Our partner in podcasting, The Gravel Ride Podcast, presents Episode Two of a compilation of chats with builders from the MADE handmade bike show in Portland, Oregon. We speak with Moots, Fat Chance, Hot Salad, Seeker, Neuhaus, Pinebury, Circa, Story Street, Paul’s Components, Stinner, Horse, Frameworks and Bosch.
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Automatic Transcription by The Gravel Ride (please excuse all errors)
[00:00:00] Craig Dalton: Hello, and welcome to the gravel ride podcast, where we go deep on the sport of gravel cycling through in-depth interviews with product designers, event organizers and athletes. Who are pioneering the sport
I’m your host, Craig Dalton, a lifelong cyclist who discovered gravel cycling back in 2016 and made all the mistakes you don’t need to make. I approach each episode as a beginner down, unlock all the knowledge you need to become a great gravel cyclist.
This week on the podcast, I’ve got round two of my interviews from the made bike show in Portland, Oregon. In this week’s episode, we’ve got John from moots. It’s talking about that seven 50 B wheel size got Chris from fat chance. Be vivid from hot salad. Chris McGovern from seeker and McGovern cycles. Nick new house, the pine Berry team, circa story street. Paul’s components, Aaron from Stenner. A horse. Frameworks Bosch. We’ve got it all. Another exciting episode. Can I tell you how jazz that was to attend this show and get all these great interviews
And I guarantee I’ll have some of them on, for longer form interviews so we can get an even deeper dive as to their backstory and what they’re all about as a brand. And frame builder. Before we jump in, I do need to thank this week. Sponsor hammerhead. And the hammerhead crew to computer. As many of you wind down your advent seasons, you may be looking forward to a winter filled with exploration and adventure rides. And there’s no better device than the hammerhead crew too, for those adventures. It’s the most advanced GPS cycling computer available today with industry leading mapping navigation and routing capabilities that set it apart from other GPS had units.
You can seamlessly import. Roots from Strava commute and more you can route and reroute on the fly and create pin dropping routing with all with turn by turn directions. With upcoming elevation changes. You know, this device is always up to date with the latest software as they do biweekly software updates, making sure that they’re adding the latest features, whether you bought the device two years ago or tomorrow, you’re ready to go with a hammerhead kuru too. For a limited time, our listeners can get a free heart rate monitor with the purchase of the crew to visit hammerhead. Dot IO right now and use the code, the gravel ride. At checkouts today, it’s an exclusive limited time offer for our podcast listeners. So don’t forget that promo code. Just add the heart rate, monitor to your cart, along with the crew too, and use the code, the gravel ride today. With that said let’s jump right in to all these conversations from the made bike show in portland oregon
[00:02:48] Jon | Moots: Can I get your name and brand? John Caribou from moots based outta Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Good to see you again, John. You too. One of the like, moots doesn’t need a lot to draw attention to itself. The titanium frames have always been gorgeous. We’ve had you on the pod. I’ve toured the factory.
I know the type of work you do, but one of the bikes you have today is making a lot of noise here at the Maid show for a very specific reason. Can you talk about that? Yeah. It’s Yeah very much in prototype stage right now. But the seven 50 D wheel size seems to be catching a lot of people interest and, comments out there on the social medias.
But yeah, it’s, I think it just lends itself to the lineage and the heritage of Moots over time. Just always being on that forefront of innovation and trying different things. It doesn’t mean that. This is a defacto new standard by any stretch. It’s definitely a new option and honestly that, that wheel size been, has been ridden for some over the last four to five years.
We just haven’t seen it. Gotcha. And you W t B was the partner who came to you with the rim and the tire, presumably, to explore this. People who’ve been around mountain bikes for a while will remember that. 26 to 29 moments. Can you talk about what’s the rationale behind a bigger wheel size?
Yeah. It’s, to me being around the industry long enough, I do remember the introduction of the 29, and it was the same company that, W t V that came to us with a rim and a tire at, in 98 and said, what do you think about this? Let’s, do you want to build maybe a test bike? And we all know, the.
History of the 29 inch proliferation in the bike world, and not that this is gonna happen there, but always nice to be nimble enough to set up and build a frame around a given wheel size. And Moots is in that position to be able to do that. Yeah I remember that moment and getting on the first 29 ERs and thinking it took a little bit more to get the wheel going, but when you rolled over stuff and when you had those bikes going, It was remarkable for me and I was a very early convert to that bigger wheel size.
So it’s just a curious kind of intellectual process I’m going through and understanding like, what would a gravel bike feel like as someone who rides very technical terrain, I could see the advantages of rolling over stuff more easily. And you mentioned the contact patch extending on a bigger wheel and what that might mean to the rider.
Yeah, I think it’s, if you think about. Riding gravel. There’s not a lot of extremely technical situations where you’re making hard turns. It’s a lot of straight line speed. It’s a lot of straight line hits to the outer edge of the tire and rim combination at that point. So making it longer and, quite a bit bigger, spreads that out and lessens, washboard, it lessens baby heads and whatever you might encounter.
In a similar passion that the 29 did for the mountain bike world. Yeah, I think it’s just been really interesting as gravel you could argue that it started out as being road bikes plus as we started to allow bigger tires in there and explore different terrain. But it’s super interesting as we get into this moment many years into the gravel evolution, to start just exploring things differently and thinking about, yeah, it doesn’t need to feel like a road bike as you’re going faster and these bikes are getting more capable.
Who knows, maybe a bigger tire size and bigger start, a bigger ring rim size will have advantages that riders will start to see as they start to spend time on this new size. Yeah it’ll be interesting and, we’re anxious to put more time on it. Honestly our time has been limited, but we’re getting there and, throughout this fall, late summer, we’ll be logging miles and jotting down our thoughts and getting feedback to W T B and.
Anybody that would be interested in listening. Yeah. Amazing. Thanks John. I can’t wait for that additional feedback. Yeah, Craig, thanks for having us.
[00:06:54] Chris | Fat Chance: Okay. Can I get your name and the brand? Yeah. The name is Chris Chance and the brand is Fat Chance Bikes. We’re now building all our bikes in Medford, Oregon. Got a nicely set up shop there and we’ve just introduced the Thai crisscross, been doing it in steel for a number of years and I’m really excited to be doing it in titanium and the people that have been buying them are really excited to ride them.
Were you working with titanium with the mountain bikes many years ago to begin with? Yes. Yeah, we started in 93, building a titanium yoti. Okay. Called it a fat chance back then. But yeah, so we built a bunch of titanium bikes and getting back into, you know, relaunching the brand. A couple of years ago we were mostly doing steel, but you know, Ty really called me back.
What do you like about Ty for for a gravel bike purpose? Well, in general I love Thai because, you know, it never rusts. It’s got a nice kind of springy resilience to it. I I like to do the engineering where we’re, I have much experience in steel in designing bikes and tube diameters and wall thicknesses to get the, the, the ride properties I want, the the resilience, the, the stiffness where I want it, and the, just the lively feel in the bike.
And so I I translate the stiffness of a steel tube into titanium using a computer, and that way you get all the benefits of titanium. It’s lightness, it’s kind of springy feel, but I’m designing the bike more for the stiffness of the ride. So it gives you the performance you want as you’re riding, like, especially like off road, you know, if you’re going down a, say a trail at like as much as 30 miles an hour, your bike is, you know, bouncing around or whatever, and you’re just focused on where the front wheel is going.
But if you’re bouncing around a bunch, your body is taking information from what the rear wheel is doing through your feet and you, without really being conscious of it, you’re doing the corrections of that through the pedals, cranks and, and frame to the wheel to keep the rubber side down. And so how the bike feels is just really important to me that I want to have the rider and the bike work as one.
Right. And so having that, that ability to Sense what the bike is doing at some, like, not even a conscious level, but developing the trust that the bike is there for you, you know, you can do what you wanna do and the bike is, is supporting you and having that peak experience. What is the customer journey to get a, a fat chance at this point?
Is it, is it a custom process? Are you building stock frames? We built stock frames, but we do some custom sizing and you can you can email us at yo at Fat Chance Bike. And get the conversation started. There’s also a phone number on our website, fat chance.bike. It’s do bike instead of.com and we can talk on the phone, we can do email and just get everything nailed and build you an awesome bike.
I know some of the, you know, challenges in working with titanium tubes are around tire clearance and things like that. Yeah. What, what kind of tire clearance can you achieve? Yeah, so we can do pretty much any tire clearance, if you notice on this spike. We have what we call a demi yolk. Yep. And that affords us the same rigidity, excuse me that a full tube would, would offer, but gives us the, the clearance for wide tires.
