Last year we received an invitation from Bastion to be part of its ‘owners experience’, where we’d be hosted to exclusive factory visits, ride some of the best roads in Australia and even watch the Tour Down Under. Beyond excited, we booked our tickets quicker than you can say Koala!

The trip from NYC to Melbourne is not an easy one, the flight from Dallas to Melbourne was over 18 hours, but it could not have been more worth it.


A short drive from the airport to Fairfield, we were greeted by Bastion founders James and Ben, who promptly showed us around the factory.

Walking around the factory felt more like a high-tech assembly line than a bike factory and has a unique elegance to it. We’re first introduced to Dan, the expert technician who was building none other than Richie Porte’s bike. We were asked not to take photo’s here as Richie hadn’t seen it yet, but was it a beauty! We especially loved the bronze/rose finish on the lugs and the Tasmanian badge etched on the chainstay, a personal touch for Richie.

Next, we saw Fit Studio (run by RideFit) who do most of Bastion’s fittings. Many who book a fitting do not actually know they will be heading to the Bastion factory; we can only imagine a new customers eyes when they come in for a fit and see the amazing facility.

Behind the fitting space is the ‘Testing Lab’ area where every 3D printed frame component is tested by an ‘ultimate tensile testing machine’ to confirm strength and quality. This is also where the lateral stiffness of the frames, forks and handlebars are tested. Every part of the Bastion production and quality control is meticulously done in-house.

After the Testing Lab you will find, what Bastion call 'The Pretty Room', where two 3D printing machines run non-stop. 3D printed components are not new in cycling, but Bastion are unique in having complete control over the entire bike production process, making them leaders in this exciting field.

The Pretty Room was amazing, Ruedi even got the chance to put on the gloves and feel for himself how the parts form. Once components are printed, they go into strengthening where they are exposed to extremely high temperatures that achieve the desired material strength.


Next up on the tour is the CNC Machine Room, where every piece that comes out of The Pretty Room needing a tread, like a BB shell or headset bearing cup will go. Bastion’s machining here is pure perfection.

We then reached The Painting Room. Bastion has a great relationship with Velocraft, who currently paint the bikes. Again, Bastion is looking into innovative techniques as they start to take this in house, we’re looking forward to hearing more about it.

Round the corner we found the ‘Nosey Room’ where the team polish every 3D lug. From matte to satin matte or our personal favourite high polish finish, this is where the lugs beauty really shines. If you’ve ever listened to the Cycling Tips podcast, you’ll know just how difficult it is to do.

As we head upstairs to continue, Ben and James begin telling us about the custom wrapping of carbon tubes they do. They proudly announce that they are the only manufacturer in the world who is custom wrapping square chainstays. This process allows Bastion to create higher power transfer to the rear wheel.

This process of wrapping square chainstays didn’t exist before Bastion started doing it and they showed us the very machine they invented in-house to do so! Watching this machine’s complexity is as beautiful as it is confusing!

We end the factory tour with a private unveiling of Bastion latest model, the limited edition ‘ArchAngel’. This bike epitomises everything that Bastion do well, from the futuristic technology used to build the frame to the hand-crafted elements like the polished wings. All finished in a Cerakote paint (the lightest paint you can put on a bike), this is an object of extraordinary beauty. The ArchAngel is the pinnacle of custom hand-built bicycles.

My project 16

If you can get to Melbourne, you simply need to see this place. It’s amazing seeing all the hard work that happens there. The most impressive part for us was how these 3 ex-Toyota engineers are pioneering a new age in cycling technology. Only brilliant minds could develop the equipment and testing facilities that create these state-of-the-art bikes.

We came to Australia to confirm that Bastion is making some of the best bikes in the world and we were not disappointed. We already loved these bikes for the aesthetic and ride, but knowing the full story of how they come to life made us fall in love with them even more.

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