Performance Skate Wheels

It’s finally time for this problem to be solved. I’ve been wanting this for a very long time! Now testing can begin without constraints. I’ve been contending with the availability of wheels that conform to the needs of my skateboard project. I need tall and soft wheels for ease of travel over rough road but … Read more

Fancy new head tube

After testing a new modular head tube design on Windy’s Vega MTB, I wanted to get some nice parts CNC machined so that I could get the look just right. I’ve got a new mountain bike going together for myself and it’s going to use the new parts. As usual, a lot has gone into … Read more

PVD G5 Skate Truck

Here we are again. Another draft of the skate truck. They are getting pretty. The G4 trucks were working very well and there had been enough time on them to figure out what needed to change next. Functionally, they were pretty good but there was still room for improvement. I had some changes to add … Read more

Chris King Guest House at Santa Cruz Bicycles 2023

No Sea Otter for me. I did go to the Chris King Guest House at Santa Cruz Bicycles. I was expecting something a bit bigger than last year’s event at Caletti Cycles. It was, but in a different way than expected. A smaller bike show but a bigger ‘party’ at the headquarters. An interesting crowd. … Read more

Designing at the Mill

In my workshop at the university, I’m constantly instructing students and others that designing at the mill is a fools job. It’s not where we do this work. We should be arriving at the machine with a fully sorted design with all of the issues worked out. This is obvious stuff that somehow doesn’t occur … Read more

PVD CNC ICP

I started this project about a year ago, almost to the week. It was going to be a big undertaking for me as I haven’t done a lot of this kind of work, or at least properly. I’m happy to learn new things but it can take me a bit of effort and time to … Read more

The Back Catalog

I’ve been doing audio interviews surrounding the bicycle space for the past few years. In that time, I’ve built up a back catalog of over 65 recordings. I wanted to get them all together so that folks could hear them if they haven’t. The blog format that I use inspires me to create new posts … Read more

Marc Salvisberg

This starts with my path to Marc. In 1995, I left the Boston area. I was 25 years old and needed a change in my surroundings. I had grown up in central and eastern Massachusetts. Just two semesters at a college in Rhode Island. Otherwise, I had spent the previous 6 years in the Boston, … Read more

Vega

This is one of the big ones….hold on! The Lockheed 5B Vega “Little Red Bus” is the airplane Amelia Earhart used to set two of her major aviation records. In 1932 she flew it solo across the Atlantic Ocean, only the second person to do so and the first woman. She was the first woman … Read more

Big dummy

Dummy axles and how they are held are a crucial part of a frame building program. We have to accurately place where the wheel axles will be, just as we do with the various tubes. The frame should hold the hubs so that the tires, gears, derailleur, and rotor are in plane, centered among the … Read more

Second Principles

When we work in engineering and design, we refer as much as possible to ‘first principles’, those datums or facts on which the entire project rests. “A basic assumption that cannot be deduced any further”. Everything comes back to these. They are both our lighthouse and safe harbor. In bicycle design, there are many of … Read more

Good Work

I try to do good work. I know a lot of folks that do good work. Folks like us generally want to know each other. I’m sure this is because we are a minority. It’s easy to see good work when someone points it out to you. They point. You look. It’s seen. Easy. Then … Read more

The New Head Tube

Construction of Windy’s new mountain bike is underway. Among the details that needed working out was the head tube. In optimizing the geometry, space got a bit tricky at the head of the bike. I wanted to free up some rider space for her and that means keeping the top tube low. That meant using … Read more

PVD Fixture Updates

It’s been a while since discussing the SKYNET and WOPR frame fixtures. They are some of my most important work and I review them from time to time. I’m not going to go into too much about the fixtures as little has changed, aside from one important detail. Early in the designing of the Cyberdyne … Read more

Industrial Craftsmanship

I design and produce quite a few things as a hobby. Bicycles, motorcycles, & skateboards and the details that surround them. I do other projects but the short list is probably the most elegant way to describe it. I could get even more discrete when I say ’tilt steer vehicles’, but that requires more explanation … Read more

