Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Video :: Newmarket Shop

Former IF racer and camera maestro Logan Hodson paid us a recent visit and took a bit of footage.

Check it out:

Independent Fabrication from Logan Hodson on Vimeo.

Monday, January 16, 2012

New Tees :: New Frame Colors

It's always a vigorous conversation around IF World HQ when it comes time for new t-shirts and new paint colors.

This time around we kept it simple for the new tees, both offerings are black.  Rather than try to figure out the latest "color X is the new black" debate, we just went with black for both offerings.  So hard to go wrong with a black t-shirt... formal and rebellious at the same time.

Offered with our two down tube logos, one of which is the new script that we first introduced last year on the Titanium Factory Lightweight. The script version also features our new seat tube tower logo on the back.

For the classic up and down box version, we went with a gray and orange combination to celebrate the colors of our new showroom and fit studio, The Bike Factory NH.
As always, American made and available here.

On the new bike color front, it's a bit of a shot in the dark when it comes to which colors to add to our standard offering of two dozen or so colors (of course we are always happy to match your custom color request).

Once you consider the classic bike colors of black, white, red, silver, and the occasional blue, along with our team green and yellow, it gets to the fringes pretty quick.  But the fringe is where the fun is, so we we try to keep it fresh.  Last year we added a bunch of muscle car colors like Boss Blue, Barracuda Purple, Sprout Green, and Omaha Orange to go with the Factory Lightweight series, so this year, after we culled out some of less popular selections, we decided to go with:

Dove Gray is for those of you who like a sharp contrast to either a second color, or to your choice of decals, but are played out on white.  It looks good on its own, or next to just about anything.  I love it with orange (see The Bike Factory Logo and the new t-shirt above).

Chocolate Brown is... well it's chocolate, does anything else really need to be said?  Makes me want a big slice of cake right now.

Nogaro Blue is back for a return engagement.  It's an Audi color used in their S-series performance models, and we had it the line-up a few years back.  We have been getting more requests for bright blues, and have been told that it is the next trend in bike color, set to rival red for bike color dominance. We'll see how the blue/red bike color smack down plays out, but it's an awesome blue and it's an election year, so equal opportunity and all.

Army Green is probably the biggest flyer here, but I just want to do one bike with red logos on it as an homage to vintage Soviet-era parade vehicles.  I always thought it was funny to see military vehicles in polished camouflage colors with bright red logos.  Did they repaint them in matte finishes and less visible logos after the parades?  Just wondering.



Monday, January 9, 2012

Doing Well and Doing Good :: Shiny and Pink

Every now and then I come across a part that makes me want to create a bike around it.  It's a round about way to do things, but it works for me.

Such was the case last year when I first saw Soma Fabrications cafe racer handle bar.  It inspired me to create the Caffeine Racer mixte for my better half.

While at NAHBS, I was conveying this story to Paul Tolme, who runs PR for Gates Carbon Belt Drive.  He came back to our booth a bit later and handed me a pink belt that Gates had produced in limited quantities to raise awareness for the fight against childhood cancer going on at the Pablove Foundation, and challenged me to create a bike around it.

It wasn't a "double-dog-dare-you" kind of thing, but he was pushing my buttons.

At the same show, I received a unique set of shaped stainless steel tubes from our crazy and stylish Italian metal-heads at Columbus.  It was obvious... shiny and pink had to go together.

With the belt and tube set in hand, the casserole cooking began in earnest.  I wanted to make it fixed gear, and incorporate modern standards like a BB30 bottom bracket and an over-sized head tube to accommodate the robust main tubes and an aggressive fork with a tapered steerer tube.  

After all, it is a war against this disease, so you have to roll with something stout.

The shaped chain stays presented a challenge when it came to incorporating a break for adding/removing the belt.  Their square tapered bottoms required the splitter to be just below the bridge.

The head tube is a story all by itself.  I wanted to use 3T's new tapered steerer road fork, so that meant an oversized HT to accommodate, but no stainless tubing exists in the proper diameter, so in stepped Mark Norstad from Paragon Machine Works.  Mark spent 9 hours of machine "spindle time" milling this head tube out of solid stainless bar.

Expensive as it was, I think that it was worth it, since it gives the front end a bit of presence to go with the aggressive fork and over-sized down tube.

The folks at Cane Creek came through with a unique head set to make it all work together, and the fine folks at Full Speed Ahead added their SLK series bar, stem and post to go along with their BB30 Gossamer Crank.

Pink anno chain ring bolts... of course.

Jedi Paint Master Chris added the Pablove panels on the DT and ST.

Here she is... a shaped tube, stainless steel, fixed gear, belt drive, cancer killing machine. 

Stay tuned for details on how you can help kill childhood cancer and win a chance to do it on style on this machine.