Like this bike will take up to like a, a 44 millimeter 700 C or a 2.1 up to two inches or 2.1 inches. And if you need to write a double, we can account for that. Typically our stock bikes are just one buys up front. Got it. But we have a lot of room because we’re using this demi oak design. And what kind of turnaround time do you look at to get a bike?
Yeah. Right now we’re in the roughly eight to 12 weeks, depending on the model. Okay. Yeah. Pretty quick. Yeah. That’s great. Thanks Chris. All right.
[00:10:36] B Vivid | Hot Salad Bicycles: Can I get your name and brand? Yes. It’s B Vivid from Hot Salad Bicycles B. Where are you building out of? We’re here in Portland. Okay. Yeah. And how did you get into Frame Building? Oh, long story. Give us a short version. We can have you back for the long form one. Okay. I used to sit at Destroy Bike Co in the Bay Area and Sean Eagleton was building bikes there and I was like, this is a thing, I can build bikes.
That is absolutely what I’m doing. 15 years later, here I am debuting hot salad bicycles. And I’ve been chasing welding all over the country. Amazing. So you’ve built up your expertise and now you’re ready to go out with hot salad. Yes, exactly. So you’re a custom builder. So talk about the customer journey.
Like how do you like to get to know the customer so that you can build the bike that’s right for them? What kind of materials do you use? Yeah, so I build in steel and titanium. And I like to talk to the customer. We have quite a few emails back and forth. I would just wanna know where you’re riding.
Like what are you riding on? What do you like to ride fast? Is that a thing? Do what is your current favorite bike that you like to ride? And then what don’t you like about that bike? Yeah. Those are the basics. If we’re having that conversation, just say, for example I’ve been on like a random carbon bike, some specialized bike, and I like the way it feels.
Sometimes I, even me, I have a hard time articulating like, what is it that I like or what have I, what I don’t like? How do you eke out those qualities that then translate to you as an artisan giving me what I really am expressing? Absolutely. I do some research, right? I go look at that specialized bike and I see what specialize is saying about it.
But I also know the inherent differences between carbon, titanium, steel, right? Titanium is gonna be a little flexer. So if we’re trying to make a carbon feel, which is what Rook asked for on her bike you’re gonna have to go up a tube size right. And that’s gonna make it a little bit stiffer, give you that snappier ride quality of a carbon bike when Ty is so much flexer.
Gotcha. So there’s just small things like that where over the years I collected those tidbits from other builders and other people who are willing to gimme time. Amazing. Yeah. And what type of bikes do you like to build? All types. I’m down for the weird ideas. I built that titanium clunker behind you as well that I showed at Philly Bike Expo.
And then this is a beautiful all road that wanted to be a little bit more aggressive because Rook is an excellent rider. And I make commuter bikes. I just making, so it doesn’t really matter what type of bike it is. And from a customer interaction, how long does it take to get a bike? Once they’ve, once you’ve locked down the design elements of it, you’ve done your research.
How long does it take to produce a bike and get it back out to the customer? Yeah, probably about a month. And I know that’s a long time, but I’m currently doing all of my own finish work as well. So unless you want me to send it to Black Magic or something like that. And then it could be probably as little as two weeks.
And how do you think about finish work? Are you doing your own painting or are you doing anodizing? What kind of options do you make available for customers? Depends on the material, obviously. Yeah. But I have a powder coder who is excellent and he can do fades, he can do sharp lines. And then I also have, I do.
I did the t anodizing on this as well. And then, yeah, those are the two options that I currently offer, but I’m hoping to add wet paint in the nearest future. Okay. Okay. And what’s the best way for people to find out more about the brand and your story? Yeah, hot salad bicycles.com. Okay. And are you on Instagram and any, the socials?
I’m hot salad underscore bicycles on Instagram. Got it. Thanks for the time. B Yeah, thank you.
[00:14:06] Chris | Seeker & McGovern: Can I get your name and brand? Chris McGovern. And now what brand are you gonna say? That’s my question. We’re here with Seeker right now. We do have a McGovern bike in the house, but we’re launching Seeker bike company today. Yeah. That’s awesome. So McGovern bikes, custom carbon bikes.
Yep. Great looking stuff. You’ve been building for a while. Yep. But we got these seekers in front of us. So tell me about the brand. The intention and what we’re doing here. Yeah. Basically with these metal bikes, the steel and titanium gravel bikes, I’m just trying to get, basically make it more available, get people on bikes, on building more readily available, easier to do.
Obviously the materials are superior. Materials for riding gravel, the carbon customer is a different customer, basically, yeah. Where are you building these bikes? These are be, these are being built in the, in Portland. Oregon. Okay. At the moment they’re going to be built in Olympia, Washington eventually.
But yeah, US made, yeah. And what’s the customer journey look like? Or do you have stock sizes? Is this a custom jam? Yeah, so we’re gonna do stock with custom options, basically. Okay. So the geo will be stock 50 to 60 centimeters and two centimeter increments. But we can customize anything.
So I want you to go to the website, be like, yep, I’m a 54. I want that stock color. I want that build kit. Boom. And we’re gonna try to have that two week turnaround. And when I think about my, like tire size desires and things like that, do you have flexibility there or have you built around a particular tire vision?
So the gravel this version of bike is designed around a 45 C 700 by 45 and up to a 46 tooth single ring. So it could be two by or one by. Gotcha. But I want you to be able to do unbound and throw the big meat on if you’re rolling, if you’re Keegan Swenson or whatever, you wanna roll that big single Yeah.
With the the mullet build or the Explorer build, whatever. Yeah. We want to have that clearance for that. So we’ve designed around that. Yeah. And you mentioned you’re offering a steel bike and a tie bike. What do we see different visually between the two bikes and what sort of adaptations do you make going to tie from the steel?
So on. What we see here basically is the same geometry, same style. We have a different seat stay cluster on this one. I do think that the tie bike will end up being the mono stay, like the steel. Okay. We’re just need, we’re working on repeatability of that. Tie’s a little bit trickier to bend but we’re gonna do that, I’m pretty sure.
The same weeding of the tubes, the down tube is swedged for a little bit to the T 47 bottom bracket. So it’s a little stiffer, laterally, 44 mil head tubes. The geometry will be very similar. The, if you’ve ridden tie, the ride quality is a little bit different. Yeah.
Titanium’s kind of like air quotes, the forever material. So that’s why the tie offering is there. It’s a different customer again. Nice. Yeah. Let’s talk quickly, Chris, about the origin of the Seeker brand. ’cause I do remember this project at the very earliest start of Covid. Yeah. Lockdowns. Yeah I’ve, okay.
I’ve been riding bikes for a million years and your brain goes in weird places when you’re riding your bike all the time by yourself. And I’ve had this saddlebag designed in my head forever, and usually just meant I’d come home from a training ride and get the scissors out and chop on the bag I was currently using.
And during Covid, for whatever reason, I just decided I got on Amazon, ordered a sewing machine, bought some fabric, and started making saddlebag. I love it. And it turned out to be really good. Some people wanted it, so I made some for some friends and then I was like, oh, I’m gonna get some labels. And I actually was labeling them as McGovern cycles thinking, Hey, when someone buys a bike, I’m going to throw a saddle bag in their box.
Yeah. And then bike shops wanted ’em and I was like, ah, it’s gotta be something else. So we came up with the seeker logo. I worked on the artwork with Matt Loomis, who’s done a bunch of work with Paul Components. We came up with this cool logo. And the people like it. Like we’ve been selling a lot of t-shirts and stuff and so I felt oh, this branding is strong.
Let’s do some bikes. Yeah. I think it’s super evocative seeker. Yeah. Exploration. Yeah. Makes a lot of sense. Yeah. Are you I’ve seen you explore a lot of different bag. Options for your running. Yeah. For various things. Yeah. Are you now just settled on the seat pack as being the one product from Secret?
Oh, no. So it’s our only like stock product for the bags right now. I do some top two bags. I do some I call it the rapid response bag, like for racing scenarios, it’s like quick to it. I do frame bags. Those are a little bit more custom. They require a template.
Yeah. I build, I built hydration vests. I built. Fast packs. I built backpacks. I’ll sew anything really. But I think the secret stuff, we’re gonna keep it towards the bike oriented stuff. Possibly. The new website is Secret Adventure Gear, so it’s still open-ended. Yeah. You’re ready to go?
Yeah. We’re ready to go. We’re ready for whatever you need. We’re ready. I was just gonna ask, what’s the best place for people to find out more information about the bikes and the bags? I think right now as the Instagram handle, yeah. Okay. Is a secret At secret, a dv. The website is secret venture gear.com.
Sweet. Yeah. Thanks for sharing this, Chris. Yeah, thank you.
