I first heard about Crumpton from Darren Baum. I sat in on the fitting and design of the bike he built for a good mate of mine. I was curious whether anyone did bespoke carbon. He told me yes and if he were to go to anyone he’d go to Nick Crumpton.

A couple years went by and after much research I eventually decided to go for it. Typically Nick has a 6-8 month waiting list. Most people can’t wait that long. Nick had a look at my fit requirements and told me I’d be a good fit for the Corsa Team considering what I wanted.

This frame was his attempt at doing a mass produced bike. It was less expensive and readily available. It was an amazing machine, perfect in every way. There was never a time I got off that bike and was sore other than through fatigue. I’m talking from a 1 hour crit to a 12+ hour escapade around Bright. I had that bike for just over a year before I was involved in the accident.

I was on my way to work. I used to ride in (most days) from Mt Eliza to the CBD. It was about 5:45am near the border of Carrum and Seaford when a ute with a trailer drove too close to me and took me down. I was knocked unconscious and when I came to I was in an ambulance on my way to the Alfred.

My injuries were fairly typical considering I was run over by the trailer: broken collarbone, seven broken ribs, bleeding in the brain, punctured lung and lots of abrasions down my left side. The ute did not stop but I was fortunate that a good citizen followed him and took down his rego and was even aware enough to get a look at who was driving.

They got him and he was convicted. I am healing well but I still have a few issues, mainly mental ones.

As soon as I was out of the hospital and well enough to get my demolished bike from the police station I started the process of looking for a new bike. (By the way, staring at several thousand dollars worth of mangled carbon can make a grown man cry. I also realised carbon is really strong stuff.)

I considered a lot of off the shelf bikes and even a couple other bespoke builders in the US like Alchemy or Appleman. In the end, I knew I’d regret not having the bike I loved.

I called Nick and told him about the situation. He no longer did the Corsa Team as most of his customers really wanted something built by hand by him. I put myself on his very long waiting list.

I went back and forth regarding Di2. I never thought I’d go the way of electronic gearing but after using it once I was wowed. It’s just so effortless. Lastly, bespoke is not about custom fitting. I fit standard geometry to a lot of bikes including Crumptons. It’s about working with a single craftsman/artisan and working with their experience in knowing how to tweak ride characteristics.

I’d say never tell a builder what to build — instead tell them what you want your machine to do. An honest builder will tell you what is realistically possible with their build.

The colour of the finished bike definitely polarises people but I put it this way: I wanted the bike to be symbol and reminder of why I do everything — my family. My missus and I have always had a bit of a green fetish so green was to be the primary colour. I was thinking of adding splashes of colour here and there but in the end I went for a traditional/retro look with a solid colour.

I added a special touch to the chainstays with my wife’s name on one side and my daughter’s on the other. Why? I figure that I have two sponsors and it’s them I do it all for.

Specs:

Frame: Crumpton Corsa (Team)
Fork: Enve 1.0
Groupset: Full Dura Ace Di2 9070 with Stages powermeter
Cockpit and Post: Enve
Saddle: Selle SMP Dynamic
Wheels: Enve Smart SES 6.7 with DT Swiss 240 hubs