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11th May 2020 / Comments (0)

Shona’s All City Nature Boy

All City Nature Boy by Keep Pedalling

Shona from Keep Pedalling needs little introduction. Along with partner Rich and assistance from shop dog Olive, she’s probably responsible for rolling more adventure bikes out of the door than any other bike shop in the country.

“Road racing bikes have a place, but it’s not at Keep Pedalling” points out Shona. The shop floor exhibits a range you’d rarely see outside of the USA; All City, Bombtrack, Niner, Salsa, and Surly all jostle for position in this small corner of Manchester’s Northern Quarter.

They don’t just sell adventure, they ride it too. Shona has been travelling the world since her late teens and has extensive experience of Asia, Africa and all over Europe. More recently she’s toured the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, traversed Iceland’s interior and explored the less travelled parts of the Scottish Highlands.

Shona from Keep Pedalling in Morocco.

Shona, somewhere in Morocco. With gears.

A bike for the hills (and subways) of home

So the big question then. What bike does a world explorer choose for just hacking around their local trails?

“Rich and I were lucky enough to be guests of QBP’s Frost Bike show in February 2019. They’re the brains behind All City, Salsa and Surly. So we were super excited to get an invite to their in-house trade show in Minneapolis. We were invited to a ‘secret‘ unveiling with a handful of dealers to see some of the projects in the pipeline. Amongst those was the new, limited edition All City Nature Boy in the team green fade splatter.”

All City Team Edition

Team Edition – its limited.

Gotta have it

“As soon as I saw the single speed green fade bike I knew I really really wanted one!” Adds Shona. “I was especially lucky that between Nate at All City and Duncan at Ison, they managed to ‘save’ me one of the few tiny sized frames made.”

The Nature Boy has been a feature of the All City lineup for years. The 2020 overhaul revitalised the frame with All City’s proprietary A.C.E. steel tubing, making it both lighter and stiffer. And as Shona already pointed out, one of the most eye catching paint jobs we’ve seen!

All City Nature Boy

That splatter paint job is an eye catcher.

All City designed the Nature Boy from the get go as a single speed cyclocross race weapon. It’s sibling the Macho King is touted as the geared option in the lineup. But if your knees cry for a rest from single speeding, you can retrofit a derailleur hanger and add gears. Just remember that the clean lines of the frame doesn’t include cable guides.

All City logo

One Cog doesn’t have to  mean All Pain

But isn’t a one-cog bike intended for 60 punishing minutes of cyclocross pain a little uncomfortable for gravel? “I can’t stress enough what an amazingly great bike this is to ride” says Shona. “All City’s own design ACE tubing is lightweight and ever so comfy. The geometry sits nicely between race-your-socks-off or ride all day comfort.”

Just like all great singlespeed builds, Shona’s Nature Boy consists of donor parts and hand-me-downs. Bits that have come off a previous SSer and a few choice components that were bought to make it ‘just right.’

Rapha Ride with the Nature Boy

Rapha Prestige Revisited. That route did indeed ride better in reverse after all.

The shakedown ride for this build was a visit to familiar ground. ADVNTR joined Keep Pedalling back one grey November day in 2018 for the Rapha Prestige: Manchester. At the time we all felt the route would probably have been more satisfying in reverse. Shona and Rich decided to put that theory to the test. In the dark! And yes, we were right it rode better backwards- the few tech climbs made great descents.

All City ACE

It’s ACE, man.

Shona's All City Nature Boy
  • All City Nature Boy ‘Team Edition’ frame in green fade splatter
  • Cane Creek headset
  • Stan’s Grail Wheelset with Panaracer Gravelking SK tyres, 700 x 43
  • SRAM Force 1 cranks
  • Surly Stainless Cog to the rear (can’t beat a Surly cog, they just last and last)
  • TRP brakes and TRP levers
  • Hope disc rotors
  • Easton AX EC70 carbon handlebars
  • Easton EC70SL stem and seatpost.
  • Suapcaz Suave bartape
  • WTB Diva saddle
All City Nature Boy by Keep Pedalling

3Peaks, One Speed, Full Suffering

It sounds almost masochistic, but Shona has always held a desire to do the 3Peaks singlespeed. This All City Nature Boy is exactly the bike she has in mind to try that on. Perhaps next year…

Nature Boy is rolling

It’s not gravel all the time…

Want one?

If you have a desire to own an All City Nature Boy, you’re too late. We asked Duncan at UK distributor Ison, and his inventory showed up a big fat zero on this limited edition frameset. But stock of its geared sibling the Macho King, is in ready supply and the black/yellow splatter fade is almost as cool!

All-City Macho King 2020

Macho King is the Nature Boy’s geared sibling. Paint job is almost as cool but more importantly, you can still buy one.

Follow Shona, Rich and Olive too, over on Instagram. Pay them a visit in Manchester (when safe to do so #stayathomesavelives) at Keep Pedalling – www.keeppedalling.co.uk

Last modified: 11th May 2020

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