User Tag List

Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Shop Dog Cycles

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Shop Dog Cycles

    My name is Michael Gordon, and I am the creator of Shop Dog Cycles.

    First and foremost, a big thank you to Richard and Josh for my spot here in Smoked Out, and the community they've created with Velocipede Salon.

    I’m a steel guy. My love of steel developed as a kid, fascinated by my best friend’s father’s Ron Cooper and Colnago, both of which lovingly hung on a rack in their family room, inside their house…The proper place for any family member. They were not just bicycles. With their lug work and craftsmanship, they were works of art.

    As fate would have it, my first real road bike would also be a Ron Cooper, one which came into the shop I was working at to be sold on consignment. As quickly as the manager hung it on the wall, I pulled it down. I’ve ridden carbon, aluminum, and titanium too, but steel offers a ride quality all its own.

    Frame building has been a passion now for about 10 years, longer if you add up the years I spent just studying the process prior to even striking up a torch. Much of my early bicycle obsession was spent focused on fit, frame design and the fundamentals of steel frame fabrication (i.e. practice). It was slow going at first, but really took off after reading Richard’s “Downsize the Fantasy.” My lag in “just doing it” was overcome as I gave up on the idea of fancy jigs and fixtures. Creativity took over, and I developed my process for building lugged frames, free from expensive jigs. This taught me patience and process, and better prepared me for use of the tooling I now use. As the saying goes, learn to walk before you run.

    My formal education in fabrication comes from a degree in Manufacturing Engineering Technology with focused lab work in CAD, Machining, Welding and Material Sciences. I took on this degree for fun, with my main focus a degree in marketing. It wasn’t until years later that I understood my priorities were flipped. After school I did a short stint in Southern California working for Bill McCready of Santana Cycles. It was an interesting summer, but California was just not the right fit for me and back to Chicago I moved.

    Today in cycling I continue to ride and race; mountain, mountain tandem, fat bike, triathlon and cyclo-cross. Track starts up next season. With a velodrome just a few miles from my house, it would be wrong for me not to partake. I’m not the fastest guy out there, but I have the passion to pin on a number and line up at the start gate. I did get to taste the podium once so far, as my son and I took a 3rd place in the Men’s Tandem category at the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival (yes, there were more than 3 men’s tandems in that race).

    Shop Dog cycles is the name on my frames. As I continue my frame building journey, my mission is to help increase the awareness, interest and appreciation in hand-built bicycles in Chicago, once the bicycle building capital of the United States.
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    DC
    Posts
    23,695
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    6 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    I've been waiting for this brother. I'll hold my questions until some others get a chance.
    How about some pictures????

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    Josh,

    Thanks for warm welcome!

    In Chicago, the Chicago Cross Cup is in full swing.
    IMG_1616.jpg
    IMG_1677.jpg

    More pics will come later. Up next will be a track bike assembly as soon as the frame comes back from paint. Following that will be a gravel bike of which I will chronicle the frame build here.
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    Up next, a gravel ride... Pego Richie tubing, Richie Issimo lugs, Paragon flat mount dropouts and thru axles.

    Elijah C.Gravel.Geometry.093018.jpg

    E Church.Gravel.093018.jpg
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Bakersfield
    Posts
    27
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Gordon View Post
    Up next, a gravel ride... Pego Richie tubing, Richie Issimo lugs, Paragon flat mount dropouts and thru axles.

    Elijah C.Gravel.Geometry.093018.jpg

    E Church.Gravel.093018.jpg
    Good stuff Michael! Looking forward to your gravel build.
    Brandon Poser
    BAHL Cycle Works

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    When I'm not making bicycles, I'm making candy. That is most of the time, as for now it is the gig that pays the bills.

    Here's a fun one you can all try at home, and you probably have most of the ingredients already.

    English Toffee, or as they say out east... Butter Crunch, not to be confused with what the British call English Toffee, which is far different. Enjoy!