[00:19:07] Nick | Neuhaus: Can I get your name and brand? I’m Nick Newhouse with Newhouse Metalworks. Nick, where are you building out of? We’re building out of Novato, California, so Northern Bay Area. Nice. Right up the road from myself in Mill Valley. That’s it. I started to hear about your brand through a neighbor in Mill Valley who had one of your hard tail mountain bikes and then later learned you’ve been doing some gravel bikes.
Can you just talk a little bit about the brand and the type of gravel bikes you’re putting out there in the world? Yeah, so we just released this weekend actually our steel anti Tanium drop bar, bike lines. The steel line is the Solana. It’ll be available in a road, an all road and a gravel version.
And to pick the part, those three different categories, what do they translate to? Yeah, so the road version will have a 32 C max. It’ll fit a double chain ring larger sizes for those longer road rides. The all road model kind of blends a little bit of gravel, a little bit of road, right. It’s got a, a little bit of that road geometry.
It’ll fit up to a 40 C tire. Still can fit a double chain ring and then the gravel model will go up to a 48 C tire. And it’ll be won by specific for those rougher roads, dirt roads, gravel roads wherever you wanna take it. Gotcha. And I interrupted you, I think you were gonna move on to the titanium model over here.
Yeah. So the Eon is our titanium version of that. It’ll be offered in the exact same configurations. So you’ll have your road, you’ll have your all road, and you’ll have your gravel. We will also offer the eon in an advanced model, which will be very much a, a custom frame set and a departure from our stock sizing.
And it’ll come with three D printed dropouts that are unique to your specific build. Okay. And it does look like on this titanium model, you’re doing some unique stuff with three D printing already. Yeah, so we we use three D printing on all of our bikes. You know, it’s not a gimmick. We use it to make sure that we’re building the best bike for our customers and the best bike that we can possibly put out into the world without you know, going to a point where they’re just, you know, this unobtainable price point.
So we always three d print our y yolk. It just, it helps us have flexibility and material choices for rider, weight, size use. We do that on our mountain bikes and all of our drop bar bikes. Got it. And what was, what’s sort of the quick origin story of the brand? Yeah, so I’ve got a a background in motor sports.
I’ve always kind of just fabricated things. Always been a cyclist, you know, you can’t grow up in Marin County and not ride bikes. And a couple years ago people finally just wanted to, you know, they, they were knocking on the door wanting to buy bikes and, you know, I wanted to build good bikes. So, yeah.
Am I correct? The sort of origin started building. Hardtail mountain bikes. Yeah. That’s definitely what we’re known for. Okay. So our, our hummingbird model, definitely our top seller. Well received, well reviewed and we’re just looking to expand that success into the drop bar market. Nice. And working with both titanium and steel, obviously there’s different challenges and different learning curve around working with titanium.
Did you start doing titanium on the mountain bikes? We did. Okay. Yeah. So You know, titanium has just always been something that was present, needed to be done. You know, it’s like there’s a right bike for everybody. There’s a right material for everybody based on use, based on needs, based on price point.
The way I like to say it right is your steel bike. It’s your Cadillac, C T SS V ride’s. Great. You can live with it day to day. It comes in at a good price point. The titanium bike is your Corvette. It’s sportier. It’s faster, right? You know, maybe not the greatest for taking the family to the park. But it serves a purpose as well.
Got it. What’s the customer journey look like for you? If they’ve discovered the brand, what does it look like from them getting into contact with you for the first time to getting a bike in their door? Yeah, so we really try to maintain the quickest lead time possible. Right now we’re at four months. Our throughput is very high.
We have a very manufacturable process right there in Marin County. If a customer wants a bike, they have options. You can order a bike on our website. You can order your build kit on our website. You can email us, we can help you with sizing. It’s really, you know, the door is open to, to the customer experience that’s desired.
Okay, gotcha. Cool. Well I look forward to seeing you later this year at Adventure Revival Ride. Yeah. With the Marin County Bike Coalition and definitely have to check out your facility at some point. Definitely, yeah, we’ll be moving into a new shop shortly and we plan to have an open house, so we’d love to have you there.
Fantastic, thanks. Thank you.
[00:23:28] Kyle | Pinebury: Can I get your name and the brand? Kyle Rancourt. And the brand is Pine. Berry. Can you tell us a little bit about what you’re showing here from Pine Berry? Yeah. We make lightweight Marino, wool cycling apparel and active wear. Nice. And where are you manufacturing? In Massachusetts. Our first production one was made in Massachusetts and we’re also manufacturing in Allentown, Pennsylvania and Hilderbrand North Carolina for our, our knitwear.
And when did you launch the brand? April, 2023. Okay. April of this year. Yeah. And what was it about wool and the type of wool you’re using that inspired you to go on this journey and start the brand? I wanted to, mainly, I wanted to make the cycling apparel and active wear that I wanted to wear. And I fell in love with lightweight, you know, performance Marino wool a long time ago.
And I haven’t seen anybody really in the industry focus on that. It always seems like. It’s sort of an afterthought for some of the brands, like they’ll have a small collection or a piece or two. And so when doing research before starting this brand, I discovered this amazing fabric in, in yarn manufacturer outta New Zealand called New Yarn.
Okay? They have a patented yarn spinning technology. It’s twist free spinning. So when you, when you spin merino yarn and it gets twisted, you take out a lot of the natural benefits of the fiber. You reduce elasticity, durability, and loft. And so breathability and new yarn with their twist free spinning they’re, they’re able to make a fabric that’s almost nine times more durable.
It has 85% more elasticity. It’s five times faster drying, and the list goes on. It sounds like it just, Supercharges what we know about wool to begin with. Exactly. That’s the perfect way to put it. So is it, is it still considered Marino wool or is this like an entirely new word we need to learn? That’s a great question.
I still refer to it as Marino wool. Okay. But new yarn kind of is, is branding it as performance wool. Yeah. Yeah. It’s interesting, you know, you were talking about building this brand around. Sort of purpose-built cycling clothing. And those was that was the cycling clothing you’d wanted to wear and Yeah.
Yeah. My experience, like I, I love Marino. I kind of think about it from a hiking perspective and went on a bike packing trip and wanted to wear a t-shirt, so I grabbed a hiking Marino wool wool shirt. So it’s super cool that you’re focused on kind of cycling as your core market. Obviously the clothing works everywhere else.
Yeah. Do you wanna talk a little bit about, it seems like you have both kind of performance tees. As well as jerseys, right? Yeah. Yeah. And actually I like that you brought that up. ’cause I, I wanted to make a point there about our performance tees. Even though they are meant for sort of all sports and all outdoor activities, they have some elements of, of cycling built into them.
Like they’re a bit longer than a typical tee. They’re longer in the back than they are in the front. And actually I’m working on developing a tee that would have a. A zippered pocket in the back of it. Okay. Like a pullover tea that has a zippered pocket. So, nice. Yeah. What’s the best way for people to learn more about the brand and the products?
It go to our website, pine Bury Us. We have a ton of information on there. We have a whole page dedicated to new yarn. We have a whole page dedicated to our story, you know, in, in addition to domestic manufacturing, all our products remain in the us. We’re also plastic free. All of our packaging and shipping materials are plastic free and recyclable.
And we have, you know, a real commitment to like sustainability in the environment. I love it. And are people ordering directly from your website today? Yeah. You can order directly and we ship anywhere in the world. Okay. Yeah. One of the final questions I’ll ask you is, you know, oftentimes I think in, at least in my mind, historically, will got, will got, will got categorized as something that I’m gonna wear when it’s cold.
Yeah. Great. Can you dispel or affirm that statement? No, that’s a great question. It is not just for cold weather. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I wanna underline that we are actually specializing in lightweight wool that can be worn year round. In spring 24. We’ll have an ultra light Marino that would, will blow people away at how light and fast drying it is and could be worn in, in the hottest of climates.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. I knew that. I was teasing a little bit. Because I’m with you. It’s like, I remember on that bike packing trip, it was quite hot on during the days, and it’s just a great material in terms of how it handles moisture, how it dries, how it feels, and I’m, I’m a little bit surprised more people don’t understand that and embrace it.
Right. My, my favorite way to put this is to get in a little, a little like sciency here. Our body’s cooling system is evaporative, right? We’re evaporative cooling system. So you heat up, you sweat. The, the, the sweat captures heat and when it evaporates, it carries the heat away from your body. So you want a garment that’s gonna support that system.
Marina wool is by far the best to do that. It is, it’s able to wick moisture away from the body at the vapor stage, so before it turns into a liquid. So that’s why it can dry fast five times faster than synthetics or conventional Marino. Yeah, this new yard Marino. Awesome. Thanks for sharing all that.
