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Desk Jockeys

What does your desk say about you? When you pull open a drawer, do crumpled Starbucks napkins and leaky ballpoint pens erupt from within, or are you met by a cool, controlled selection of your daily essentials?

We looked over the desks at Condor to find out what necessities assist us in creating dream bikes. You won't find old batteries and an endemic population of rubber bands (we've pushed them out the picture for now).

Grant Young's desk

Grant Young, Managing Director

Grant is part of the fabric of Condor. He's steered the brand through several economic recessions and taken Condor from being a small bike building workshop to a global brand with Asian distributors, a factory in Italy and eight exclusive UK concessions.

  • Duplicate book (1) - "I look after the frame refurbishments and restorations. I love bringing an old Condor back to life. I often spend a few minutes answering staff questions about the frame or the builder. Each restoration is noted by hand in my carbon copy notebook, just like when we used to take orders in the 1970s."
  • Work awaiting approval (2) - "Lots of things pass over my desk. Condor is a multifaceted business. We don't stop at framesets."
  • Glasses, letter opener and Caran d'Ache fountain pen (3) - "A well-balanced, timeless compact pen is lovely to write with. The handsomely proportioned and weighty letter opener looks like a dangerous implement."
  • Campagnolo Nut Cracker and bottle of red - "The nut cracker serves no real purpose other than being a symbol of great quality and craftsmanship, which is exactly what we strive for. The red, well, it's nice to relax at the end of the week. Today's tipple happens to come from the edge of Lake Geneva and carries a 2011 Assos label."

Ben Spurrier's desk

Ben Spurrier, Head of Design

He colours, cuts, clicks, and creates the liverys you see on the Condor bicycles.

  • Furst & Iven Classic drafting pencil and ensemble of vinyl tools (1) - "Whilst most designers work in paperless studios I find that when I pull out a pencil my ideas going into turbo. The scalpel, vinyl weeder, and wooden agate burnisher are tools I use to apply vinyl decals to frames and mock up ideas. It helps to touch and feel when it comes to bicycles."
  • Compass Cutter (2) - "Another one of the weird tools I use."
  • Garmin Edge 500 (3) - "I try to ride everyday, which helps pull together ideas and flush out the cobwebs. My Garmin is the best way to record what and where I've ridden."
  • Ral books (4) - "Essential for design work. I have two Ral books; the smaller book has just over 200 hues and I never get tired of flicking through."
  • Espresso (5) - "I have to begin my day with an espresso. Currently I'm working my way through the Yukro Espresso blend from Workshop Coffee based just down the road from Condor in Clerkenwell. My go to stable is Monmouth's Organic Espresso blend. Their Covent Garden store is no more than five minutes from the office by bike."
  • The Smythson ringbound note book (6) - "A note book is great for sketching ideas in meetings. I have quite a few hanging about my desk and drawer. A moleskin notebook is an essential for any notemaker."

James Wakelin's desk

James Wakelin, Senior Bike Fitter

Condor offers a bicycle fit as part of the process of buying a bike. It is essential because everyone is different. For those who already own a bicycle but don't feel comfortable James is the go to man for improving position, posture and speed.

  • Shoe shims (1) - "Sometimes a niggle in the knee, twinge in the thigh or aching toes is not always because of the bike per se. Your foot is the final contact point between you and the bike, and it will be different to the next guy (unless you are an identical twin). Forcing your foot into a position because of a generalisation made by a shoe maker isn't always going to work for everyone, and that is where a shoe shim comes in!"
  • Jig tools (2) - "The trusty Condor Allen key and sturdy 6mm Park Tool. I can't fault them and I use them everyday for adjusting the jig during bike fittings."
  • Adjustable stem (3) - "Adjustable in more ways than one, this weighty implement allows us to make the important but minutest of changes in no time at all. It allows us to play with position; you can literally be riding a low pro track bike and a few turns of an Allen key later be ready for an autumn audax!"
  • The tape measure (4) - "More measuring tools! That is what our bike fits are all about. Stanley make excellent tape measures with integrated clip for you belt and Tylon coating to make it last forever."
  • Pret A Manger milk chocolate with cardomon (5) - "I cycle roughly 70 miles a day, five days a week. A slice of chocolate and mid morning coffee is always a good pick me up, especially during the dark winter months!"
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