ENVE Builder’s Roundup, Part II

It’s a shame that the Builder’s Roundup at ENVE wasn’t a bigger, more public event, but I can’t complain because, Delta Variant, donchaknow. That’s my inclusive way of lamenting the fact that I wasn’t there to see each of these bikes in person.

I’ve been writing about custom frame builders since the early 1990s. I’ve been to a number of events that brought together multiple builders to show off bikes. The collection presented in Provo, Utah, is arguably the finest concentration of great bikes I’ve ever seen. I put this ahead of NAHBS for the simple reason that the clarity of presentation was uniform—one bike—and so most builders took it as an invitation to do what they are known for.

I generally see it as bad form to comment on a frame builder’s paint as opposed to the build, but this is an excellent example of how good welds fade into the background beneath an incredible candy finish.
It’s unfortunate that the welding on this ti frame is overshadowed by the paint, but when the painter adds touches like gold flake, it’s easy to distract the photographer from focusing on the smooth welds.
Breadwinner showed a long-travel, hard-tail mountain bike called the Bad Otis a few years ago at NAHBS; this is another Bad Otis in that vein, but with better paint. The all-mountain steel hardtail. That suits a very special rider. A badass.
The dropouts on this bike are elegant and not overbuilt, which helps keep weight down and allows the rear end to flex a bit more for a subtler ride.
The Breadwinner head tube badge is one of the very coolest out there and is a worthy nod to the quality of work that Ira Ryan and Tony Pereira do.
Cameron Falconer showed a modern cruiser that recalls what we used to call dirt bikes when I was a kid. This has the added attraction of a front rack for a sleeping bag that was. formed from titanium sheets.
There’s nothing scavanged about this bike, but the build would make it look pieced together to the unaided eye. The coaster brake is such an awesome touch. Guaranteed, this is the only coaster brake hub laced to an ENVE rim on the planet.
The welds are clean and precise and the use of a Paul quick release for the seat clamp rings true for a bike like this, while still spec’ing a quality part.
The dropouts on this bike are stylish and the fact that they include adjusters means that the bike has a nearly unlimited range in gear choice.
Festka is a Czech company based in Prague producing short-run, high-quality carbon fiber bikes. I’ve been impressed with their work before, but this bike is a wonder. The watercolor style finish is amazing, but, that’s just a visual appetizer.
The fact that they didn’t cover the entire bike with paint gave them a chance to show off just how good their carbon layup is. It’s an exacting skill that’s harder than people think.
The lines on the Festka are clean and the tube shapes show they did some modeling to optimize stiffness and ride quality. The use of a 1k weave around the bottom bracket adds durability in the event of a dropped chain. Smart move.
FiftyOne is an Irish brand producing carbon fiber frames.
The lines of the FiftyOne were simple and elegant without any of the gimmicky design features that smaller brands will sometimes use to grab attention. The paint scheme comes thanks to F1.
Seeing external headset cups gives the bike a somewhat retro look but combined with ENVE’s integrated bar and stem it makes for a cohesive look.
The Moots Womble is a hardtail with a 140mm fork, making it a versatile singletrack ripper.
The welding on the Womble is just what we’ve come to expect from the Steamboat Springs-based builder.
Dropouts can be an odd place to make a signature. Moots’ dropouts are minimal and make for easy coping and welding.
Not many companies can claim to have been making mountain bikes for virtually as long as they’ve been around. Even fewer have been doing it in titanium.
Mosaic showed off this amazing gravel bike. Their paint is so eye-catching that it’s easy to miss just how good the construction is.
The bike’s use of color is stylish and, well, un-ignorable.
Minimal but broad dropouts eliminate the need to crimp the seatstays and chainstays. The welds are immaculate.
The fade from green to gold to orange is utterly original and the metal flake in the logo doesn’t so much grab the eye as command it.

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