It’s not everyday that a reigning national champion emails you and says, “Hi Simon, I have just won the New Zealand Road Championship and want a NZ themed bike to celebrate – are you interested..?
Joe Cooper is a machine. Otherwise known as “Driver”, in 2014 he became the first Kiwi to win the Australian National Road Series and also took out the individual time trial title at the Oceania Cycling Championships. In 2015 he jumped the field over a 12 lap course in Christchurch to win the much coveted national road champion title.
The design brief was very loose – the champs jersey was to be used as a guide to colours but otherwise Joe said “Make it Pop”!
Based on the jersey, the colour palette was classic NZ black and white with a touch of blue – not exactly colours that pop but the great thing about custom paint is that not all blacks and whites are created equal.
First stop was design guru Gregg Larcombe from Larcombe Creative. A keen cyclist with a great eye for classic and modern bicycle design, he has come up with a number of stunning designs that I have had the great pleasure of turning into reality – and this one was no exception.
After a bit of email tag, 9 designs were submitted back to Joe incorporating 3 designs in a multitude of blacks, blues, silvers and whites. The final design was agreed on – classic black and white with a massive silver fern sitting flat on the downtube…or this:
In order to make these colours “pop” however, Joe agreed to let me go nuts with some big silver flake, some black candy and some stunning pearl blue over the white
So….the bike. A rather tired scratched Avanti Corsa SL from Joe’s vast collection in the team Avanti colours of blue, black and orange.
Deep breath and off we go…
Original paint was hanging on well so it was scuffed up pretty hard and sealed with some 2k surfacer.
First layer was a fine silver base followed by the first of many sponsor logo’s. I am advised that Rumble Coffee is the best coffee on the planet! #getsome
…and Raw C make some hella good coconut water! #getsomeofthattoo
Lots of “measure twice, stick once” to make sure the logos are spot on…
…before coming over the top with a straight white base coat and then off with the vinyl masks
It was really important on this job to retain the basic layout of the original graphics…to keep it looking like an Avanti.
So back to the reference photos to help with the hours of masking
“Yep….that looks about right…”
Time for a silver glitter bomb
To incorporate multiple shades of black and grey throughout, the next step is to flatten the flake and lay down more vinyls….including the monster silver fern…
…and abbreviated motivational sayings. Ask Joe what this stands for next time you see him – I can confirm that it’s NSFW!
Stickered and ready for candy…
Translucent black sounds a lot like an oxymoron…but it is in fact a thing!
First layer down and then selectively unmask a few of the vinyl decals
Two more layers of candy and then reveal the big sparkly fern
Then on to a few more hours of weeding and sticking decals. Massive thanks to Andrew McCosker for his awesome work on the vinyls.
Masking the orange to turn it white…
Everything in readiness for the final clear coats
A bit more rubbing, a final flow coat…and out into the sun to show it off
Best wishes Joe – race hard and fly those NZ colours high!