Overview: Workcycles City Bikes


WorkCycles Opa 2008

WorkCycles city bikes are practical, beautiful and durable utility bicycles built to provide decades of reliable service in all conditions. Like all real “Dutch bikes” they’re equipped to ride comfortably upright, clean and dry in street clothes, to ride in the dark, and to carry your groceries, gear and children. WorkCycles bikes are not flashy fashion items; they are simply the best daily-use bicycles we can build for an affordable price.

All WorkCycles bikes are hand-built here in the Netherlands. Each bicycle is custom built for its new owner as a combination of a frame choice, component package and various options. This page explains in detail the options available. For purchase information please contact us via the various city bike model pages on the WorkCycles website.

workcycles-azor-factory 5

WorkCycles builds both bikes for individuals and also special bicycles for business and organizations. Whether your firm needs a fleet of heavy-duty transport bikes or just a couple gorgeous bicycles for a boutique display we have the experience and capabilities for the task. There are many more possibilities for fleet bikes than shown on our site and in our price lists; Just contact us to discuss your needs.

Foreigners sometimes ask what our bikes weigh, as if this is an important consideration in a utility bike. Answer? They’re not an ounce heavier than they need to be. WorkCycles bicycles ride great but they’re not light weight. Making them lighter would require compromises in durability, practicality or price. They weigh between 18 and 25 kilos – depending on how many extras and gears you add.

Features of all WorkCycles City Bicycles

    Hand-soldered, steel frames
    Lugs and large diameter tubing make them much stiffer and stronger than frames from other manufacturers. They’re built to handle heavy loads, child seats, big riders and constant use. Frames are coated first with an anti-rust zinc carbonate primer and then a tough and environmentally friendly powdercoat. They’re guaranteed for 10 years against manufacturer’s defects.

    Heavy duty 28” wheels
    Special wide, double-wall, black, aluminium rims are made here in the Netherlands just for WorkCycles. These tough rims are laced with (thick) 2.3mm stainless spokes bent to precisely fit the hub. These wheels are so durable that they put those of other city bikes to shame. They’re perfectly suitable for heavy riders, carrying large loads or two kids. They’re even strong enough to ride with an adult passenger on the rear carrier… Dutch style.

    The tires are smooth rolling and long wearing Schwalbe Marathons with Kevlar anti-puncture layers. On request we can fit even more puncture resistant Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires.


    Internal hub gears
    All WorkCycles bikes have fully enclosed hub gears, mostly from Shimano: foolproof shifting, nearly maintainence free and out of harm’s way. You can even shift while stopped, a very handy feature when riding for transportation.

    Hub brakes on both wheels
    All models have a front Shimano roller brake and either a backpedal or (hand operated) roller rear brake. Hub brakes are nearly maintainence free, unaffected by weather and don’t make the bike dirty with brake pad sludge. WorkCycles fits the top of the line Shimano IM80 rollerbrakes to all bikes now. Though many Dutch bicycles have only a rear coaster brake we feel strongly that a bicycle with two brakes is both safer and more convenient.

    Fully enclosed chain-case and mudguards
    No dirty trousers/skirts and almost no drivetrain maintenance. The mudguards are zinc and powder-coated steel so they won’t break or rust. The full chaincase keeps your drivetrain clean to reduce maintenance to a minimum. A hatch on the rear makes the occasional lubrication and chain tension adjustment easy.

    Hub dynamo powered LED lighting
    Bright lights whenever needed without the hassle of batteries. The dynamo is inside the front hub so it runs silently with negligible resistance. Headlamps come from B&M in Germany and have powerful LED’s. The taillamps have LEDs with a 100,000 hour lifespan and energy storage circuitry to remain on for a few minutes while stopped. Double wiring is routed internally though the frame and mudguard stays for reliability and clean looks.

    Stainless steel parts and hardware
    The handlebar, stem, spokes and almost all of the nuts, bolts and washers will remain serviceable and pretty for decades… even when stored outdoors in a rainy climate (like Amsterdam).

    Stable and strong centerstand
    We find the combination of this stable, 2-leg center-stand, steering limiter spring and the headlamp mounted on the left fork leg to be much handier than the more typical side-stand. The bike stands upright which is great when loading the front carrier and even with loaded panniers or front carrier the bike stands reliably.

    Rear wheel lock
    The integrated lock immobilizes the rear wheel. This won’t prevent the bike from being carried away but when combined with a chain or U-lock it’s a very complete locking system. For those fortunate enough to live in a low-theft area the ring lock is adequate on its own.

    Heavy-duty rear carrier and elastics
    Carry a child seat, big panniers, or a friend… Dutch style. WorkCycles carriers are strong, very strong.


    Frame mounted front carrier option
    This incredibly handy rack is fixed to the frame so it can carry huge loads without influencing your bike’s handling. Your bike remains stable when parked as well. Once trying a bike with a frame-mounted front carrier you won’t ever want to ride a bike with a load that swings around with the front handlebar.

