Boulder Bicycle

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Boulder Bicycle & Rene Herse Frames Modern and Rando Parts Soma Grand Randonneur Frame News, Links, and Articles

Vintage Specialties

On-line store Boulder Bicycle Blog


All Road and Brevet models now include a boss for our optional battery tailight (not available on smallest size frames) Our snazzy skinny tube lug set with a heatube extension (the extension is a no-charge option on lugged frames)  The black with white decals is a fun paint option! A 700c Brevet model with hand painted lettering.  This example uses oversize tubing


Lots of Info to digest - for help, call or email to communicate with a real person!


  The Boulder Bicycle Frame Line-Up

prices include frame and fork in single color with framesaver


Both the All Road 650b and the Brevet 700c models are true low-trail designs designed to be used with a handlebar bag sized front load.  There is provision for easy routing of lighting, and both models (except in the smallest sizes) have a stud to mount our proprietary seatube mount battery tailight.   Both models have ample clearance for fenders (see our warnings about fender use) and also have a pump peg, 3 sets of waterbottle braze ons, seatstay chainholder peg, and a mount on the left seatay for an additional battery light.

All Road 650b

A great choice for added comfort or if you do some off-road riding.  650b extraordinarily comfortable yet amazingly fast.  Designed for a front load, lighting, and fenders.  Comes in two versions - regular light oversize or superlight skinny (except large sizes).  Clearance for 42mm tires with Berthoud or Honjo 50mm fenders.

TIG Stock $1,435

TIG Custom $1,685

Lug Oversize (incl. custom design) $1,995

Lug Skinny* (incl. custom design) $ 2,265

Brevet 700c

If you want a perkier feel that is very close in performance to a true racing bicycle, yet can still do some light off road on fire roads.  Designed for a front load, lighting, and fenders.  Comes in two versions - regular light oversize or superlight skinny (except large sizes).  Clearance for 30mm tires such as the Grand Bois Cypres.

TIG Stock $1,435

TIG Custom $1,685

Lug Oversize (incl. custom design) $1,995

Lug Skinny* (incl. custom design) $ 2,265

Road Sport 700c

You want a bicycle that is great for shorter "training" rides and perfect for century rides.  This model only very light tubing for a lively fast feel with no fenders, no front load, and no lighting.  Like a classic race bike but more comfort and stability.  This frame is only supplied with the superlight skinny tubing.  Clearance for 30mm tires such as the Grand Bois Cypres.

TIG Stock $1,295

TIG Custom $1,535

Lug Skinny* (incl. custom design) $2,095

More Details

* All skinny tube lug frames feature a special lugset with decorative holes and other treatment.  The skinny tube lug option also includes sidetack seatstay attachment which is very spiffy looking on the seatlug we use.

Stock Paint Choices - no extra cost

Light blue with dark blue decals

Medium metalic blue with cream decals

Black with white decals

Garnet red with cream decals

Yellow with dark blue decals

Popular Add-Ons

Threaded Steerer  $75

Contrasting headtube paint panel  $125

Handpainted lettering   $200

Box striping in the French style $200

TIG or Lug?

We love lugged frames, but all the love in the world doesn't enable them to actually ride better or faster.  So the reality is that a $1,435 Tig Boulder Bicycle frame will perform just as well on the road as one of our $6,000 Rene Herse frames.



Remember - the use of fenders carries safety risks!  Debris can cause a front wheel lockup which can result in a terrible accident!  Click Here to go to our fender page to learn more.



Why is Boulder Bicycle Special?

A Boulder Bicycle frame represents the latest step in a journey to build frames that perform without compromise.  The designs of our randonneur frames are obtained through careful study of classic Rene Herse geometries and those of other French makers.  Some of the "classic" designs work better than others, and we obviously select those from the best-performing historic examples.

Over the past 10 years the French randonneur bicycle saw a rebirth in the United States.  Mike Kone, lead designer at Boulder Bicycle, was one of the early proponents of French randonneur machines.  In fact, some of the most notable writers and modern proponents for this style of bicycle saw their first Rene Herse bicycles in Massachusetts when Mike Kone owned Bicycle Classics inc.

