The North American Handmade Bicycle Show (NAHBS) 2016

Feb 29, 2016
by Abner Kingman  
Even if you will only ever ride a production rig it is impossible to visit the North American Handmade Bicycle Show and fail to appreciate the creativity and hard work that people are investing in building the bicycles shown here. There are some remarkably talented people who have chosen build bikes, parts, and accessories with their own hands.

Rick Hunter of Hunter Cycles from Davenport California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail.
  Rick Hunter of Hunter Cycles from Davenport, California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail (That's Rick in the background).

Black Cat Bicycles from Aptos California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail.
  Black Cat Bicycles from Aptos, California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail.

Jeremy Sycip of Sycip Designs from Santa Rosa California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail.
  Jeremy Sycip of Sycip Designs from Santa Rosa, California brought this 27.5 plus hardtail.

Adam Sklar of Sklar Bikes from Bozeman Montana just finished this 27.5 plus adventure bike for Joey Schusler.
  Adam Sklar of Sklar Bikes from Bozeman, Montana just finished this 27.5 plus adventure bike for Joey Schusler.

NAHBS 2016
Sklar makes his own front dropouts and barrel nut brake posts.
Sklar makes his own front dropouts and barrel nut brake posts.
Sklar built the stem bars and they are wide.
Sklar built the stem/bars and they are wide.
Sklar built the racks to accomodate skis.
Sklar built the racks to accommodate skis.

Sean Walling of Soulcraft Bikes from Petaluma California just built this 29 27.5 plus hardtail for his wife. Sean s bikes are unembellished and elegant in their simplicity emphasis on function.
  Sean Walling of Soulcraft Bikes from Petaluma, California just built this 29/27.5 plus hardtail for his wife. Sean's bikes are unembellished and elegant in their simplicity, emphasis on function.

NAHBS 2016
NAHBS 2016

Cameron Falconer of Falconer Cycles in San Francisco is another builder who cuts the frills and focuses on function geometry materials build quality. I expect people to ride the ---- out my bikes. This one is a 29 steel dirt touring bike he built for Matt Feeney of Pass and Stow Racks in Oakland who builds custom steel racks.
  Cameron Falconer of Falconer Cycles in San Francisco is another builder who cuts the frills and focuses on function: geometry, materials, build quality. This one is a 29" steel dirt touring bike he built for Matt Feeney of Pass and Stow Racks in Oakland, who builds custom steel racks.

Ventana had their own aluminum 27.5 plus bike which they are offering with custom geometry hand built in Rancho Cordova CA. a glimpse of Sherwood Gibson Ventana founder and brain trust
  Ventana had their own aluminum 27.5 plus bike, which they are offering with custom geometry, hand built in Rancho Cordova, California. (A glimpse of Sherwood Gibson, Ventana founder and brain trust.)

With a Pinion gearbox.
With a Pinion gearbox.
And a belt drive tensioning system.
And a belt drive, tensioning system.

And this 27.5 not plus modern klunker.
  And this 27.5 (not plus) modern klunker designed by Don Koski.

Rob English of English Cycles from Eugene Oregon brought this single-sided 29 belt drive singlespeed.
  Rob English of English Cycles from Eugene, Oregon brought this single-sided 29" belt drive single speed.

He modified the brake caliper so it could mount on the drive side.
He modified the brake caliper so it could mount on the drive side.
NAHBS 2016

NAHBS 2016
170mm eccentric bottom bracket.
170mm eccentric bottom bracket.

Chris Connor of Connor Wood Bicycles from Denver Colorado brought this 27.5 plus bike.
  Chris Connor of Connor Wood Bicycles from Denver, Colorado brought this 27.5 plus bike.

Boo Bicycles of Fort Collins Colorado and Viet Nam was showing a 29 plus rigid touring bike with a Banksy theme.
  Boo Bicycles of Fort Collins, Colorado and Viet Nam was showing a 29 plus rigid bike with a Banksy theme.

NAHBS 2016
NAHBS 2016

The Cal Poly student project bike.
  The Cal Poly student project bike.

REEB Cycles of Longmont Colorado just finished a prototype Horst link 29 bike with 135mm rear and 140mm front travel. It has a HTA of 67 deg. and 434mm chainstays.
  REEB Cycles of Longmont, Colorado just finished a prototype Horst link 29" bike with 135mm rear and 140mm front travel. It has a HTA of 67 deg. and 434mm chainstays.

Foes brought the 2016 Hydro H2. Brent Foes says he has settled on a suspension ratio of 2.3 1 after going as low as 2.0 1 in past years and that he is still working on the negative travel bike which is getting closer to completion. As always Foes hydroformed aluminum frames and linkage parts are made in Pasadena California.
  Foes brought the 2016 Hydro H2. Brent Foes says he has settled on a leverage ratio of 2.3/1 after going as low as 2.0/1 in past years. He also says that he is still working on his negative travel bike, which is getting closer to completion (nine inches of positive travel and three inches of negative). As always, Foes hydroformed aluminum frames and linkage parts are made in Pasadena, California.