    It can be removed with a single bolt, but once you’ve used this carrier you won’t understand how you ever lived without it. Most WorkCycles riders choose to semi-permanently attach a crate to their front carrier. Just drop your grocery bags, backpack, briefcase, kids toys in and go.

“Classic” or “Secret Service” series bicycles?
The WorkCycles models can be divided into two series: Classic and Secret Service. The differences are more a matter of geometry, appearance and mass than technology. In fact many of our favorite components and materials are used almost universally throughout the line.

Its also worth noting that there are no quality differences between the various WorkCycles models; We build bikes that are absolutely good enough to provide years of pleasurable transportation, nothing less. Just choose the frame type, components and options that best suit your needs, with the assurance that our simplest 2-speed is made with the same attention and care as the most expensive Nuvinci CVT model.

The Classic bicycles are more traditional in appearance, have a slightly more relaxed and stable ride thanks to a longer wheelbase and larger tires and mudguards.

The Secret Service bicycles are slightly more “athletic” in nature. They’re also great for cyclists for whom the ultra-robust Classic bicycles are overkill or to ride in areas where the topography is more varied than Holland. This is all quite relative as these are still much tougher and better equipped bicycles than most people have ever seen or ridden. Both series are available in a range of sizes but the very smallest sizes are only available for the Secret Service and the very largest size (73cm!) only for the Classic.


WorkCycles Classic Series Bicycles
Classic series bicycles are built on the Oma, Opa, Double-Tube and Kruis frames. These are modern descendants of the beloved, black, Dutch roadsters produced since the beginning of the 20th century. They are timeless, comfortable, practical and (aside from the WorkCycles Fr8) as tough as bicycles can be. The geometry is relaxed, the wheelbase is long and the fat, 47mm tires provide a wonderfully smooth ride. They also provide lots of protection for the rims when carrying heavy loads.

The traditional square-bend handlebar offers classic looks, comfort and versatility. You sit upright but can tuck into a headwind by holding the front section. The thick-walled stainless steel won’t break even after years of abuse.

Other features

  • Choice of various frame styles
  • 47mm Schwalbe Marathon tires
  • Wide mudguards of thick, zinc-coated steel
  • Rear mudguard white white tail and taillamp
  • Super strong rear “postal” carrier
  • Colors: Gloss Black or Matte Black. Some frames available in both and others in only one of the two.

    Classic Series Frame Options
    Classic series bicycles can be built on the basis of any of the following frames. Below is an overview.

    workcycles-oma-gt-nr3d 1

      The iconic Dutch granny’s bike with gracefully curved tube and very tall head tube to sit upright or fit a front child seat. Everybody makes something “looking” like this bike but the WorkCycles Oma is constructed with large diameter tubing and a reinforced seat tube so it’s much stiffer and stronger than similar looking frames from other manufacturers.
      Sizes: 49, 53, 57, 61cm

      Workcycles Opa GT-NR2D met slotje

      The timeless, diamond form, men’s frame, with solid riding large-diameter tubing. No nonsense beauty.
      Sizes 53, 57, 61, 65cm

      workcycles Dubbelbuis 65 GT-NR8D

      Double-Tube Transport
      The twin top-tubes make this frame extremely strong and stiffer than the otherwise similar Opa but Dutch men generally buy them because it’s something of an icon here. The 73cm size Double-Tube is extra long for really tall men (200cm / 6’6″+).
      Sizes: 57, 61, 65, 73cm


      Kruis Gents, aka Pastoorsfiets
      “Kruis” = “Cross” Originally made for the preacher with his long robes. The many triangulated tubes makes this frame very stiff, strong and distrinctive. The Kruis also has a very long head tube for very upright sitting while the step-over is lower than a diamond frame of the same size. Tip: The Kruis makes a great transport bike with our front carrier; It’s even stiffer than the Double-Tube frame.
      Sizes: 57, 61, 65cm

      workcycles-krui-dames-pu-gt-nr3d 1

      Kruis step-through
      An attractive cross-frame with a lower instep. This frame is ideal for tall women, for carrying kids or for a couple to share. The geometry is identical to the Oma frame but it’s much more solid riding under load. The stiffness and relaxed geometry provide especially solid and safe handling.
      Sizes: 57, 61cm

      Classic Series Component Packages
      From 2003-2013 WorkCycles Classic bikes were available in either a simpler “GT” spec, or a slightly fancier “LX” spec, each with several variants. Anno 2013 production of the traditional “lakdoek” (vinyl coated cloth) chaincases and skirt guards ended so we’ve merged the GT and LX into a single model line called “GX” (which doesn’t mean anything but we Dutch like acronyms). Fortunately local supplier Hesling has introduced an excellent new chaincase that looks like the traditional “lakdoek” model but is actually their most advanced model yet.

