Despite its Scandinavian name, Sven Cycles is a thoroughly English concern based in the Dorset town of Weymouth, where bicycle engineer Darron Coppin crafts entirely bespoke two-wheelers.
Hand-building the made-to-measure frames using top-quality, double-butted Reynolds tubing, Coppin works around designs inspired by the return to popularity of classically styled bikes (from £3,000, prices vary according to individual requirements). Be it a traditional, sit-up-and-beg roadster, a drop-handlebar racer, a cross-town commuter or even a practical delivery bike, Sven Cycles can make it – as demonstrated by the so-called Forager Bike recently built for chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.
A modern take on an old-style “tradesman’s” machine, the Forager features a front-mounted carrier fitted with a capacious wicker hamper containing a full camp kitchen. There’s also a demountable rear basket and a bespoke, three-piece luggage set in practical, hard-wearing canvas, while the bike benefits from some high-tech touches such as a specially designed “loop” front wheel to smooth the ride over rough terrain and a nifty, dynamo-powered USB charging socket.
These specially made additions are another key aspect of the Sven Cycles bespoke service, taking in not only the ultra-modern but also well-loved vintage parts such as saddles, handlebars and lighting systems. Clients can either bring their own components or flick through old cycling publications at Coppin’s offices in search of inspiration, while for those who can’t manage a face-to-face meeting he will happily discuss requests and requirements via Skype.
The company also offers nine “semi-custom” cycles that are built to order and can be personalised using an online configurator covering paint colours, tyre types, saddle and mudguard options, as well as “braze-on” extras such as racks and bottle holders. Semi-custom machines start at £1,700 for the Roadster eight-speed model and rise to £4,000 for the Pathfinder 22-speed.