NAHBS 2016
NAHBS 2016

NAHBS 2016
NAHBS 2016

Richard Cunningham recently reviewed the Foes Mixer Trail http www.pinkbike.com news foes-mixer-trail-review-2016.html . This is the longer travel Mixer Enduro with a raw finish.
  Richard Cunningham recently reviewed the Foes Mixer Trail. This is the longer travel Mixer Enduro with a raw finish.
Check out RC's review of the Mixer here.

Collin Schaafsma of Matter Cycles from Boulder Colorado says he spent time working on multi-pivot linkages but decided he liked the ride quality and simplicity of single pivot. He just finished builidng this 27.5 plus 150mm rear 160mm front bike.
  Collin Schaafsma of Matter Cycles from Boulder, Colorado says he spent time working on multi-pivot linkages but decided he liked the ride quality and simplicity of single pivot. He just finished building this 27.5 plus 150mm rear 160mm front bike.

He has given the pivot rigidity by building it around 1 1 8 headset bearings.
He has given the pivot rigidity by building it around 1 1/8" headset bearings.
He says he elevated the chainstays so he could shorten them to 430mm and eliminate chain slap.
He says he elevated the chainstays so he could shorten them to 430mm, and eliminate chain slap.

Devin Bodonoy of Lichen Bikes from Indianola Washington had his new 27.5 steel bike. It is 29.9 lbs as built with Pike at 160mm and 150mm of rear travel. He has developed his own linkage and machined the parts for it. He just started a Kickstarter campaign.
  Devin Bodonoy of Lichen Bikes from Indianola, Washington had his new 27.5" steel bike. It is 29.9 lbs as built, with Pike at 160mm and 150mm of rear travel, 432mm chainstays, and 66 deg. HTA. He has developed his own linkage and machined the parts for it. He just launched a Kickstarter campaign.

Alliance Bicycles of Hailey Idaho had this 130mm rear 140mm front 67 deg. HTA 430mm chainstay Horst link 29 titanium bike.
  Alliance Bicycles of Hailey, Idaho had this 130mm rear, 140mm front, 67 deg. HTA, 430mm chainstay, Horst link 29" titanium bike.

Kent Eriksen from Steamboat Springs Colorado brought this Di2 equipped titanium single pivot.
  Kent Eriksen from Steamboat Springs, Colorado brought this Di2 equipped titanium single pivot.

Portus Cycles from Germany is making a steel version of the crowd sourced Internet Community Bike 2.0 .
  Portus Cycles from Germany is making a steel version of the crowd-sourced "Internet Community Bike 2.0".

Achemy says the Arktos is ready to go. If you place an order now they will have it painted and sent out in about a month. The look is production carbon but the front triangle is made in Denver Colorado assembled with an imported rear triangle and custom painted in Denver. Mike Kazimer s First Look is here http www.pinkbike.com news alchemy-arktos-interbike-2015.html
  Achemy says the Arktos is ready to go. If you place an order now they will have it painted and sent out in about a month. The look is production carbon, but the front triangle is made in Denver, Colorado, assembled with an imported rear triangle, and custom painted in Denver.
Check out Mike Kazimer's First Look here.

Black Sheep Bikes from Fort Collins Colorado had this 25.6 lb. fat bike with flexing plates in the fork and chainstay yoke. They say the travel is 25-40mm.
  Black Sheep Bikes from Fort Collins, Colorado had this 25.6 lbs. fat bike with flexing plates in the fork and chainstay yoke. They say the travel is 25-40mm.

Black Sheep also had this 36 Titanium bike with a truss fork for rigidity. The offset is 108mm.
  Black Sheep also had this 36" Titanium bike, with a truss fork for rigidity. The offset is 108mm.

The 36 spoke Onyx hubs are laced with 371mm 14 ga. straight spokes to unicycle rims that are shod with Vee Rubber 2.25 tires that weight 1625 grams each.
The 36 spoke Onyx hubs are laced with 371mm 14 ga. straight spokes to unicycle rims that are shod with Vee Rubber 2.25" tires that weigh 1625 grams each.
Big bike big water bottle.
Big bike, big water bottle.

Ventana built the frame for the 36 DirtySixer with an inverted fork.
  Ventana built the frame for the 36" DirtySixer with an inverted fork.

They built custom clamps for the MRP Groove so that it can accomodate a 150mm hub and lowered the travel to 100mm to accomodate the big wheel.
  They also built custom clamps for the MRP Groove so that it can accommodate a 150mm hub, and lowered the travel to 100mm to fit the big wheel.

And he had a 24 BMX bike.
  Rick Hunter had a 24" BMX bike.

Ventana built this long travel ski bike for Don Koski one of the mountain bike forefathers from Marin.
  Ventana built this long travel ski bike for Don Koski, one of the mountain bike forefathers from Marin.