      The GX can be ordered in any of the following versions:
      – GX NR2D: Sram 2sp, hand brake F, coaster brake R (automatic shift, no shifter or cable)
      – GX NR3D: Shimano 3sp, hand brake F, coaster brake R
      – GX NN3D: Shimano 3sp, hand brakes F/R
      – GX NR8D: Shimano 8sp, hand brake F, coaster brake R
      – GX NN8D: Shimano 8sp, hand brakes F/R
      – GX NNiD: Nuvinci CVT, hand brakes F/R (infinitely variable transmission)

      A comfortable, tough and weatherproof Selle Royal Ondina saddle (vinyl) is standard. A Brooks B67 (mens) or B67S (unisex) leather saddle is optional.

      WorkCycles Secret Service mens 2008

      The WorkCycles “Secret Service”
      The Secret Service is our stealth machine. It’s conservative in appearance and is made from similar materials to our Classic models. However it’s a little lighter, faster and more responsive handling because it’s based around 37mm wide tires instead of the fat 47mm of our Classic bikes. The smaller tires enable narrower mudguards, and thus a frame and fork with tighter geometry. The combination of slightly shorter wheelbase and lighter weight provide a more sporty ride… sporty for a heavy-duty city bike, that is.

      The Secret Service comes in a wide range of sizes, making it also suitable for the smaller cyclist (as well as normal and larger riders).

      Some Secret Service specifications

    1. 37mm Schwalbe Marathon tires
    2. Tubular steel rear carrier
    3. Brooks B67 leather saddle
    4. Busch & Muller LED tailamp with stand light mounted on the carrier
    5. Sportier “Moon” handlebar
    6. Secret Service Frame Options
      The Secret Service can be built with either of these frames. All are available in gloss black and most in matte black.

      Workcycles Secret Service NN8D

      Men’s lugged steel
      The timeless, diamond-form, men’s frame, with solid riding large-diameter tubing. No nonsense beauty.
      Sizes: 49, 53, 57, 61, 67cm

      Workcycles Secret service damesfiets

      Ladies’ lugged steel
      A timeless step-through frame that looked as normal 50 years ago as today… except that this frame is made with oversized tubing making it much more solid riding.
      Sizes: 45, 49, 53, 57, 61cm

      Secret Service Component Packages
      – SS NR2D: Sram 2sp, hand brakes F/R (automatic shift, no shifter or cable)
      – SS NR3D: Shimano 3sp, hand brake F, coaster brake R
      – SS NR8D: Shimano 8sp, hand brake F, coaster brake R
      – SS NN8D: Shimano 8sp, hand brakes F/R
      – SS NNiD: Nuvinci CVT, hand brakes F/R (infinitely variable transmission)

    General Options

      Front Carrier
      WorkCycles can fit this ultra handy front carrier to any of the above bicycles. In fact a majority of our bikes get fitted with it. As noted above the carrier is bolted to the frame where it has no influence on your bike’s handling. Most riders choose to semi-permanently attach a plastic or wooden crate to the carrier: Just toss your groceries, briefcase, pug, backpack… right in.

    Saddles Options (for all bikes)
    Brooks leather saddles are beautiful and gradually form to your anatomy. With care they will last many years, developing a lovely patina. But leather saddles require care and maintenance and will not survive long if the bike is stored outdoors in a rainy climate. Any model can be fitted with one of the following saddles, if it’s not already standard equipment. Conversely a vinyl saddle can be fitted to a bike that normally comes with a leather saddle.

      This is Brooks’ standard city bike saddle, with the “S” designating “short” or ladies’ versions. Available in Honey, Brown and Black. Brown is standard. Honey and black usually cost a few euro more.

      The B33/3 is much bigger and has really cool, wound triple-coil springs. This saddle is quite imposing and can be overwhelming on smaller bicycles. A word of warning: The B33 is beautiful and luxuriously wide but we feel that the B66/67 really rides better. Honey or Black.

      Anti-theft cable
      In some cities your precious Brooks saddle will get stolen, so we can press-fit a small cable from your frame to the saddle. Its discrete and provides room for adjustment.

    The WorkCycles website is here.

    Here are the various WorkCycles city bikes on our website.

    Copyright 2009-2014 WorkCycles

    68 Responses to “Overview: Workcycles City Bikes”

    1. Barrie Baker Says:

      Hello from South Australia ! I will be in Amsterdam soon !! What can I expect to pay for the Top of the Azor range gloss Black Oma with all the trimmings including the 8 speed .Thank You For Your Time, Barrie Baker

    2. Danny Says:

      Concerning the Kruisframe model-
      Name the lugs used (seat, crown, ect.) and the tubing specs.
      What’s the make and model of the lights?
      Have you fitted the bike with a Rohloff 500/14 before?


    3. timmy Says:

      Is there an Ultegra upgrade path? Pls forward brochure listing compatible hydraulic disc braking systems. I don’t see bottle cage mounts. Are tied and soldered spokes strong enough? Thanks.

