I’ve always loved craftsmanship. I studied General Art & Design after leaving school, and part of the course enabled me to try my hand at all sorts of different arts and crafts – jewellery, textiles, furniture, product, printmaking – I tried them all. Some of it I was good at, some of them not so. But what it left me with was an ingrained appreciation of how craftspeople at the top of their game are not only talented, they work hard at their craft and have a real attention to detail and perfection.
Which is probably why, when I started getting into cycling around the same time, that 90% of the bikes I’ve owned have been hand crafted and made-to-measure. I’ve owned steel frames from Vernon Barker at M+B in Dronfield (he used to make Malcolm Elliot’s frames) and having lived in Leeds for many years, I’ve owned a few different Bob Jackson’s. And now I own the pinnacle of hand crafted, custom frames.
But as we all know, even though a good bike frame really drives how a bike handles – it isn’t a bike unless it has components on it. And building up a bike frame very well takes craftsmanship. One such craftsman is Doctor D.
If you take a look to your right, under the list of Legend Dealers, you’ll see Doctor D. Now he doesn’t have a shop, but he can fit, order, supply and build you a Legend – hence the reason why he’s on the list. But primarily he’s a bike mechanic. In fact I’d go so far at to say he’s more than that. Since I’ve been aware of Doctor D, I’ve been following him on Facebook. Rohan Dubash (the man behind Doctor D) knows how to work Facebook really well. He photographs all his jobs and projects – and I’m an avid follower. His attention to detail and craftsmanship in all his jobs – no matter how big or small – is inspirational.
For many months, I’ve been jealous of anyone who lives in his vicinity, being able to have their bikes looked after him. And I’ve thought how I could use his services.
Then a couple of months ago I had the perfect opportunity. My right hand Chorus ergo lever on my training bike suddenly stopped working. I scoured the internet looking for a good price for a replacement when it dawned on me that Doctor D can fix Ergo levers. It would be simple enough to box them and post them down to Surrey.
Although it was such a small job, Rohan’s customer service was brilliant. He gave me a run down of what was wrong, what needed doing along with a price. He only proceeded once I’d agreed everything.
So then he stripped both levers down, serviced everything, replaced the inner bodies and then proceeded to repair the carbon lever blades as they had scuffs and chips in the lacquer.
A week after I’d sent them I received a parcel. Inside were a pair of Chorus levers sat in a Campag box – they were like new again. I couldn’t see the repairs on the levers at all. And all the while through the job, Rohan posted photos on Facebook, so I could see the progress.
Doctor D is a true craftsman – he pours passion into every job he does. And his attention to detail is unbelievable. I’m seriously thinking of boxing my HT9.5 up and sending it down to him if it needs any work doing – he’s that good.
As Legend owners , we should look after our pride and joy. If you don’t have anyone local you trust your Legend to – then get in touch with Doctor D. He’ll treat it with kid gloves.
Either way – I’d recommend you follow him on Facebook