Detroit Bikes hand makes the frames and most of the parts on this bike in Detroit. Price 699.
  Detroit Bikes hand makes the frames and most of the parts on this bike in Detroit. Price for the complete bike, $699.

Dmitry Nechaev of Triton Bikes from Russia made his kid a 12 titanium strider.
Dmitry Nechaev of Triton Bikes from Russia made his kid a 12" titanium strider.
Jeremy Sycip built this 20 titanium bike for one of his kids.
Jeremy Sycip built this 20" titanium bike for one of his kids.

Tricycles.
Tricycles.
NAHBS 2016

There may have been more fat and plus size mountain bike tires on display at the show than conventional ones. And there were even some high volume road tires with WTB releasing it s new 27.5 x 47c tire calling it road plus .
  It seemed like there were more fat and plus size mountain bikes on display at the show than conventional ones. And there were even some high volume road tires, with WTB releasing it's new 27.5 x 47c tire, and calling it "Road Plus".

Alec White of White Industries frotm Petaluma California teamed up with Chris King and some other collaborators to develop the T47 bottom bracket standard a threaded shell that can handle a 30mm spindled crank. In addition to eliminating all the problems of press fit 30mm shells T47 can accomodate wiring for electronics that can t fit in a standard 73mm shell. The idea is to coexist with 73mm threaded and start edging out pressfit. Word is that some of the big companies are interested.
  Alec White of White Industries from Petaluma, California teamed up with Chris King and some other collaborators to develop the T47 bottom bracket standard, a threaded shell that can handle a 30mm spindled crank. In addition, to eliminating all the problems of press-fit 30mm shells T47 can accommodate wiring for electronics that can't fit in a standard 73mm shell. The idea is to coexist with 73mm threaded and start edging out press-fit.

Doug White built this 20 bike in 1976.
  Doug White built this 20" bike in 1976.

The Chris King 40th anniversary collection is being introduced here.
  The Chris King 40th anniversary collection was introduced at the show.

Chris McGovern of Nevada City California makes carbon bikes by hand. He starts with stock carbon tubing which he mitres and fits in a fixture then wraps the joints with prepreg carbon cloth. Then he vaccum bags the frame and bakes the whole thing in an oven he built out of sheet metal. The result is prettier than many molded carbon bikes.
  Chris McGovern of Nevada City, California makes carbon bikes by hand. He starts with stock carbon tubing, which he miters and fits in a fixture, then wraps the joints with prepreg carbon cloth. Next he vacuum bags the frame and bakes the whole thing in an oven he built out of sheet metal.

Mark Norstad and his crew at Paragon Machine Works in Richmond California are responsible for making the headtubes dropouts cable guides and so on that many hand builders rely on. Several builders said something to the effect of We might be able to survive without Paragon but it would be hard.
Mark Norstad and his crew at Paragon Machine Works in Richmond, California are responsible for making the headtubes, dropouts, cable guides and so on, that many hand builders rely on. Several builders said something to the effect of, "We might be able to survive without Paragon, but it would be hard."
NAHBS 2016

NAHBS 2016
NAHBS 2016

The raw material for many bikes at the show.
The raw material for many bikes at the show.
Almost every bike here was built in a fixture like this. Sputnik and Anvil are the standard bearers.
Almost every bike here was built in a fixture like this. Sputnik and Anvil are the standards.

Steel bike builders are challenged at the chainstay bottom bracket junction when making big tire bikes. Cameron Falconer Falconer Cycles and Sean Walling Soulcraf have developed this bridged yoke that can accomodate a 27.5 plus tire and a 34 tooth chainring.
Steel bike builders are challenged at the chainstay/bottom bracket junction when making big tire bikes. Cameron Falconer (Falconer Cycles) and Sean Walling (Soulcraft) have developed this bridged yoke that can accomodate a 27.5 plus tire and a 34 tooth chainring.
Rick Hunter Hunter Cycles developed this yoke that fits under the bottom bracket and includes a chain-tensioning wing nut.
Rick Hunter (Hunter Cycles) developed this single speed yoke that fits under the bottom bracket and includes a chain-tensioning wing nut.

NAHBS 2016
Triton Bikes of Russia had a hollow titanium yoke that is made by welding two machined halves together.
Triton Bikes of Russia had a hollow titanium yoke that is made by welding two machined halves together.

Moots was showing off some 3D printed titanium dropouts.
Moots was showing off some 3D printed titanium dropouts.
Chris McGovern couldn t find a carbon dropout that he liked so he made one himself.
Chris McGovern couldn't find a carbon dropout that he liked, so he made one himself.

Inside Line hand makes it s bags in Berkely California using US made fabric.
Inside Line hand makes it's waterproof bags in Berkely, California using US made fabric.
NAHBS 2016

This hand pump has mirror honed internals .
This hand pump has "mirror honed internals".
Stainless steel pocket flask from King Cage.
Stainless steel pocket flask from King Cage.