    4. henry Says:

      Barrie, Please contact WorkCycles for specifics and pricing: http://www.workcycles.com/workbike/contact.html

      Danny, I’m guessing you also commented here: http://www.bakfiets-en-meer.nl/2007/05/20/nieuwe-transportfiets-met-kruisframe/ but your questions are (partially) answered there in any case.

      Timmy, There is certainly an Ultegra option, but it’s a downgrade. We can fit the new Ultegra coaster brake hub and the accompanying Ultegra “Solidtech” steel crank. All hydraulic disc brake systems are compatible; You supply the disk brakes and we loan you our MIG welding kit and as much steel strip as needed to install them. There are no bottle mounts because real men don’t need to drink while cycling. Have you ever seen a picture of Eddy Merckx drinking while riding? No, because he was too busy attacking. Tied and soldered spokes are always strong enough.

    5. treberden Says:

      Hi Henry,

      Very nice blog and even much nicer products ! Please fin ASAP a french retailer in Paris please 😉

      I have a question or two about The kruisframe step through:

      – Is it possible to use in the same time a bobike mini and a front carrier ? I have the feeling that the kid would have his feet on the carrier.

      – Do you have the same kind of “Child’s saddle and footrests” you offer for FR8 that could fit on your kruisframe step through ?


      Mr T

    6. henry Says:

      Mr. T,
      We’re working on that Paris dealer! Go put some pressure on Allovélo with whom we’re already talking.

      A Bobike Mini can be combined with a front carrier on the Kruisframe. If you mount a box or bin on the carrier you’ll just have to cut it away at the rear to make room for the footrests to swing. We do this all the time here.

      We do also have a child’s saddle with footrests to fit the Kruisframe but it’s not nearly as elegant as our integrated system for the Fr8.

    7. john in SF Says:

      Hi Henry, I’ve been happily riding an 8 speed Secret Service through out San Francisco. 61 cm men’s frame with front/back roller brakes. But I prefer the square bend handlebar over the \Sportier Moon\ bar. I know that the Secret Service has a tighter frame compared to the standard opa fiets– am I going to impale myself if I swap out the moon bar with the square bend?

    8. henry Says:

      Hi John,
      The classic type handlebar works just fine on the Secret Service. Just trim a centimeter or two off the ends to shorten it… but first check to see how much CAN be cut while still leaving room on the straight section for the shifter, brake lever and grip on the right side.

    9. Dan Says:

      I’m trying to decide between the Transport double-tube and the Opafiets… apart from the second tube and the frame-mounted front carrier… can you elaborate on any other differences?

      I’m 6’5″ and 260lbs, is there a significant difference in the sturdiness of one over the other?



    10. Todd Edelman Says:

      Hi. I know that you use Busch & Müller lights and I wonder if you use their DIWA system. See http://www.kinetics.org.uk/html/diwa_system.shtml for one example. These have a rear taillight which increases in output when a bikes gets slower, thus imitating – if in a softer way – brake lights. (I do not think that bikes should have brake lights as with them can get mistaken for scooters etc.). Are these lights legal in the NL?

    11. henry Says:

      We do use B&M taillamps on many of our bikes. They always have standlights (stay on for a few minutes when stopped) but not the DIWA feature. I doubt they’re illegal here since the regulations for bike lighting are vary basic.

    12. Dan Says:

      I’m starting to think I should take your lack of response personally…

    13. Todd Edelman Says:

      @Dan, I am fairly certain that the double top tube bike is stiffer than the Opa. But of course it is also heavier, though I am not sure by how much. I also think you can put the pickup front carriers on both bikes. Are you in a position to test ride both?

    14. henry Says:

      I don’t think I ever noticed your comment. At 6’5″ you’ll probably ride the 70cm frame which only comes in the Double Tube anyway. They’re all very sturdy bikes but the Double Tube and Kruisframe are even stiffer and stronger. Do you need the extra-ness? No, but it will be nicer especially when loaded up.

      Given that you weigh 260lbs I can’t imagine the 1 pound difference here is relevant.

    15. Dan Says:

      Thank you Todd and Henry for your replies, unfortunately I don’t have access to test ride them, I’m in Canada and Curbside seems to only bring in pre-sold bikes… it might be a good excuse to visit Chicago or even Amsterdam!

    16. henry Says:

      Yes, we’ve heard the same about Curbside and find it strange given the number of (frustrated) inquiries we get from Canada. Lots of people visit us in Amsterdam to pick up their bikes and then bring them home on the plane. We also send bikes all over the world by air freight. It’s not cheap but it’s also not crazy expensive. Just contact us at workcycles and we can help you.

    17. Keith Messingschlager Says:

      Hello Henry,

      I am still enjoying lots of good utility and pleasure from my Workcycles Transport Double-Tube bicycle. I need to replace to Bibia rear carrier rubber straps though. The sun’s UV finally ate ’em up. Do you have any replacements for sale? Price?


