Welcome to another edition of W.A.C.C, where we have been keeping our movements down to a minimum, as you may have noticed on our Instagram... it's definitely a time of reflection for us while we think about our next moves ...



No doubt though, it will be revolved around music, as we have been from the start as we continued to be inspired by our surroundings and the many great creators connected to us, like Funkineven who had some words with Mixmag:



Ooo don't forget that his label Apron just made a fresh drop of T-shirts n such...best to get in there quick before they sell out:



The same can be said for his new drop 'Bloodline'...oops too late pre-orders are already, which just goes to show how the world feels about what Apron is doing:



You can check the 'Bloodline' sound clips below:



Also, you can listen to the Apron radio show here too:



All this music has me hyped to once again unite with my Funktion brethren TONIGHT...myself and Outer Loop (formerly known as Haruki but most known as Harry) made a mix not too long ago and I can't wait to present it to you all:



We are always grateful for the good vibes you have been bringing to the Funktion...



Let tonight be no exception... AMEN:






Since our collaboration with 'bal Original' the words classic and classical have been thrown around a lot lately, with my colleagues even asking me what the differences between the two words actually are; within the context of bicycles.


Cooking up a classic custom that has a classical feel to it is quite simple if you start by using a bike like the matte white 'Avenue'. 



The Avenue itself with its slim horizontal frame, head tube, and no thread stem make it already reminiscent of the touring bikes of old...



I always like to ensure any customization of the matte white 'Avenue' retains a nostalgic feeling and the custom we  posted on our Instagram today is no exception:



I have no real idea when riser handlebars started becoming a popular option, but I think its definitely a more recent trend especially on fixed and single speed bikes. I use them since I feel they have a user-friendly appeal:



However, Brooks' slender leather grips are always there to add a touch of sophistication and that 'classic' look to any bicycle:



That black leather from both the saddle, grips plus the tires makes for a great contrast against the snow white frame and silver parts.



A simple yet strong custom matte white 'Avenue' for your riding pleasure:




An alternative could be by using promenade handlebars like below:



White is a great base for mixing colors too, so you can try some of Brooks other leather shades like this B17 in dark brown:



If you want to switch it up completely, then how about the "City Bike"?




If W.A.C.C is our expression for bicycle culture; then Cartel's recent collaboration with Bal is an example of how well bicycles can crossover into things like fashion (and music!), ESPECIALLY with the types of single/fixed gear bikes we are making.



I know for a fact that our friends at Bal have been riding for years now and furthermore are still riding their own bikes around Tokyo today. During the development process of the "City Bike" the chief designer was telling us how he injured himself during the "crit" style races that were put on by T19/Carnival back in the days...like this:



Coming from this base it's clear he still holds a passion for bicycles and riding; within this, he also holds a knowledge of bicycles and their parts that allowed him and the Bal team to create a clear image of the bike they wanted to create with us.



The new Dune Gold version of the bike dropped yesterday and is available now from Diner!


It's been a while since I mentioned our allies movements especially those at NCA:



However, after listening to their latest radio show on NTS, I can honestly say this label really has the next - check it out for yourself:



The show is made up heavily of productions from their stable via JMS KHOSAH, ASTRE JENKINS, KO SAITO, BLACK VOID SMITH and JR... 


Music is not the limits of their upcoming activities, with a line of original merchandise AND MUCH MORE!!! 



Their vibes have once again got me hyped for our weekly sessions via Funktion...



Come join us ...



We're happy to announce the return of our collaboration with 'bal Original' and our original "CITY BIKE"; this time presented to you in a new limited color Dune Gold:





BAL / CARTEL BIKES 'CITY BIKE' DUNE GOLD from Cartel Bikes on Vimeo.