MENTIONS: @abnerkingman / @chriskingbuzz




186 Comments

  • + 173
 AKA the "How expensive can we make a steel hardtail" show. And I want all of them.
  • + 68
 If you're going to spend $10k on a bike, be it a downhill bike, enduro machine, hardtail or cross, you may as well do it properly and spend $10k on a bike from one of these guys instead of some chunk of far eastern carbon. Most high end bikes are nice, but nothing quite matches up to a bike that was made just for you.
  • + 4
 Yeah mad wants for all of the stuff above! It looks incredible - great coverage too! Cheers PB!!!!
  • + 8
 I went to the show on Saturday. The quality of the craftsmanship was phenomenal. I like road and mountain, so I was geeking out a ton. I think my next mountain bike will likely be a + size steel hardtail. That being said, if you are in the market for a new ride... check out custom builders. There's some amazing talent out there.
  • + 2
 Those 27.5+ bikes are fine looking rigs indeed.
  • + 3
 Not quite sure how I feel right now.
  • + 5
 So cool seeing so much passion being put into "fun". Some beautiful bikes...if I won the lottery I'd be inquiring about most of them on the page! Would make quite the garage/living room collection
  • + 3
 I'd like to see some more info on that small orange full suspension frame in Ventana's booth. Kids bike?
  • + 2
 Rick Hunter and Todd at Black Cat-- Quality stuff and good guys!
  • + 1
 I really dig that "Road Plus" bike. Unique and beautiful for city commute. Just love it.
  • + 1
 check out my friends Matter...

www.pinkbike.com/photo/13134699
  • + 1
 The "Righty" from English Cycles look awesome!.. i wan one to go head to head with Lefty!
  • + 1
 So far the plus size "movement" is an alternative to trust fund babes and noobs but as usual I find myself jumping over peoples head in an effort to clear trail clutter by bbw bikes.
  • + 53
 think you can just sneak a new bb standard in the middle of this article??? time to get the pitch forks out!!!!!
  • + 15
 Actually, I imagine Pinkbike will like this one, it being the antithesis to PressFit. If your bike has an aluminum PF30 BB shell, you can run this; you just have to get threads tapped.
  • + 18
 T47 isn't exactly new. Also, it has an admirable goal- kill all of the stupid competing pressfit standards by offering all the advantages with few (if any) of the drawbacks while still being something that's easily installed by simple tools.
  • + 5
 My legend friend at the lbs knew I wouldn't want a standard press fit BB30 in the new bike, hope make one that screws together as well as pressing in which makes it turbo stiff and sturdy. Impressed so far but if it starts creaking. Threads will be cut and one of these badgers will go straight in! Threads all the way really!
  • + 1
 It's a new BB standard, starting from scratch... that STILL leaves the bearings external to the shell. Damn near every BB shell design, except the increasing bastardizations we've added to BSA(which started with internal bearings) has bearings internal to the shell. because putting the parts where you transfer load, at the end of a lever that's threaded into aluminum, is dumb. at the very least, it means you have to overbuild to sustain a load that would be handled with far less strain, if you widened the shell but a couple cm.
  • + 10
 @groghunter I have no idea what you are saying. It sounds important, but it has no bearing in this conversation....
  • + 2
 What will kill Boost?
  • + 2
 @groghunter There is enough room in the shell that you can run a 6806 bearing inside the shell for narrow BB30 cranks like some Sram 1X cranks.

velonews.competitor.com/2015/11/bikes-and-tech/argonaut-and-chris-king-to-slay-pf30-with-new-threaded-bb_388673/attachment/img_5757
  • + 2
 I F*cking hate PF30. So, if PF30 + threads = T47, then that's something good.
  • + 5
 I think ol' mate @groghunter found the grog cause that's the ramblings of a drunk.
T47 all the way!! The only reason any of the press fit standards ever became a thing is to make factory assembly of frames quicker. #deathtopressfit
  • + 3
 @whilgenb Yea, I noticed later that some narrower BB standards do work with T47 to run the bearing internal to the shell(& without a large difference in shell ID/bearing OD, which is also a positive.)

So I'm more cautiously optimistic than before. I still question fine (in fact, after looking, T47 is slightly finer thread than BSA) threads in an aluminum shell: Threaded BBs(& headsets, for that matter) were designed around the material properties of steel, & after dealing with what happens to an aluminum BSA BB shell if you don't catch a slightly loose external BB cup right away, I've gained a new appreciation for an interface that has less potential to catastrophically destroy itself.