    18. henry Says:

      Hi Keith,
      We now have some much stronger and UV resistant straps (“snelbinders”). They cost just €5.50 but shipping them to the US will probably cost much more.

    19. Marsha Says:

      Hi Henry. I am very confused. I tried the Secret Service bike today at Adeline Adeline. It was 45cm and had roller brakes front and rear.
      1. What is the advantage of Roller brakes front and coaster brakes in the rear?
      Also, I don’t remember the shape of the handlebars.
      2. What is the advantage of moon shape vs. the bent shape.
      Most importantly, on the 45cm frame, if the seat was at the right level for me to extend my legs, then I could not sit on the seat and put my one or two feet on the ground at a stop. Any suggestions? Thanks.

    20. henry Says:

      1. In Holland we sell the most bikes with handbrake front and coaster brake rear. For those accustomed to coaster brakes it’s a nice combination. The coaster allows you to brake while cycling with one hand (talking on phone, guiding child, signaling, carrying stuff…) and coaster brakes are basically maintenance free. On the other hand, many adults outside northern Europe aren’t comfortable with coaster brakes and the roller brake offers better braking and heat dissipation for hilly terrain.

      2. The moon shape handlebar offers a slightly more athletic position, thus suitable for the Secret Service. We swap handlebars frequently. It’s easy.

      3. The saddle height dilemma you describe is a common one, mainly for smaller riders. A lower bottom bracket (crank axle) helps but it can only be so low before causing ground clearance problems. The Fr8, designed for carrying heavy loads, has a very low BB. Even my 150cm mother in law can ride my own Fr8 comfortably. Pushing the saddle back on its rails to create a shallower seat angle helps but only if you can sit and pedal comfortably like that.
      4. Yes, the Yepp Mini fits all of our bikes. In theory all of the front child seats have a limit of 15kg but it’s mostly a matter of whether the bike still handles properly and whether the parent is comfortable riding with the child in the seat. Also kids’ legs tend to get too long to fit between the handlebar and seat. Still lots of Dutch folks keeep ridin their kids in front seats until four or so because it’s just more fun, or because the seat is already on the bike.

    21. Marsha Says:

      Henry. I forgot to ask, can you put a Yepp child seat on the front handle bars of the Secret Service bike. Will this seat hold a child 31lbs. (2yr old) Do you need a square bent handlebar to put a child seat on or will a moon shape also hold a child seat?

    22. Marsha Says:

      Thanks for your suggestions. Do you think the seat level/leg extension problem could be solved with a the next size up frame. Also, at my age, I do not begin a bike ride on the seat. It feels very awkward for me to do this. I begin with my right (the broken ankle) foot on the right pedal and then push and sit. I think leg extension is more important than beginning and ending sitting on the seat.

      Also, would a Oma be better than a secret service for me? What are the advantages of the SS over the Oma?

      Last question. Can I order a bike from you to send to me. I may want the coaster rear brake and the rolling front brake. Again, I am so old that I was always very comfortable with the coaster brake. Thanks. Marsha

    23. henry Says:

      No, the frame size has no influence on whether you can reach the ground at a give saddle to crank extension. It’s a function of the BB height and effective crank axle to seat angle. Many of the older women (usually shorter and less flexible) always step off their bikes when they stop at signals and elsewhere. When it’s time to continue they push off and step through with their right leg.

      An Oma will not be better in this regard, and the smallest frame size is 49cm. A Fr8 will be better but it sounds like you don’t want one. In a few months the lighter, more compact Gr8 will be available and it will also be very low.

      You can best order the bike from Adeline Adeline. Perhaps they would be willing to install a coaster brake rear wheel for you.

    24. Frits B Says:

      Ha, Gr8 news :-).

    25. Keith Messingschlager Says:

      Hi Henry,
      How much would it cost for you to ship me two of the Bibia Snelbinders and I also need to replace the small black stem bolt cover. For shipping cost calculations, I am in Traverse City, Michigan 49684.

      Thank you! ☺

    26. daniel Says:

      I want to share a Pastoor Cross Frame bike with my wife. She is 5’3″, and I am 5’10”
      What is the ideal size bike we should get?

    27. henry Says:

      Daniel, If you want to share this bike you simply have to choose the size that fits the smaller rider, your wife in this case. That’d be a 49cm frame. The 49cm is too small for you but with a long seat post and a quick release seat post clamp can be adjusted to fit you too.

      Really this is not the ideal bike for shared use. That’s why we build Fr8’s and Gr8’s with our special Adaptive Seat Tube geometry. A Fr8 or Gr8 Universal frame will easily adjust to fit you both perfectly.

    28. Bryant Says:

      Is their a big difference in frame geometry between the Oma/Opa or SS Male/Female. As a Male looking to get his first city bike after riding Road Racers and Cross bikes, I’d much prefer a transport bike that I didn’t have to throw my leg over but that didn’t alter the Geometry to much from as the top tube varients. The Fr8/Gr8 aren’t off the table either but I really like the look of the classic models
      Also as a 6’1-ish male what size Oma/Opa should I start with(are the sizes the same as other bikes is what I’m asking)

    29. Marsha Says:

      Bryant, Where are you located?