  • PRICE: ¥80,000(w/o tax)
  • 発売日・AVAILABLE: 3/7(水)

バイクショップ”DINER”が手掛けるプライベートブランド"CARTEL BIKES"とコラボレーション。

The return of the collaboration between private brands "Bal Original" and "CARTEL BIKES" handled by the fixed gear boutique store "DINER".
Which saw the creation of their original complete bicycle; which they titled as their own 'City Bike' a 700 C size bike inspired by classic Italian city bicycles.
The base frame adopts a shape that makes for easy straddling and riding for all since it uses a unique rear sloping step-through frame.
Just like last time all parts such as the handlebars, tires, cantilever brakes etc. were supervised by BAL and finished in a vintage like fashion.
The steel frame is made of Chromoly, which is tough and rugged while still being relatively lightweight.The handlebars are the curved promenade type.The rear end of the bicycle can be set to fix or free gear.
This release the City bike now comes in a brand a new color 'Dune Gold'; the subtle golden shades of sand dunes.



The embossed head patch is a detail that must be appreciated...



The cantilever brakes remain the same as the first line, but the frame comes ready install caliper brakes at a later date if that is your preference: 



It shares the same brake levers as all our models in our bike fleet that have silver parts:



Promenade handlebars come as standard just like the previous models:



The crankset is also shared with other bikes in our fleet that have silver parts:



You might remember this saddle from the 'Specular':



As always you find the Novatec hubs connected to a flip-flop cog allowing you to be fixed or free with a simple flip of the wheel:



BAL X CARTEL BIKES 'City Bike' Dune Gold Price: ¥80,000 (+Tax)



The warmer seems to be here a little earlier than usual.


As the weather warms up we will be getting more active; using our bikes to fuel the movements of our lives. Maybe that sounds like an exaggeration, though it is a basic truth, how many of us have and do use our bikes to do more than go to the supermarket? For me, my wheels are the vehicle I use to get around the city to do what I have to do...which usually means hitting spots to DJ, meaning I ride mainly by night.



Djing since 2017 has really meant holding down my weekly night Funktion, a place where I have seen my community come together now for over 52weeks... and we recently enjoyed our 1st year anniversary:



I will take a moment out here to big up DJ Outer Loop (above) here representing for W.A.C.C, few things satisfy me more than having a good DJ throw it down while wearing one of your creations.



Above the dynamic duo Marcy and Cenju who brought a totally new vibe to Funktion!!!



Thank you to everyone who has continued to make Funktion THE Thursday night spot to be, tonight is no different as we celebrate one of longest standing patron's birthday...the homie Ken who has been coming regularly now for at least 40 weeks!!!





A little side note - about the last drop we did with Factry; I still have a couple of gray long sleeve T-shirts left if any of you out there are interested?




I also have a couple of hats left over too!



If you are interested, you can reach by the usual methods...or simply come to Funktion tonight!



It's always good when our bikes are put to good use, and by good use, I mean being ridden by few for the good of many, this works best when our bikes get picked up by the press. Here are at Cartel we are always grateful when given these opportunities, so once again, we thank for 'Fine magazine' for the love:



Love for sharing with people our matte white 'Avenue'



With the bike holding an air of simplicity thanks to its clean white coloring, slim tubing, and black parts. Maybe it is for these reasons that some stylists pay attention to the possibilities of using our bikes in combination with the varieties of looks that they create for people to relate with.



Due to its simplicity the 'Avenue' in matte white, can most definitely be a tool for you to work with, complimenting your lifestyles and of course, match your style:



For this particular model, we used silver parts that blend in well with the matte white coat, offering a world of opportunity to its users; be it for how they wish to match their own personal style with the bike...



Or for the chance to the build up the bike around how they look, either way, the 'Avenue' is our staple with unbeatable added value for money:


Matte white 'Avenue' - ¥59,400 



Last Friday on my travels, I found a good example of someone who has built their 'Avenue' into something totally unique for themselves...



I actually remember seeing this customer somewhere on Diner's blog... 



I like how he added 'Diners' original 3 spoke, the front mount rack and the riser handlebars with orange bar tape - I think these all add up to give our 'Avenue' the image of a street bike, not to mention the addition of SRAM's Omnium...



