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Custom Bicycles: A Passionate Pursuit Hardcover – May 15, 2009
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About the Author
Based in Melbourne, Australia, Christine Elliott and David Jablonka share a love of cycling that has taken them on cycling trips through Italy, Greece, and the USA, believing that cycling is a wonderful way to experience the sights, sounds, and aromas of another country. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
There are plenty of "coffee table" type books exploring other crafts -- hand made furniture, pottery, custom motorcycles, etc. -- but as far as I know this is the only widely available recent book showing the current state of the art of custom bike building. Many of these bikes appear to date from early 2008 (several of them were on display at the North American Handbuilt Bicycle Show in Portland in February 2008, and were made about then). And most of the builders are "open for business:" except for two or three who have exceptionally long waiting lists, I think you could contact practically anyone in the book and get your own custom bike in a matter of weeks or months (more likely months than weeks).
A few quibbles - since the photos were collected from a variety of photographers from various sources in Europe, North America and Australia, the photos and layout lack a consistency or point of view about how to show a bike (as opposed to Jan Heine's book, "The Golden Age of Handbuilt Bicycles," which is about historic custom bikes, and which used a single photographer shooting bikes with a consistent, clean white background). As a result, while all the photos are good, in some cases the photos are not as useful as they could be (for example, there are way too many shots of Calfee's novelty bikes and not enough of his standard bamboo or carbon fiber bikes).
Anyway, that is just a quibble. It's a great book for any serious cyclist or anyone who enjoys fine craftsmanship.
I -- and many of the probable (or intended) purchasers of this book could write a far better one.
Further deconstruction and/or constructive criticism is pointless without a solid basis, and this book doesn't provide one.
I don't know who the book is supposed to appeal to. Other reviewers have offered frankly puzzling comments; there is not sufficiently detailed or ample information presented to make this book a "guide" to anything beyond where to put a mug on a coffee table.