Classic geometries are juxtaposed with modern materials to create the current line of Boulder Bicycles.  Waterford Precision Cycles does the actual frame construction.  Waterford was somewhat reluctant to embrace the low trial and light tube specifications used on Boulder Bicycles, but they have come to appreciate the performance of these machines.  In addition, Waterford brings expertise to the Boulder Bicycle line which is unique to the industry.  Waterford has arguably built more custom and semi-custom high-end steel frames than perhaps any builder in the county.  Their understanding of materials combined with their access to proprietary materials is an invaluable asset.  They are unyielding in their quest for reliability.

There are many builders constructing randonneur style bicycles.  But our extensive experience yields advantages.  We know what geometries are most likely to perform well.  We know when we are pushing the envelope with extra light tubing.  And as students of bicycle history with many examples we've personally ridden, we know what is most likely to work well for a rider.

Many of our Boulder Bicycle customers think of their purchase as a stepping stone to a Rene Herse.  They are welcome to think that.  But in reality, there is no performance gain in going to a more costly frame.  If there was a better tube or a better geometry for performance, we would use it on the Boulder Bicycle.  But there isn't.  A Rene Herse frame (or a frame from some other wonderful builders such as Peter Weigle) may offer cleaner wiring integration or more elegant lug shaping or fancier racks.  But when it is you and the bicycle and the mountain, your Boulder Bicycle will deliver the same ride and performance as a frame costing many times more.  So please take advantage of our experience and eye for value, and let us supply you with the bicycle that will provide the ride of your dreams.     



Skinny Extra Light Tubing

As of September 2013, stock small and middle size Tig Frames are now available with skinny extra light tubing without an upcharge!  About 35%  of frames we currently build are with these tubes (1" .7/.4/.7 top tube and 1 1/8" .8/.5/.8 downtube).  These tubes are NOT for everyone, But we can discuss and help you choose if they are right for you.



The Wait Time

For both tig and lugged Boulder Bicycle frames wait times are getting longer - but compared to other builders the wait times are still very reasonable.  As of November 2013, the wait times for your new Boulder Bicycle from the time we finalize your order with Waterford is approximately 10-12 weeks for tig frames and 20 weeks for lug frames.  These wait times are our best estimates at this time.



A deposit of $1,000 gets the process rolling.  You can make your deposit online or call the shop.



Sizing your bike and fit Mock-ups

It is vital that your new frame fits.  And we take lots of time with our customers to help them, and we have size info on these pages that will help guide you.  But we are not fitting experts nor can we fit you easily from a distance.  We are happy to provide mock ups of a stock geometry frame with your saddle height/reach/drop info (or provide custom drawings once you commit to a custom frame).  But this is very important - you must provide us with saddle height, reach, drop, (and the seat angle for the frame for which these numbers "work" for you) that you need your new frame to be able to achieve.  You can even give us a range.  But we can not "guess" for you what the optimal numbers may be or make accurate judgements if you say I have a race bike but I want to be more upright.  We urge you to test out the contact points you want for your new bike on your current bike (i.e if you want a more upright position, try that on your current bike to see if it works). 


Shop Support

Rando style bikes can be very time consuming to assemble - we are happy to provide email and phone support once you purchase a frame/fork and hopefully some parts from us so you can get it on the road.  We are also happy to chat with a local shop you may use for some of your assembly if questions arise.


Full bikes

In addition to frames, we sometimes sell complete bicycles, but we only schedule in a few as rando builds are very time consuming and we have limited shop resources.  As of early 2014, we are significantly over-booked and we are not commiting to any partial or complete builds at this time.  Many of our customers purchase a frame/fork and perhaps some special rando parts from us, and either assemble it themselves or patronize their local bicycle shop for the build.  This is an ideal choice for the customer that wants the frame and specialized parts that are unique to us, yet needs the support and assistance of their local shop.  We are also working on more technical info that we will post to this website that will provide buyers and other shops with the info they need to build up one of our bicycles (well not all the info, we can't post everything but we will get the main points covered soon we hope).


Click Here

to see more photos of our fun new Boulder Bicycle lugged frame with hand painted lettering and stripping

Click Here

to see more info on our new Road Sport model with ultra light tubing!

