Greatest ever uk frame builder?

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foxychick
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Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby foxychick » 29 Aug 2016, 10:49am

I went to a vintage cycle museum yesterday and when i got home it really got me thinking about who was the creme de le creme of british frame builders over the last 100 years. Would love to hear your thoughts on this subject, after some research on the internet i was in awe at some of the artistry and sheer quality and craftwork of some of the uk frame builders past and present.

pete75
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby pete75 » 29 Aug 2016, 1:33pm

Major Nichols perhaps?


Mike O'Hanlon said
" I remember Tom Crowther, one of the founders of Mercian Cycles in Derby, describing Major's frames as 'jewels'. He said that some people might build a frame as good as a 'Major', but nobody would build a better. Tom felt that Major's frames compare favourably with the Colnagos, De Rosas and Masis of this world, and he was no slouch of a builder himself!!"

http://www.classiclightweights.co.uk/bu ... chols.html

http://www.blackcountrysociety.co.uk/ar ... cholls.htm

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NUKe
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Location: Suffolk

Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby NUKe » 29 Aug 2016, 1:44pm

In terms of innovation you would have to look to somebody like Mike Burrows.
NUKe
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scottg
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby scottg » 29 Aug 2016, 1:46pm

George Longstaff, would be the best trike maker.

Taylor Brothers, finest bronze welded frames.

Les Ephgrave and Bill Hurlow, superb craftsmen.

Dave Moulton, but he left for the States.
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Why not the best, buy Cyclo-Benelux.

tatanab
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby tatanab » 29 Aug 2016, 1:53pm

100 years, that is many generations each with their own fashions and fads. Fancy lugs etc display artistry and perhaps show the frame as being from a particular builder, but they do not show that the frame is well thought out or constructed. A fancy paint job can hide many sins. Many very highly thought of builders built frames that were very plain but were very well built e.g. Stan Pike. Some also highly regarded builders went against fashion and did their own thing e.g. Tony Oliver. I've had frames from highly regarded builders where joints failed, so not well built.

I currently have a 1956 Higgins which is extremely plain to look at (lugless) but he is regarded as an excellent builder, it rides very nicely indeed.

tatanab
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby tatanab » 29 Aug 2016, 1:56pm

scottg wrote:George Longstaff, would be the best trike maker.
Of his generation (I've had 3), but each generation of trike builders has introduced something by way of improvement. Currently the mantle is held by Trykit. I might also say that Fred Higgins was the best trike frame builder of HIS generation - look how sought after they are considering that the very youngest is 50 years old.

Brucey
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby Brucey » 29 Aug 2016, 2:07pm

form, fit, function; which do you prioritise?

I've yet to see any frame builder where they consistently had all three to the highest degree, and anyway folk will never agree on the first one.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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TrevA
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby TrevA » 29 Aug 2016, 4:37pm

Pongo Braithwaite!

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Vetus Ossa
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby Vetus Ossa » 29 Aug 2016, 4:54pm

Vic Edwards was pretty good.

Samuel D
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby Samuel D » 29 Aug 2016, 5:03pm

Raleigh.

Peejay56
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby Peejay56 » 29 Aug 2016, 6:16pm

Jason Rourke

Kevin Sayles

fastpedaller
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby fastpedaller » 29 Aug 2016, 6:33pm

Vetus Ossa wrote:Vic Edwards was pretty good.

I'll agree entirely. Vic built some very light frames (753 approved) and had some nice ideas and many, many years of experience. I never heard of a problem with one of his frames. The special racing tandems were something special. I always considered Vic could braze anything to anything else, and when I was (albeit briefly) working at Lotus a colleague said (he thought) Vic was involved with a human-powered flight machine, brazing the very light skeleton structure. I don't know how accurate this story is.

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Spinners
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby Spinners » 29 Aug 2016, 7:13pm

A mate of mine was a bike shop owner and always praised Major Nichols and, indeed, owned a few himself. Best custom-built steel frames I've owned were by Jeff Bruce (both lugged and fillet brazed) and, off a CTC member, I bought a Thorn Cyclosportif 853 built by Kevin Sayles which was a real head-turner.
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SpannerGeek
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby SpannerGeek » 29 Aug 2016, 7:21pm

HR Morris. Better than ANY Hetchins, but deadly expensive to buy!

Constructeur of the highest caliber, even making his own chain rings, stems and brake calipers!
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SpannerGeek
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Re: Greatest ever uk frame builder?

Postby SpannerGeek » 29 Aug 2016, 7:28pm

The legend!
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