Those press fit BBs that thread into each other have a pretty good advantage that this standard doesn't: you're putting the threads in a disposable part, rather than in the frame. if you destroy threads in a BB30 sized cup, there's no coming back from that, & I haven't heard of anyone squeaking once they went to one of those "thread together" BBs.
  • + 39
 Were there any 27.5 plus bikes at the show?
  • - 1
 Plus rides really nice for hardtails
  • + 9
 I know, I just bought a 26+ hardtail. I hope the 26+ can gain some attention away from the 27.5+ bikes so I can have more tire choices.
  • - 4
flag MaxDeutsch (Feb 29, 2016 at 21:24) (Below Threshold)
 Imagine if you set up an enduro evo with 26 plus. That would be sick
  • + 2
 Maybe one... wasn't.
  • + 22
 Cyclocross plus! FOR THE WI....oh wait. It's just a mountain bike from 1991.
  • + 2
 WTB is rapidly going from one of my favorite brands to one im starting to dislike seems to be solving problems nobody had ever had, case in point, padlock grips.
  • + 2
 Jesus christ. Okay those grips are actually really nice grips. I have a pair myself. I also did have problems with lock ons slipping. And also being really uncomfy. But the padlocs are really nice believe or not.
  • + 1
 they have "monster cross" races around where i live. basically a xc ride on stupid tame fire roads.

slap some flat bars on a plus sized cross bike and spank the roadies that enter
  • + 20
 year of the plus hardtail
  • + 0
 I was thinking the same thing.
  • + 8
 Time to re-name it the 27.5"+ Hardtail show.
  • + 7
 It's shame there's no write up on Terraplane Bikes (formerly Bicycle Fabrications). Maybe Brian Hapgood didn't have a booth, but he deserves a mention. Gravity oriented steel bikes handmade in the heart of the Nor-Cal foothills. DH, Enduro, 4X/Park....
They ride brilliant and I'm obviously a huge fan (I own two). Check em out if you want something different form the rest of the herd.
www.pinkbike.com/photo/12437066
www.terraplanebikes.com
  • + 1
 Didn't have a booth, at least I didn't see them.
  • + 1
 Their bikes look a bit strange. But, I have thrown a leg over the pocket rocket and it is a capable rig. Brian definitely rips on it.
  • + 11
 That Lichen Bikes Matchstick looks amazing.
  • + 7
 They're a rad company, and I can't wait to get my matchstick!

You can support them at: www.kickstarter.com/projects/1106708179/lichen-bikes
  • + 5
 As the owner of Lichen's prototype #2, I have to say Devin has come up with something amazing. It blew my boyfriend's old Yeti SB-66 clean out of the water in all departments, it climbs so well and loves to smash through rough descents, and the Matchstick is going to be even better! But I'm really excited for his DH bike that's supposed to come out next...
  • + 9
 I'm Lichen it!
  • + 4
 Super stoked to get a Matchstick. Steel full suspension bikes are outta control. Especially when they weigh virtually the same as alu and carbon. It's pretty hard to beat a fully customized geometry too. Mad respect to all the builders out there who experiment, refine, and evolve the sport for the love of the game.
  • + 3
 And so pretty.
  • + 4
 Seriously!
  • + 1
 I'm trying to get my head around how that linkage would ride. So as the rear compresses, both links rotate down and forward (relative to their mounting points on the front triangle). That lets the rear axle move upward, but also immediately moves it forward. That's usually not the best recipe for smoothing out small bumps or square-edge hits, but I could be wrong here.
  • + 2
 The lower link hardly moves at all, maybe a few millimeters. When he had it on display he was also cycling the suspension through the travel.
  • + 1
 In the video it looks pretty plush.
  • + 5
 I'm the builder, happy to answer any questions. The axle path is very similar to a single pivot for the first third of the stroke, and then slightly more rearward for the later portion of the stroke.
  • + 1
 Thanks for the reply, and best of luck @devin-bodony !
  • + 10
 That 36er looks kinda fun! Think of how many miles you could pound out in a day!
  • + 13
 I dig it as well but I couldn't help but think about how many pinkbiker's you could piss off in a day! Oh the horror...
  • + 18
 Just run them over. You'll hardly feel the bump.
  • + 3
 2016 the year of the 36r
  • + 2
 36 dh. Rig.. it's coming..
  • + 10
 really awesome to see some unique innovative frames.. fair few ugly ones too but..
  • + 5
 If I should ever be in the market for a steel framed 1x11 27.5+ hardtail with a curved seat tube, a Chris King headset and a Thomson seatpost, I now know exactly where to look.

Might be just me, but somehow the bikes at NAHBS tend to look more uniform than anything the large manufacturers show at Interbike.
  • + 4
 WHY all this custom builders choose to go 27.5"+ ?
It seems we can't have a regular size wheeled custom bike anymore. Niche markets keep being pushed to mainstream,and I don't see any great inovations,just the stupid war of wheel sizes year after year. Screw this.
  • + 5
 Or maybe that's just what PB decided to cover...?
  • + 3
 nope. just about every booth that wasn't road bike only had a fat bike or a 27.5+displayed
  • + 4
 @nozes Maybe that's what their customers wanted?
  • + 3
 That's why they're called custom builders. They can definitely build other wheel sizes for you!
  • + 1
 @whilgenb Do you still believe the industry really builds what customers want? Do you remember any of your friends saying 2 years ago "man I wish someone came up with a bike with 650b 3" tires,now that would really be the sh1t!"?
  • + 2
 @nozes The handmade bikes are likely all using production parts that were requested by the customers. Blame the manufacturers who are pushing the parts if you'd like to blame someone.

