Santa Cruz builders at NAHBS 2016 in Sacramento

All of the usual suspects from Santa Cruz County will return with their selection of beautiful wares at the 2016 North American Handmade Bicycle Show beginning Friday, February 26, 2016 (tomorrow!) at the Sacramento Convention Center. I can’t get over John Caletti’s show bike, the CALETTI X KILLE, so let’s talk about that first.

caletti x kille

Caletti, who builds in a shop on the west side of Santa Cruz, is known for clean, crisp designs and understated paint schemes on his road and cyclocross bikes, so I’m excited to see this standout collaboration with local artist Jeremiah Kille. I love that the triangle motif on the frame is reflected on the stem and bartape. Kille even painted shoes, helmet and a wrist rocket to match!

caletti cycles NAHBS show bicycle

Caletti writes of this project: “This collab project with artist, Jeremiah Kille goes to eleven. It is a hand painted steel Road Race Special with matching Giro Synthe MIPS Helmet and Empire shoes. Also in the mix is a match-match Caletti slingshot and custom Zelvin bar tape. We are especially thrilled with how this project evolved and catalyzed.”

Caletti will also introduce The Scrambler, a top shelf urban bike capable of turning a coffee run into an all day adventure. It’s hard to see in this low-res photo but the clear coat pearl over the orange and California Republic detailing make the Scrambler look so delicious. Two of these will be available for sale at NAHBS.

caletti scrambler urban townie bicycle

People fly in from all over the world to buy bikes from Calfee Design, nestled just north of Sunset State Beach in La Selva (Spanish for “The Jungle”). Craig Calfee is known for sometimes going way beyond the bounds of traditional bike design for his show bikes, and he continues to pioneer the use of new materials and techniques in frame construction. I think we’ll see his new rear suspension road bike at NAHBS, and Calfee promises more goodies as well.

Black Cat Bicycles is builder Todd Ingermanson’s brand. I didn’t have a chance to talk with him about his 2016 show bikes, but Ingermanson is known for design details that add personality, and he consistently delivers show bikes with unique paint jobs.

Josh Muir of Santa Cruz is Frances Cycles near downtown, and he’s about as Santa Cruz as you can get. He wears woolen hats and waxed canvas jackets, he has a full beard, he builds cargo bikes. Josh helped establish the Bike Church co-op to teach people in the community how to repair and build their own bikes. He organizes an annual on-bike scavenger hunt / race that sends participants all over the north part of Santa Cruz County. Velo Orange chose France Cycles to showcase their parts this year.

Rick Hunter fabricates steel bikes from his secret hideout in the hills above Davenport, California. Lately he’s been known for gorgeous gravel grinders, which sounds weird until you see his bikes in person.

hunter yellow gravel bike

Schnozola Cycles (a much talked about collab between Bruce Gordon and Paul Sadoff of Rock Lobster) will make an appearance at this show. I have no idea what to expect from them.

DirtySixer Bikes in Santa Cruz builds for tall people (6’4 to 7’7) using 36″ wheels. I featured this builder over here, and they promise to announce new designs at NAHBS.

Bay Area

A number of builders and other vendors from the San Francisco Bay Area will also appear at NAHBS beginning on Friday. These include:

Ride share to NAHBS?

I’m driving to and from Sacramento on Friday for the show. Ping me if you want a ride from either Santa Cruz or somewhere in the South Bay. I plan to leave Santa Cruz around 7 AM, and will leave the show right after it ends at 6 PM. No drinking, no smoking, and no room for bikes.


  1. Richard, do you know how to get our prepurchased tickets? I got nothing in the mail, just an email receipt. Will call?

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