Baller’s Bicycles – Chris Bishop’s Road Bike Wins the Weekend

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

Sitting outside the lodging, Chris Bishop’s lugged road bike attracted the other builders and participants like moths to a flame. The lug work, details and paint all begged for attention, and even Zukas admitted being inspired by Chris’s work.

Roll through to see what made his baller bike the star of the show…

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

The silver clamp between the headset nuts is for a custom rack. Lower mounts are on the fork, sometimes hidden on the insides of the fork legs. Headbadges are made by a company that makes electronics control panels. Once they’re machined, Chris paints them then burnishes off the top layer to get the shiny over black.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

One of Chris’s trademark touches are the tapered lug ends. Note how the part of the lug that extends onto the tubes gets flatter? It’s a small thing, but it makes a huge visual difference across the entire bike, smoothing the whole thing out.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

This one shows the tapered, flattened lugs very well. The smooth finishing on the cable ports takes it all to the next level.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

The polished finish around the port was a happy accident. His painter did one by mistake and started explaining it away until Chris said he liked it. Besides being pretty, it keeps the paint from chipping during cable installation and service calls.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

Perhaps the most trick feature of the frame is also the hardest to do. The seatpost binder bolt is incorporated into the drive side seatstay and threads directly into the other stay. To do that, he inserts a steel rode into the non-drive stay, then drills and taps it so the bolt will thread into a solid base. The hard part? It’s the final step on the frame, so a mistake there means the entire frame might need a do over. He said he was really sweating the first five or six he did but has gotten pretty good at it since.

The seatpost and stem were “decorated” by Drillium Revival. While they look deeper, the machined ridges were less than a millimeter deep and (Chris says) won’t affect strength or durability on these particular components.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

Details, details, details…

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

Cut outs on the BB lug add visual interest as well as save a bit of weight and provide a drain hole.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

The extra drilling and machining even extended to the front derailleur’s braze-on mount. Note the polished mounting surface here, too.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

Tooled axles front and rear do more than provide security – they provide a subtle continuation of the overall clean appearance.

ballers ride chris bishop personal lugged road bike

He does about 15-20 frames per year with about a 16 month wait list. On top of being a great builder, Chris is a fun guy to hang out and ride with. Check him out at

That’s our collection of the builders’ bikes from the 2014 Baller’s Ride weekend. Here’s the others:

What did I ride? Well, a stock bike just wouldn’t be at home at Ballers. And virtually everyone else present was riding something custom (Gaulzetti, Crumpton and other such rides were spotted). So, I reached out to Denver’s Alchemy Bicycles for a test ride on their prototype Aithon gravel bike. Stay tuned for a short review later this week…it is simply amazing.


K11 - 06/01/14 - 12:09pm

that cable stop in the last picture, very nice.

nsp234 - 06/01/14 - 4:24pm

I really enjoyed these five ballers articles a lot!
Thanks for the interesting, inspiring read.
This is the stuff that keeps bikerumor stand out of the masses of other bike sites!

Pacific - 06/01/14 - 5:06pm

True that.

charlied - 06/01/14 - 11:51pm

I know who RS is, what he stands for and think his bikes are killer and would love to own one. I own a GD GranFondo bike and love it…

Like Richie I get to do whatever the F I want.

Ride a bike.

WesternRapid - 06/02/14 - 1:39am

Anybody know what those tyres are? Look pretty fat, but still manage the clearance beneath those regular calipers…

ceebee - 06/02/14 - 4:58am

nice lugs and color scheme. cable stop on the down tube seems to extend a bit too far. else its all pretty sweet.

Chris - 06/02/14 - 10:22am


Grand Bois Cerf. I use the 26mm on my bikes. Love them.

pmurf - 06/02/14 - 10:52am

I’m guessing he lofted the DT cable stops because he likes to cross cables before the BB. I do the same, but my cables rub the DT because the stops aren’t offset enough. If I went custom I’d get my stops extended. May also be easier to tweak barrels mid-ride.

Andreas - 06/02/14 - 12:23pm

Looks like Grand Bois Cerf 28 mm.

Andreas - 06/02/14 - 12:41pm

Looks like Grand Bois Cerf. The green ones are 28 mm and the blue 26 mm. Amazing tyres!

Bill - 06/02/14 - 12:58pm

Tires look like they may be Grand Bois (Cypres or Cerfs). Or the new Compass tires…

Devin - 06/02/14 - 1:24pm

More clearance on a standard caliper isn’t tough, it just takes some forethought and a tiny bit of fabrication. Placing the brake mount hole slightly higher than usual, then using two beveled spacers (made from carbon, natch) so you can angle the bolt more aggressively than stock washers allow and a longer Ti bolt to get the brake shoe lower gets you heaps of clearance. I need to get a better shot of it, but I did that to this bike and I could fit 30mm tires and still have a little room to spare:

Unfortunately, it’s not the kind of thing you can do once the bike is built.

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