I have been a fan of Richard Sachs for some time now, and although I most likely will never possess one of his coveted bicycle frames, the almost metaphysical approach he takes when handcrafting them resonates soundly with me. They are built solely by him, with no assistance from anyone else, at a rate of 5 per month. He gave an interview in Bicycling Magazine recently, and what he said helped me better understand the impassioned artisan mindset that my wife, Laurie Ilene King, has every day that she steps into her shop. That imperfection is perfection.
“Making anything by hand is a collaboration. You have the materials. You have your tools. The commission. You have your own skill set, and work room, and mood. The goal is to lure everything into a finished state that meets the standard that you’ve set. On the best of days, you exceed the standard, and even consider that you’ve raised your own bar. On the average days, building to the standard is a gift unto itself. I am talking about when a tube has the slightest bow, or an interference fit is a tad tight or loose. But when you get close, if you get close, savor the moment. Because you start from zero the next day.
I understood that perfection was always going to be on the other side of that line that I was trying to get to, and that meant I was never going to get there – because when you really start to approach it, when you really get close, the line moves.” — Richard Sachs
By Trey King