My journey to frame building traces back my education in art, design and fabrication at Cooper Union. Commuting to school, I fell in love with bikes, and continued to branch out into various ways to engage the world on a bike. After I graduated and began working in the field of architecture, I realized that spending all day in an office meant that I couldn’t access my passion for fabrication, so in 2015, I moved to Portland, OR to learn the traditional method of bicycle construction called fillet brazing. With a torch in one hand, and a bronze rod in the other, I was mesmerized by the alchemy that happens when these elements come together. It’s a magical experience to melt dabs of bronze around each joint, creating a triangulated piece of steel soon to become a functional bike.
After working for a few years at Breadwinner Cycles, and with many mentors who patiently answered questions and shared words of wisdom, I was then ready to embark down a path that honors what I learned while adding my own special touch. To create the elusive “modern-masterpiece”—a goal which can so easily end in a contrived and busy assemblage of metal—is by no means an easy journey, but with practice, my vision has produced bicycles that I believe are elegant, eye-catching, and (I hope) transcendent in their ability to take their riders places they have yet to explore as well as make known routes feel new again.
Jacqueline Mautner – builder, UNTITLED Cycles