Yeah, thank you.
[00:28:39] Rich | Circa: All right. Can I get your name and the brand? My name is Rich Fox and I’m the founder of Circa Cycles in Portland, Oregon. You beat me to my next question, which is, where are you building? We’re in Portland right now. And you’re a Portland based builder? We are, yeah. We’ve been doing this in Portland for, I started the company 10 years ago.
The first two years we’re pretty much r and d. As you can see we do things a little bit differently than some folks do, and the first couple of years were just spent basically in our underground lab. And we always with the same, we will get into what is different about these bikes, but using this same technique from the get go, the underlying philosophy.
Yes. There were some things we and the first generation prototypes definitely are different from where we ended up. Sure. So why don’t you talk about, the attributes of the bike that make it different than almost anything I’ve seen today. Oh, okay. Sure. So what you’re looking at is a bonded anodized aluminum.
Lugged frame. So we’re anodized lugged and bonded aluminum. And which you can also laser etch into, which is also another fun thing that you brought. Pretty amazing finishes I see over there in the corner. Thanks. So when we talk about lugs, and I did talk to another builder who was working with lugs, which were the much more traditional style that my father’s road bike has, we’re definitely not talking about those type of lugs here.
We’re talking about a lot more substantial. Parts of the bike in your version of a lug? Yeah. In, I guess I’d have to, I’d have to ask you what stands out as how sub What do you mean by substantially? I think this sort of oversize nature, like it appears to the naked eye. Oh, okay. That almost the entire kind of seat collar area that’s joining the top tube and the seat tube is one large lug rather than a petite.
Crafted one that got TIG welded. Okay. Yeah. There are a few things going on. So as I was, when we’d made the decision to get away from welding altogether and work with the bonded assembly, we knew that we would, we’d also made the decision around the same time that if we’re gonna bond, we’re gonna have to create our own lug system.
If we’re gonna create our own lug system, it’s gotta be. Because, and we would’ve to create our own lug system because it’d have to be something that Maxim maximizes the performance characteristics of the adhesive systems that we’re gonna be using. So there’s nothing off the shelf that you can buy that’s going to do that.
So we’d have to engineer a solution that would handle that for us. Along the way we decided, okay, we don’t want to cast those lugs because the general volume strategies around bike frame manufacturing and the way that things. Change over even the way that angles change across size variations in a frame.
’cause they don’t scale geometrically or logically in a way. Yeah. We would have to, we would need some kind of a lug manufacturing strategy that would be able to do lower volume and give us incredibly precise control over certain aspects. For example, the tube to the tube to lug interface we need.
Super, super tight control at that bond gap. Yeah. And we’d also really need to understand a lot about the bond surfacing itself. So the reason those lugs are somewhat beefy is that a few things are going on. One is that we are trying to maximize contact area for the bond. Yeah for the bond.
Two, we are solving a problem of We want the thing to look stout. Yeah. You in the way early days of of deciding what we were doing, there were prototypes that we put in front of people that’s, and they said, oh, that looks fragile. And if you’re already doing something that’s a bit unique and a little bit quite, is off the beaten trail to some re in some respects, you need to do a.
W put some extra design work into a SW and keep things that people might be concerned over. So what type of technique are you using, say, for this head tube? Are you machining that out of a block of aluminum? Yes. Everything, all of the connectives on the frame. So all of the lugs, the dropouts any connectives on the seat stays, et cetera.
Those are all proprietary things that we’ve designed, engineered in c and seeded from solid blocks of aluminum billet. Gotcha. I’m using a combination of three, four, and five axis. C N C machines. Yeah. It’s interesting when you look at the junction up here on the C tube connecting these tubes in that bolted in right.
Does that sort of create limitations around the sort of tire diameters that you can achieve for a gravel bike? No. No. That’s definitely that. While there are certain areas on this, the frame that we’re looking at right now, that might be a little, that might have a restriction for what you can do that’s not the, that’s not the, that’s not the area.
Okay. So that particular solution that’s going on there is driven by the fact that the C NNC work that we do, the precision the complexity of the parts, the precision of the details, the quality of the finish work that we’re trying to achieve makes those parts. And at a volume that we’re not a hundred thousand a year manufacturer.
Yeah. The volumes that we’re working at makes those parts pretty expensive. So ultimately we have to find ways. Of elegantly identifying components in the frame assembly that we can do in higher volumes so that we can offset the cost. So at the top of the seat stays those plugs, you’ll see the same part.
This is the same part as what’s on the other side, it’s mirror. Yeah. So that’s two of, two of the same part on the same frame. That’s good. But now I can use that same part on any on any frame size. Gotcha. Which gives me some extra flex, so all of a sudden I can really amortize out the cost of that part across lots of different frame sizes.
Yeah, I feel like this is a bike that needs to be seen to be best understood, to Definitely encourage listeners to go and check out the show notes and find a link to circa bicycles. Ride circa.com. Right on. And yeah, just as far as like the customer journey goes, if once someone discovers the brand, what does it look like to get a bike underneath them?
Are you building fully custom bicycles or is it a stock range? We don’t do, we found that we don’t really need to do fully custom. Yeah. An interesting byproduct of our manufacturing strategy is that because we have this modular kit of parts, essentially that we’ve developed over time is that it lets us, our, we consider it we have three, three fit options.
Essentially, we have a standard geo which is suited towards. The majority of the population from a arm and leg and torso length Yeah. Standpoint. But we also are really easily able to create a long reach or a short reach version of the same design. Yeah. And that’s basically a free thing. So we’re essentially doing semi-custom geometry for free.
If you do have a fit scenario where you need to be upright or you want to be more if you have a long torso. A short torso. Yeah. Or you have some kind of a, a. Physical limitation if you have less mobility in your back or more mobility. Yeah. If you needed a sort of a higher stack would you adjust the machined head tube to achieve that?
Or is that not an area that you adjust? It’s typically not necessary. Okay. We, our size range right now is pretty broad. Our, we have the, our platform goes from an what we call our extra small, which Although you can’t see it in our conversation here, this is the seat tube for our extra small, okay.
Which is for those folks listening imagine basically something about the length of A B M X seat tube. So we created that for a rider who had, I think she required a 711 millimeter standover. It’s either seven 11 or eight 11. One of those, okay. But very super short stand. So we created like a 17 degree sloping top tube for her.
And but now that’s become our extra small platform. Nice. Covers a pretty petite rider. And then our extra large platform goes up to 6 3, 6 4 riders. Okay. So between that size range and the ability to pull the cock pin in and out we feel like we do a pretty good job of accommodating most.
G I’m sure most fit requirements. Super cool. And what is the typical turnaround time? It depends on on load at any given time, but bare minimum is six weeks. And that just depends, but that’s bare minimum. And it can go out to two to three months depending, but sell them longer than that.
The only time we’ve ever had something that really stretched. Was during the nightmare of Covid times. Yeah. And nobody could get any parts. Yeah. So the frames would be done and we’d be sitting around really hoping our order from shaman or RA would show up of course. Which they never did well.
Super striking bikes and encourage people to go take a look at ’em. Thanks for the time. Thank you so much for paying attention for for Karen.
[00:37:22] Devin | Story Street: Can I get your name and the brand? Yeah. My name is Devin Ross and I am the owner and the builder for Story Street cycles. How did you get started building? I’ve been working in the ski in the in and the bike industry since about 2006, and most of my experience was through on the service side of things and retail and sales.
Kind of on a whim back in 2015, decided to take a frame building. Course at U B I in Ashland and kind of really enjoyed it and started doing some more kind of small custom building for friends and family. And over the last few years have developed that into kind of our first run of production, small batch frames.
We do a. All road frame and then an all mountain frame. Cool. Let’s talk about this all road frame. Does it have a, a, a sort of model name or just your all road? It’s just the ar. Okay. I have the AR and the am What are you building this frame out of? So the frame is out of steel. It is kind of a combination of Columbus steel and a little bit of the kasai tubing from Japan.
The All of the hardware and all of the small components such as the head tube, the bottom bracket, and dropouts are all from Paragon Machine Works. And then the finishing kits kind of are all the color matched options from Wolf Tooth. And what size wheel are you running on this bike? This current one is a six 50 B with 2.1 tires on there.
Okay. The general frames are, Designed with clearance up to 45. I think usually like a 38 to a 42 for a lot of this type of riding is kind of the sweet spot. But we can, we got clearance and everything to go up to some bigger options. Nice. And what’s sort of the, the customer journey when they discover you?
You mentioned you’ve sort of brought a small batch phenomenon. Mm-hmm. So you have a handful of bikes in stock. You typically try to fit them on one of those models and Yes. So we do. On the all road side, we have a 52, 54, 56, and 58 in the pre-made ones. The frames are all kind of built and welded and ready to go.
