Bike Check: Jill Kintner's Queen of Hearts Norco Rampage HT - Crankworx Whistler 2019

Aug 19, 2019
by Daniel Sapp  


Jill Kintner has a long history of podiums when it comes to mountain biking. Whether it's downhill, Air DH, slalom, or pump track, Kintner has stood on top of the podium nearly countless times. With 40 gold medals over the years at Crankworx alone, the five-time "Queen of Crankworx" is undoubtedly one of the best riders out there.

It's not all that uncommon to see custom bikes for top riders at high profile events like Crankworx or World Championships, but Jill's "Queen of Hearts" bike takes things to a new level. The bike was designed and painted by Tony Baumann of Bellingham, Washington. Jill also had a lot of input in the creation of the bike, as an artist herself. I sat down with Tony to hear how he came up with the wild design and also spoke with Jill to get a few more details on the truly one-of-a-kind bike.

If the name Tony Baumann sounds familiar, it's because you've likely seen or heard of some of his incredible designs before. Last year, he painted Bryn Atkinson's "Snake Bike" for Crankworx. Tony has done numerous other high profile bikes such as Ken Block and Troy Brosnan's Demo 8's.
Rider Name // Jill Kintner
Hometown: Bellingham, WA
Instagram: @jillkintner

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Baumann's frames are hand painted start to finish. As he says, "Wraps are for presents."

As intricate and involved as some of the past creations Tony has made have been, he says that Jill's bike was the most stressful he's made. Jill came to Tony a while back looking for a "Queen of Hearts" bike. With a few different card styles in mind, Jill gave some ideas to Tony and at first it seemed somewhat straightforward, but once ideas started going back and forth it became difficult to nail down an exact design, especially given Jill and Tony's busy schedules.

The inspiration for the bike.

Time became tight leading up to Crankworx, and Jill told Tony, "Do whatever you want. I haven't seen a bad bike from you and I'm sure it'll be great." As anyone who has heard a similar phrase knows, that takes away stress in some ways and adds in others. After a little more contemplation and walking the dog around the block, Tony settled on an idea and then the labor started.

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 maderadbytony

Some of the challenges of the design were making the entire bike seamless. Everything flows continuously and there are no seams to be seen. The amount of planning that it took to get everything to perfectly line up, along with the order of painting different colors was beyond complicated.

Unmasking the Queen of Hearts

Jill was concerned with weight so the frame was stripped down to the bare aluminum to start, a painstaking and time consuming process in itself. Then the frame was sprayed black, the black was masked off, then it was sprayed white, masked, yellow, masked, and finally red. After that, it was a matter of pulling off all of the vinyl and hoping everything worked.


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All in, just the painting process took over 30 hours. That doesn't include any of the design, prep, or the clear coat.

bigquotesGetting the rear wheel in the right spot took a lot of testing and set up; I tried different frame sizes, stems, bars, gears, wheel positions, and flat pedals at different thicknesses to find this set up. The pedal height lets you lower the bottom bracket height a tiny bit, which felt better. The bike I have at home is a custom size as well, but has a derailleur and gears, which I prefer. For pumptrack racing though, without a chain, just getting the geo sweet and having good tires is key.

This queen bike was really special. After Tony painted Bryn’s snake bike last year, I knew he was the right guy for this Queen of Hearts bike. The idea was just to copy a playing card with the textures and style, but there were a million ways he could have done it. I was a little concerned this bike might be way too busy and hard to see the detail, but he came up with this bold graphic print and figured out how to get the queen in both directions on point with the card. Every angle of this bike makes me happy, and I was truly honored to ride such a bike. Thanks Norco and Made Rad By Tony!
Jill Kintner




2019 Norco Rampage Custom Details

Size: Custom, 5mm shorter than a large
Fork: Fox 36 - 120 psi 9 tokens
Tires: Maxxis Ikon 2.2 - 50psi F/ 55psi R Tubeless
Wheels: Stans Arch CB7 carbon wheels, 26”
Cranks: Shimano XT - 170mm
Brakes: Shimano XT
Pedals: Shimano
Seat: Fabric Line - Custom gold
Bars: Renthal Fatbars Lite Alloy 30mm rise, 740mm width
Stem: Renthal Duo 50mm stem
Grips: Renthal Ultra tacky traction grips





Check out more of Tony's work at maderad.com or @maderadbytony


75 Comments

  • 179 7
 Now that is a hardtail. Love it, one of the best looking bikes ever.
  • 7 1
 Couldn't have said it better myself.
  • 9 0
 Awesome paint job and concept.
  • 6 0
 When a nice paint job was factory default..
www.pinkbike.com/photo/17629439
  • 3 0
 it is my favorite paint job to date. just fantastic.
  • 3 0
 Arguably the sickest bike I've ever seen
  • 1 0
 Logged in to upvote this. It's mint!
  • 69 5
 As a designer (the equivalent of "I'm an engineer..." but for the visually inclined) this is one of the most impressive bike graphics I've ever seen. Very challenging idea and perfect execution.
  • 19 18
 Designer pfff - you are everything that is wrong with the world! Only marketers are worse! Engineers should rule but money rules, what can you do. Go figure

