BQ 63 (Spring 2018)


The Torino-Nice Rally straddles the crest of the Alps all the way from Northern Italy to the Mediterranean Sea. Thomas Hassler describes the landscapes and emotions of this incredible ride.

It was for this terrain that Jo Routens designed his bikes. We bring you the full story of this inspirational randonneur and builder, whose skill with the torch was matched by his riding prowess. Studio photos of three wonderful classics complement images from the Routens family archives.

With Lyli Herse we have lost one of the greats of French cycling. To celebrate her life, we take a very personal look at Lyli beyond her role as eight-time French champion and daughter of the ‘magician of Levallois.’ Discover the real Lyli through stories and anecdotes, many told in her own words.

Our passhunting adventure in the Japanese Alps was the perfect ride to figure out the strengths of our test bike, a beautiful titanium Caletti Monstercross. We didn’t just hunt passes in Japan, we also took the Caletti on some of our favorite rides in the Cascades, where we compared it to our Firefly. Both bikes are equipped with titanium frames, wide tires and drop handlebars, and yet they couldn’t be more different. Where does the Caletti’s high-trail geometry shine, and where does the Firefly’s low-trail setup prove advantageous? We took both bikes to the limit to find out.

Tubeless tires are useful to avoid pinch flats when riding in rough terrain. Our illustrated step-by-step guide shows you how to set up your tires tubeless with just a floor pump. A few tricks will go a long way toward making your first tubeless installation a success.

It was on the roads and trails of the Cascades that the idea of the ‘allroad’ bike was first conceived more than a decade ago. When we realized that wide tires could roll as fast as narrow ones, this liberated our riding. Find out how we developed supple and wide high-performance tires. Above is Peter Weigle shaving the tread off a prototype tire for our testing. This is the story behind the trend that is now sweeping the bike industry.

Also in Seattle, we take you inside Davidson & Kullaway, one of the oldest custom frame shops in the country. Bill Davidson reminisces about the days when the shop made 750 frames a year, and when he traveled to Japan to get the very best lugs, which made it possible to make bikes efficiently without cutting corners. He tells us why he prefers brass over silver brazing, and why it’s so hard to make the current generation of allroad bikes. Max Kullaway discusses the intricacies of welding frames.

It’s exciting to see a low-trail, wide-tire bike at an affordable price point. For $ 1420, the Masi Speciale Randonneur even comes with metal fenders. How does it ride on the road? We tested it to find out.

Mountain bikes have dropped a bit out of the limelight lately, but they still have their place. Natsuko Hirose talks about her first ride on a beautiful custom-made Steve Rex mountain bike, and how it feels different from riding the passhunters she uses to explore the Japanese Alps.

  • Lyli Herse 1928 - 2018
  • Torino - Nice Gravel Rally
  • My First Mountain Bike Ride
  • Factory Visit: Davidson & Kullaway
  • Skill: Look Where You Go
  • Icon: Wonder Light
  • Jo Routens
  • The Evolution of ‘Allroad’ Bikes
  • Bike Test: Caletti Monstercross
  • First Ride: MASI Speciale Randonneur
  • Berthoud Bar-End Mirror
  • Crankbrothers Eggbeater 11 Pedals
  • Mount a Tire Tubeless
  • News
  • Reader’s Forum
Availability: Out of stock