And then when a customer is ready to to purchase them, then we will kind of figure out what the overall paint scheme and the the highlight. So the, all of the frames are gonna be painted, are gonna be powder coated to the customer specification. And then all of the finishing kit and everything, our decals, we try to go along the same kind of seven standard colors that wolf tooth does, just to make all of the, the matching and everything like that make your accessorizing easy.
So that way we can still get the, the same custom kind of one of a kind finish that that people can get with choosing their color and choosing their finishing kit without the the longer lead time. For a full custom build. If people are still interested in doing kind of their own custom geometry we see that a lot with people looking for a little bit taller of a head tube.
A lot of times people that have maybe longer torsos, shorter legs and stuff, we still do offer those options to do a fully custom in either of our. Or All Road or, or All Mountain. Okay. And if people wanna find more out about the brand, how do they find you? So we’re on Instagram at story street cycles and then our website is story street cycles.com.
Awesome. Thank you. Cool.
[00:40:55] Paul | Pauls Components: Yeah. Can I get your name and company? Paul Price Paul Component Engineering. Good to meet you Paul. And you too. Thanks. Yeah. I know you’ve been around the industry for a long time making beautiful componentry outta California. The one area I wanted to talk to you about though are these clamper disc brakes cable actuated, disc brakes.
It’s something I’ve long seen on some of the sexiest bikes around, but misunderstood because I had some old, I won’t name the brand. Mechanical disc brakes. That really didn’t serve me well. This is true. This, yeah. The the cable breaks were always for the cheap bikes and there’s certain advantages for cable breaks.
And I knew when we developed this thing that there had to be some people that just wanted to keep it simple, but really wanted a really good product and didn’t necessarily enjoy bleeding their breaks that much. Yeah. And how, how are you able to achieve. The stopping power of a hydraulic brake with a cable actuated brake.
That took about three years and about 10,000 prototypes. But we just make everything to a much tighter tolerance, like we just made it as good as we can. All those other cheap brakes come from Taiwan and everything is just smashed and squished to, to get made. We actually machine to very tight tolerances, so everything fits together really nice.
We also bolted up a little bit and figured out a way to just get tons of power out of it. It go ahead And does it mount in the exact same fashion as a hydraulic disc brake would on my bike exactly the same. Exactly. The mounting is exactly the same. Yeah. Okay. And do the different levers have different poll ratios that you need to consider?
This is important. Yeah. The long pole lever, which was, is a v brake lever that’s called a long pole. And then you can buy the clamper with that arm or a shorter arm for like your road bike levers and your short pole levers. We make something called a cantilever. And then we also make a camp campy version because it pulls a completely different amount of cable as well.
And are those. Completely different versions of the brake bracket itself, or are they just a component? No. To you buy the brake, which is not cheap. But you can just change one part to change to match any lever that’s around. Got it. And are we using a typical brake pad, disc brake pad in Yeah the pad is a, is came out of an avid model that.
It fits a whole bunch of different breaks and we just wanted to pick something to where you could go in a bike shop in the middle of, the desert or New York City or wherever and they’re gonna have some pads in stock, so that’s not a problem. Going back to my cable pole, breaks of my mountain bike of yester year.
Yeah. Now I remember cable stretch needed to be adjusted. Obviously you’ve got brake pads that’ll burn out a little bit. Yeah. How do I deal with that with a clamper product? You first thing you do is you install ’em and then you go on three bike rides. And what that does is it moves all the grease around that’s inside all the parts which fit very well together, all get cozy together and the the pads bed into the, to the rotor real nice.
And after that, your housing is compressed as it’s gonna get your cable stretched on the initial stretch. And you’re good to go. And one of your colleagues was showing me a little micro adjust you could do on it, that it seemed like it would tighten the pad up. Is that right? Yeah, both sides, there’s adjustment which you can actually do on the road or trail, which is a really nice feature.
Absolutely. Yeah. What’s the best way for people to find out about Paul’s components? Paul comp.com. P a u l c o m p.com. And And check that out. Send us an email, give us a call if you have any questions. Perfect. Thank you. You’re welcome.
[00:44:45] Aaron | Stinner Frameworks: All right. Can I get your name and brand? Yeah. Aaron Stenner Frameworks. Nice, Aaron. And where do you guys build out of? We are in Santa Barbara, California. Nice. And how long have you guys been building? I’ve been building full-time since 2012. And current team’s been in place since 2 20 15.
How did you get into it in the first place? I was managing a bike shop and running a pretty robust like fit department, so we were doing a lot of fitting. And I ended up going to U B I to just learn a little bit more about frame building and why angles and why this and why that. And so I learned how to build bike at U B I and I came back and people heard that I knew how to build frames and it just snowballed from there.
Yeah, that seems to be the way it works. It’s friends and family. Yeah. Then extended friends. And then maybe I got a business on my hands. Exactly. Yeah. So then were you building with steel at that point? Yeah, primarily steel. And I started doing like lug bikes and braised bikes and then morphed into TIG welding.
And we’ve been doing primarily TIG welding bikes since 2013. And are the bikes typically custom built for the customer or is are you doing small batch? So we do we don’t we build the order, so we don’t have any inventory, but we do have sizing, size models. So we do have a 52, 54, 56 kind of model based and we are model based, meaning like we have a gravel frame model and we have a road model.
So model based, we have sizes, but we can do custom geometry depending on what you need. And then we have a paint program that’s similar where we have pre-picked schemes or pre-designed schemes, and then you can iterate and design within that. Gotcha. Yeah, I’ve seen a lot of really stunning sinners out there on the roads.
Thank you. Which is great. What is this bike that we’re looking at today? Yeah, so we have the, our new Refugio. So we’ve, our Ravel bike has been our refugio for many years. And this one, The big upgrades is we went from a 45 C tire to now being able to fit a 50 C tire. Brilliant. Keeping Our chain stays still relatively short.
These are at like 4 28. And we have U D H compatibility, so running the universal STR universal trailer hanger. And it also still work with a transmission drive train. So on this bike we have transmission on the rear like a road oriented crank set up front with a 42 tooth train ring. So you get this like really nice wide range. Mountain bike, road meets, road bike compatibility build, buildable. Yeah. Model. Those are our big changes. So U D H and 50 C tire. And then we also are integrating all of our cables internally now on Okay. Gravel frames as well. And that’s a dumb question. As you’ve built a frame like that, you’re committed, you gotta go inside.
At that point. Yeah, to a degree. And that’s kind of stuff we’re working on. So like right now yeah you more or less need to pick a bar, stem and headset that worked that way. I think everybody’s learning that this is a nice way to route this stuff. So we are we do also have the ability to run like regular external cables and just have ’em drop into the top of the headset as well.
Okay. So you could run traditional parts as well. Okay. Yeah. So both work. So you don’t have to commit only to one one style. Gotcha. And what does the customer journey look like once they discover you? Like how much interaction are you having with me as a customer prior to ordering? And then what does that timeline look like to get a bike these days?
Yeah, so we have we just launched a configurator like literally last Wednesday. We’ve been working on it for about a year. So you can actually go on and design your pain scheme, build out your bike online and get a live quote and So you could have a very hands-off approach if you’re that type of customer.
But we also, our email’s on there, we have a contact form right there. If you have any questions, you have any concerns, you can just email us in. Yeah. And we’re happy to answer any questions. And we do everything from the configurator, which is pre-picked, more or less to full-blown custom if you want it.
The configurator will give you a very guided tour of costing. And then if you want to go full custom, that’s more of a conversation to have. Yeah. Gotcha. Just pick your own adventure. I feel like every time I come across a bike customizer, I lose tens of minutes of my life dreaming, changing, going backwards and forwards to try to find something wonderful.
Yeah. Yeah. That was the idea is we wanted people that don’t want to email in or don’t have the time to do the emailing. Yeah. We wanted to give ’em a tool that they could sit out at the end of the night and play around with and get an idea about our brand and what things cost and what we’re all about without having to have a direct conversation.
But we’re there and we’re ready when they want to have that conversation. Yeah. Awesome. So remind us, how do we find you? Yeah, so Entner Frameworks is our website just tinder frameworks.com. We’re on Instagram sinner frameworks. Those are our two main points of contact. And yeah, let us know if you have any questions.
Perfect. Thanks for the time. Awesome, thank you.
[00:49:12] Thomas | Horse Cycles: Can I get your name and brand? Thomas Callahan Horse Cycles. Thomas, how long have you been building under the Horse cycles brand? 17 years. Amazing. Yeah. What got you started to begin with? I was doing sculpture fine art, so I had a studio and was ready to commit to a nicer bike and decided to make the tooling and buy the tooling to build my own bike rather than invest in a, I think I was looking at Italian track bikes at the time.