*it be like sarcasm that
  • 4 2
 @WAKIdesigns: im most of the time on your side however this is my point on this :
- I can't ride an ugly bike. Check Marin that hideous enduro bike they ve released its said to be so capable etc. Dude I won't ever buy an ugly looking bike.
I started the season on a 2018 remedy although my mind was after the 2019 bronson.... I ordered it. Now I have it. How does it compares to the trek?... By far not as capable climber and doesn't give you the feeling it's on rails on the down like the trek did. BUT it's a fun bike no matter what! It's alive all the time and it's the sexiest bike in the world. I only hate climbing on it. It sucks im used to have a good climber because the descents where I live are short so you need to climb fast back up there in order to put more runs down. Bottom line - trek was more capable but f*ck that shit bronson is the sexiest bike ever and fun all the times. Maybe not the most accurate point but you get the idea
  • 2 1
 @WAKIdesigns: guess I only wanted to say I can't ride an ugly looking bike and YES hand down this Norco is so damn sexy and thats not just for the paint, geo is top
  • 25 1
 One of the best looking bikes I've seen. Insane work.
  • 13 0
 "Wraps are for presents." - more like wraps are for peasants, given the theme of the bike!
  • 9 0
 Absolutely incredible. I like it even more than Bryn's snake bike. What a true work of art.
  • 5 6
 That was sick too. Like their van
  • 7 0
 holy ballsack that is one of the best looking bikes I've ever seen. It's easy to go over the top with custom paint jobs, but this one is just completely on point.
  • 9 0
 yas queen
  • 4 1
 "
Jill Kintner has a long history of podiums when it comes to mountain biking. Whether it's downhill, Air DH, slalom, or pump track, Kintner has stood on top of the podium nearly countless times.
"
Her achievements in 4X racing deserve a mention.

Beautiful bike that is!
  • 7 1
 Coolest custom paint hi I’ve ever seen.
  • 2 1
 *paint job
  • 5 0
 One of the best bikes that I have ever seen.
  • 5 0
 technically and thematically masterful...BRAVO!
  • 3 0
 Every time I see something like this it makes me want to custom paint my bike... But I lack the skill to make it look good, as well as the cash to pay someone else to do it
  • 3 0
 30 Hours to paint... Wow, I bet that’s more than all the parts on the bike took to make combined.
  • 2 0
 So, so cool. What an awesome theme. I've never seen a card-themed bike before. That, plus Reeder's sparkle-mania HT, make for one good-looking crankworx.
  • 5 1
 DJ bike of the year is all I’m saying!
  • 3 0
 Real question: at that PSI and tokens (nine! freaking NINE!) why doesn't she just ride a rigid fork?

Sponsor obligations?
  • 1 0
 9 tokens is the factory default for the 100mm travel Fox 36 (831) dirt jump fork. It NEEDS to ramp quickly so it doesn't bottom out on the bumper at 100mm. 120 PSI though...
  • 4 1
 #26AintDeadYet according to Jill....or is that the infamous pinkbike typo?
  • 1 3
 Yes, f****** kill it.
  • 3 0
 Gorgeous and ambitious work, flawlessly executed. FANTASTIC.
  • 2 0
 Let’s see her new sight
  • 2 1
 If your that concerned about weight why have a seat you don’t sit on when riding !
  • 2 0
 Bike of the Year hands down!
  • 2 0
 My Jill Kintner crush now includes her bike too.
  • 1 0
 this is absolutely my one of my favorite custom painted things ever. Second only to Martyn Ashton's poc dh helmet
  • 1 0
 Excellent design, beautifully executed. Bravo!
  • 3 3
 worried about weight...on an alloy frame...what doesn't she think paint is made of? Lead?
  • 5 0
 The bike is super crazy light, so there was definitely lots of attention to detail paid there as well.
  • 2 0
 @dkidd: I bet the paint adds close to a pound
  • 2 0
 not since health and safety regulations.................
  • 1 0
 that looks awesome, great work!
  • 1 0
 So......fricken......DOPE!
  • 1 0
 Sweeeet! Pretty cool idea and design! Love the details!
  • 1 1
 Wraps may indeed be for presents but an Invisiframe wrap would protect all that hard work.
  • 3 4
 i looked at his website, lots of cool work there. however, as talented as he is he still wasn't able to make the marin wolf ridge look like anything i'd want to ride...
  • 1 0
 If they put these bikes in production they are gonna make bank!!
  • 1 0
 not sure why she's the queen of hearts, def the queen of shred.
  • 1 1
 "Wraps are for presents"... Wait, what is tape for? Still looks awesome though.
  • 1 0
 A Sweet Ride for the QUEEN!! Smile
  • 1 0
 That just works, fantastic
  • 1 0
 Wow!!!! Any other word is useless
  • 1 0
 Too nice to ride, a work of art!
  • 1 0
 Can't wait to see her Shuffle around on this bike
  • 1 0
 That is truly inspirational... thanks Pink Bike
  • 1 0
 Wow!
  • 1 1
 Damn...THAT is ridiculously bad ass!
  • 1 0
 That's very nice!
  • 1 0
 WOW!!!
  • 1 0
 1000% YEEEEESS!!!
  • 1 0
 Now this bike is cool!
  • 1 1
 Great bike but hang on a second......55psi in the tires?!
  • 2 0
 Unless you like a roll your tire off the rim! It’s a dirt jumper broski!
  • 1 0
 Sick! Awesome looking
  • 1 0
 9 tokens...
  • 1 0
 Stunning!
  • 1 4
 Bell and Norco didnt get the memo, that Jill is not the queen of crankworx.
  • 4 0
 She has been more than any other female athlete. Guess you missed that one....
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