The Original, down to the cable Housing

The left bikes in the desert

see the story on the found here

The addition to this is an anecdote on the fork.

When Will collected the Steelman bikes (see also the El Gato Racmac in the background on the left picture), the fork of the Don Myrah Replica was missing. There was one, see pictures below, but with the wrong blue color for both El Gato Teams.

The second wonder found, unbelievable!

A few weeks later, Will got a message from the seller of the bike. He found another box and guess what, the fork from the Don Myrah Replica was in there. This is how it preserved decades, while the yellow RockShox got sandy...

The original Steelman El Gato Don Myrah Replica?

Pretty fast after the first Google searches, the bike from Eric (Rumpfy) pops up. Will contacted him, luckily Eric had a high resolution and yes, every decal even chips match with the magazine bike. No wonder, these articles were managed and promoted by Ray Schmal.

It is THE magazine bike.

The plan was clear, put it back together to the magazine bike. The missing parts like the stem and seatpost were found, while the German sponsor´s CONTENTAL BAJA tyres (hand signed) were included on the backyard. Also an highlight, the numbered wheelsmith wheels.


Photo by Hugh Blanchard
Photo by Hugh Blanchard
Photo by: Tommy Breeze
Photo by: Tommy Breeze

These pictures were taken at 2018´s Keyesville, thanks for sharing the pics, Will and Hugh (via facebook)

the story continues, Hamburg Nov 23, 2018


The restauration of a monument

This bike is clearly amazing, it has everything what a bike like this has to have. Great steel frame, existing history and found, perfect parts and overall condition. If you look at the frame, every detail is beautiful, even the marks, chips, some rust. It tells stories. So what should one do with a bike like this. My goal is to get the most out of this build by restauration of a monument. I.e.- clean, polish and wax the existing paint, work and close rusty areas and maybe replace some heavy worn parts with exact the same in better condition. I want to see the original color shine again and ride this bike a beautiful trails in the upcoming summer

Jan, 13, 2018.
(here some pics of the current historical marks of this materpiece of frame


Some polish to test

Before / After wards, simple Meguiars polish

What I really like is the white tone and the colour changes. After the initial clean up of some parts of the frame (will do completely later), this pearl effect of the white became visible. I'm flashed from it, beautiful and special bike.

First winter ride, check

The first ride was a winter tour through Hamburg. If this bike ever saw snow. The German Continental tyres will like have it in it´s DNA.

Even though it was a short trip, the El Gato showed the opposite from what the RayMac did. It is straight, agile, direct in curves. The tail really absorbs hard kicks. Clearly, this bike is made for narrow trails, fast turns, cross country.

Frame and parts details




Steelman Excel tube set with ovalized top tube and chain stay, full fillet brazed


18" (I measure 17.5)


Steelman Excel tubes, full fillet brazed (shimano drop outs)




Answer Hyperlite


XT 730


Shimano XT 732

Brake Levers

Dia Compe 183


Cook Bros Racing + XT SG Chainwheels


Suntour XC Pro or Shimano SPD 737

Buttom Braked Phil Wood
Derailleur Shimano XT 732 (FD) / 735 (RD)

Ritchey Vantage Comp + Shimano 600 (28h)  XT 732 (32) hubs + Wheelsmith spokes + XT HG cassette 7 speed


Continental Baja

Seat Post Suntour XC (I ride American Classic Titan)
Saddle Look
Grips Scott
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