Santa Cruz Bicycles Builds Custom Trials Bike For Danny MacAskill In-House - Video Bike Check

Apr 2, 2018 at 15:45
by Pinkbike Staff  


The in-house composites lab at Santa Cruz was initially set-up for their Reserve wheels program, but after riding carbon wheels for a full season and not breaking them, Danny MacAskill got excited about the possibility of riding a complete carbon trials bike, and asked Santa Cruz Chief Composites Engineer Nic McRae if he could make him one.

bigquotesI rode that one pair of wheels all summer. Some of the scenes took more than 150 attempts to get right. A 1000lb hay bale rolled over them a few times and they still only needed a quarter spoke turn the whole time. It was pretty unbelievable really. That’s when I started talking seriously to Santa Cruz about what other stuff we could do with carbon.Danny MacAskill

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

bigquotesDanny wanted us to make him a carbon trials bike. I had no idea what kind of journey that was going to be, but it sounded like there’d be a whole lot of new stuff to learn working on a project like this so I just said yes... and used it as an opportunity to take our in-house R and D facility to the next level.Nic McCrae, Chief Composites Engineer at Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame


Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame
Santa Cruz Bicycles Danny MacAskill Prototype Frame

Danny will be riding the custom frame at Sea Otter, and picking where he left off (due to injury) on an exciting film project.


MENTIONS: @santacruzbicycles



113 Comments

  • 291 7
 No water bottle mount. Bb seems high. Steep steerer tube. Pressfit. This won't be my next trail bike.
  • 10 37
flag chyu (Apr 3, 2018 at 2:15) (Below Threshold)
 How is him going to pedal that thing up?
  • 7 168
flag AlexJamke (Apr 3, 2018 at 3:44) (Below Threshold)
 Dude, it's a TRIALS bike!!! And there is a reason why trial bikes have high BBs.
  • 72 2
 @AlexJamke: ... Swooosh...
  • 26 3
 @Spark24: Knock! Knock! - who is there? - Vi ask ze qvestionz!!!
  • 18 1
 No black spokes.
  • 16 1
 @AlexJamke: Helicopter joke... (its over your head)
  • 15 1
 It's not Pressfit.
  • 5 0
 @High-Life: LOL Yeah! its pretty easy to see the threads eh?!
  • 5 2
 @AlexJamke: dude. It’s a joke.
  • 2 0
 And it is 24 inches with narrow tires, how is this even possible in 2018?
  • 3 0
 @b-wicked: it’s called 4-bar and it’s not a linkage
  • 2 0
 @WAKIdesigns: 4-bar, a bike made for Bar visits? It would be better with training wheels, safer way home is a key of bar rally.
  • 1 0
 John Holmes Road Bike Stem. all biek must haz 50mm or it bad -everyone on pinkbike
  • 101 0
 Santa Cruz why dont you use that clear coat over raw carbon for all your logos?? looks sick af
  • 23 5
 cos frames made in Asia are not so beautiful.Get some bondo over here and there and sanding marks....
  • 12 0
 the black rectangles on CC frames are raw carbon. they just don't have that cosmetic weave look.
  • 2 0
 @mylespotter: hi Myles
  • 2 16
flag Telemahn (Apr 3, 2018 at 6:17) (Below Threshold)
 That's a carbon decal, not a cutaway.
  • 3 0
 Per the vitalmtb article it is 'some very special, Department of Defense controlled, impact-resistant braided carbon coming through the lettering on the downtube'
  • 4 1
 @BillT999: you mean texalium?
  • 8 1
 A lot of their matt black frames are actually simi transparent. I can clearly see the Unidirectional Carbon through my Hightower paint which is what most bikes are completely made out of. same with my Race Face Six C and Race handle bars. They use female molds and prepreg carbon for both making bondo and fillers unnecessary as it is basically impossible for bubbles in resin or imperfections to form except for maybe the tightest areas or any joints they may have.
  • 4 0
 @WAKIdesigns: Texalium = Aluminum Vacuum Deposit Coated Glass Fiber = Same Strength, heavier weight and shiney look if you are into it...
  • 43 4
 The level of irrational want is insane...
  • 8 1
 I've been hovering over the 'buy' icon on the Inspired Skye for ages. Now there's a carbon version (albeit with SC logos). The level of need is strong.
  • 16 2
 i wanted to buy a 24” trials/ street bike but then I was fortunate to do a demo ride on one and realized small wheels don’t exactly make me a stylish, playful rider, I still suck... so I kept my 26” DJ . Now trials riders and BMXers laugh at me and tell me to get those wagon wheels the fk out of their playground.