Following this customers idea, I made this up:



Modest use of carbon on both the front and rear wheels via Diner's 88mm carbon wheel for the rear, and 50mm carbon wheel for the front:




Following with the riser bar theme, but this time keeping the grips black is something we thought everyone could appreciate.



Which keeps the dark and mysterious looks of the bicycle consistent.



This particular custom can be put together exclusively by our friends at Diner Tokyo (English ok!).




Looking back at the video works we have done over the past few years has really got me hyped to get back out there to shoot something new with our bikes...



Our videos started back in 2015:



Then we did a run of shorts about who we are connected too, which first started off with me and my adventures as a DJ in and around Tokyo:



It seems that me being a DJ and riding around Tokyo is a central theme in my life, as such this was expressed in the following video, where I guess we are showing how I am using my bicycle - or how my bicycle supports my lifestyle. Which really does get me to thinking about how other people are using their bikes to support their way of life? 



The period in which this video was made was a very transitional one for me; I think the way my bike was set up back then articulates this point...



For instance, my carbon fiber handlebars from Diner had no bar ends so they looked exactly as pictured:



I was also riding around on a well worn Brooks Saddle that I feel stood out way too much...

I also had to return to London to deal with a family matter; where I found a lot of support and good energy from my direct family and friends...






Being able to share with you all via this blog, also gives me the chance to really reflect on things that have been, are and are to come  - writing (typing) is a powerful tool indeed, I am grateful to have this channel.



An essential part of W.A.C.C is music, which as you have seen above defines how I view the world of bikes, and in recent times I have been enjoying the sounds of Jamma Dee's NTS radio show 'Soul in Paradise'...



His selection reminds me roughly of the images I created in my mind for Funktion when I first conceptualized the event back in 2009, a time when I was rediscovering G-Funk and rap music from the southern side of the U.S, an example of which would be...



But the image of Funktion could best be carried the by the artist Vontel:




Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed all this reflection.


Almost every day we're sharing custom versions of our bikes with the world, we do this of course via our Instagram with the hopes that our followers will either be inspired to customize their own cartel bikes, or join the cartel by visiting one of our dealers and putting together their own custom.



We don't really have much space to explain in detail the ingredients that go into the customs but if you have been following this blog for a while you'll know that we use one update a week (usually) to do just that.



The rear wheel of this particular 'Avenue Lo' is the real catch point - our friends at 'Diner' provided us with their original carbon fiber 4 spoke baton rear wheel. With it's reduced surface area and finely balanced 2D blades, this wheel provides it's riders with dramatic aerodynamic gains.



We also placed Diner's more slightly modest original 50mm carbon wheel on the front, with the idea of putting together a custom bike that offers even complete beginners something special from day 1.



Fun fact: Did you know that our Cartel Bike logo seal is optional? So for this custom, we opted to leave the frame clean.



This custom chrome 'Avenue Lo'  is available now from Diner - ¥244,080



This second offering for the day is via our sky blue 'Avenue Lo':



Hmm sky blue is actually a nostalgic color for me because it reminds me of my very first pist bike... that someone nicknamed 'Funassyi'.




These sporty looking drop handlebars come courtesy of FSA which is an acronymn for Full.Speed.Ahead:



These drop handlebars are made so that riders can easily and quickly switch handling positions - something called the 'quick reach'. Without doubt handling position is really important, and allowing riders to feel confident while they push themselves to the limit.



Employing Diner's big 3 spoke for when you want to burst off from the lights and get those extra gains when reaching the top end of your speed limit...



All adds up to make this simple custom a great package for the more determined cyclist. Why not add our original carbon forks to make this really special?



This custom can also be obtained from our head shop Diner:

Without the carbon forks  - ¥176,400

With the carbon forks - ¥198,000




Welcome readers to the 28th chapter of the W.A.C.C Chronicles...



