes smell like fork oil even though he retired from shop life in 2007. He prefers manual over automatic, fizzy over still, and the right way over the easy way.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA
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