Sounds familiar...
  • 4 0
 Does it Inspire you to get into trials riding?
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I always thought they were cool. This is a very specific trials frame but some of these 24" models are a bit more cross-over. I always used to like that Woodman Elite frame. It still looks fun to me.
  • 2 0
 @ReformedRoadie: I must say It was a bit like (being) Inspired...
  • 1 1
 this + 100

i bought the team Inspired danny replica bike to ride around the block with my kids.

Now im looking on santa cruz's website to see where i can buy this one!

damn you Danny!!!!!
  • 3 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I used to ride my dj bike in the bmx parks near my home....but the bmxers didnt complain about my bike because they allways were stoned jjajajajaja
  • 17 0
 That's the neatest chain tensioner I've ever seen, tucked away like that. It is a neat bike full stop. Danny is one of those riders who really inspire you to get better at those slow speed moves. If it works for trials, it should also work on a technical trail. Loads of reasons to practice this kind of stuff.
  • 3 0
 @winko: Not being an expert, trials bikes are a bit like BMX bikes to me. I find it hard to tell them apart. Most striking difference I notice between the carbon SC bike and the aluminium Inspired bike is the head tube area. Again, not being an expert I can't tell whether these differences are considered so minimal to consider them carbon copies. Either way, they both look neat to me.
  • 2 0
 @vinay: Well neither am I but geometry and features wise (tensioner mount, 12mm axle,...) I'd say it is pretty much a copy considering its his signature bike so it must suit him well Smile
The structural changes are probably related to the carbon, since its stronger you can make tubes thinner etc. (just compare the top tubes).
And yeah, they are both neat for sure, both would also be a complete waste if ridden by me haha
  • 1 0
 @winko: Yeah I get that he wouldn't suddenly demand an entirely different geometry. I wouldn't even know if these axle standards are that unique though. At least they're common enough that he can get replacement hubs should he ever need them.

I'd say Danny provides the geometry numbers and features to work with, which probably is where the similarities come from. But design and production with fibre reinforced plastics is so different to metals that I wouldn't call it a copy.
  • 15 1
 This makes me feel uninspired. Frown
  • 13 4
 Santa Cruz could really change the game with this new carbon lab... The cost, and thus barrier to entry, for a mold was so high before it wasn't feasible to customize like this. Interested to see what else comes to bear.
  • 8 0
 How do you think almost every prototype carbon frame is made ? This has much more cost involved then you think. I bet that frame is well over 15k in labour alone. Its excellent to make a one off. But any actual production goes to a mould.
  • 4 0
 SC failed a bit in Raoul Lueschers lab. But let’s hope it’s an isolated incident.
instagram.com/p/Bg4fpiDj21W
  • 12 1
 So this is why Santa Cruz dropped Logan Peat to afford the carbon moulds
  • 13 3
 It took Danny 1 hour to brake that frame