Okay. And then people just started to ask me to build them bikes, which was really great. ’cause I wasn’t, it was hard to fine art wasn’t super accessible, conceptual fine art wasn’t super accessible to a larger audience. Yeah. Yeah. Super cool. And what’s the bike that we’re looking at today?
Are you all custom or do you have sort of product models? Yeah, they’re product models, which is really nice. It’s like a really good base to work from. So even the custom stuff, usually there’s a platform, all road platform, a road platform, a mountain platform. From there we go. Custom. This is a fully custom tie bike.
This is tie number five. And it’s a all road adventure bike. It’s got the envy adventure fork on it, tapered head tube super supple Vermont Rider customer. So yeah, it’s got a SCO fade from the head tube back and yeah. It’s beautiful. Have you been working with Titanium for a while? I’ve been working with it for about five years.
Just, before I put it out in the universe just to make sure that I have the confidence and the skills and was playing around with it. ’cause I wasn’t sure I really wanted to go that way. But it’s a fun material to grow into. You just really wanna make sure that you’re doing it properly and what does a customer journey look like?
If they wanted to work with you, just people reach out. Get some more info about the process, get on the website, talk about their needs and see if, it would work out. And usually around four months lead time and do a lot of full builds. But I really love connecting with people.
That’s one of the best parts other than being able to work with my hands is really connecting with people. To build something together. And that connection is really why I do what I do, yeah. ’cause, people are great. It’s such a great journey as a customer, working with a builder to express like our collective vision for this bike.
Yeah. And then receive it. I imagine that you get a lot of love back from customers. Yeah, I do. And really the people that I’m able to work with, first of all, I’m so appreciative. Because it takes a lot of effort for customers, but they’re really amazing people. The industry is great ’cause, it’s a BA based on physical and mental fitness, and that’s usually provides a pretty positive, personal platform and, they’re good solid folks.
So a hundred percent. If people wanna find out more about horse cycles, where do they go? They can go to horse cycles.com, they can go to my Instagram horse cycles, gimme a phone call, reach out. I’m, I’m there and I’m not going anywhere. Perfect. Thanks for the time. Thank you.
[00:52:13] Jonathan | Frameworks: Can I get your name and, and company? Yeah. I’m Jonathan from Framework Bicycles. We’re based outta Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Nice. And how long have, have you guys been around? We’ve only been building bikes for about one year now, but my wife and I own and operate an aerospace tool and die shop Gotcha.
For about 11 years. So that makes a lot of sense. Yeah. Why you have the capability to do these amazing and aluminum lugs that we’re looking at. That to me are like sort of one of the more striking features of the bike. Thank you. Do you wanna just kind of describe how this bike is constructed in the tubes and it lugs?
Yeah, so I guess we use a hybrid construction method that’s not unique to us right now. Like Bastion’s doing it, Atherton’s doing it. Pivot just did it with that full suspension bike. I know you’re a gravel guy, but we machine bill it aluminum lugs and wind filament wound carbon tubes in house that are bladder molded and cured in in mold.
And then we bonded together. Essentially, the joint details are all handled by the C N C machine. Okay. So you’ve got sort of the, the joints of the bike, if you will, with these aluminum lugs that you’re machining, and then in between carbon fiber tubes. Yep. And you were, you were mentioning that you have the ability to kind of customize the carbon fiber tools for the cust Yeah.
Tubes. Yeah, the tubes. So we, we have a couple main things we can change. Everything we do is inside of a three D modeling software. So each bike is a total one-off. It’s parametrically modeled. So we enter your fit data tire clearance, all that kind of stuff. The CAD model updates from there. So if I, if I needed sort of a, a taller head tube would Yep, totally.
Would that translate into, yeah, we, we would look at, well the combination of top tube drop head tube, it’s gonna change everything in the back of the bike from their back, right? Yep. So we’d look at your touch points for the bars, head tube lengths from there also with the four you wanna run. So that’s gonna give you that dimension there on the head tube.
And then, Even things like where these joints intersect one another, we can control that. So say you were a small rider and this tires getting too close to the down tube, we can actually bring that up a bit. Gotcha. Yeah. Gotcha. And what kind of, if I came to you, what kind of modifications do you consider for the tubing on the carbon fiber side?
If it was a super heavy rider? Super tall rider? Yeah. Wall thickness is like, we can change tube diameters too. So I would say there’s two spectrums. If you’re a really small rider, you don’t need like a really round, big round tube. It’s too much for you. Yeah, so my wife, like for example, I run a smaller down tube on that so that the shape, the size of the tube and the shape is your main driver in terms of strength.
From there, what we tune is wall thickness, so how many layers of carbon we put into each tube, and then below that is the fiber orientation. Because we’re C N C, winding them, we can whine for torsional strength, bending, stiffness, anywhere in that spectrum to give the different compliance in the frame where you need it.
Since it’s a somewhat novel approach to frame construction. Yeah. How do you describe to customers or would be customers, what the ride quality might feel like on this bike? It’s hard. So we do have some bikes out for review with media outlets right now, but they’re custom bikes that are built for those people.
Yeah. So they, they’ll ride it, but it’s like, if I made you a bike for your fitting, it’s gonna be a bit different. So what I would describe it as is kind of picking the best of all worlds. You get some damping from the way the joints go together. You still have the kind of lightness and strength of carbon fiber, but with none of the chatter or buzz or like squeak in the bottom bracket.
’cause everywhere we’re interfacing metal parts, it’s going to a metal part on our bike. Okay. So really stiff bottom bracket shelf. And it they ride really quietly. Yeah. Someone else had mentioned that. You know, this type of joint juncture up here does add a lot of rigidity to how the stays come into the tube here.
Like this detail here. Yeah. Yeah. So what we do to try to get some of that back is, I’m a big proponent of top tube drop. Like basically the, the stick out of your seat tube, your ride perception is gonna be way more on how your saddle’s moving back and forth with frame flex than anything happening in the frame.
So that’s why people are playing with things like the drop stays. To try to get that to bend in like an SS shape a little bit. Yeah. But if you just make this cantilevered bar longer, you’re gonna get way more comfort from that. Got it. That’s basically the easiest way to do it. What does the customer journey look like to discover you and how do they find you?
And then what does it look like from there If you wanna purchase the bike? Yeah. ’cause we’re super active on Instagram. That’s basically how most people have found us. I’m big on just sharing process stuff while I’m in the shop. People either love it or at least they’ll like check it out quickly and come back like a month from then.
So I’m on stories all the time showing how we machine stuff, how we make the equipment that makes the bikes. So pretty much right now we’re trying to get set up with a couple shops, but we’re direct to consumer. Yeah. So it’s reach out to us. I’ll email you back. We typically recommend that if you’re not very confident about your fit, like where your touch points are on the frame that you work with the fitter local to you.
Yeah. Send us that detail. The discussion from there is what type of bike are you looking for? Road bike, gravel bike in that spectrum. Mountain bike. So your touch points and the style of bike you want kind of dictate the geometry we go to from there and then it’s ticket deposit and we ship you a bike in like four to eight weeks.
Super cool. Tell me the website and Instagram handle framework bicycles.com and on Instagram where framework bikes. Awesome. Thanks.
[00:57:29] Zack | Bosch: Can I get your name and the brand you represent? Sure. Zach Kreel and Vapor Propulsion Labs. We do Bosch, pinion, supernova, and three by three hubs. Right on. So Bosch has been making electric bicycle motors for how long? Gen One came out in Europe in 2010. Started working with ’em in 2009 over a 18 month period of time to, to work on that project.
Gotcha. Yeah. What’s been curious to me is obviously, like many of us are aware of the bigger brands doing e-bikes in their lineup, but over the last few years I’ve started to see builders like Jeremy CIP build with your product. So building, a custom bike effectively. Yeah. And accommodating the Bausch motor in the bottom of it.
How does that come to be and what kind of trends do you see in that area? Yeah, so we, we are definitely seeing the custom handmade guy come and express interest. A lot of times there is this misconception that this is way complicated and in general you’re replacing the BB with a motor node that can be welded in just like a BB shell can and you’re accommodating that.
And we try to cut the red tape for the handmade guys to be able to make sure, or to reassure them. That this is pretty easy. So yeah, when you see from an engineering standpoint, from a bill of material of the electric standpoint, all that stuff, we hold their hand to to get them to make the first one, and then they’re ready to roll.
