Saxil Cykler is making cool, vintage-style designer bikes that are both high-quality and surprisingly affordable. The brand produces both damecykler and herrecykler, although of course anyone can ride any bike, and their cycles come in three Copenhagen-inspired silhouettes: the Nørrebro, Vesterbro, and Østerbro.
Finding a cycle brand in Copenhagen making aesthically-pleasing bikes at prices that are fair, is rare. Tobias, the manager of the shop, also designs every city bike, or bycykel.
“We used to sell other bike brands in the store,” he explains, “but in 2015 we realized that we just weren’t finding the bikes that were exactly right. It was either a very high price or basically the same bikes that everyone else has. The colors weren’t what we wanted, and small details like plastic fenders just didn’t suit our needs. So we made our own.”
It sounds easy, right? But it took two years and over ten frames just to get the prototype right. “Our bikes are produced in Taiwan, which is where most quality bicycle production takes place,” Tobias explains. “There is actually a different factory for every single part of the bike and another factory to assemble the whole thing. So we’re dealing with about 15 factories all together.”
After getting their first prototype, a version of the Nørrebro bike, Tobias rode it through the Copenhagen winter. “We figured if it could withstand that season, it would be good to go,” he laughs. “The bikes are meant to be city bikes, but they still need to be sturdy. I’m actually still riding that bike today!”
Saxil Cykler‘s own-branded bicycles may be young, but the brand itself first launched in 1952, when famous Danish cyclist Børge Saxil opened his shop in Vesterbro. He ran it until his death in 1977. 32 years later in 2009, the brand was revived as the iteration we know today and moved to Østerbro.
Saxil Cykler is both a shop and a workshop where people bring their bikes to be fixed. “It was really important to us that even though we are making our own bikes, the parts can be found easily. We don’t want people to buy our bikes then need to import this piece or that piece. So in that way, they are straightforward,” Tobias says, “but in our own shop, we only sell our own bikes. When we started producing for ourselves, it just made sense to sell off the other brands we had, then let our own brand take over. It’s been really successful so far.”
All three bikes are sleek with a retro edge. The Nørrebro is perhaps the most modern, with sports-style handles and an ultra-thin frame. The Østerbro is a bit chunkier, with high-rise handlebars, a basket, and lights integrated into the design: “it’s got the most details,” Tobias says. The Vesterbro sits somewhere between the two, with high-rise handlebars but a more minimalist shell. These are the kind of bicycles you see others riding and go, “where’d she get that bike?!” The attention to detail and quality of each piece is evident. So is the sense of aesthetics, which has Danish design written all over it.
When I ask if the bikes are aluminium, as many city bikes are in order to keep them light, Tobias says not exactly. “Many of the parts on each bike made from aluminium, but the frames and guards are steel. That’s because steel actually transfers power from you to the bike much better, so you get a smoother and easier ride. People worry about them rusting, but if the bike is well-painted and of decent quality, it won’t be a problem.”
“Our goal is to have the coolest bike shop in Copenhagen,” Tobias says. With bikes like these, it seems like they’ve already reached their goal.
Take a look at Saxil Cykler’s Nørrebro, Vesterbro, and Østerbro bicycles:
Saxil Cykler’s Nørrebro Bicycle
Saxil Cykler’s Vesterbro Bicycle
Saxil Cykler’s Østerbro Bicycle
Visit Saxil Cykler and pick out your perfect bike!
Østerfælled Torv 19
2100 København Ø
Mon – Fri 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sat 10:00 am – 2:00 pm