I had my childhood in the 1970s and my teens, together with the start of my bike mechanic career, in the 1980s; so it’s no surprise that I developed a passion for the bikes of that era.
I worked as a mechanic in Newcastle upon Tyne in the north east of England and experienced the widest range of bikes, from the huge amount of student bikes repaired on a shoestring, to professional road bikes built to top specifications and using the latest technologies.
The shop was called Denton Cycles. I learned my trade in this shop and still try to keep the DENTON name alive through restorations.
Steel frames were the main stay business, Reynolds 531 & 753 frame sets from the local suppliers such as Dave Yates and Joe Waugh, to vintage Mercians, Flying Scots and Hetchins, together with the finest steel and bonded frames from builders such as Colnago, Vitus & TVT. Every discipline was catered for… Road, Time trial, Track, Cyclo cross and even Tandems! Mountain Bikes were even in there too, 3 of the bikes I built being ridden by the National champion in 3 World downhill championships.
Although there were lots of exotic new frames and materials coming through in the nineties, the steel frames of the 70’s, 80’s & 90’s remained my firm favourite. And that is how my passion for the Specialist Bicycle Development Unit (SBDU) started.