This is an American-Ukrainian-Dutch joint volunteer initiative. The goal of this project is to build quality transportation bicycles from scratch and deliver them to various service workers, educators and ministry leaders for commuting and transporting in Ukraine.
Public transportation is unable to meet the demand of all the displaced people throughout Ukraine. It doesn't go everywhere and anytime it's needed. The average salary of $200 per month has been interrupted. The local economy and gas availability have been severely impacted since the invasion.
Our bicycle framebuilding shop is located in Bucha, Ukraine.
This project began with a call from Andrews University in MI to donate bicycles so students in its sister school in Russia wouldn't have to spend time walking so much. Russian customs refused our container of bicycles so they all went to Ukraine instead. In 2000, Doug Fattic - an American bicycle framebuilder - established the Ukraine Bicycle Project. A bicycle shop was set up on the campus of the Ukrainian Humanitarian Institute in Bucha, Ukraine. Since then, a number of Doug's students, framebuilders and various bicycle enthusiasts have traveled to Ukraine to help build frames and assemble bicycles.
Project founder, Doug Fattic, presents a keynote on Ukraine at the Classic Bicycles Auburn Show 2022 at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum. Photo courtesy of Tim Potter.
When the invasion started, we switched from thinking about bicycles to humanitarian aid. We used the money we had raised to pay for fuel, so those who could escape the city could go west. While in the west, the van drivers bought food to bring back and distribute around the city.
Evacuees (including children, as the word on the van's window indicates) load up for the drive west. Photo courtesy of Skip Montanaro.
The problem is that even though many people have gotten to areas where they probably aren’t in physical danger, danger always exists and keeps them in a constant state of fear. Not just of being physically harmed, but not knowing what the future holds. Millions have fled and that destabilizes the economy, so their future is entirely in doubt.
Doug has worked with Ukrainian Yuriy Kuzmenko (former engineer and church administrator) since the project's inception. Yuriy's house is close to the campus and our workshop. When the invasion started, he was able to move valuables from the shop and his house to safer locations and together with his wife they hid in their root cellar for safety.
The Russians are aware that root cellars (where everyone stores root vegetables for the winter) are a natural place to hide. They would open them up and yell down that they were going to throw in a grenade unless everyone came out. The fear was strong. Eventually, after a couple of weeks in those conditions, Yuriy was able to leave and go to Kyiv where he could take a train to West Ukraine. His van was destroyed by a huge shell. Our translator said he acted in her words “shell shocked”.
Eventually, we hope to expand this bicycle humanitarian model to other countries with similar needs as we have had inquiries from different parts of the world.
bicycle is at least 3 times more efficient than walking
bicycle increases one's capacity to carry by 5 times
Bicycle cuts commuting emissions by 67%
Source, repair, ship and distribute used bicycles from Western Europe
generators, stoves and heaters
Resume shop operations in Ukraine
Acquire tubing, bike components and supplies to make new bicycles
Train new volunteers to braze and build frames
Build frames, assemble bicycles, distribute and provide maintenance
During the winter season, heaters/stoves were made and assembled in Ukraine and delivered to the most impacted areas of the country. We aimed to provide at least 50 at $110 per unit. Your generous help enabled the production of total 144 heaters!Thank you so much for your contribution.
Individuals can donate any amount, large or small. Bicycle enthusiasts can get involved by volunteering. Companies can donate bicycle parts and tools. All contributions of money or value of product are tax-deductible and can receive a written receipt.
The link goes to the Adventist Giving Treasurer Portal.
Please select Ukraine Bicycle Project. You will receive a confirmation e-mail.
Please make checks payable to Niles Westside Adventist Church: Ukraine Bicycle Project
bicycles are serving in all parts of Ukraine
"This bicycle became my best helper in servicing others. The only way my colleagues can get around in Eastern Ukraine is by walking or bicycling."
bicycle design and components
The bicycle is modeled after Dutch transportation bikes that emphasize function, all weather efficiency and durability. They are designed to be ridden in good clothes. The bicycles are suitable for both paved and dirt roads. The frame is constructed with locally made laser-cut parts.
enclosed chaingurd and Fenders
The bikes have a fully enclosed chain guard which keeps the chain and clothes clean. They are ridden on usually moderately level terrain at a walking effort of 8 to 10 mph, so that one doesn't need a shower and change of clothes at their destination.
7 speed internal hub
The bikes use 7 speed (now often 8) internally geared hubs. Being able to shift when pedaling, coasting, or standing still is more convenient than derailleur systems. They don't wear out as fast either. They are especially helpful to those new to bicycling.
The bikes have a ring lock on the seat stays that makes locking a bicycle in non-NYC areas simple and fast. You turn a key, push a lever, and remove the key and, voila, it prevents an impulse steal. A cable can also be attached to the lock.