Yeah. When you see the raw frames that they’re producing, it’s obvious oh, you can just bolt the engine there on the bottom, and that part’s clear. But as you look at what’s required to kind of function and power and control the motor, There’s more to it than that. So what are the other components of the system that they need to be thinking about as they’re building these bikes?
Well, a lot of times, you’ll think about the end consumer and you’ll say, okay, is this gonna be, for somebody that is running a cargo bike, if it’s a, if it’s a touring, a gravel rig, if it’s a, if’s a’s pavement bike, if it’s a car, alternative bike, those particular frame builders will potentially.
Alter the gauge of their tubing. Potentially. It depends on how much load is on it, but that end customer is driving where these will go. And from our standpoint the Bosch system is super robust. It’s tested all the way to E M T V standards now and that typically works for everything that everybody in this building is gonna make.
What kind of controls are necessary to connect to the motor? So the motor, the botch system is a, it’s a closed system. So there’s basically, the hardest system is the motor connected to the battery, and then there’s the display. The motor has the brains inside there. It measures the human input at a thousand times a second, roughly.
So super fast. And then it it connects to the battery. There’s a communication between battery and motor, and then there’s also communication to the. To the head unit or your smartphone, all of that stuff is, its ecosystem and they’re all required to have on the bike itself. And is it a pedal assist system?
So it’s just adding wattage to my It is, yeah. Personal output. So it measures your input super super accurately. And then you level, you choose the level of assistance eco up to turbo and eco’s, like 50% of your input turbo is up to 400% of your input. Gotcha. And I see behind us. It’s not only a tandem, it’s a triple.
Is that right? Yes, that is right. So that’s a, that’s our concept bike. My daughter’s the one who’s gonna be in the middle there. So lucky her. That particular rig is cool because the middle stoker, that section of the frame can be removed and then it can turn into a tandem. That’s incredible. We brought that one here for frame builders to see as like the most complicated bike that they could ever imagine.
And then give them the perspective of okay, a single is super simple compared to that. Yeah. And is there’s just one, is there just one Bausch engine in that bike? Yep. Okay. Yeah. And it’s a, that’s a dual battery. There’s a three by three internal gear hub in the back with e shift. So electronic shifting, there’s a Bluetooth wireless controller to the bar for shifting.
There’s also a Bluetooth wireless Bosch sensor on the bar to change your level of assist. And then of course it’s full belt driven. The Captain Stoker one and Stoker two are all in times. It’s a lot going on that rig. That’s super cool. As listeners are interested in exploring Bausch products what are the brands other than the custom brands that you typically see them in?
So you’ll see Bosch on some of the brands like Trek that, that are doing many thousands of of e-bikes a year. You’ll see them on. Niche products like CoMotion got a tandem. You’ll see them on Terra t Trike or Cat trike. Recumbent Tricycles. There’s also other custom guys right now like Cycle Chinook over in Vermont and Firefly in, in Massachusetts.
So there this kind of craft built market is starting to come up. Quickly. Yeah. I think it’s gonna be an interesting trend to watch because Absolutely. It makes sense. If you’re someone who loves bikes and you wanna get a bike built from your favorite builder, but you’ve found eist to be what you need for whatever reason or what you want.
Yeah. Like why not get it from your favorite builder? Yeah. We like this Portus mid in Germany that’s That’s a cargo rig, it’s purpose built for cargo. The omnium behind me is similar to that, and it tends to start to broaden people’s horizons of okay, I can dish my car, I can be empowered a little bit more, but being able to haul more stuff and it it just in, in my opinion it’s a great thing for the market.
If people find Bausch online, do you help them find builders who are. Our building with it. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. So some, sometimes the end consumer’s, the one who, who goes up to somebody like a breadwinner or you name the builder and say, Hey I’d really like to have a an e-bike system, and can you put me on the list?
That, that pressure helps. And then we talk and we talk with those those builders and make sure that they’re equipped to be able to. Build that first bike and all the other ones after that. Yeah. Super cool. Thanks for the time. Yeah. Yeah, you bet.
[01:03:33] Randall, Sam and Craig: All right. I’m here at the tail end of my day at the Made Bike Show in Portland, Oregon. Ran into Randall and Sam from Logos and Thesis Bikes. I thought it’d be cool since I had you guys to just talk about, what are some things that stood out to you today. We’ve, the listener, will have just heard a bunch of conversations I’ve had along the way, but just zooming out, I know it’s fresh in our minds.
What inspired you? What, what got you stoked today? There are a ton of incredible bikes all under one very big roof over here. But one of the, one of the builders that I was really excited to check out coming into this show was framework Bikes out of nearby Toronto, Canada. And they’ve been sharing their road up to Maid and the process that goes into the refinement of their new bike project in incredible detail with a ton of transparency.
Which has been really interesting to watch. Totally. I, of all the bikes I’ve seen here, that one and the one from circa using similar technology was the ones that were the most thought provoking for me. Just this idea of a new approach to lugs combined in their case with carbon fiber, which they’re working on in-house in their facility there.
It just fascinated me to think about what would those ride qualities be of a bicycle like that? Super striking to look at, but how will it ride? Yeah, and they’re taking a construction process that we saw decades ago and unfortunately went really awry with alloy lugs and carbon tubes.
Back in the day it was something that was tested out and there were a lot of failures associated with the bonding agents and galvanic corrosion and it’s really cool to watch as he, he navigates that using his aerospace background. To introduce production techniques that like plating his lugs and using three M glass microspheres, ak fancy sand to make sure that the tubes are perfectly spaced and have good bonding all the way around to make for a really reliable and durable product.
Because you know a lot of people who live through the era of the carbon tubed allo frames. Grew to know them as pretty scary, but it seems like the attention to detail that he is brought is gonna make them reconsider their aspersions. Yeah, I was actually very impressed with that as well.
It was my first introduction. I haven’t been following them and the the amount of precision that he’s able to accomplish in his machining. And then dealing with things like galvanic corrosion through those, those little glass globules, which I believe are hollow too not hollow. They offer them, they, they do make them hollow, but he’s using a solid microsphere because he needs that compressive strength.
Got it. And I had one of the original cannondale system sixes, which was also aluminum exposed aluminum lugs with a, some mechanical interlace with the carbon tube coming in. And I had galvanic corrosion issues. And the way that he’s doing the plating to reduce the, what is it, the galvanic potential across.
And then also that glass layer. I mean we put fiberglass in our frames on any interface with aluminum specifically to deal with that galvanic corrosion issue. Just so to see that level of precision and attention to detail and addressing the primary concerns with that type of construction was super cool to see, especially from a small small builder.
Yeah, I think my first road bike was a giant carbon fiber tubes with aluminum lugs, and it was the wiest thing I ever rode. So this is going back 25 plus years. So I’m glad to see the technology evolve and as we said, it’s a striking look visually for the bike. Yeah. I’ve always loved the look of that and it’s nice that he’s just taken it so far and to the extent that he’s winding his own tubes, single strand of carbon fiber being wound on A C N C or lathe, I think.
And and then being transferred to a mole to get really good resin extraction. Pressurized at, I think 400 p ss i to really get like every drop of excess resin and all of the voids pressed out of it. I think he’s he is gonna be producing an incredibly high quality product. Nice. What else is on your list, Sam, on not the other end of the spectrum, but a very different end of things.
I believe it’s to is out of Austin, Texas and they’re making these stunningly beautiful steel bikes. Where they’re adorned with beautiful beautiful small illustrations throughout the frames. All of these, all these I mean it’s like almost like little tattoos on the bike in a way.
Yeah. Some of them three dimensional, some of them not. Yeah. And also doing accessories that are being handcrafted like bells. And these bar ends and top caps that are inlaid with beautiful turquoise. It. It’s like an level of artistry that you don’t see too often. I think calling them an accessories is not even it’s bicycle jewelry.
Yeah. Like some of, he had some headset spacers that I could imagine around, around my finger, right? As a ring. Like really that sort of gorgeous attention to detail. I really wanted some of his stuff on my bike. It was very inspiring. And the bikes also look like, of course, they’re super well, designed and fabricated and they should ride.
Fantastically too. But yeah, really taking things in a very different direction than, the fighter jet aesthetic that the big brands have been been doing for a long time and taking things in a much more painterly and it’s not, I don’t wanna say quaint, but it’s very charming.
Nice. And do you have a third on your list? It’s, I would say it’s impossible to pick, a top three out of all of ’em. But I do think it’s worth calling out a hot salad and lunchtime who. Hot Salad is B vivid. And lunchtime is her and Sean Eagleton, I believe, working together. And they are, they’re doing US fabrication for a number of different brands at a really high level.
