As part of our exploration of other British Manufacturers we caught up with Darron Sven Coppin, founder and chief bike builder of Sven bikes, a bespoke British bike building company established in 2012. His dad, a jeweler and vintage car enthusiast, taught him how to braze when he was a teenager and he has been in love with bike building ever since. His latest bespoke bike, which was rolled out of the workshop last week, is now touring around the Alps. Oh, to be a bike!
1. Why did you start up Sven Cycles?
I have been obsessed with bikes and making things from a very young age and the time just felt right
2. How would you describe your bike building style?
Classically inspired with modern functionality.
3. So many bike companies get their bikes made in the far east now, what do you think is so special about a British built bike?
For us it’s having the control over our bikes and being small enough to give every customer what they need. Everything is done in house in our workshop in Dorset - from frame building, wheel building and paint and final assembly.
4. What do you love most about working with bikes?
It's a fantastic feeling taking someone’s ideas and a box of tunes and parts and making a bike that could be around for the next 100 years or so.
5. We heard a rumour that you are working on a collaboration project with River Cottage. Can you tell us about it? And have you been given a free meal yet?
We are building a bike for the River Cottage and I have had a bite to eat with Hugh and Gill – who are both very nice people. I’m just trying to get the bike right at the moment - there are lots of accessories.
6. What else is in the pipeline for 2015?
We have a very exciting promotion with a major Lager manufacture coming up for August and September. I can’t say any more than that but you will be able to win some of our bikes as part of it as well as another very interesting collaboration later this year.
7. What's your favourite Hill & Ellis bag?
The Jasper is my favourite bag - I love the classic style with the Orange and Black. See the bag here.
8. What’s your current favourite bike route - including the obligatory pub or coffee shop stop on the way?
Dorset has some great rides but one of my favourites is the costal path round Portland with a stop of at The Cove pub on Chisel beach for a cold beer and watch the sun go down.
For more information on Sven cycles have a look at their website http://www.svencycles.com/