Take a Tour of SRAM's Mother Ship - Val di Sole World Cup 2017

Aug 25, 2017 at 15:16
by Richard Cunningham  
SRAM Truck


SRAM goes big, especially at the races, where their red and white tent and adjoining tractor-trailer is usually found in the center of the action and stuffed with Race Techs, busily wrenching on bikes and suspension that belong to the world's most enviable athletes. Most race fans have watched the action in the SRAM pits from the sidelines - and on those rarer occasions like Crankworx, when SRAM opens its race-tech services to the public, some have been fortunate enough to watch their own drivetrains, brakes, forks, and shocks, get the pro-treatment. Few, however, are invited to climb the steps that lead into the cavernous trailer where the secret stuff happens, safely hidden from the lenses of tech-hungry journos.

PB photographer Ross Bell is one of those lucky ones, and who better to guide us through the SRAM Mother Ship than the multi-time RockShox Boxxer World Champion, Evan Warner. Click on the audio track and listen to Warner as he gives PB a walk-through of SRAM's Race Support operations while you view the images below.
Winner of round two Evan Warner advancing...
Master Tech Evan Warner celebrates another victory at the BoXXer World Championships.



SRAM Truck
World Cups, like Val di Sole, double the action in the SRAM paddock, with techs tasked to wrench on cross-country and downhill rigs, back to back.

SRAM Truck
Not sure if this is a deli or a drug store. The workload varies from long, undisturbed evenings spent rebuilding wheels and bikes for race-day, to six-hour stretches of make-it-happen...now! Occasionally, there is playtime. SRAM ensures there are beverages readily available to suit all occasions.

SRAM Truck
Number-one plates are a common sight under the red and white tent. This one belongs to Nino Schurter.

SRAM Truck
Nino Schurter's SID World Cup, ready to rock.
SRAM Truck
Gunn-Rita's Monarch XX shocks in for makeovers.

SRAM Truck
What your tool kit looks like when you'll need to be ready to fix anything that may need fixing on a DH or XC machine.

SRAM Truck
SRAM Truck
Next! When half the Pro Peloton is riding red, SRAM needs big bike stands to queue up the bikes.

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SRAM Truck
Most of the time, there's plenty of work for everyone....
SRAM Truck

SRAM Truck
...When the show begins, however, it can be a ghost town.

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Now, the fun part: Inside the SRAM Mother Ship

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Dani Portmann at work. The race truck's first task is to provide a sanitary environment for suspension techs...

SRAM Truck
...and it's a hiding place for the candy store.
SRAM Truck
Lots of very expensive candy for the kids.

SRAM Truck
The nature of the tool kit changes behind the doorways: bottom bracket and headset-facing cutters, bearing presses, cutting fixtures, files, hammers, and a few BFC wrenches bear witness to the major surgeries that take place here.

SRAM Truck
And who wouldn't want a precision metal lathe in their workshop? If SRAM doesn't have it, then they can probably make it.

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Dani Portmann: Working in secret is important to a company that is often developing products three years in advance, but more often, the race truck offers the opportunity to think through a critically important re-valve without dealing with the crush of the crowd.






65 Comments

  • + 124
 How many sets of guides are in there with stuck pistons....
  • + 11
 just switched back to Shimano because this crap just keeps happening
  • + 19
 @kaeton-sf: Shimano is great till the lever seals blow. Happened on 8 levers I've seen so far. Just get Hope and be done with it all! May be expensive but they last forever and perform AMAZING!
  • + 13
 not mine, theyre still on my bike.. stuck as fvck
  • + 4
 Left mine out in the sun today for 35 minutes before a race run. Rookie error. Spongey, and terrifying! Ha. This is the second set after SRAM replaced...
  • + 2
 @kaeton-sf: Shimano making some of the best reasonably priced stuff on Earth. Also there fishing gear isn't too shabby.
  • + 0
 Scram it the guides are stuck again.
  • + 3
 This truck is why there's no rebuild kits left for them to send to the shops.
  • + 2
 ROfl, just rebuilt a pair with that flaw. What a pain. Luckily I like my components like I like my wife.
  • + 8
 @zidaen: beat up and worthless ?
  • + 70
 So that's where the money goes when you buy a Sram cassette! Pretty cool!
  • + 50
 3% of every Eagle sale goes towards SRAM floor mats
  • - 43
flag Dylanmurray69420 (Aug 25, 2017 at 21:33) (Below Threshold)
 sram is bad I spend $70 on new x4 shifter for mongosse mountain cycle it break after 2 yeets. I only but sr sun tour products now these guys are bad
  • - 43
flag Dylanmurray69420 (Aug 25, 2017 at 21:34) (Below Threshold)
 also one day at crankworx I went to get fork fix and they put the upper part with the smooth cylinders in backwards It work bad I only ride Smith derailleurs now
  • + 68
 @Dylanmurray69420: have you tried the Dakine tires yet ?
  • + 12
 @yoannbarelli: i here theyr covfefe
  • + 18
 @Dylanmurray69420: Hardly anything lasts more than 2 yeets.
  • + 26
 Fox digital shock pump in the SRAM mechanics tool kit
  • + 5
 That pump exists with either Fox or RockShox logos. I guarantee if the photo showed the whole pump, this one would say RockShox.
  • + 1
 It's for 'lending out'. My one of those read over 100 psi too high.......
  • + 1
 @joecrosby:




