Greetings from Finland.

Nov 4, 2020
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Hello people. I was referred to this forum by a friend who's also into old bikes and I thought to check it out... What a treasure trove. :D I love the stuff you guys do!

I'm from Finland, 36 years old, loved bicycles since the day I took my first ride and on the road since. I've been riding on and off, with a long quiet period in my twenties but got back into it bit less than ten years ago. I have always had a love for somehow modified bikes and specially the oldies. I made my first rat bike when I was in my teens, it was simple, 80's Finnish made Helkama Kulkuri just stripped off all the "unnecessary" stuff and that was it. And count in making weird saddles of the carriers and so on.

When I really got into this stuff was around 2012 when I got some random old "granny bike" from my uncle. Painted it black & yellow, took all kinds of stuff off of it and so on and then it just hit me, I must make more. And soon I was building my first custom bicycle. Although I do not modify the frames, I don't have the tools for it and the old Finnish/Scandinavian bikes are cheap and easy to find so I just went on from that. Then I started adding Chopper/Cruiser style stuff on the classic Nordic style bicycles, I'm on my fourth or fifth bike at the moment, making up a frankenbike from 1960's Norwegian Öglaend Strada. Fat tires, banana saddle, big cruiser handlebar and so on. I have seen all kinds of stuff being made, custom bicycles are not very popular around here and I have never seen anyone else combine 28" Nordic classics with American Cruiser/Chopper stuff. Now someone might ask, why I don't do 26" stuff and the answer is simple, those are rare here and/or expensive. larger classic frames on the other hand are all over the place and its easy to get them for free or insanely cheap unless they're some nicely renovated ones or very old. The prices bounce up from about 1940's backwards and go skyhigh for anything over hundred years old. So far I have had four Öglaend frames as those I can get my hands on any time. All of them ladies models, for some reason old men's bikes are hard to find. The 60's to 70's Öglaend frames are fantasticly made, very sturdy and lighter than typical old European frames, the only issue is the weird 19mm seat posts. Also some Nordic bicycles have weird standards for stems, one oddity being 21mm one instead of the usual 22,2mm.

I'm starting to ramble already, more of this stuff elsewhere. Its nice to be here, I'm in awe of the mind blowing bikes you guys make! Most are way prettier and more customized than what I do. :D
 
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Its been quite a welcome here so far... As I expected, foreign community is nicer than our own. Finns are often so stuck up with their own ideas or too envious. xD
 
Nov 4, 2020
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Welcome Finnrat. Sounds like you are much more accomplished than I. Glad you are here. Be Well, SS.
I guess it all boils down to practice. :) I've been into this for a good while and still I feel like a newbie when I look at all the magnificent velocipeds around here and elsewhere. Trying to improve each time, the only way is uphill. :D
 
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Nov 24, 2019
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Welcome aboard from the other side of the Atlantic! Sounds like you've already been bit by the bug that is customizing bikes! You're bound to have a ton of fun here! Be sure to share some photos of your bikes while you're here; we all love seeing what everyone's working on!
 
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