They have M shaped handlebars. This shape is more comfortable in around town trips than straight MTB type bars. The next alternative would be the figure 8 bar laid on its side, a shape more popular in Europe. It gives multiple hand positions. They have generator lights. Trips aren't scheduled only during the day.
front and rear Baskets, rear rack and kickstand
The bikes generally come with fenders, a rear rack, front and rear baskets and a bell. Bikes can get really loaded down carrying stuff. They have extra long chain stays for basket heel clearance.
They have a kickstand integrated into the frame. Another example of convenience over weight concerns.
They use roller brakes on the hubs. This makes rain and out of true wheels a non-issue. Coaster brakes don't let you scrub off a bit of speed as easily and put the crank in the best position after stopping. Those who are raised using them know how to overcome those obstacles but it's harder if you haven't learned to like them.
framebuilders and bicycle enthusiasts are wanted
Do good for the world while honing your skills. Many builders benefit greatly from the building experience in our shop where they can perfect their technique.
Our shop is located on the campus of the Ukrainian Humanitarian Institute in Bucha near Kyiv. It was broken into and looted by Russian troops. Fortunately, they took just general use tools and not the bike specific equipment we use to make frames and assemble them into complete bicycles. One of our storage sheds they left a Trek bicycle that's equipped with a Campy 8 speed group. When college people returned to campus after the Russians left, the door was wide open with the bicycle still inside. In the other shed where our expensive fixtures are stored, they couldn’t break the lock. Currently, we have 50 finished frames that are waiting for parts and another 50 sets of frame materials waiting to be made into frames. Both, pandemic and the invasion had impacted our production capacity.
The design features the Ukrainian coat of arms artistically stylized by Ukrainian artist, Eugene Berd, and traditional embroidery. Shipping worldwide.
Doug spent a lot of time designing and having this fixture made for sale because he really likes how it works and there isn’t anything similar on the market. It simplifies creating a frame design, makes it easy to check the accuracy of miters and assures that the main triangle is perfectly aligned ready to be spot brazed together exactly to specifications. It is also convenient to make changes to the design if something needs to be altered even after starting (such as a top tube being mitered a millimeter short).
Does what other fixtures can't
You can tell what the proportions really are of anything between the top tube and stem. The length of the head tube with the headset, the number of spacers or stem extension and the angle and/or length of the stem can all be visually calculated to find the best result. There is no need to find where the bottom of the head tube needs to be with trigonometry. It can be easily measured from the point that represents the center of the front wheel. Most fixtures can’t do that. After the design is finished and something needs to be changed, it is much easier to slide the pieces around to a new position than erase and redraw.
Unique Design. Simple to use. manufactured in ukraine
Doug has a long-standing relationship with a local Ukrainian group of engineers at Inex Systems who have been continuously refining the design and functionality of the fixture. Prior to the invasion the steel was sourced from Mariupol. It is laser-cut to order and ships from Ukraine to U.S. and Europe. Alignment table is also available per inquiry.
supports local economy
30% of proceeds support Ukraine Bicycle Project. Starting from $1600. Contact Doug to get more information, to order the fixture or to sign up for Doug's framebuilding classes in the U.S..
Ukraine Bicycle Tours were organized to raise funds and build friendship among different nations. The yearly tour was held for 15 years in many parts of Ukraine, including Crimea. The touring group was frequently escorted by the local police and interviewed by the press. We hope to restore the tours after the war.
doug fattic framebuilding classes in the U.S.
Refined Methods. Teaching Since 1976.
Doug Fattic brings more than 45 years of experience as a full time builder, painter and teacher. He apprenticed in Europe and had frames built for him personally by famous makers such as Hetchins, W.B. Hurlow and Masi. Some of these classic frames are in his shop where they can be sources of inspiration.
Over his career, Doug has visited many builders in England, Italy, France and Japan. He holds B.A. and M.A. in Teaching Education and serves as a local school board chairman.
Build a Pro Quality Personal Frame
on Your Very First Try.
Receive 150+ Page Class Manual
Use Doug Fattic Design Fixture
Three Days $ 600
Learn to brass and silver braze. Learn the basics of bicycle fit and frame design. And become acquainted with the entire building process. Materials are not included (around $100).
Two Weeks $ 3,000
The 2 week class is for those who have limited time but want a hand in building their own personal frame while letting Doug do some of the hard parts. Materials are not included (around $500).
Three Weeks $ 3,000
For those who want to make more frames in the future or want to make a more complicated type of frame like a randonneuring bicycle. There is more time for a demonstration and practice of each type of joint. Materials are not included (around $500).
"The cost of tuition is worth more than gold."
Steve Bissell, Switzerland
Student is referring to the many mistakes Doug prevented him from making. By using the best methods for each application, a student saves time, frustration and disappointment that comes from making a mistake. It is easy to get discouraged when things have to be corrected and it is not obvious how to do it better again.
One of Doug's subspecialties is making cut-out lugs. You can learn how to do this for future frames.
Pictured: lugs made by Doug's student during class.