The Bicycle Emporium
From a throw-away remark over a glass of wine in late 2013 and a week's holiday in Ballina early in 2014, the idea of establishing a bike shop was born.
In March 2014, brothers Mark and Andrew Downey moved to Ballina and took over the lease on a shop in the main street of Ballina, River St. The shop opened on 2nd June 2014.
As Ballina's newest bicycle shop we aim to bring new ideas, new products and a new approach to customer service with the latest in style at the best value.
The Bicycle Emporium is the last word in all that is great and wonderful about owning, fixing and riding bikes.
A lifelong passion for all things cycling has seen Mark involved in all aspects of cycling from setting up Bicycle User Groups and Cycle Club leadership to amateur racing custom rebuilds.
Mark is a Colnago obsessive and a collector of old bikes. He has been repairing and rebuilding bicycles for over 20 years, coaching and encouraging amateur racers and beginners, and teaching new riders the skills important to ride safely and competitively and to service and repair their own bicycles.
In addition to a long interest in cycling, Mark has traveled the world working and cycling. He has had a varied career from cocktail bartender to dairy farmer, he has a PhD in plant biochemistry and spent almost 20 years working in grape and wine research authoring more than 40 scientific papers and led a large research department before leaving the public sector to live the dream!
A keen amateur racer, Andrew has raced with clubs from Darwin to Nowra and points in between, he now rides with the Ballina Masters Cycling Club. Andrew is an experienced bicycle mechanic and has built all of his own bikes for racing and leisure.
Also a keen cycle tourist, Andrew has ridden extensively throughout the NSW alps and Victorian highlands tackling all the great climbs and blinding descents.
By trade, a qualified sailmaker, Andrew has a back ground in hospitality and also spent 8.5 years in the Australian Navy before joining his brother in yet another cycling adventure, to live the dream and open their own bicycle shop.
Rhys started hanging out in the shop a couple of years ago and we started giving him things to do, which gradually increased to a point where he was becoming quite productive, so we decided we should give a job.
Rhys rides just about everything and currently has a scooter, custom built Mankind BMX, SPECIALIZED Pitch hardtail, a Fuji road bike and has just taken delivery of new a SPECIALIZED Camber Comp 29er.
Hayley is an outstanding mountain bike rider and currently leads the Women's U15 National Cross Country Series, Hayley is also one of our sponsored riders who rides with us on Saturday mornings when she isn't racing.
Hayley work in the shop some afternoons and weekends to help support her cycling habit! Hayley rides a SPECIALIZED Epic Expert carbon 29er and on Saturday mornings, a road bike :-)
You can follow Hayley on Facebook.
2007 Colnago C-50
It took a long time to move away from the Mexico (below), but finally relented and bought a C-50 a few years ago. Great bike, 1400g frameset, 7.5 kg total, with Ksyrium SL wheelset and Dura Ace 7800 (not a fan of this gruppo, 7900 is much better). Recently upgraded to Dura Ace 9100 and a set of Campagnolo Shamal Mille wheels with Pirelli P-Zero tyres.
1983 Colnago Mexico
My primary race bike for 10 years, has been through about four groupsets. Still running 7700 Dura Ace 9 speed (one of the best groupsets ever made) and Campagnolo Vento wheelset.
1984 Colnago Nuovo Mexico
Found this frameset in Melbourne a while ago, then started looking for an appropriate groupset.
I'd always wanted a Campagnolo Delta groupset and picked up a Kenevans with a complete Croce Daune (circa. 1988) gruppo, but no wheels in 2013.
I found the hubs earlier this year and rescued the rims from another bike, the spokes were corroded and the hubs badly oxidised , but the rims cleaned up nicely. So I recently rebuilt the bike with the Selle San Marco Rolls saddle, LOOK PP66 pedals, and Cinelli bar and stem from the original Kenevans. Turned out pretty well, even managed to find some NOS delta LOOK cleats for my old shoes!
2000 Ciocc Booster
Dedaccai 7003 aluminium tubeset with Ciocc carbon fork. 1694g frameset bought NOS and built up with Roval carbon wheels, Vision aero bar with SRAM bar-end shifters, SRAM derailleurs, FSA cranks.
