Arjan van den Boom and his Amsterdam-based crew at Ironwood Custom Motorcycles have unveiled their next project. This time they started with a brand new donor — a mint fresh Yamaha XSR700.

The XSR700 landed in their laps via Dutch watchmaker TW Steel, as part of the Sons of Time project. Working in collaboration with Yamaha, TW Steel pairs a new bike with a builder and creates a limited edition watch to match — via Bike EXIF


The Victorians were a pretty buttoned-up bunch, but boy did they know how to build an industrial structure. This converted ironworks in Shoreditch, London boasts original Gothic windows, gorgeous brickwork, double-width industrial staircase, and exposed steel beams.

Granted, this duplex penthouse has had a masterful renovation including the addition of a glass-vaulted ceiling and glass doors on the upper level, which fold back to open up the room to an outdoor seating area. Another flight of rooftop steps leads to a terrace with panoramic views — via Curbed


This 1977 swooping home is striking and sculptural all the same. That’s because it was designed by Norman Jaffe, a prolific romantic modernist architect known for creating a collection of modern homes in the Hamptons over a 35-year-long career. Located in Old Westbury, New York, in Nassau County, the hefty house is formed by several hulking volumes, the largest of which is the wood-clad, wedge-like roof topping the residence. Below it is an expansive glass-walled living space that enjoys views onto the verdant two-acre site. The structure also incorporates extensive use of stone on the façade and throughout the many outdoor spaces dotting the property. Amenities-wise there’s a home theatre, multiple decks and patios, and, of course, a glittering pool. Located at 15 Horseshoe Road, it’s offered at just under $4 million — via Curbed


Architectural designer Wallace Cunningham has created another dramatic home — 10 years in the making — with swooping rooflines and curving glass expanses, this time in Carmel, California. Completed this year, the three-bedroom is super fresh: Perched by a secluded cove, the 250 square metre oasis frames jaw-dropping vistas of the Pacific Ocean by way of full-height glazing on both the front and rear of the structure. Located at 243 Highway, the special property is offered at $11.9 million — via Curbed


A trio of month-old Bat-eared Fox kits are stealing hearts at Germany’s Zoo Krefeld since they emerged from their den in early June. It’s been ten years since Bat-eared Foxes were born at Zoo Krefeld, and the arrival of a new female in February revived the breeding program — via ZooBorns


Andrea and Simon, the duo behind Sette Nero were around long before riding buffed-up Beemers was considered cool. Scintilla was born in a Deptford pub, over a pint and an eBay listing for a tatty R80, mechanically the donor was strong but the rest was in a sorry state. Obviously the entire bike was completely stripped and refreshed before the real work could commence — via The Bike Shed


This mid century modern desert pad comes trimmed in a cheery blue, a feature you don’t see often in updated (usually all-white) Palm Springs homes. Built in 1957, the post-and-beam appears to have been renovated in parts — namely the paint job and the tongue-and-groove ceiling — but other features are original, while still others could use a further refresh.

Measuring just over 200 square metres, the property, located at 342 South Patencio Road in the Historic Tennis Club neighbourhood, wants $1.29 million — via Curbed


You’re looking at a Yamaha RZ350 motor, that South African Gareth Evans wedged into an Aprilia RS250 frame, and wrapped in a mix of hand-made and top-shelf parts. The project was three years in the making, but the seed was planted much further back… — via Bike EXIF


California-based, Singer Vehicle Designs, a company that specializes in tasteful Porsche 911 restorations — has teamed up with watch designer Marco Borraccino, and watchmaker Jean-Marc Wiederrecht, to create a mechanical chronograph for use at the track.

Presented in a tonneau-shaped titanium case that measures 43 mm by 15 mm, the Track 1 exterior features brushed and polished surfaces along with a leather rally-style strap with metal eyelets.

Under the hood, is the AgenGraphe movement (that is currently only used in one other watch, the Faberge Visionnaire), produced by Agenhor.

