From time to time I’ll take on an apprentice. I’ve had two actual apprentices over the years as well as a handful of employees that I trained to build in more of a production environment. My current apprentice is Erik Rolf and he’s doing an outstanding job. before Erik was Nic, Nic worked with me from about 2003 to 2006 roughly. Nic is very talented in many ways and it showed in his Framebuilding. He was doing (and I think, still will if you beg) beautiful lug and fillet work. He has a great aesthetic and his creativity really showed in very subtle details that only the most discerning eyes might catch.
Subtle sophistication is the sign of a mature builder. I’ve always preferred the quite confidence of builders like Sachs, Weigle, Kirk and Gordon to the over the top so called “arty” bikes you see so frequently these days. I think a lot of builders are trying way too hard.
At any rate, as it turned out, Nic was ready after about three years with me to go it on his own. he moved to Seattle and set up shop. Unfortunately we (the Framebuilding community) lost him to the professional world where he now works and an engineer. Luckily though, he is still involved in creative endeavors. Not only does he do a little Framebuilding on the side but he also plays music and does art. Below is some of his work. The two guys “Let there be Doom” he did as a going away present when he left. I’m the one on the right, him on the left. The other two are concert posters he’s done for a Seattle band. We have several other pieces as well. Loretta is currently in the process of framing them and they will be added to our art wall.