@thehustler Exactly.
  • + 7
 Lots of great bikes, but I've gotta say, Rob English remains some kind of sorcerer. What a lovely, lovely machine.
  • + 3
 As far as the Matter two-stroke, not quite sure yet. I have a Matter SlayRide, and I have to say, it's probably the best geometry and material out there for an aggressive hard tail. Colin has done a great job refining his bikes for those who ride similar Front Range terrain. Not sure what MTBLegend92 is talking about. Does he own any of the bikes shown above? I don't think so. The frame warranties appear much better than the mainstream mfgs.
  • + 2
 Not sure how many cross bike fans here, but one of the companies at NAHBS was Squid Bikes. I just built(and painted) one of their Rattlecan frames: www.pinkbike.com/photo/13206752

The thing seriously rips. Its my first cross bike and as a die-hard mountainbiker, I can officially say I'm sold on the platform. Its so much fun. I've taken it on some less than smooth trails and a couple semi-steep rides and it's unreal how much fun it is to get a little rowdy on 38mm tires and drop bars.
  • + 3
 After looking at the captions of the first few bikes I thought of a paraphrase of Demolition Man: "Now all bikes are 27.5" ( www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFiDoOgRTpk )
  • + 5
 YEEEEEEEEEEEW YEAH SKLAR!
  • + 1
 Great Article. LOVE those "adventurer" frames with the welded racks. The Skyler and The Falconer. Now thats how you make good use of 27.5 plus and or 29. Shame no fork sus tho. Even tho makes perfect sense.
Not sure how Hydro formed constitutes handmade... Also that wood frame is a work of art.
  • + 1
 What I find most refreshing about these shows are the independent points of view on paint, colors, and other finishes. The bigger manufacturers have to think in terms of "blue with black...no wait, red and white stripes with black" but as seen in the very first Hunter photo there are all kinds of other colors in the world to choose from. Even the chrome-finish handlebar gives the bike a distinct look, that the big companies can't afford to do. That said, all the product managers from across the industry are probably there borrowing ideas.
  • + 1
 27.5 Plus making a big splash, not a passing fancy! Been on a Fuse for sevreal months and can vouch for its funability, traction, climbing and overall handling, has been my go to much to the chagrin of my other several bikes!
  • + 1
 I never understood the appeal of handbuilt bikes, I get it with road bikes tailor fitted to your body for racing but not the manufacturing or quality reasons, if you spend enough theres nothing wrong with the manufacturing of most production bikes and they probably go through stricter durability testing than the average handbuilt.
  • + 6
 Think about it this way: this is bike porn for frame builders, not bike riders.
  • + 1
 The part about durability testing is absolutely true. NAHBS is about who can make the flashiest looking bike, not the best performing or most structurally sound, and nobody at the show really knows what rides best because you can't ride any of the bikes like at other bike shows where you can demo stuff from the different manufacturers. Not to say there aren't great bikes there, but most of the builders there have no engineering background, and at best were welders or machinists prior to building frames. Plenty were photographers, worked in marketing, etc. and don't come close to really knowing what they are doing beyond getting a fancy paint job put on their bike, which most of them also don't do themselves. It's bike porn for people who like pretty bikes, not necessarily high performance bikes.
  • + 4
 Hipster breeding ground. Could you imagine how many Westfalias were in the parking lot while this show was going on :O
  • + 5
 there will be hell to pay when the 26 for life crew hears about this!
  • + 1
 That modern klunker designed by Don Koski is absolutely georgeous, one of the sweetest rides I've ever seen. From the saint anchors, to the wicked Ti bars, the polished frame with relaxed geometry, Brooks saddle, it's just spot-on, perfectamundo, wouldn't change a thing. What an impressive showcase, simultaneously flashy yet workmanlike. Positively oozes style and confidence, a rolling tribute to Don's MTB knowledge and experience. Two thumbs up for keeping it real and avoiding plus size tyres. Thanks for sharing!
  • + 1
 What a mullet is for haircuts, Foes is for mountain bikes.
It screams "it's still the 80s" and somehow looks all wrong, but hey, I guess you can still pull it off, look cool in a strange kind of way, and have a shitload of fun doing it.
Also, I guess it must be nice to know that even if your bike falls down a cliff or if a tank rolls over it, it'll only have a scratch and a small dent on it.
  • + 1
 "According to Daimler, the German company that produces the high-end sedan, increasing customization, like fancy carbon-fiber trim or heated cup holders, means that fewer robots are being used on its main production line in Sindelfingen, Germany....conventional industrial robots are still widely used on the Daimler line; it’s just that these machines aren’t so good for custom jobs" (MIT Tech Review, last Feb, 29er)
Long live Handmade Bicycles!!!
  • + 1
 I really like the FOES bikes. they look awesome. The frames look tough, wonder what the weight is...?

I also really want to have one of those snow bikes. or at least try one! are these going to be allowed on ski hills? how do you stop? haha

woo
  • + 1
 Saw some DIY snow bikes at Sierra at Tahoe last week one was just a trail bike with a boxxer
  • + 2
 every single one of those bikes is beautiful. thankyou Indy bike makers for making such lovely, lovely looking bikes. I'm glad that bike manufacturing goes deep enough to involve such independent, grass roots fabricators.
  • + 1
 ^What he said^ ... Totally agree there are some true works of art there and some genius innovations that make you question why hasn't it been done before!
  • + 3
 "Steel bike builders are challenged at the chainstay/bottom bracket junction when making big tire bikes."

I can think of at least one free solution to this.
  • + 6
 I dont get it
  • + 4
 Is it just me or do Foes bikes look 15lbs heavier than everything else ?
  • + 4
 Interesting, not a single 29+ wheel. Is it dead?
  • + 2
 Colours on that Portus bike are awful!

Until the end of this article I was hoping for custom 26" HT frame for normal size tires...
  • + 1
 It's a shame if the plus bikes can't accept 29er tires as they are available even in DHF 2.5 guises nowadays. Current plus tires are just a tad thin but guisesweight similar to aggressive 29er tires.
  • + 4
 is it weird that I really want to try that dirty-sixer?
  • + 2
 Matter made the modern "Bullit" with Nomad geo with the TwoStroke. The headset pivot bearing is badass. It looks not only super stout, but mad fun.
  • + 3
 The new standards = T47 BB + 36" wheels. Everything thing else will become obsolete!
  • + 4
 That Alchemy looks promising.
  • + 1
 Ag no - these guys are all on the same 27.5/ 27.5 plus/29 band wagon like the big boys. And have added their own crazy shite like a 36er. Smite!
  • + 1
 anybody else notice the size of the shock on the Foes dh bike, the spring looks tiny compared to the shock body. there are soooo many threads showing on the preload.
  • + 3
 Thank God, something other than Rampage or Crankworx to read about.
  • + 1
 Its just all filler until the fest series begins.
  • + 1
 You might want to join the beard wearing beer brewing crowd at mtbr then..
  • + 1
 Wrong he has really nice chop style sideburns!
  • + 1
 What's wrong with beards and beer @bonkywonky ?
  • + 2
 @bonkywonky don't tell us your into bib short bulges and after ride cream soda's. Don't you have a plum smuggler anonymous meeting to get to!
  • + 2
 orange is the new black...orange ano everywhere...that 40th aniversary green from king is delicious
  • + 3
 That 36" HT would get me to school about 40x faster
  • + 3
 Rick Hunter, the 80s may want their grips back but i think they look cool.
  • + 1
 I love this show and appreciate the coverage of it. Also, what is that cyclinder-lookin' thing at the bottom of the MRP fork on the DirtySixer?
  • + 0
 Piggyback reservoir? I have seen it before moto forks.
  • + 2
 ti FS 29er is rad. also i want that ski bike. do resorts let you take ski bikes up there on the east coast?
  • + 1
 Some resorts in NH allow ski bikes. Jay Peak allows them on the tram. Hopefully more will allow them eventually.
  • + 3
 how can alchemy win best mtb... the bike is 90% made in asia.
  • + 2
 The front triangle is only 10% of a FS frame? That said, your bike, regardless of what you're riding, is mostly made in Asia.
  • + 1
 hand made bike show? it is pretty ballsy to give it to a bike where pretty much everything is made in asia.

my bikes are made in usa. Except for the drivetrain that is made near osaka, japan.
  • + 5
 @MojoMauer All the bikes at the show were laid up in the USA.

That being said, even the Asian manufactured carbon fiber frames are handmade. . .
  • + 1
 i am talking about the alchemy bike. the front triangle is made is us. the rest in asia. it just does not belong to nahbs. even less to win an award. look at the eriksen in comparison. the alchemy is just a supermarket bike like many. besides the fact the paint screams newbie.
  • + 3
 That single sided rear stay bike... so cool.
  • + 3
 Please Foes, make that negative travel bike
  • + 1
 can someone explain to me what a negative travel bike is please?
  • + 3
 Hydro formed canteen! Neat
  • + 3
 Get your Steam Punk on mother fokker!
  • + 5
 That's forker...
  • + 1
 Nice to see Sycip is still active. I wasn't sure if he was. Should see the furniture Jeremy was making for a while. Amazing.
  • + 3
 This article is making me RiGID
  • + 3
 Wow, wooden frame is beautiful
  • + 2
 that green Black Cat! so sexy..
  • - 1
 So what exactly is "negative travel"? Does that mean you hit a bump and your bike suddenly leaps into the air instead of absorbing it? Or is it just another word for "really huge rearward axle path"?
  • + 3
 Rear wheel has travel both up and down...so if you're going through moto whoops or something the rear wheel would absorb the bumps and use that negative travel to extend down into the divots as well
  • + 3
 So 3" of sag. Sounds... uh... actually I don't really know.
  • + 1
 That's what sag does... So his question is valid. But to somewhat clarify it's a dual stage damper. They had an article up here about it some months back.
  • + 0
 Not exactly sag. The dampening will be different if it is truly negative travel in the..... negative tracel. Squared.
  • + 1
 *travel
  • + 3
 its not sag, its negative travel, the extra cost proves its different
  • + 1
 www.pinkbike.com/news/first-look-foes-ffr-dh-prototype-has-two-stage-damper-to-boost-negative-travel-sea-otter-2014.html

