Alternative materials are trending these days, with bikes being made out of wood, bamboo, and even cardboard. Ruphus is hitting the scene with both alternative materials bikes and accessories. They started out with a few bamboo prototypes, but went in a direction that ended up in failure. That’s ok though, because they learned from their efforts and have moved on to working with plywood. In fact, it’s Canadian Maple, and it’s the same stuff you find in skateboard decks. The bike shown has a two speed coaster brake setup, and the design was inspired by cafe racer motorcycles. This tank just happens to hold booze rather than gas. Admittedly , Ruphus knows they have some work to do still with the layup, as the bike is still a bit to flexy for mass consumption. However, they are hard at work perfecting the model and hope to release a version for sale soon.
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While the bike may not be ready for prime time just yet, Ruphus does have a couple of cycling accessories that are primed and ready to go. The Slim is a fender that pulls double duty. It is designed to hold your U-Lock securely as well. It works specifically with the Kryptonite Keeper 12 LS, but I have a feeling a few others might fit as well. As far as being a functioning fender, well, it may not be the best choice. However, it can hold a sixer of beer along with that U-Lock and it looks good while doing it. It can be had in bamboo, walnut, or maple for $95.
Ruphus also makes a rack / fender combo dubbed the Bowie. It’s meant for light duty, so don’t plan on mounting any panniers. But a trunk bag, or grocery bag will fit on the top. The Bowie is available in maple or walnut, and has a black formica bottom (with a leather option coming soon). Cost is set at $95.
New builder Jason Gayton has made the move from mechanical engineer to full time frame builder. He took classes at UBI and fell in love with the craft, so he decided to make a go of it. At the show he was displaying the two types of construction he does in his shop. First, he had a pretty red lugged light touring / rando bike. This isn’t an over the top show bike by any means, but it is a good clean example of a lugged road frame. Also on hand was a deep green fillet brazed road racer. The joints all looked super smooth, and with the high end parts kit, the bike weighs in at about 16.5lbs we are told.