fotos.mtb-news.de/p/2255039
  • 9 0
 Danny McCrackskills
  • 1 3
 I see what you did there you funny german person! Big Grin
  • 1 0
 I should hope he did otherwise it would have been overly heavy.
  • 3 0
 Did you check Santa Cruz's site? They didn't exactly cover up that fact. It's all in the name of product development.
  • 8 0
 So what's the complete weight on the bike?
  • 4 0
 Frame: 1600g. Forks: 600g. Complete Bike weight: 9.6kg (21.0Lbs), which is about 1.8kg (4lbs) lighter than his previous bike.
  • 2 0
 thing which matters is that your goals, Danny wanted this and here it is, It's your choice guys whether you want it or not. Personal Preference does matters too, If this bike will be out in market then would be called mercedez of trials :p
  • 3 0
 pagani*
  • 3 1
 I always get pissed when i see single speed bikes with a tensioner (brendan seminuk) but these guys actually took a second to explain it and made a super clean alternative to some overpriced and underused derailleur. Well done Santa Cruz.
  • 3 1
 Still makes me wonder, why use a tensioner at all, sure you dont want sliding dropouts but there are EBB's that work amazingly well?
  • 1 0
 @aer0: it seems like there are a lot better solutions out there including EBBs and moving dropouts. These guys at least have a better solution and gave it more thought than trek. I just hate seeing people pay for parts that the bikes don't need.
  • 1 0
 Semenuk uses a tensioner (actually a derailleur) because he's on a full sus. You can't just run a slope bike like a DJ due to rear suspension.
  • 5 0
 That's surely one of THE coolest one-offs of all time?
  • 4 3
 One for the ages! Reminds me of a comedian's comment I heard recently, "this is what peak performance looks like!" I think referring to his weird looking physique. I feel the same about this kind of goofy looking bike, "THIS IS WHAT PEAK PERFORMANCE LOOKS LIKE!!!". LOL. It literally is what peak performance looks like, but it's just so funny looking.
  • 2 0
 Surprised that we didn't see something a little more radical in terms of design. It feels like the two triangles idea of frame design doesn't really fit with carbon in terms of the design criteria for a trials bike
  • 1 0
 Trials riding question(from a non-trials rider): from a frame design standpoint, why do you have such a high rise stem? I would think you could make a longer headtube, and a swoopy top tube to make it work. I'm sure there's something here that I am missing, anyone have any insights?
  • 3 0
 leverage over the front wheel, better balance point. More natural position when on the rear wheel.
  • 2 0
 If you have a longer headtube in order to get the geometry right you end up pushing the top cap stem area into yourself when you do pedals kicks and those types of maneuvers, the same reason they use bars with so much rise and sweep. Also that stem isn't even that bad compared to comp trials bikes that can have up to 180mm stems with 35 degrees of rise, although they normally aren't quite that long.
  • 4 0
 I’d love to see a carbon dj frame for Logan Peat. Oh wait...
  • 7 0
 Now dont go crazy logans good but danny is a far bigger branding asset. Alls his videos etc logan peats came 5th a few times at fmb event. Chalk and cheese and all that
  • 1 0
 @wellbastardfast: I’m well aware but it’s unfortunate to see riders end up unsupported
  • 4 0
 @j0302: well they did make him a slope bike? not in carbon but that coulda been his choice for all we know and i'll hardly call that unsupporting...
  • 1 0
 I would not want a full carbon trials bike, but would like a bamboo back end for my street bike
Well will build it my self,
Danny your back will not thank you for riding full carbon street rig?
  • 2 0
 You need Morpheus Vimana then
  • 2 0
 Same thoughts. His back gave him trouble once too. Maybe he's a cyborg now. Robocop on disco biscuits.
  • 2 2
 What's the best trail in Santa Cruz (the town)? Is there a specific trail you use to test designs or shoot promos? I visited once, but only rode Demo Forest, since I think a lot of the good trails aren't official and I didn't know anyone in town. Is Santa Cruz involved in any trail access initiatives such as supporting STC or local efforts?
  • 3 0
 Bring on a carbon version of the Chameleon. Do it all light and rowdy all mountain hardtail
  • 1 0
 god, please yes! i've been saying that for years!
  • 1 0
 It is the bonding agent that is really evil, maybe got got something better now, but dont know as this is hidden, could used hemp or bamboo fibres though?
  • 2 0
 The carbon weave left expose to create the Santa Cruz lettering is a beautiful touch!
  • 1 0
 Considering Inspired charge ludicrous money for a 24" complete bike I dread to think what the SC bike would cost if released.
  • 3 1
 Finally a carbon frame from Santa Cruz made in the USA
  • 3 4
 At least Santacruz will not dump there waste in the sea!
  • 2 0
 @aljoburr: I hope not. I swim and surf here and we have enough needles from the junkies on our beach.
  • 1 0
 @aljoburr: most u.s. heavy waste gets shipped to india unfortunately. Helps keep the usa looking clean and green...and better than china?!?!?!!
  • 2 0
 Are you planning to make a jackal Carbon ?
  • 2 1
 What's up with these poor American workers, forced to use powerful adhesives without a proper mask?
  • 1 0
 What is going to happen with his partnership with inspired if santa cruz has made him a trials bike?
  • 1 0
 I wouldn't be sticking my hands in the big red press looking thing for sure.
  • 1 0
 I was gonna mention the silver spokes but then he did. Big Grin Would round this thing of pretty nicely. What about the weight?
  • 1 0
 I would like those forks to be released in a 26" variant for dj
  • 1 0
 The axle to crown height is fairly close to what's run on BMX cruisers by the looks of things. Answer, Box and a few others make forks that might fit your requirements. I don't know if I'd want carbon for dirt jumping though.
  • 1 0
 @DarrellW: thanks about the box mention
  • 2 1
 Absolutely bonkers. Amazing. Does everyone smoke a lot in CA?
  • 5 4
 Yep, that's how they evolved out of the primordial soup that makes up the central 8/10ths of the country. Love you Merica xx
  • 5 3
 @BenPea: Hate Speech!!! You'll be reported to the French thought police for reeducation. Love you Germany's bitch xx.
  • 4 0
 @Session603: Hey, you gotta laugh, otherwise you cry... And Germany's a great sugar daddy. Ritch, kerring und zexy!
  • 1 0
 @BenPea: I wholeheartedly agree.
  • 2 1
 Saying a lot for the Reserve rims
  • 9 2
 Seen em break like all other carbons. Notice Dannys video he ALWAYS hits square on both beads of the rim?