    30. Bryant Says:

      Alaska(not many options for testing purposes but I am planning a trip that goes through Seattle sometime in April so I’ll definitely be stopping by Dutch Bike Co. Seattle), I’m thinking about next summer as I’m sticking to my Fat tire bike for the winter and for when I Move(Mid 2015) to somewhere hopefully more a bit easier to handle by bike(I’m a mostly full-time bike commuter)[though to be fair they’ve tried their best]

    31. Marsha Says:

      Hi Bryant. I cannot be of much help. I ended buying a Batavus bike in Amsterdam and brought it back to NYC. I do not ride anymore as NYC is still not bike friendly enough for me. In fact, I have two Batavus bikes for sale. Good luck.

    32. John Says:

      Hi Bryant. I have a SS, Crossframe bike, and also a Gr8. I’ve rented step-thru frames of the Omafiets and Crossframe bikes from Henry while staying in Amsterdam. I’m 6-0 and ride a 61 cm frame. I love riding my SS in hilly San Francisco. The bike is lighter and slightly shorter than the standard Opa or Oma. However, the heavier Opa/Oma bikes ride much better on horrible road surfaces and they’re better for hauling things, or a friend on the back rack. Gr8 is superfun. Rides like a little tank and can haul a lot. Buying a step thru frame does make sense for a transport bike. Happy riding!

    33. Pat Says:

      Hi, I’m interested in purchasing a Oma – I am 168 cm in height. What frame size would you recommend – 49 or 53 cm?

    34. henry Says:

      Pat, At 168 the 53cm would be fine unless you have very short legs for your height. But… the 53 and 57cm sizes are being phased out, to be replaced by a 55cm. So the question is really 49cm or 55cm. A size chart I have to put online:

      Below is a rough frame size chart for traditional Dutch bikes. Note that one typically rides a Dutch bike with a considerably bigger frame than what they might be accustomed to in road and mountain bikes. This issue comes up frequently with our customers. For example I ride a 56cm c-t road bike and a 61cm Secret Service (59cm c-c).

      With the “normal” Dutch frame size one can just barely or not quite stand over a diamond frame bike with their feet flat on the ground

      45cm: quite small (I’d recommend a Gr8 to this customer anyway)
      49cm: 155cm, 5’1″ plus
      53cm: 161cm, 5’3″ plus
      55cm: 165cm, 5’5″ plus
      57cm: 168cm, 5’6″ plus
      61cm: 178cm, 5’10” plus
      65cm: 188cm, 6’2″ plus
      70cm: 198cm, 6’5″ and over
      73cm: 200cm, 6’6″ and over

      Obviously there’s a lot of tolerance between people depending on their build. With step through frames it really doesn’t matter much, as long as the seat post can go low enough. Many Dutch ladies bikes have traditionally been available only in 56 or 57cm anyway.

      Standover heights:
      We don’t actually stand over our bicycles here in this manner but standover height is often used as a guideline elsewhere so here they are for those accustomed to this measurement:

      Opa 65cm = 90cm
      Opa 61cm = 86cm
      Opa 57cm = 81cm
      Opa 53cm = 78cm

      Secret Service 67cm = 90cm
      Secret Service 61cm = 84cm
      Secret Service 57cm = 80cm
      Secret Service 55cm = 78cm
      Secret Service 53cm = 77cm

    35. arwin Says:

      Hi – I am a guy interested in a oma bike. I cycle up a lot of hills and stand up in the pedals. I am happy hauling a heavy bike (I enjoy the pain!)but am attracted by the female step thru frame for convenience . Would the frame handle all the strain of this kind of riding or is the opa better? The roads are really rough around here so I like the wide tyres on this model as opposed to your secret service. Thanks, Arwin

    36. John Says:

      Hi Arwin, the step-thru frame should be fine on hills and bad road surfaces. You’ll definitely enjoy the 47mm tires of the Omafiets compared to the 37mm Secret Service. If you’re hauling heavy cargo on the front / back racks, Henry is the authority on how the step-thru frame compares to diamond. I ride a traditional Crossframe bike laden with cargo. Works like a charm in San Francisco.

    37. Amy Says:

      I have wanted a Workcycles Oma Transport forever (LX, 8speed, front and rear roller brakes). I have three questions:

      (1) Here in the States, I see that many Omas are equipped with the NuVinci rather than the Shimano. What are your thoughts on one vs. the other? Does that non-Newtonian fluid prevent you from being able to change the gearing at a stop?

      (2) At 5’4″ I was planning to get the 53cm Oma, but I don’t see that size listed under the Oma Transport. Is there a way to order one in that size or will it not matter because of the step-through design? If not, which size do you recommend?

      (3) If I go with the smaller size, will there be any issue of either “toe-clip overlap” with the front wheel when making tight turns — the problem that the Terry bike tried to fix? On my current Trek commuter bike I have the opposite problem where my heels knick the panniers. I’m hoping the extended wheelbase will eliminate both those issues.

      Thanks for your help.

    38. henry Says:

      Hi Amy,
      Wow that’s a lotta questions, but this is also a good place to put answers so here goes…

      1. NuVinci vs. Nexus 8 Premium: There’s quite a bit of discussion about it here:

      Basically the NuVinci is really sweet to ride, has a wider range, seems to be very tough and requires almost no adjustment or maintenance. On the other hand it’s quite a bit more expensive and the jury is out on whether it’s meaningfully less efficient than the Nexus 8.

      2. The frames have changed a little and now you can get a 53cm Oma Transport. Also true that frame size is of much less importance with upright, step-through frames. Basically, as long as you can get the saddle low enough it’s fine.

      3a. You won’t be riding with toe clips on an Omafiets so there’s certainly no problem with toe-clip overlap. But seriously, the wheelbase is so long and head tube angle so slack that your toes won’t even be close to the front wheel.

      3b. The chainstays are also so long that you won’t have any problem with your heels hitting the panniers unless both your feet and the panniers are enormous.

    39. Amerigo Says:

      I am 5’5″ and I am looking into getting one of these bikes (the one with double tube). I would like to get the size with the longest wheelbase possible but still be fitting my height and measurements. Would a 57″ frame be still comfortable for me? I’d like to make sure that I do not get shoulder or back pain on long rides and still enjoy a luxury ride.


    40. henry Says:

      At 5’5″ the 57cm might fit or might be a little big depending on your inseam length. The stand over height is 81cm. You needn’t have much or any clearance but that’s also a rough estimate of the minimum height for this frame size.

      We also have a 53cm Opa frame. A double tube smaller than 57cm doesn’t make any sense since the tubes would actually be touching each other.

      In any case, the seating position is very upright and relaxed on all of these bikes. You shouldn’t have any problem with shoulder or back pain.

    41. John Says:

      Amerigo / Henry, how about a 55 cm Kruisframe? Top bar is a little lower, Amerigo, if you’re looking for a distinctive frame shape, something other than a diamond frame, the Crossframe is another option. Works great for hauling cargo and/or an adult or older child in the back rack. Pickup carrier on the front. I ride mine all over San Francisco. Not too heavy for hills. Great for rough road surfaces. Enjoy!

    42. henry Says:

      Good idea John, Yes the 55cm Kruisframe has a stand over much lower than the Opa and is more unique too.

    43. Scott Says:

      Hi Henry,
      Am I correct in thinking that if I order an LX package it will have a Brooke’s saddle, vinyl covered cloth skirt guard and hard plastic chain guard?


    44. henry Says:

      Sorry, our info online is out of date; The LX and GT options have been combined into the GX package. Basically this is the best of both bikes combined. The cranks are now forged aluminium and the chaincase is the excellent new Hesling Nostalgie. The fabric chaincase and skirt guards are no longer made but their replacements fortunately look the same and are more durable and handy. All models now also have sealed bearing pedals, hub dynamo B&M LED lights, and top of the line IM80 roller brakes. The NN8D spec is always the Nexus Premium hub.

      I really need to spend some time taking fresh photos and updating the overview pages!

    45. RR Says:

      Hello. I’m looking at a gently used Oma in my area. I am 5’9″ or 175 cm. Can I use a 53 inch Oma? Or would it be too small? Thank you.

    46. henry Says:

      The 53cm is a size smaller than you’d normally ride but with the seat post extended it’ll work just fine for you.

    47. Anonymous Says:

      Ron Says:
      I am 77 years old, live in Raleigh, NC, US and am thinking of buying an Azor Omafiets 8-gear bicycle with a front roller brake/rear coaster brake and a front detachable basket. I am 5′ 7″ (168cm) with a 31″ inseam and am considering a 55cm frame. Does this sound like a practical purchase for me?

    48. henry Says:

      If it’s not really hilly where you live that will be fine and the size should be good. Why ask me about Azor bikes though? We can ship a WorkCycles over from Amsterdam for a very reasonable price. We do it all the time.

    49. Francis Gorman Says:


      My Secret Service is doing very well on the streets of Belfast. It is a joy to ride. I often take it out at lunch time to get to places I would not otherwise get to. Two questions. Where can I get the elastic strap that stretches over the rear carrier? I put too many groceries on it last night. That brings me ton the the next question. Where can I get one of the wooden boxes that sit on the front carrier?


    50. henry Says:

      WorkCycles sells the elastic straps and we also have tougher versions if needed. We also have all sorts of wooden crates but you can also get a wine or old beer crate locally. A coat of varnish will help it last longer.

    51. Guus Says:


      I’m a 6’2 Dutchman living in Arlington, VA and I’m looking for an Omafiets with a 61 cm frame. Your step through model looks great. There doesn’t seem to be a dealer in the Washington, DC area, is that right?

