From 1972 until 1980, Bill ran Casa de Oro Cycles. Before long Bill started addressing the need of adding braze-on’s to the European road frames that were popping up everywhere. This turned into a lucrative side business of striping the first paint, adding the braze-on’s and then re-painting the frames. This started to peak his interest in frame design and in 1976, he enrolled in his first frame building class from the legendary Albert Eisentraut and started creating his first custom frames.
In 1980, Bill decided to leave the retail side of the bike business and focus his efforts on frame building and painting. Around the same time as selling his bike shop, Joe Bell returned from parts East and his racing career. The two moved out to the beach and setup a garage with the sole purpose of building and painting steel frames.
Around 1983/4, Bill started working together with Richard Bryne (Speedplay) on some special Sceptre frame make-ups featuring steeper seat tube angles (80 degrees) to allow one of Richard’s coachee’s (and RAAM racer) Jim Elliot to achieve an advanced aerodynamic position on his distance setup.
In 1986, Bill and JB moved back to Spring Valley and the Holland Cycles brand of frame was truly born. Each frame was made of steel and every single one was painted. Before long (1989), Jason Lilly was hired at the peak of the steel era and Holland Cycles had swollen to 4/5 frame builders and 2/3 painters producing around 200 frames per year.
In 1992, Bill designed and built his first Titanium bicycle and the game changed. Paint became a secondary business and soon Joe Bell purchased this portion of the business to focus his efforts and allow Bill to pursue the Titanium dream. By 1995, Bill had transitioned all his custom frame work to titanium and the steel era of Holland Cycles had ended.
By 1997, Jason Lilly was becoming masterful at annodization techniques and pursued his dream into his own OE supply business for the biggest wheel makers in the bike industry. Years later Jason would release what has become one of the benchmark lubricants in the industry… Lillylube.
In 2004, Bill released his next innovation by licensing ExoGrid® Technology for use in bicycle frames. This technology co-molds carbon fiber and a cutout titanium tube to save weight, retain strength and generate special ride qualities through the constrained layer damping combination of both materials. Bill also experimented with VyaTek’s IsoGrid® combinations of carbon tubes and titanium lugs for a few short years. Ultimately the market proved Exogrid to be the technology to bring Titanium strength and carbon lightness to the next generation of customers.
In 2010, Bill was approached and convinced to join forces with master wheel builder Charles Wells for the opportunity to marry his custom frame design business with Charles’ custom wheel creations. In this way, as Bill had purpose designed and built custom frames for his customers for may years; now Charles and he could add yet another layer of custom strength and function for these unique and purely custom bicycles.
In 2012, faced double digit growth, Bill Holland hired former professional cyclist turned master bike fitter, Cody Stevenson to join the Holland Cycles team. Cody was a super addition to the team as all his years as a professional cyclist racing all throughout the world allowed Holland’s clientele a new perspective in bike function and design.
By 2013, Charles had convinced Bill that there was an ever-growing need for travel-equipped bike designs. Therefore, Holland Cycles licensed Ritchey’s Breakaway design and immediately improved its design in every regard The Holland Jet, available in Titanium or ExoGrid® construction. The Jet is a much smaller interface, which allows a stronger connection and barely tips the scales (80g) over a normal build.
By January 2014, Holland Cycles has finally outgrown the semi-original facility (from 1986) in Casa de Oro and a brand new 1800 square feet showroom was opened including a state of the art fit center, a full showroom displaying all build options and a service/build area which quadrupled previous capabilities.
Three short months later, Bill Holland announced his next product innovation with the introduction of a Holland HC Full Carbon, all custom, completely handcrafted bicycle frame made entirely in San Diego.