Hit just one side on a good carbon rim and theyre cracked.

The lifetime warranty is tits, however the expectation they wont crack is just marketing hyperbole.
  • 1 0
 24" or 26" carbon wheels on that thing???
  • 1 0
 I am not into trialing or planning on it. Nevertheless GIMME!
  • 2 1
 Yey! Santa Cruz making kids bikes... oh... sorry... showing my age.
  • 1 0
 Those 27.5 wheels looks small Oh wait..
  • 1 0
 Thanks for the pretty pictures.
  • 1 0
 Looks like a fun bike! Do they make it in a balance bike version?
  • 1 0
 Magic.i want those magura calipers!
  • 1 0
 I'd love to see a custom Carbon pump track bike.... Could weigh 5kg...
  • 3 3
 I wonder where the carbon haters went...
  • 8 28
flag Powderface (Apr 3, 2018 at 0:13) (Below Threshold)
 You have the second comment on this article. Are you saying that because the first comment wasn't carbon hate that somehow we've all disappeared?

I'd never buy a santa cruz. Probably the worst value of any brand because they throw money at projects like this. One off carbon trials frame? Completely useless.
  • 6 1
 @Powderface: Excuse me, I was first. Big Grin Not that it matters. I knew you guys were still out there; there will always be haters on PB, whether it be frame material, wheel size, bottom brackets, geometry, cable routing, or water bottle mounts. I was noting what a cool bike/rider/story that was, and that yes, the general consensus is now that carbon is great, or at least fine. Look at the other comments and feel free to prove me wrong. 1. Carbon isn't evil. 2. What I just read was freakin AWESOME.
  • 3 1
 Clarification: When I said what I just read, I meant the article.
  • 1 0
 What does it weigh?
  • 2 2
 Danny Hart has heros?
  • 6 0
 @shimanosaint0097
I'm sure he does.. maybe we'll find out in an article about him.
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