A Bike for Life: The British bits

Sadly I can’t buy only British made parts for my Bike for life, there are several items that nobody makes in Britain 🙁

At the moment I think that realistically I can achieve just over 50% of the total cost being items actually made in Britain. As some of the non-British items are very high value (like the Rohloff hub gear) I am reasonably pleased to achieve that.

The following are part of my Bike for Life and are all British made 🙂

The Frame.

See A Bike for Life: The Frame. Being made by Steven Shand at Shand Cycles in Scotland. The model I am buying is the Stoater Allroad.

Hope Technology

Hope are the next largest British supplier. I am buying several bits from them including:


Just for their cranks. Sadly their website is not up-to-date. However, they make an Middleburn RS8 X-Type crank for external Bottom Bracket bearings to the Hollowtech II standard and they produce a version specifically for Rohloff  which needs a 54mm chainline.

USE – Ultimate Sports Engineering

The Sumo XCR Carbon Seatpost.


I will be fitting Infiniti3D security with the initial goal to make sure the wheels & saddle can’t be stolen. The goal is to only need to carry a U-Lock. That will then fasten the frame to something secure and everything else will be secured to the frame already


I should not miss Brooks out as I will be using my B17 Select saddle. But I don’t need to buy a new one as their lifespan is perfectly suited to a Bike for Life 🙂

Not quite there

  • I like the look of Woodguards a lot, but in my view they need some form of edging strip to stop water running off sideways.
  • I could have gone for the new Exposure dynamo lights, but they don’t make their own dynamo and I decided to stick with the proven Edelux and B&M.

Not at all there

Sadly I could not find a British manufacturers for:

  • Wheel rims (Hope make hubs but don’t appear to make their own rims).
  • Spokes
  • Handlebar (unsurprising given that I want the Jones H-Bar)
  • Dynamo front hub
  • Belt drive
  • Hub gear with wide range and plenty of evenly spaced gears
  • Low rider racks
  • Porteur style front rack
  • Randonneur front rack
  • Rear rack
  • Grips (I am going for Ergon Biokork GP1)
  • Handlebar tape

The Series so far:

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  1. Hello Dave,

    I am a fairly new follower of your blog, but after two years of bike commuting in London I came to exactly the same conclusions about the belt, brakes, mudguards, saddles, luggage racks,… My trusty belt driven Trek District is still going, but it is approaching the point of needing major overhaul and I am using this as an excuse to look for an upgrade.

    At the moment I am leaning toward a Ti frame ( a belt driven rohloff Amazon, or a Backroad frame from Lynskey), but I wanted to say ” Thank You” for posting the results of your component search – it might just save me countless hours of research looking for the same things.

    One thing I have discovered so far in trying to estimate my build is just how quickly the price tag for a nice practical bike can grow…

    Good luck with your build. I will follow it from great interest hoping to repeat this feat in a few months.


    • Eugene,

      Yep the price for a great bike is quite scary until you work it out per mile. In the first year the purchase cost of my very “extravagant” bike will work out at about the same cost per mile as the basic running cost of a car. By the end of the 2nd year it will be about half the cost per mile of a car and that will keep dropping for the rest of my life (while the cost of a car will continue to rise). If you factor in the time and cost savings of not needing to use a gym, not having to pay for parking etc then it looks like a bargain.

      Of course economically if I buy as much as possible in the UK then I also benefit from other people being in work and paying taxes, needing less benefit – that saves me money.

      I look forward to hearing how you get on with your search.

      Let me know if there are any other areas of my work for a Bike for Life that you think it would be helpful/interesting to write about.

  2. A bike for life « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:02 am
  3. A Bike for Life: A suitable challenge? « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:02 am
  4. A Bike for life: Beyond the bike « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:02 am
  5. A Bike for Life: Tyres « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:03 am
  6. A Bike for Life: The Frame « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:03 am
  7. A Bike for Life: Carrying stuff « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:04 am
  8. A bike for life: Cascading decisions « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:04 am
  9. A Bike for life: Dependability « 42 Bikes - pingback on July 23, 2012 at 6:05 am

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