And it’s cool to see these shops that are really innovating and getting production batches out at a super accessible level, but still making things domestically at a very high quality. Yeah, it’s been really cool to see bees. Journey. So I met her in San Francisco years ago when her and another mutual friend were getting ready to take their first welding class.
This is over a decade ago. And since then she has, she was an instructor at U B I, the was it United Bicycle Institute also in Oregon. And worked for another very reputable frame fabricator. And so to see her going on her own with both her own brands and her own. Fabrication house for other brands is really neat to see that arc of her in, really from the beginning of her career.
Yeah. It’s been interesting. I was talking to another frame builder who’s been around the block for a while and he was talking about how they’re working with her Yep. And how he was getting a lot of personal satisfaction out of mentoring her a little bit in, in the bicycle world. Yeah.
And just being part of her journey. And he expressed a, a strong desire to just, I just want to see her. Be successful in those brands, be successful. And there were quite a few brands here actually that I had spoken to that had a bike made by her or her and her partner. Nice. It’s interesting to see.
So they, nice, they got something good going on. Yeah. What’s on your list, Randall? So not in the gravel sphere, but Albatross has a dual suspension bike made out of steel with a really interesting linkage design. That they fabricated entirely on their own with a domestic c n C partner for all the linkages and so on.
That’s absolutely beautiful. So that was one of my highlights to see that in person. Actually just had a, what we call that little event with Matt at Enduro. Just a little speakeasy, I should say, with one of our former guests. And it’s also cool to see those collaborations emerge as well.
So that was one for me. I really like Story Street. They have a bike that was really focused on making a high quality bike that was accessible to young riders. So it’s really focused on yo local naca was it NA National, they youth cycling high school level cycling a bike specifically for that crowd in his booth.
So that was another highlight for me. I’m gonna be doing an episode real soon, or it’s already recorded with Brad Bingham. And, he had a reputation for having the best welds in, I think he won twice at nabs. And so I had a conversation with him, which you’ll hear soon enough.
And actually seeing the welds in person and seeing the bikes in person, my first impression was like, this is like CAD model level of precision. How is this humanly possible? Just everything absolutely perfectly aligned. These buttery welds where the, you see the faintest little difference in, I don’t know what those features are called, but the waves of the welds and it’s all really smooth and evenly spaced and the super elegant ex extreme degree of technical excellence on those bikes.
Yeah. It’s such a pleasure walking around here and seeing the craftsmanship that these frame builders put into their work and. That’s the reason to make the trip up to made or any handmade bike show, in my opinion. Absolutely. Yeah. Without mentioning number two, you can’t really address craft ’cause they’re actually doing some of the most stunning bikes as well.
They’re also doing tie like bam, but they’re doing a level of adornment that it’s an eye watering price point. But but the bikes that they make are just, Arresting, they’ve they’ve done a a travel bike that, that has couplers that are not a standard Ss n s coupler.
If you didn’t know any better, you wouldn’t even be able to see them. You can’t even see them. Yeah. And and the finishes that they’re doing are also incredible as well. Nice. Nice. A couple booths that I’d shout out while I was here, in addition to what you guys are talking about, one would be Newhouse.
They’re building out of Marin County, so I’d been familiar with ’em, actually a neighbor of ours. A ridership member, Eli Bingham got one of their hardtail mountain bikes and they’re just debuting both the titanium and steel gravel bike here and doing some interesting thing with three D printing around how they’re constructing that bike.
So that was super cool to see and super cool to us to have Marin County represented. We should also just give it a shout out here to Eli as being one of the most helpful members of the ridership community. Thanks, Eli. Thank you. You, Eli? Yeah. The second unexpected one here was seeing Bausch and their electric motors.
And I’d begun to see guys like Jeremy Cecip building custom frames and putting the Bausch electrical motor in there. Obviously e-bikes are a big trend and we’re seeing them more and more. It’s pretty natural that we’d start to see custom builders working with that. And Bausch seems to be the one sort of engine system that is most easily utilized and built into a frame.
I don’t have a lot of reference points there as you’re looking quizzically to the sky Randall, but I see more of them than others. Yeah. And the coolest thing in their booth I saw, so a, I don’t know what a three person bike is called, obviously a tandem is one. It was a triple and he was describing to me that an about e-bike motor in it as well.
But he was saying via the ss n s coupling, he can take the third person out and make it a tandem. Oh yeah. Super rad. Just conceptually blowing my mind kind of bike that I saw here with s n s couplings or, yeah. Coupling. Yeah. I believe it was s and s coupling. I think I’ve seen, I think I’ve seen Craig EY do that as well.
And I think I’ve seen, I don’t know if it was Craig or someone else, but do it where you could actually have one bike, two bikes. Yeah. Two first, no, 3000. Yeah. That’s super cool. I’ve often heard of tandems referred to as relationship accelerators, and they’ll either lead you straight into a very serious and loving relationship or off a cliff and your relationship will end in demise.
But wherever you, I would imagine adding the e-bike element maybe would. Would slow things down in, in the emotional sense. Maybe not the physical sense, you never have to question if if the stoker is pedaling or any of that. So I think it’s wherever your relationship is going, you’ll get there faster on a tandem.
Yep, yep. I love it. And then I did wanna shout out the guys at Pine Bury, they’re making wool clothing and it’s easy to categorize wool clothing as, oh, it’s what you wear in the winter, which is an antiquated kind of concept about wool. But they’ve actually worked with a Marino wool vendor who’s got a proprietary weave in their Marino wool, which basically supercharges all the attributes of Marino.
So it’s better cooling, better stretching, better feel. So super exciting. They’re making ’em currently in Massachusetts, but I believe they’re moving to a factory in Pennsylvania. But it’s American made. The founder has a family legacy in shoe manufacturing in Maine. So just super fascinating. Hope to get ’em on the podcast later, just to hear more of that US manufacturing story and give a little shout out to wool as a material where in Massachusetts I might have to pay a visit.
I’ll point you to their booth. Okay. Sounds good. Yeah they had some cool stuff going and I talked to ’em a bit. It seems like they’re using a nylon substructure basically in the weave. Yeah. And that allows, obviously nylons gonna strengthen the wool, but they’re also doing it in a way that increases the loft of the wool fibers and allows them to work better both in their, in its insulating and cooling properties.
So is that a nylon core around which the Marino goes, or, yeah. I am not a textiles expert, but it seemed like the nylon was strictly it was not part of the main weave at all. It was just used structurally to reinforce it. But yeah, I’m a huge fan of Merino. I live in Los Angeles where it is often quite sweltering hot, and I have transitioned almost all my socks to Merino wool and slowly but surely transitioning some of the more expensive pieces like t-shirts to Merino as well.
Same. Nice. And I feel like we shouldn’t end the broadcast on a clothing company, although it is cycling clothing. I was happy to catch up with friend of the pod, Chris McGovern. Chris has been a long time member of the cycling family, well known for his Cyclo Cross and supportive Cycl CROs.
Racers also had his custom carbon fiber construction brand McGovern cycles for a long time. He’s launching a new brand called Seeker that’s both both titanium and and steel bikes. And more of a production mindset, but super exciting, interesting story that he told earlier on the podcast.
During Covid it’s, he just needed something to do. So he bought a sewing machine and started sewing and was doing bags, rear bags for bicycles and a whole bunch of other stuff to support some running he was doing. And he fell in love with the seeker brand and really loved the vibe of the name.
So he is putting it out there in the world and launching these new gravel frames to the world right now. Ooh, exciting. I’ll have to check those out. I wonder every time. So I realize I’ve had the, who’s. Seeker they call me the seeker in my head, this whole show. Every time I walk back that booth.
I wonder if there’s any inspiration. You blame Chris for that. Any final thoughts before we sign off? Yeah, if you haven’t, so this is the first year of made here in Portland and someone who’s been to a lot of industry events and trade shows and so on, I can say that the crew here has put on something special.
The venue is fantastic. The vibe has just really been wonderful. And if you have the opportunity, I’m sure that this is gonna happen again next year because it seems to be a wild success. Really something special and really excited to have had the opportunity to be a part of it and next year to maybe have a bigger presence.
Yeah. Awesome, Sam. The one big takeaway is that, there, there are a bunch of incredibly creative people out there and they’re putting their passion into making some of the most fun bikes that you could possibly imagine. Yeah, definitely take the time to take a look at all the galleries floating around online.
And I hope you enjoyed the the conversations that Craig brought you from some of these innovative minds. Yeah, for sure. I don’t envy the builders sitting in their booths the next two days is quite hot here in Portland, but so much enthusiasm from the Portland cycling community. They really seemed to have showed up for this inaugural event and we wish them much success ’cause we need more shows like this in the world.
Until next time here’s to finding some dirt under your wheels.