Rolf Prima Brings Alloy Rim Production Back to Oregon, USA

rolf-prima-brings-alloy-rim-production-to-oregon

Last February, Velocity moved all of their alloy rim production back to the US, handling it all in their Jacksonville, FL, plant. Now, Rolf Prima’s doing the same thing in the other corner of the country.

“You know, we joked about ‘what if…’ enough times that we decided it was time to put our heads down and make it happen,” said Rolf Prima owner Brian Roddy. “At first it seemed impossible, but we’ve got deep experience in rim design and a lot of motivation. We’re all pretty pumped to bring more manufacturing to Eugene, OR.”

Now, they’ll be making the rims and building all the wheels in house, and we’re already lining up a factory tour for later in the year to show you just how they do it!

“We’ve always designed and developed our own custom rims but we wanted more control over the process,” said Joel Wilson, Sr. Engineer. “We’ve been known for our hand‐building of high performance wheels and now we can bring our hallmark small‐batch craftsmanship to our rims as well. As an engineer and lifelong cyclist, there is not much more satisfying than designing the parts and then being able to step out the door, get my hands dirty and actually make the rims. That’s hard to beat.”

The move gives them a little more control over the process, but will dramatically improve lead time and production schedules.

They told us production is up and running now, ramping up slowly but surely. They brought on 2-3 new employees to get things up and running, and as production volume ramps up they should be bringing on a couple more over the next 12 months.

Comments

Joe - 09/12/13 - 1:43pm

Congrats on making a tough choice. Sometimes the road less traveled, is the best option. Perhaps USA made will mean something once again, and inevitably you’ll save on transportation and improved quality. It’s even worth a premium.

vectorbug - 09/12/13 - 2:33pm

Thats awesome! Ugh, I jsut made the tough choice between a Rolf wheelset and Ultegra 6800. Shimano won thanks to a sale price but it was very close.

Ajax - 09/12/13 - 3:16pm

Correction: article states that Velocity moved their production “back” to Florida. Not true. Velocity was originally based in Australia, and moved their production to the USA. In this case, however, made in Australia was waaaaaaay better than made in the USA.

Pat Mahoney - 09/12/13 - 9:54pm

This makes me proud to ride & sell such a great US Made Brand!

shafty - 09/12/13 - 10:38pm

re-Ajax Huh?! Do you actually build with their rims? If anything the quality has been improved and now they can serve their primary(U.S.) market. Velocity’s capability has also increased–they’ve brought more new models and sizes out in the last couple years than they did in a decade over there. Tolerances and finish quality have gone up as well. I’m hoping Rolf can do the same.

filibuster cash - 09/12/13 - 11:48pm

I know everyone forgets Washington exists, but Oregon is no more in the “corner” than the Carolinas. Good choice by Rolf, hopefully. Separation from T-wreck (and Lemond) a while ago, now this; hopefully more companies will follow suit. Rolf’s wheels are kinda cool, if you’re okay with high-tension, paired-spoke throwbacks to 2003.

Mindless - 09/13/13 - 3:15am

Not real America. Damn hippie liberals.

Psi Squared - 09/13/13 - 7:54am

Good for Rolf. Maybe they’ll send a hankie to mindless.

bin judgin - 09/13/13 - 9:25am

the benefits of a dying dollar

norm - 09/13/13 - 9:35pm

So the Vigors I bought earlier this year aren’t made in the USA… Bummer. Now that I look through their site, I see what is plain and obvious –it’s all “built by hand in the USA” and 6pt fine print on my wheels say “assembled in USA” with a prominent USA flag (and they don’t state the country of manufacture). If I had realized they were obscuring the country of manufacture, I wouldn’t have bought the wheels. If they had given credit to the country of origin, then I might have bought the wheels. All said, I like the wheels, but I don’t like shifty marketing.

Rain - 09/13/13 - 10:29pm

Go hippie liberals!

Psi Squared - 09/13/13 - 11:37pm

“Built by hand in the US” is the same as saying “Assembled in the US”. That much should be obvious. Does anyone actually say “My rim was built in the US.” I’ve never heard that. They might say, “My rim was manufactured or extruded in the US” or “My rim was manufactured or extruded in ______.” Similarly you don’t say, “My spokes were built in Belgium” or “My inner tubes were built in Thailand.” Reading comprehension is key.

norm - 09/15/13 - 4:11pm

Yes, Psi Squared, and you might have comprehended that I said as much. Not that I mind you repeating it. Reiteration is just fine by me. However, the main point of my comment was not about what the company said but what they did not say. Sorry if that wasn’t clear.

Of course, lots of companies omit the location of manufacture. That’s given, but I prefer it when companies provide this information. When I see that a company is upfront it, even if they are having things manufactured in a country I’d rather not support, it’s an honest business practice that I value.

Post a comment:

Comment sections can be a beautiful source of knowledge, conversation and comedy. They can also get pretty ugly, which is why we've updated our Comments Policy. If your comment isn't showing up or suddenly disappears, you might want to check it out.