    1 Cup (1/2 lb.) Unsalted Butter
    1 Cup Sugar
    1/4 Cup Water
    1/2 Teaspoon Salt

    Chocolate (Milk, Dark or White, Your Choice)
    Nuts (Optional)
    1.JPG

    Add all of the ingredients to your pot over a low to medium low flame to melt all of the butter. Use a pot that is 3x higher than your ingredients, because it will bubble up! On your granite counter or a cookie sheet, lay out aluminum foil and lightly butter it.
    2.JPG

    Once melted, kick the heat up to high.
    3.JPG

    As the candy mass cooks, the sugar will caramelize and brown.
    4.JPG

    Keep cooking until you reach around 265 to 280F, then lower the flame to medium high. The last stretch from here to 300F will go too fast if you just keep the flame on high. You'll over shoot 300F and burn.
    5.JPG

    Remove the pot once you reach 300-305F (max). Gently stir until the mass has settled and it is not so full of air, then pour along your buttered foil in a thin even layer. Do not work it with a spoon to spread it, or you risk breaking the emulsion.
    6.JPG

    As the mass cools, you will eventually be able to score it with a knife or spatula. Too hot and it will just flow back together. Too cold and it will shatter as you try to score it.
    7.JPG
    8.JPG

    Melt your milk chocolate, and temper it (read up on this one, or perhaps one of these I'll write about that process).
    9.JPG

    Coat your toffee with chocolate using an offset spatula, toss it with the nuts of your choice (or none if you are allergic), and place in the fridge to set up.
    10.JPG
    11.JPG
    12.JPG

    Enjoy! I like to keep my in the freezer where it will last for a long time and have great crunch.
    IMG_3172.JPG
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    If the work looks good without paint, then it will look good with paint.

    It's a simple standard to hold to.

    IMG_3283.JPG
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    While the road season is winding down in the Chicago area, Cross is in full swing, and Fat Bike season is quickly approaching.

    Having all 4 seasons is one of the benefits of living in the Midwest. There is a very clear rationale to support the N+1 formula when it need be explained to my better half.

    A couple of weeks ago on what was probably my last road ride for the year, I hooked up with a group ride out of Velosmith Bicycle Studio in Wilmette, rolling out in collaboration with the Chicago Rapha club house. This ride had the greatest number of swanky custom bikes I’ve ever seen outside of NAHBS, most either Carbon or Ti.

    As we rolled out, some guy behind commented on my wheels… “Whoa! Are those Mavic Reflexes?”

    Yes, and guess what, they are still true!

    Riding 2 x 2, I took pull number four alongside a guy riding a Winter, the only other steel bike I had eyed in the group of about 40, most of whom probably never took their turn at the front.

    Steel! The most utilized material for building bicycles!

    IMG_3350.jpg
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    This sexy little piece is my favorite little braze-on of all. There is just something about it's complex curves, angles, chamfers, and that ingenious little pin that locates it spot on every time. There is a bit of sadness with each track and cross frame I build which don't get privilege of this little jewel. Thank you RS!

    IMG_3449.jpg

    IMG_3450.jpg
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    176
    Post Thanks / Like
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default Re: Shop Dog Cycles

    Cycling is strong in Chicago, but the hand built bike scene is not nearly as robust as it is on the coasts.

    Chicago has a rich history as a hub of our nations bicycle building industry, and it is time to build it up again.

    Chicago.1.jpg
    Chicago.2.jpg
    Michael Gordon
    Shop Dog Cycles
    www.shopdogcycles.com
    Highland Park, IL

Similar Threads

  1. Shop Dog Cycles - Road Build Chronical
    By Michael Gordon in forum The Path
    Replies: 58
    Last Post: 10-10-2017, 11:38 PM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-10-2017, 09:10 PM
  3. Replies: 28
    Last Post: 02-28-2012, 08:13 PM
  4. Shop Air
    By PCW in forum The Path
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-03-2010, 06:22 PM
  5. Ages 12 and up / Shop Smart, Shop S-Mart!
    By 54ny77 in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-18-2009, 08:22 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •