Ace Cycles Works were a local suburban South Australian cycle manufacturer located at 281 Torrens Road, West Croydon (S.A) owned by Charlie J. Ryles.
Ryles was a notable local rider and in 1940s and with many wins he grabbed attention from the 25-mile from a field of 34 seniors in the Bullock Consistency Cup held by the Woodville Professional Cycling Club at the age of 52 years racing alongside Deane Toseland and Keith Thurgood.
He carried on racing with more success in 1944 to win the 26-mile senior professional race handicap.
His business became widely known as racers shop, his cycles were supremely built and handcrafted to the requirements of the purchaser, these became known as the Ace Special and were offered as high end builds with the use of fancy lug sets, special brazing methods matched with lightweight tubing.
Offered in both road and track combinations with the finest selection of racing parts and accessories.
Ace cycles also produced lesser standard road, ladies and family model cycles but it was their Ace Special that was their premium build asked upon racers.
Ace Specials are known by their brazed “A” or painted letter on the head-tube, models also exist with combinations of brazed “A” on the center of the seat-tube and forks including the highly ornate models featuring a cursive “A”
The seat-tube decal commonly has ” The Ace” with an image of spade as their trademark, with a ribbon underneath noting C.J Ryles, West Croydon, this is also present on the head-tube with no brazed “A”.
Made to order frames included Osgear styled dropouts on road models, card deck club themed motifs with unique flamboyant paint works with scroll-work over the frame.
In the 1960’s Ace were used by many top cyclists including 1964 Olympian Bob Baird.
While known as builders they also specialized in enamelling, repairs and cycle accessories with later stocking garden tools and fertilizers.
Ryles son, Ray Ryles was an exceptional artist, his work graced many frames which produced unparalleled scroll-work and lining with Ray Greenslade also responsible for much of the work on these frames who already had a reputation of fine detailing work.
Believed to be operating since the early 1930’s, Ace specials frames/bicycles are today sought after by collectors due to their artistic flair of their frames with stunning paint works, Pre-war models are exceptionally rare.
Ace Cycle Works closed its doors around the years of 1970.