Geometry for All Road 650b and Brevet 700c Frames

Size and wheel/tire size Top tube length - theoretical due to sloping top tube Seatube length - Actual to top, but less than theoretical due to slope for most sizes models to enhance standover clearance Seatube Angle Headtube Angle
Size A - optimized for 650b 32mm 51.5 cm 47 cm 75 degrees 71.5 degrees
Size B - 650b or 700c 53 cm 52 cm 74.5 degrees 72 degrees 650b, 71.5 degrees 700c
Size C - 650b or 700c 54.5 cm 54.5 cm 74 degrees 72 degrees 700c, 72.5 degrees 650b
Size D - 650b or 700c 56 cm 56.5 cm 73.5 degrees 72.5 degrees
Size E - 650b or 700c 57.5 cm 59 cm 73 degrees 73 degrees
Size F - 650b or 700c 59 cm 62cm 72.5 degrees 73 degrees
Size G - 650b or 700c 61 cm 66cm 72.5 degrees 73 degrees


To Order

To order, we require a $1000 deposit

Sizing Information

Click Here for a PDF illustrating these measurements

When we size a bicycle for someone, we like to get three pieces of information.  This information is easiest if supplied in metric - plus the charts below can help also!

1)   Saddle height.  On a bicycle that fits well, get the measurement from center of crank to top of saddle.

2)   Reach.  This is simple but the hardest to explain.  Look at the bike from the side. Now consider the line going through the center axis of the seatube, then it extends through the center of the seatpost, and then continues until it "pierces" the top of the saddle.  From the point where the top of the saddle is "pierced" by this imaginary line to the top center of the handlebars is the Reach.

3)   Saddle to bar drop.  Also known as the difference in height between the bars and the saddle.  It is easiest to measure by taking the measurement from ground to top of saddle, then ground to top of bars, then subtract the difference.  Then be sure to make a note which of these is higher. Usually the bars are lower than the saddle, but that is not always the case, especially on rando oriented machines.

Now, if your reference bike doesn't fit well, or if the seatangle of your bike is not "typical", or if you are using a post with extra setback (or no setback), please let us know.  But as a rough guide, these numbers work really well for dialing in the fit on the vast majority of riders who are comfortable and set up well on their current bikes.

Some Stock Frame Sizing mock-ups for 700c and 650b Rando Frames

(sizing is slightly different for the road sport model - sizing charts for this new model to follow soon)


Frame size Center of crank to top of saddle Stem length Headset Spacers Reach Saddle over Bars

(Saddle height minus bar height)

C-54.5 top tube 690mm 73 deg 10cm 35mm 653mm 22mm
C-54.5 top tube 690mm 84 deg 9cm 35mm 641mm 11mm
C-54.5 top tube 690mm 96 deg 8cm 40mm 626mm bar over saddle 3mm
C-54.5 top tube 705mm 96 deg 8cm 40mm 630mm 11mm
D-56 top tube 705mm 73 deg 10cm 39mm 667 16mm
D - 56 top tube 720mm 73 deg 10cm 35mm 672mm 34mm
D - 56 top tube 720mm 84 deg 9cm 35mm 662mm 21mm
D - 56 top tube 720mm 96 deg 8cm 47mm 645mm level
D-56 top tube 735mm 96 deg 8cm 45mm 649mm 16mm
E-57.5 top tube 735mm 73 deg 10cm 40mm 684mm 16mm
E-57.5 top tube 750mm 73 deg 10cm 36mm 690mm 34mm
E-57.5 top tube 750mm 84 deg 9cm 36mm 679mm 21mm
E-57.5 top tube 750mm 96 deg 9cm 43mm 673mm level
E-57.5 top tube 765mm 96 deg 9cm 42mm 678mm 16mm
F-59 top tube 765mm 73 deg 11cm 40mm 711mm 16mm
F-59 top tube 785mm 73 deg 11cm 41mm 717mm 34mm
F-59 top tube 785mm 84 deg 10cm 39mm 706mm 21mm
F-59 top tube 785mm 96 deg 10cm 44mm 700mm level
G-61 top tube 825mm 73 deg 11cm 41mm 737 34mm
G-61 top tube 825mm 84 deg 10cm 39mm 727 21mm
G-61 top tube 825mm 96 deg 10cm 44mm 720mm level