I seen inside Evan's tool kit. Yes that one and the one that he gave me both say Rockshox.
  • + 16
 I wonder why there's no Shimano/ Fox truck? Is it because you just install them and kinda forget about them?
  • + 3
 There is a FOX truck, not nearly as big but they for sure have support in the pits. You know that Jordi guy Gwin and Minnar are always going to visit... factory fox support.
  • + 13
 That view inside the Mother ship... precision metal lathe! damn! and that was only 2 drawers with all the brake pads and derailleur hangers... imagine all the other drawers...
  • + 7
 I would totally willy wonka that shit and sing Pure Imagination as I waltz my behind through that tent
  • + 5
 It's so nice to see a posters of Stevie and Zarja on the last picture
  • + 4
 ill take that girl with the twisted leg and the lathe thanks !
  • + 20
 I don't think you would know what to do with either.
  • + 2
 @employee7: ya put her let in the lathe, butter it up and straiten it out. BAM!
  • + 2
 Ok I'll just have one of these, and a couple eagle cassettes. My those derailleurs look nice! ! Excuse me?! The shifters and the Pike?! Don't mind if I do.
  • + 4
 Hope they have tons of extra Guide Levers on hand, amirite???
  • + 2
 I see QR codes on the paper travellers attached to the bikes and components. Curious if SRAM uses a software program to track and manage lot history.
  • - 1
 Was just at Outerbike in Crested Butte and there was a SRAM tent....and it was busy. They have great customer service because they have to. Some of their stuff (cranks, cassettes, forks) is really good. Rear shocks and Reverbs are a crapshoot (you get a good one and it lasts, you get a bad one and it pukes oil/stops working within 2-10 rides). And then there are the brakes........all garbage all the time. Shimano brakes and drivetrains aren't flawless, but they're close, all the way down to Deore stuff. Maybe someday SRAM will learn to make reliable stuff. Until then, the only way pros can trust their stuff is if there's a huge repair area to replace stuff on sight As needed (which is very, very often).
  • + 2
 That's what happens when you wrench Cecile's bike: the press actually come to your tent!
  • + 3
 Now that is pro support!!!
  • + 2
 So this is why SRAM stuff costs a fortune
  • + 3
 I love candy.
  • + 2
 Screw what I studied in grad school, I want to work on that truck!!!!!!
  • + 1
 Now the Secret's out you all finally know why this s*** is so expensive. Consumers going to pay consumers going to pay.
  • + 1
 Is it possible to know why on the photo, Nino is riding a Fox rear shock?
  • + 4
 Scott co-developed their "Nude" shock with Fox. It's remote spring rate and travel-adjust feature is integral to the bike's performance, so I assume that is the reason the shock remains on the bike.
  • + 1
 so thats what all my money goes to
  • + 1
 spotted stevie smith's poster
  • + 0
 Sram really rocks, thanks sram for all the help you guy give me in my shop. RINCON MOUNTAIN BIKE PRO SHOP
  • + 1
 What a badass way to support their riders...but where are the bleed kits?
  • + 1
 A candy for kids. Damn.
  • + 1
 Choice
  • + 1
 Made in Taiwan Smile
  • - 11
flag loaded (Aug 25, 2017 at 18:21) (Below Threshold)
 What are u racist? What the hell is wrong with Taiwan? Some of the best stuff in the world comes off that island
  • + 7
 @loaded: saying "Made in Taiwan" doesn't make me racist. I rather like that fact. Many high-end products are made there. Not just bike parts. Taiwan is an awesome country and I've visited there many times.
  • + 1
 rapid fire
  • + 0
 SRAM!!!
  • - 1
 No beer in that fridge??? Fail...
  • + 0
 LOL????
  • + 7
 Only if it was a Shimano trailer LOL
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