The Track 1 Launch Edition is limited to 50 pieces and retails for approximately $40,000. Water-resistance is 50 metres (Ref. SR001) — via Professional Watches


The Whitelands art deco property in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire is grade II-listed, the work of Stanley Hamp of Collcutt and Hamp and dating back to 1934. £2,250,000 is the guide price here — via WowHaus


You can get the Gorenje special edition VW Camper Van fridge in two colour options (vintage baby blue or bordeaux red) based on the timeless and much-loved van and it looks amazing. A retro-style fridge based on the frontage of the van and complete with the logo is always going to be popular.

It’s also a practical item too. The fridge has an A+++ energy efficiency rating, 254 litres of net capacity, three adjustable glass shelves, a salad crisper drawer with humidity control, Freshzone drawer, bottle rack, LED interior lighting and of course, a freezer section.

So functionality matching the looks. Not too many stockists out there, but you can get it online for £1,149 in both colour options via Electrical Discount UK — via Retro to Go


Zoo Brno is home to five incredibly adorable Arctic Wolf pups. A male pup and four females were born just three months ago. The siblings can now be seen on exhibit with their parents — via ZooBorns


Arjan’s shop, Ironwood Custom Motorcycles in Amsterdam, gets regular orders for BMW builds. The Mutant is Arjan’s twelfth boxer, and it’s a stark reminder that there are still new and exciting ways to customize an airhead — via Bike EXIF


Dating back to 1979, this modernist property in Lakeway, Texas is the work of John Covert Watson, who was an apprentice under Frank Lloyd Wright while The Guggenheim was being built.

The agent describes this as a living sculpture and you can see why. This place has an amazing organic shape both outside and inside, as well as a stunning location. Perched on a wooded bluff, this house offers water and sunset views from every room, aided by an expanse of glass. Originally built for Eugenia Hunt to serve as her art studio. It will cost you around $1,175,000 — via WowHaus


This latest creation from J Webster Designs is a 1974 Honda CB550 that Justin’s called the City Scrambler: It’s a stripped-down, lightened, shaved and smoothed fun machine designed to tackle anything the city can throw your way, he says — via Bike EXIF

Art, History

While driving through Norway, my boyfriend and I listened to Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. Here’s a quick sketch of Fenrir Wolf who is tricked into letting the God’s tie him with ribbon that traps him — via hollisketch


Temperature Blanket / Sharon McDermott

Sharon McDermott crocheted a row on an afghan every day. The colour of yarn each day was determined by the day’s high temperature. After a year, she has a full blanket with an archive of the local weather conditions.

You can get instructions from knitting or crocheting blogs, or at YouTube. While the colours are up to the creator, and the blankets will vary widely by latitude, I wonder how a blanket made now will vary from a blanket made in the same home ten years from now — via Youtube


Following extensive renovations led by Philip Gumuchdjian and landscape architect Todd Longstaffe-Gowan, Wimbledon House — formerly known as the Rogers House or 22 Parkside — has reopened as the Harvard GSD’s primary residence and London venue for the Richard Rogers Fellowship. The house, which was designed by Lord Rogers and his former wife Su Rogers for his parents in the late 1960s, was gifted to the US school by Lord and Lady Rogers in 2015 to ensure the Heritage-listed property’s continued use as a residence, and to provide a unique research opportunity. The house has now been protected for future generations of architecture professionals and scholars whose work is focused on the built environment — via ArchDaily


Just landed at Made is this rather cool Vaserely large circular wool rug. The name hints at the op art inspiration behind this particular design, with the finished product a perfect addition to any retro living room. We particularly love the mustard version, although the grey would work if you are looking for something a little more subdued. Each rug is hand carved by artisans in India using high quality New Zealand wool, as well as a a looped pile and high tufted pile for a 3D effect. £349 is the price in either colour — via Retro to Go

Politics, Technology

Elon Musk’s Tesla to build world’s biggest lithium ion battery to secure power for South Australia

South Australia will be home to the world’s largest lithium ion battery thanks to a historic agreement between Tesla and the State Government.

