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The NAHBS Awards began as an informal, friendly contest between builders at the first NAHBS in 2005. All builders exhibiting at the show were encouraged to enter and vote on the best in 10 categories. The intent was to encourage examination and appraisal of each other’s work and to put the spotlight on a talented new builder. By 2008 the show had gotten so busy with attendees and there were so many entries in the NAHBS Awards, it became an impossible time commitment for the builders to give fair scrutiny to each one. Thus a dedicated jury was appointed to judge the awards as of 2009. In 2012 NAHBS recognized the very high standard of work in the industry and allowed more than up to three bicycles to win an award if no one entry was clearly the best. This change did not run across the board. The Overall division, listed below, remains with just one winner in each category.


2013 Entry window

Builders must submit their intentions for each category between December 1, 2012 and February 18, 2013. Late entries will be considered but are not guaranteed a place in the most popular categories. With over 170 entries expected, the more time NAHBS has  to create the schedule for judging, the smoother the process should be.


2013 New theme and category

New for this year is a Theme Bicycle category in the Overall Design division. These are complete bicycles with a description of the theme, concept or heritage the frame builder is portraying. The bicycles will be judged with an eye toward the overall execution of the theme.

Utility Bicycle will be a new category under Riding Discipline.


2013 NAHBS Awards groups and categories


Materials Division

Best steel construction
Best titanium construction
Best carbon construction
Best alternative material (bamboo, aluminum, wood, magnesium, etc.)


Riding Discipline Division

Best city bike
Best road bike
Best mountain bike
Best cyclocross bike
Best track bike
Best tandem bike
Best experimental bike
Best utility bike


Construction Division

Best lugged frame
Best fillet frame
Best TIG frame


Overall Design Division

Best new builder
Best finish
Best theme bike
People’s choice
President’s choice
Best of show


Materials division criteria

Unpainted or clearcoat only
Complete bikes are recommended (frame or frame/fork will be judged, but may be downgraded due to lack of completeness)


Construction division criteria

Bare frame or clear coat only (lugged may be bare frame only, upon consultation with judges)
Frame or frame/fork, only if fork is custom (no aftermarket forks)
Frames will be assigned a number, so that judging is not influenced by bias


Riding Discipline division criteria

Fully complete bikes, paint and component choices will factor into the judging (aesthetic impact and correctness of the discipline)


Overall Design division criteria

Bicycles must be submitted for Theme and Best Finish categories
Other categories are open to all bikes in the show
New builders are restricted to the new builders category only and may not enter in other categories
Complete bikes are recommended for the Theme category


Physical setup of judging area

There are three areas in the judging room. The NAHBS Exhibitor packet contains a schedule for each of the awards categories, with a drop-off time, pickup time, and a specific area (A, B, C). Frame builders must leave their bicycle with judging staff in the designated area and retrieve it within the time windows provided on the schedule.

How to Enter

Entry submissions must be made through the WP admin area of the NAHBS website using the NAHBS Awards Entries link in the navigation column on the left side of the admin page. This is the same admin area where NAHBS exhibitors provide their company information for the NAHBS website.


2013 Rules

Exhibitors wishing to submit a frame/bicycle for judging must provide notice to NAHBS in the window December 1, 2012 – February 18, 2013.

The category in which the frame/bicycle is entered must be indicated.

For multiple submissions, indication of category must be made for each frame.

Only two bikes per exhibitor are allowed for the 2013 show.


A frame/bicycle cannot be entered in multiple categories or divisions.

If a frame/bicycle could qualify for multiple divisions (eg. lugged steel cyclocross frame could be eligible for best steel, best lugged, or best cyclocross), the builder must indicate at the time of entry the category in which the frame/bicycle is entered.

Information about each frame/bicycle must be supplied. This information comprises notes on the concept, choice of material, design, construction process, finish, delivery process.

Completed Frame/bicycles are not required to be submitted in advance of the show, exhibitors are required only to provide notice of their intent, as outlined above (18th February).

NAHBS Management will publish all entries by 21st February.

Best of Show, Best New Builder, People’s Choice and President’s Choice are categories with automatic entry and do not require any action on the part of the frame builder.


2013 Outline Schedule


Friday, 22nd February and Saturday morning, 23rd February

Judging takes place

Saturday, 23rd February

Most awards given, starting after 1 p.m. Up to three awards per category will be issued. Award plaques will be displayed on winning bikes, which will be returned to the exhibitors’ booths before the awards are made. The Saturday awards will be made at the booths of the awards winners.

Sunday, 24th February

3 p.m. People’s Choice, President’s Choice, Best New Builder.
The Sunday awards are made at the main stage.