About Tamarack Cycles
My name is Mark Beaver. I've been riding bikes pretty much my whole life. I did my first 500 mile, ten-day bicycle tour in 1975 in my early teens.
I've been involved in bicycle touring since the late 1970s. I've toured extensively internationally, including two months across Canada; four months in New Zealand; around Ireland, France, Switzerland, Italy, and throughout many parts of North America. I became involved in randonneuring in 2003 when I founded Randonneurs Nova Scotia and participated in the legendary Paris-Brest-Paris 1200km that year - I've since completed PBP five times.
I began working in the bicycle business in 1981, fresh out of college. First as a bike mechanic, then into sales, then into purchasing. In 1996, I had the opportunity to become co-owner of Cyclesmith, Nova Scotia's largest bicycle shop, and ran the shop for twenty years. I've recently sold my shares in the store to my younger business partner, Andrew Feenstra, and have now returned to my passion, custom frame building.
I began frame building in 1989 when three friends, (Michael Thomson, Larry White, and I) bought out the tools and inventory and took over the workshop of my friend Greg Smith, who had founded a custom frame building business several years before that, which he named Cyclesmith. Greg rapidly discovered that there was more money to be made running a retail store than in building frames. (I would later take over the retail store when he moved to the USA). Michael and I began building bikes out of our workshop on the Halifax waterfront near Pier 23, doing custom frame building and custom painting. Michael moved to Toronto after graduating from mechanical engineering and I continued to build part-time while working in the retail store. As Cyclesmith became bigger and bigger, my time for frame building became less and less. Now that I have retired from retail, I am reinvigorating my frame building business and satisfying the artistic component of my soul.
I've been building with S&S
couplers since the late 1990's. So far I've done a couple dozen travel
bikes - some are retrofits and some are new Tamarack custom frames built
from scratch. I've also
traveled extensively with my own S&S bikes - having completed
Paris-Brest-Paris three times on coupled bikes and taken them to places
like New Zealand; Italy; Switzerland; Belgium; France, and multiple
trips to the USA. I have an
old-school touring bike with couplers and a Reynolds 853 custom
randonneuring bike. Both of which I built for myself. My wife has a
custom S&S as well.
The advantages of a suitcase bike are most significant when you arrive in Europe - try stuffing two IronCase's in the back of a Fiat Panda taxi - no problem with a pair of travel bike cases! And I've saved well over a thousand dollars in oversize fees with the airlines over the years - and my travel bike case arrives on the same airplane as I do at the destination - unlike when I used to travel with an IronCase, when a third of the time, the oversized box gets bumped to a later flight due to luggage compartment space issues.
Weeks wait 4-6
Weeks wait 4-6
5274 Russell Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada