A few new developments:
The effort to raise money for Haiti was fairly successful. VO sent off a check for over $2000 to Doctors Without Borders. Thanks for your help.
In case you hadn't noticed, prices for Japanese components and accessories are shooting up. This is due to the rising value of the Yen, or the falling dollar. As we, and other importers, deplete our existing stocks and re-order you'll see higher prices on Nitto, Honjo, MKS, and Sugino products. So it's a good time to be developing more products in Taiwan, like the bars and stems below.
The prototypes for these two new drop bars look great. One is a medium reach bar loosely based on the Phillippe Professional, but with a longer flat behind the hoods and slightly longer drop. The second is our own design for a randonneur bar that's based on the best traits of several French and Japanese randonneur bars I've owned.
We also have the new quill stem design that should go into production in a couple of months. It's fillet brazed and chrome plated. The one in the photo has too long an extension in back, but is otherwise the right shape. A 1-1/8" threadless fillet brazed stem will also be made. You may remember that we were developing a stem and we went through a couple of designs before settling on this one, but if it sells well we'll do another model like this one.
We've made a minor modification to the VO Course and VO Moderniste bottle cages. The tangs on the mounting plate are longer to allow use with bottle cage clamps for bikes that lack cage bosses, or to add a third cage.