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 to most people. Best to keep it easy.

My goal is to produce the finest and highest performing elements that I can. This takes a ton of hard work and planning. Money is needed, but also space and time. There are some skills that I’m very good at and others that I am not, just like everyone else. Navigating all of this with some degree of success is the real art.

Recently, I’ve watched a series of videos by TGS Outdoors on YouTube. They give a great window into another industry that I have a lot of interest in, firearms. The host, Jonny Carter, is a competitive shooter and takes us to the places in his world. This isn’t another nutter gun channel and the topic is taken very seriously.

A few recent videos on Beretta in Italy and Longthorne in England were very well produced and gave us a detailed tour of an industry that does what many folks in custom bicycles dream of, very high quality work that is brought to scale and earns a profit.

Granted, the scale of these facilities and the customers they serve are well outside of what can or should be done with custom bicycles. Still, it’s quite the education as to how it works when you are really playing the game at a high level.

They also show that a great deal of effort goes into the gun in ways that truly effect the performance and into details that don’t. Often, more work will go into what effects the presentation of craft that is well outside the true mechanical need of the item. This is interesting as many get their visceral connection and passion from these details.

There are other videos available but these four seemed to do the job of getting to what I’m discussing.