As I said. Makes the rear wheel extend back down, pushing it past the extension...here's the article. Interesting stuff, but not sure how it'd apply in riding when you want to skim over something and your rear wheel's still glued to the ground
  • + 4
 It is travel that becomes available once your weight is off of the bike. When you catch air this travel will become available to you, but if your weight is on the bike you will only have the 9" available (or whatever is left when you take out the sag for your body weight).

Think of desert trophy trucks. They have huge amounts of travel, but half of that is "negative" travel. This way they don't ride that high when their weight is acting on the suspension. This allows for a large amount of travel for big hits, but they won't handle like crap due to their high center of gravity.
  • + 1
 @bmxsnox, thank you, that finally makes some sense
  • + 1
 There's a years worth of wanks right there lol
Rob English wow !
f*ck Banksy, King Robbo Rules
  • + 2
 Incredible talent all-around. Bravo.
  • + 2
 english cycles did "lefty", right.
  • + 2
 skinny jeans and manicured beards as far as the eye can see....
  • + 1
 I was thinking about the 5k that I send in my specialized but thanks to this post I realized that it was a good inversion
  • + 1
 "And here BLANK has a 27.5 Plus hardtail"

Tons of plus bikes!! Not a bad thing, just surprised at the popularity.
  • + 3
 12" Triton Ti FTW.
  • + 2
 Three inches of "negative" travel? You mean droop?
  • + 1
 Maybe it's for those brief but intense moments where you're riding the bike upside down
  • + 1
 All the bikes look great! It's great to see small companies popping up everywhere and introducing new technology tup
  • + 2
 Did I not see "Boost" anywhere....?
  • + 1
 Anyone else see the "AWD" on the fork leg of the cal-poly bike? Is that thing two wheel drive?
  • + 2
 sean at soulcraft is great people
  • + 1
 Looks like a lot of bike love and maybe a batch of mushrooms going down here.
  • + 1
 The ventana long travel ski bike has a picture of the alchemy?
  • + 1
 REEB go home, you're drunk... on BEER.
  • + 1
 I look forward to this each year almost as much as the WCDH.
  • + 1
 alchemy arktos = yeti sb6C?
  • + 1
 Hipsters and check shirt weating bearded folk assemble
  • + 1
 No coverage of what Steve Potts brought?
  • + 1
 Who said 26" is dead? I mean, apart from these guys?
  • + 1
 Damn I want a 27.5+ hardtail now, those suckers look rowdy!
  • + 1
 That Matter looks like a steel tubed Orange 5 basically.
  • + 1
 Flexing plates for fork travel makes me nervous. Fatiguing plates?
  • + 1
 Fatiguing coils, seals, it's the same thing. Probably more reliable as you can actually visually see the wear w/o having to pull it apart. Now performance that is something to look into.
  • + 1
 Even still, when one of those things goes, the fork isn't just going to compress into itself, you're going OTB.
  • + 1
 Rick Hunter, do you name your bikes after Robotech mechs??? Smile
  • + 1
 there must be the easy gear or we all fall down
  • + 1
 Are handmade bike frames Colorado's only industry?
  • + 2
 That and weed.
  • - 3
 Thanks PinkBike for saving me $22 bucks admission and gas money to see what actually was at the show! These shows remind me of automobile HotRod shows. Cool looking but in regards to warranty and handling the gnar over time, I would not drop decent money on any of these bikes unless it was burning a hole in my pocket. Just sayin...
  • + 2
 WTB FTW in tire choice.
  • + 1
 Looks like WTB is the main Sponsor of this Show.
  • + 2
 mad post
  • + 1
 Excellent mountain bike focused coverage. What an amazing show!
  • + 1
 That 36" wheels. Just wait for 44" plus bikes come next year
  • + 1
 theese hardtails, so sexy
  • + 1
 I would NOT trust a bike made out of wood to mountain bike...
  • + 2
 Awesome Articel
  • + 1
 No plus sizes?
  • + 1
 The Lichen.... Nice.
  • + 1
 Bike porn!
  • + 1
 alloy foe life!!
  • + 1
 36" foe life!
  • + 0
 N... no...nop.. nope nope NOPE! NOPE!!!!!!!!
  • + 1
 iv got a semi
  • + 2
 Lucky you, mid terrace here.
  • + 1
 Foes still give me wood
  • + 1
 Nice bikes and details

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