G4 Skate Trucks

In early November, I got the new G3 skate trucks finished and mounted. This was just before a big trip to Boston, Philadelphia, and New York City. That was a great thing as I was able to log about 40 miles on the trucks. This was a massive test in exactly the conditions that I’ve … Read more

Caliper Mounting Systemization Equations For CAD

For those familiar with my work, it’s known that I try to push my models hard in the design of my bikes and the parts that go onto them. Because of that, equation driven construction geometry for entire bikes and groupings of parts turn into hundreds of parameters and equations for any given configuration and … Read more

The correct location for hub markings

I had to build a wheel for Windy’s bike the other day. When we put her new full suspension bike together, I had to ‘borrow’ a rear wheel from another bike to stoke the setup out. The rear hub had to be an Onyx and that got her going. It just left my klunker disheveled … Read more

Push it Until it Breaks

This post is about durable solid modeling. Durable models are those that are difficult to break after minor changes when marking-up in the virtual model space. Very often, I see others using methods that produce very fragile and delicate models that explode any time the smallest of change is made. There are methods to prevent … Read more

Sabertooth!

It was so long ago that I can hardly remember. Maybe a dozen years. New ways of looking at bikes was driving new choices in parts. I had to start getting more and more creative with setups. More than any other part, the stem became a crucial part. Not just any stem, the RIGHT stem. … Read more

PBE2022

It was looking to be a lively year for the Philly Bike Expo. Well on the backside of the pandemic, things would be closer to ‘normal’ than in the past few years. Also, with the collapse of the North American Handmade Bike Show, PBE was, without question, The Show for North America in 2022. Over … Read more

Flashdance

The other day, I got to go visit the Firefly Bicycles studio in Boston. I’ve got some history in the world surrounding this. I talked with Tyler Evans during the tour and after about what this is all about. Not many know that Tyler’s personal story was made into a movie, Flashdance, although Hollywood took … Read more

2022 PVD G3 Trucks

This is the third draft of the new skate truck. It’s for the adult skateboard concept. The truck to match the theme of what adults should use for daily drivers. It’s a semi-precision truck that hopes to balance the quality movement of a precision truck with the ease and comfort of a commodity truck. The … Read more

OnePointEight

I finally had a chance to work with some of the new OnePointEight head parts. These are being rolled out for heavier eBikes. Matt has a Transition Repeater 29″. He was ‘upgrading’ from a RS ZEB R 160mm to a Fox 38 Grip 2 Factory 180mm. The ZEB that the bike came with has a … Read more

Bike Design with Crayons

We just learned about the 2023 Marin Gestalt X10. A $1,549.00 bike that is almost worth riding. I try to rep Marin County with my bike work. It’s an incredible place to ride, especially if you want mixed terrain. We have hundreds of miles of gorgeous fire roads and a ton of singletrack from mild … Read more

Microscope Holding Upgrade

I just recently got the chance, again, to post microscope images of some failed handlebars. While I’m not into having failures, it’s nice to use my neat setup microscope. Images like the ones that I took are extremely difficult to obtain. Holding a handlebar (or portion of a handlebar) the long way, rigidly, under the … Read more

My first weld failure.

In response to whether he should give up a project, Thomas Edison once said, “I have not failed 10,000 times—I’ve successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work.” I’ve been welding my own bike frames, forks, and handlebars together since 2006. That’s about 16 years. Before that, I had a good amount of experience preparing … Read more

Suckered by Junk

This was supposed to be a nice little post about a setup tweak to Windy’s Stumpjumper and a different look at front end setup. Instead, we are also going to look at what makes a terrible commercial handlebar and what makes one good. When setting up Windy’s new bike, we were trying to push the … Read more

The Downhill Hardtail

This Sunday, I’m getting to close out the season at Northstar. I love riding downhill although I don’t do it much these days. I’ve had a nice summer in this regard. I was able to ride a day at Northstar early in the season and another two days of riding at Trestle in Colorado. Not … Read more

Welding Table Support Clamp

I tell people all the time that I’m not a very good welder. I know good welders. I am not one. Still, I need to get metal connected and I can use all the help that I can get. When welding a bicycle frame, it needs to be held in a lot of interesting positions … Read more