Where it seems like the whole world is bracing itself for the 'Black Panther' movie, on this subject lets look at where T'Challa is from... the country or land of Wakanda, which is located:



It seems to be neighboring to the origins of my Father's land Uganda, but since most of the world's current borders are nothing more than modern constructs, there definitely could have been a time when Uganda and Wakanda were part of the same civilization...just some random food for thought.



On the subject of superheroes; I get to thinking how riding around the city on my bike makes me feel like a superhero (or at least used to!)...riding around the city of Tokyo (mainly by night), spreading vibes, preserving dance music and the culture around it?  Defending the innocent from Space Invaders, Vampires, Sleep Walkers and other forms of duppies.



I would remain 'Tikini', however, my bike locks would be for beating off wack DJs and the aforementioned evils of the city, my superpowers would be my unorthodox method mixing of records; leading people to spontaneously dance, while improving bar sales and from time to time arousing listener's curiosity to the point that they ask "what tune is this?".


Actually, around this time each year, I find myself being rather more reflective than usual, and subsequently, I found myself going through some old pictures of myself...


Here I am patrolling the city a few summers ago; you'll note that my legs are very skinny for someone who rides a bike every day.



My costumes have changed over the years, but I was quite fond of this particular setup, the camouflage jacket I am wearing here had the ability to help me avoid Toyko's most ruthless road gang (disgruntled old taxi drivers with stomach ulcers), while also having special cloaking abilities...this item was passed onto me by a Nordic Prince



This is my workshop where I train and make tweaks to my two-wheeled chariot...but it's actually a front, that keeps the W.A.C.C HQ hidden (don't tell anyone ok?) - in the picture below I was removing my saddle to replace it for the current carbon fiber model I am using!



Yes, just like a superhero, as time has progressed I have made refinements to both my bike and also to my craft.



Here is one of the last times I rode out on that configuration of my bicycle:



Soon after this, I gave my ride the ultimate upgrade in the form of the direct driven Omnium which I combined with the renowned Japanese Sugino Zen.



The combination allowed for devilish speeds on the Tokyo streets and made other riders comment on how big my Chain ring looked! 



Truly legendary days...



Beaming out this update like...


Today on our Instagram we posted this picture;



That we actually took back in 2016 - as part of a nostalgic series of posts that we have been running over the past three days.

The photo shoot was for a new line of bike frame we proposed to launch back in 2016/17, which would have been the most premium model in our fleet, but we had always struggled with exactly how to present this bike frame to you...



We've always kept a few of these frames at our head store Diner in Nishi Azabu, and it has always been listed for sale on their website.


This frameset we call the 'Japan Pride'...



Made in Japan by the hand of the artisan from Tsuroaka racing whose hand is responsible for the racing bike frames of 'Bomber Pro', 'Bomber', 'Bianchini' and 'DONTZER'. Using the highest class 'Kaisei 8630R' tubing; which is easily one of the best pipes out there due to its lightness of 1820g while still being extremely strong and rigid. The frame slopes toward the front keeping in line with our 'Avenue Lo' models and is NJS approved...


Why are choosing now to tell you about this?


Well, the story starts with this complete build of the 'Japan Pride' bike:



Which actually makes use of our original parts... minus one very important part;



Yes, that is a Campagnolo Record Pista Track crankset; which uses its original bottom bracket and is renown for being one of the greatest cranksets ever built FULL STOP.


The version of the Japan Pride was put together at the request of one of Diner's customers, who after several visits to the Nishi Azabu store and one visit to Tsuroaka Racing's Fujimino facilities decided to make this bike his own...



Now we feel ready to share our 'Japan Pride' with the rest of the world... 



This is by no means your average bike...



Such acute attention detail...



Employing the most special techniques performed by the steady hand of Tsuroaka's racing artisan...



'Japan Pride' is exactly that, something Japan should be proud of...



The pride of Japan is now available for anyone...


Cartel Bikes Japan Pride - ¥290,520



For more info please call our head store Diner - 03-6427-2745