And Tesla boss Elon Musk is promising to build it in 100 days, or it’s free. Key points:

A 100-megawatt (129 megawatt hour) battery is to be in place before summer It will provide energy stability for SA and also be emergency back-up for shortfalls Elon Musk is sticking by a 100 days or free promise for SA taxpayers

Tesla will build the 100-megawatt battery which will store energy from French renewable company Neoen’s Hornsdale Wind Farm near Jamestown, which is still under construction.

The project will be in place before summer.

Mr Musk’s 100 days or it’s free pledge starts once the grid interconnection agreement has been signed — via


The Wespe training bike for kids by Legler is a balance bike inspired by a classic design of the past. In this case a vintage Vespa scooter. Made in Germany, the balance bike is handmade and designed both to look good and to get your little one confident on two wheels. The Wespe has a height adjustable seat, can cope with a weight up to 35kg and is made of a mix of plywood, MDF and rubber — via Junior Hipster


Originally launched in 2014, the Horological Machine No.6 (aka HM6) is one of the more eccentric watch designs, from a company that has basically defined the genre of unconventional independent high-end watchmaking. Max Busser (and friends) have announced the next step in the HM6 saga: the HM6 Alien Nation. With a case now made entirely of sapphire crystal, the complexity of production has been increased many times over. There will be only 4 unique pieces, and they have already been pre-sold to one collector — via Professional Watches


The Sea Sider started its life as a 1974 Honda Super Cub C70. But a mere six horsepower, even at a heady 9000 rpm, didn’t cut it. So Deus Bali have dropped in the engine from a 1995 Honda Astra — a pretty bog standard scooter in Bali — via Bike EXIF


Kris Reniers runs Deep Creek Cycleworks, based in the small town of Deepenbeek, near the Dutch border in Belgium. You could technically call his customised Ducati a Frankenbike, bitsa or parts-bin special. But none of those seem fair, when you consider how beautifully coherent it is — via Bike EXIF


Black rhino calf Moyo / Saint Louis Zoo

Tough guy Moyo doesn’t have his horns yet, but that doesn’t stop him practicing his charge. The 2-week-old black rhinoceros calf is very active and zookeepers provide him with a variety of toys and enrichment throughout the day. Play is important for baby animals — it’s how they learn the skills they will need as adults.

A male black rhinoceros calf was born at the Saint Louis Zoo on 17 May 2017. The little male is nursing well and being cared for by his mother, according to the Zoo’s rhino care team. The pair is bonding in their barn behind the scenes in River’s Edge. A date has not yet been set for their public debut — via Youtube


I gravitate towards minimalism in my design work so the Husqvarna TE 570 made sense, says Dave Mucci of Moto Mucci in Portland. It was Husqvarna’s no-frills platform; one of the most stripped down modern bikes that’s still street legal. One cylinder with no starter, battery, key, centre stand or steering lock — via Bike EXIF

History, Science

Scientists uncover Ancient Roman recipe for world’s most durable concrete

Ancient Roman concrete marine structures built thousands of years ago are stronger now than when they were first built.

So how has Roman concrete outlasted the empire, while modern concrete mixtures erode within decades of being exposed to seawater?

Scientists have uncovered the chemistry behind how Roman sea walls and harbour piers resisted the elements, and what modern engineers could learn from it.

Romans built their sea walls from a mixture of lime (calcium oxide), volcanic rocks and volcanic ash, a study, published in the journal American Mineralogist, found.

Elements within the volcanic material reacted with sea water to strengthen the concrete structure and prevent cracks from growing over time.

It’s the most durable building material in human history, and I say that as an engineer not prone to hyperbole, Roman monument expert Phillip Brune told the Washington Post — via