11 NAHBS-Related Questions:
BR: Are your plans for NAHBS a secret, or can you tell us a little bit about what you’re showing?
MD: We’re showing 3 different revolutionary and ground-breaking amazingly fantastic t-shirts. $30 each. That’s $90+ TX sales tax. They are even printed in Austin for carbon-credit-cred. I will be willing to trade the credits for floor space or mind altering substances. We also take credit cards.
- The penultimate evolution of the 29’r. It’s rigid, singlespeed and designed for commuting. I see this a BOLD STEP in the eventual evolution of all bicycles.
- beach cruisers. Once weed is legal everywhere competition will be reduced to skid and wheelie contests. We have consistently been ahead of the curve here for the last 15 years.
- There will also be some super-practical aluminum bikes for racing and/or riding on dirt, pavement and/or dirt and pavement.
- See above but substitute steel for aluminum.
- Photo copies of drawings of our badass suspension bikes that we could build if some rich person wanted to drop $10,000 for one.
- We won’t have any of our stock aluminum road racing bikes(the very last ones made in the U.S.), the ones that we are currently taking deposits for and the ones that are currently blowing up the domestic road racing scene.
MD: We haven’t even started on the booth yet. I know it will have T-SHIRTS and BICYCLES, too many to fit into a 10×10′ space. It will also process CREDIT CARDS. It probably won’t have a place to sit.
BR: What do you see as the hot trend at NAHBS this year?
MD: Buying t-shirts. Aluminum. Poetry. Beards.
BR: What is the most challenging or horrible thing you’ve had to do as a frame builder.
MD: F— up consistently in terms of QC and delivery times. Looks like we’ve nipped that in the bud now though… I’ve come very close to going completely mad. It’s made for some interesting conversations about the Constitution and 3D data visualization…
BR: What is your favorite type of bike to build?
BR: As a frame builder is there anything you absolutely will not to? Like a not-without-a-gun-to-my-head type thing?
MD: Build a bike with geometry supplied by the customer if I think it’s wrong.
MD: Don’t. Go. crazy.
BR: If you weren’t building bikes, what would you be doing?
MD: I’d be institutionalized in one way or another.
BR: Who is your bike-building idol? Who do you look up to?
MD: One thing I want to say from the gun. No one, ever, has ever really designed anything themselves. Cross-appropriation is one of the fundamental underlying tenets in what is widely-believed to be the Post-Post-Modern world in which we live (I wanna take you down to PoPoMo). Bikes have been fundamentally the same for a hundred and fifteen years, and it is impossible to escape the influence of all you see, if you are the kind of person who values the proprioceptive sensations that human existence afford us. In other words as in existence itself, everything is everything else.
Bikes, not people, lead the design process for everyone in the bike industry that I respect- whether they cut their fingers filing tubes or surf their Herman Miller, I respect everyone that salivates tri-flow — we all conceive bike design on the same parallel meta-cognitive level as hunger and sex.
When it comes down to it, the end user is a set of Newtonian parameters and joint angles. A bike builders job is to manage a customers emotional attachment in relationship to something that is effectively a commodity. People who manage expectations in a way that gets people totally f—ing stoked on bikes, not just their products are my heroes.
To answer your question- FBM is the best bike company on earth.
BR: This one is important. Of the people showing at NAHBS, who is the last frame builder you would ever want to fight? Like physically.
MD: Antonio Colombo. It’s probably a bad idea to f— with a rich Italian industrialist.