One of our first retailers in the US is a quirky store in Chattanooga, Tennessee, called Speed Deluxe. We love our stockists to have a cool vibe about their store, a creative approach to merchandising and a bringing together of people, bikes and stuff! The folks behind the Speed Deluxe Store have achieved this in canny fashion. In fact, we are goddam envious of their space, we love it!
SO WHERE DID IT ALL BEGIN?
Speed Deluxe owners, Adam & Jamie Sheard, moved to the US from Australia in April, 2013. They first landed in LA, gave themselves 2 days to find and buy a used RV and then traveled cross-country in a 1985 Chevy Tioga. They finally settled in Chattanooga, TN, in October 2013 and immediately started Speed Deluxe in Soddy Daisy, TN (20 minutes north of Chattanooga), focusing on repairing/maintaining, restoring, and customising customer’s vintage motorcycles of any make/model.
They were initially based in a 1940s gas station, with a small retail section. But they quickly realised that they needed to be closer to downtown in order to create the community space they had originally planned. They found an awesome space in a 1920s building in north downtown which was originally a dairy distribution centre and convinced friends of theirs, who own and operate local businesses to join them – Velo Coffee Roasters and Silent Cycles (custom steel-framed bicycles).
BIKES IS WHAT IT'S ABOUT...
The friends continue to operate as separate businesses, but Adam and Justin (Silent Cycles) share the workshop space in the lower level and they have retail for motorcycling and bicycling, a coffee bar and hang-out space on the street level.
They are achieving their goal of bringing the community and like minded people together by holding regular monthly events at the store, including a movie night, group rides, and tech nights. Sounds awesome, right?
SO WHO ARE SPEED DELUXE?
Adam started riding around 8 years old on a 1978 RM100. He rode offroad for a few years with friends in rural Lincolnshire in England. He moved on to cars – building cars and drag racing. That’s when he started metal fabricating and painting. He moved from England to New Zealand and then to Australia in 2009, where he got back in to motorcycles, this time on the road. Australia’s climate is perfect for riding. He built his first custom motorcycle for the invitational Oil Stained Brain show in Melbourne in 2012. It was his dream bike – a 1968 Triumph TR6 bobber, starting with just the bottom half of the engine and finding or making the rest of the parts. He met Jamie in 2009 in Brisbane, Australia, and they moved to the US in early 2013. After moving to Chattanooga, TN, where there is some of the best offroad riding in the country, he got back into dirt bikes and also offroad racing (cross-country, trials, and flat track), competing in the AHRMA vintage motorcycle series primarily on single-cylinder 250cc Triumph/BSA motorcycles.
In addition to the ongoing customer projects for Speed Deluxe, Adam custom-built a BSA flat tracker for the Deus Bike Build-Off in Venice Beach, California in 2016, which won Best Race Bike. He's currently custom-building a BMW street tracker/road racer for the 2017 One Moto Show in Portland, Oregon.
AND BEHIND EVERY GREAT MAN...
Jamie always loved motorcycles, starting from when she rode on the back of her dad’s when she was young, and has been riding for longer than Adam (>15 years), although primarily on the road. She has traveled solo on her motorcycle on semi-cross-country trips and although slightly cliché, loves the feeling of freedom and the connection with everything around her on a bike. Currently, she has bikes ranging from a 50-cc Indian moped to a 1000-cc Harley Davidson Ironhead chopper. This cool lady is also co-organiser of a Southeast US women’s only motorcycle camping weekend, called No Man’s Land, held for the first time in June 2016 and which will be an annual event!
TEAM WORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK
It takes a great deal of dedication and staying power to make a business work, but when you mix all of that with a passion for something you love doing, amazing things happen and it seems like Adam, Jamie and their friends from Velo Coffee and Silent Cycles, have created a space in Speed Deluxe where all are welcome. How cool is that?
They had this to say about 250LONDON...
Well we are very happy to be there sharing their space!
So, to our American followers, if you want to see, feel and buy our products in person, and happen to be in the Chattanooga area, drop by Speed Deluxe or enjoy cheaper local postage by purchasing from their webstore! Just hit the logo below.
Thanks for reading.