My name is Alex Dyson, and I am the Brand Manager at Restrap. I’m a 28-year-old graphic designer and enjoy discovering new places by bike. Since 2016, I have gone on bikepacking trips all over the world and am taking part in my first Ultra race (The Pan Celtic Race) this year to see what I can do with some training and foresight.
My cycling interests began with fixed gear when I accidentally bought one while I was at university in Leeds and in need of a better way to get around. I didn’t know what a fixed gear was, but it was £80, and after learning how to ride it in a car park, I discovered there was a local community [LSF] that would meet up on Thursday nights to ride track bikes.
It was there I met Nathan, who at the time made pedal straps from reclaimed seatbelts he cut out of cars at scrapyards (hence the name Restrap). After a few years of riding together and doing graphic design for Restrap in between uni work and my first studio job, I bought Nathan’s old Brother Kepler and went on my first bikepacking trip from Nantes to Barcelona with him and two other LSF friends. Since then, Nathan and I have ridden across Scotland, Croatia, Turkey, Japan, and the USA together (and we will be racing against each other in July—place your bets!).
I first heard about Stayer when my friend Tom Hill had a Groadinger OG to review in 2019, and I fell in love with the wishbone stays and attention to detail across the frame. It was a high-end, handmade in the UK, Columbus steel bike that seemed like it would take anything you threw at it. Simmer that thought for three years while saving as much as you can, and it materialises into a reality. I spoke to Holly and Sam over the phone and with countless emails, and they were really helpful with guiding me through the ordering process, choosing components, and advising on everything about the bike. Once it was built, it was sent up to Jack Kingston (@jackkkingston) in Hull for paint.
Jack and I have been friends for years, but I’ve never had anything nice enough to be worth his skills (he features heavily in Bespoked each year), but now I finally had the chance to design my own bike. I wanted it to have an earthy, hard-wearing but minimal aesthetic whilst clashing it with some bootleg ‘sponsor’ logos to poke fun at the pro-cycling brand politics within our industry.
I spoke to Tim Willis (@timwillis) about using his S-Porks (S-Works) and Pizza (Zipp) graphics and then made my own Dyson (Thomson) and Dope (Hope) bootlegs before finishing with the monogram I designed for Jack and the Slayer (Stayer) logo on the outside of the chainstays (heavy music plays a big part in my life, and I even made some bootleg Black Sabbath bikepacking t-shirts to raise money for the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal).
- Frame Stayer All Road
- Fork Whisky No9 CXLR (painted by Jack Kingston)
- Rims Stayer All Road Carbon
- Hubs Hope RS4
- Tires Schwalbe Pro One/Schwalbe G-One All Round
- Handlebars PRO Discover Alloy Gravel
- Bar tape Brooks Cambium
- Headset Hope
- Crankset Shimano 105 R7000
- Pedals Wahoo Speedplay Zero/Look Geo Trekking Roc
- Cassette Tifosi HG 11-34T
- Derailleur Shimano 105 R7000
- Brakes Shimano 105 R7000/Hope Floating Disc and Lockring
- Shifter(s) Shimano 105 R7000
- Saddle Brooks Cambium C17 Carved with Cerakote painted rivets and rails
- Seatpost Thomson Elite
- Stem Thomson Elite X4, Cerakote painted
- Front bags Restrap Bar Pack/Restrap Large Bar Bag
- Frame bags Restrap Race Frame Bag – Large
- Rear bags Restrap Race Saddle Bag/Restrap 14L Saddle Bag
- Accessory bags Restrap Race Stem Bags
- Lights Exposure Trace
- GPS Wahoo Roam with Cerakote painted K-Edge stem mount
- Other accessories SimWorks John Cages, King Stainless Cage, Stridsland Ti Top Cap, Forager Cable Cherries
This was all completed with a matching set of Whisky forks with the insides of the blades painted with the Restrap contour pattern I made years ago using an old map of the Yorkshire dales. Once the design was sent over to Jack, we got excited and decided to colour match some of the components using durable military-level Cerakote paint.
After a couple of weeks of curing, our friend Dom brought everything over from Hull and spent a couple of his free evenings with me building it up and making sure it was dialed in for my upcoming bikepacking trip across Turkey. Thanks, Dom! I couldn’t be happier with this bike. It’s comfortable, fun, fast, and versatile as an all-road, do-it-all adventure bike.
You can see more from Alex on Instagram @a__dyson.
Send Us Your Bikepacking Rig
Use the form below to submit your bikepacking rig. We’ll choose one per week to feature in a Reader’s Rig Dispatch and on Instagram. To enter, email us your best photo of the bike (preferably at a 90° angle), your Instagram username (optional), and a short description of you and your rig. If your bike is selected, we’ll need a total of five photos and a little bit more info.
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