Cannondale Hooligan 3, great little town bike, sat for 2 years in the last shop I worked in, finally had to buy it, Great little town bike, 3 speed internal gears, disk brakes, lefty fork. SOLD
1991 Kirk Revolution
Found on Gumtree in it's original MTB guise with cantilever brakes and panniers and in need of loving. Rebuilt with a carbon disk fork, 700c wheels and a rear dual pivot brake, just had a major upgrade to 1x11 Speed Di2 Alfine.
2002 Craftworks MTB, combination of AVID, Deore and SLX now running 1x9, slick tyres and panniers. SOLD
Fixie No. 1
Early 1980's Miyata race fame with a Velocity rear track wheel, Campagnolo Zonda front and a resurrected il Pirato saddle. Great for boosting around town this bike tends to rotate through the latest cool parts I've found.
Fixie No. 3
Not really a fixie, old single speed, 28" wheels, coaster brake. Found the Major Taylor headstem first then started looking for a bike to put it on. Picked the frame up about 4 years ago in Victoria, really liked the colour and the gold pinstriping, then saw the saddle and had to have it. Martin brought the rims and hubs into the shop late 2014 - 40 hole rear was a great opportunity to have a go at the crows foot 5 cross lacing pattern; 3 different spoke lengths on each side! Lot of trouble to find a narrow enough handlebar, finally found one in a junk shop near Byron Bay.
1970's Space Ranger
Picked up in a garage sale in Adelaide looking very sorry for itself. Original frame, wheels and 3 speed shifter. Most of the other parts have been replaced during the rebuild - slowly evolving.
2018 Bianchi Specialissima
Might hang on to this one! The Pantini Anniversary Edition of the Bianchi Specialissima to commemorate the 10th Anniversary of Marco Pantani's Tour de France victory. Beautiful frame built up with Campagnolo Record and the best bits filched from the CLX!
2017 Colnago CLX
Well you need to know your products, so out with the old and in with the new! For 2017 I'm riding the Colnago CLX with Di2 Ultegra with a few upgrades to carbon bar and stem and a pair of Mavic Cosmic Pro Carbone with the Exalith braking surface. Now for sale with original wheels, bars, stem, saddle, etc. $3800
2016 Stumpjumper FSR Comp Carbon 650B
To celebrate the opening of the New Italy mountain bike park, I new weapon was required! And what a beauty this one is, dual suspension, full carbon, dropper seat post, 150mm travel forks, it must be love!
2006 Kona Dr Dew
A great little frame I picked up at a bargain price, new in box and built into a touring might for my first bikepacking adventure in Vietnam in 2017. Fitted a Shimano 106 group with hydraulic disc brakes and a set of Ksyrium Elite wheels and kitted out with Topeak racks and panniers. Read all about the adventure here: https://andrewandthedoctor.wordpress.com/
2016 SPECIALIZED Tarmac Comp
Fast & Furious, this addition to the collection just flies. Full carbon monocoque frame and fork make it light and absorb so much of the road vibration, corners like a Formula 1, and the electronic shifting Di2 Ultegra automatically trims the chain and never misses a gear. SOLD
2015 Kona Minute
The small version of the Kona Ute, the Minute is a shorter wheel base cargo bike and my primary commuter, shopping bike and all-round utility vehicle. Well geared for loads, hydraulic disc brakes and comfortable riding position, this one has been customised with blinding lights and front rack and upgraded handlebar. SOLD
2006 Ridley Damocles
Robbie McEwen's Australian Champion Davitomon Lotto Ltd Edition Frameset with Dura Ace 7900 Goupset. .FSA K Force Ergo wing bars,Selle Italia SLR Ti saddle, Fulcrum Racing 5 wheelset with Schwalbe Ultremo and KMC Ti Nitride SL Gold chain.
2010 Ragley Mmmbop 26"
Rockshox Recon 351 Soloair 160mm fork
Mavic EX721 rims laced onto Hope pro II hubs using DT swiss triple butted spokes, Ritchey Comp Pro tyres and Race Fame components with XTR groupset. SOLD
Cromoly frame with full Campagnolo Record 10 speed, Mavic rims, Cinelli bars and stem with Arundel Gecko bar tape, Selle Italia SLR Flow saddle.
Columbus SLX tubing, 3ttt stem, bars and seatpost, Campagnolo Record cranks, BB, headset, brake levers, shifters and front derailleur. Chorus variable pitch rear derailleur. Normandy 36h Hi-Flange hubs on Rigida rims.
A faithful CELL bitsa. CELL frameset with a selection of parts including carbon fork and 3200 lumen headlight!