      What would the approximate shipping cost of the Classic Oma be to the United States, please? And how much is the cost of the Classic Oma with 7 or 8 gears?

    52. henry Says:

      Hoi Guus,
      I see I’m checking the comments after we’ve already talked and ordered a bike for you. Thanks for that!

      For the other readers since it’s handy information:

      1. No dealers in the DC area despite the fact that we regularly send bikes there. We’ve talked to a couple potential dealers but nothing’s come of it and frankly we don’t chase.

      2. We do make the Omafiets in 61cm but for a tall man I’d recommend the Kruisframe Step-through instead. The Oma frame won’t break but the Kruisframe is much stiffer and stronger.

      3. As of summer 2015 it costs €325 to pack and ship a WorkCycles city bike to your home in the USA via UPS Air. We do it at least a couple times each week.

      4. For prices and options you still have to write us: infoworkcyclescom.

    53. Ann Jackson Says:

      Henry, I have wanted to trade in my beach cruiser for one of your Omas for awhile now, and I have enjoyed reading the questions and answers here. I’m between 5’4″ and 5’5″ so I’m thinking a 53cm. I have no way of test riding one of your bikes–do people in the US buy them without riding them first? or are the bikes just so much more comfortable than what is on the market that a test ride isn’t necessary? And I may have overlooked it, but does the Oma come in the 8speed?

    54. henry Says:

      Yes, you’d be in the middle of the range for the 53cm frame so unless you’ve very long or short legs that’d be the right size.

      Of course it’s ideal to first test ride a bike before purchasing but a LOT of our customers buy them sight unseen. Three quarters of WorkCycles get shipped abroad, a large number of which go directly to the end customers who don’t have a dealer in the area. Some are Dutch expats who know what to expect. Others may have ridden a friend’s bike, but many have never ridden anything even like one of our bikes.

      There are a lot of WorkCycles throughout the world so it might be possible to try another WorkCycles owner’s bike. Some people have arranged test rides via our Facebook group : @WorkCycles etc etc.

      Yes, all of our classic city bikes can be ordered with 2 speed, 3 speed, 8 speed or NuVinci infinitely variable hub.

    55. Matthew Says:

      Hello Henry,

      Is there a website or online video explaining how to remove from wheel from Oma Fiets?

      Mine have suffered a puncture – for the first time since getting my bike over three years ago(!) – and I need to replace the inner tube.

      Kind regards,
      London, UK

    56. henry Says:

      Matthew, Not specifically but the How-To reassemble a WorkCycles bike from box page shows most of what you need to know: http://www.bakfiets-en-meer.nl/instructions-manuals-workcycles/reassembly-of-a-boxed-workcycles-bike/

    57. Richard Hughes Says:

      Kruis Gents, aka Pastoorsfiets. Looking for a VINYL chain guard for this type of bike.

    58. henry Says:

      Production of the vinyl (“lakdoek” in Dutch) chaincases stopped several years ago. The only way to get them now is to search amongst Dutch bike shops.

      The Hesling Nostalgie chaincase is the modern successor. It’ll fit your WorkCycles Pastoorfiets but the BB will have to be removed to install the mounting plate.

    59. Magne Says:

      All of these look amazing! I am trying to wrap my head around how the Secret service compares with the Opafiets. Is the riding position the same, or is the SS more forward-leaning? I’m interested in the classic European city bike style with an upright position, but a bit worried they might be slightly heavy in the somewhat hilly terrain of Oslo. So I’m initially looking at the Opafiets, but something more suited to hilly terrains sounds like a potentially good idea.

    60. henry Says:

      Sorry for the slow response; holiday time. Both Opafiets and SS are upright sitting bikes but the Opa is more so. A SS is a little lighter and handier in more varied terrain.

      That said the difference isn’t huge so if you’re simply charmed by the Opa or another classic series WorkCycles bike you won’t be disappointed.

    61. Doru Says:


      I am looking at a kruisframe step-through, size 61, but I am 187 cm tall and 100 kg, so I was wondering if the 67 cm frame would be more “spacious” or too big? Thanks.

    62. henry Says:

      Hi Doru, Probably you’d be fine on either size; the 61cm with a little more seat post exposed or the 67cm with less. The head tube is very long (and the same length) on both bikes so there’s no difference there. Also there is no significant different in the top tube lengths.

      From our notes:
      45cm: quite small (I’d recommend a Gr8 to this customer anyway)
      49cm: 155cm, 5’1″ plus
      53cm: 161cm, 5’3″ plus
      55cm: 165cm, 5’5″ plus
      57cm: 168cm, 5’6″ plus
      61cm: 178cm, 5’10” plus
      65cm: 188cm, 6’2″ plus
      70cm: 198cm, 6’5″ and over
      73cm: 200cm, 6’6″ and over

      Based on the above I’d say that the 61cm is the safer size but I doubt the 67 would be too big.

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