Road to NAHBS 2014: Retrotec Puts the “Fun” in Enduro
Curtis Inglis is still splitting his talents between his namesake brand and the curvy Retrotec bikes, and this year’s interview is all about the latter. Despite the classic sounding name, his latest creation is all about the current craze in the mountain bike world. Yep, that means enduro!
BIKERUMOR: What are your main building materials?
INGLIS: I build entirely out of steel.
BIKERUMOR: What’s new with your company since NAHBS last year?
INGLIS: I have been getting more requests for hardtail mountain bikes built around the 140 fork. I have been working on getting the geometry and tube sizing correct to make the bikes sweet. I call all the bikes built around the longer fork with slacker head angle Funduro. I’ll have one at the NAHBS show.
BIKERUMOR: Any killer custom bike builds in that time?
INGLIS: The Retrotec Classic (shown further down) that I am taking to the show has been a very interesting build. The customer had a set idea in what he was looking for and it was a challenge to make everything work. The customer wanted to run 2.0 slicks on an Alfine 11 Di2 internal hub with belt drive. Those three things do not usually play nice together since the belt needs a perfect beltline to work and the Alfine has a fairly narrow beltline when used with Di2. I ended up offsetting the rear hub to the right 10mm and running Shimano XT cranks so that everything would line up perfectly. I guess the trick was to make all the curves look normal even with the backend being offset. I’m really happy with the result even though the build took a little longer than normal. Sometimes you have to step outside the comfort zone.
BIKERUMOR: Say a customer gives you free reign, where do you draw your inspiration for the best projects?
INGLIS: I would say the project I described in the paragraph above is my version of free reign. I got to work with the customer and his desires and needs for a particular bike and then work towards making that bike happen.
BIKERUMOR: What are you building this year that’ll draw a crowd?
INGLIS: I am taking 4 bikes this year and I hope all 4 are worthy of some attention. I’m taking a 650B Funduro, a 29+ single speed, a monster cross and a town bike.
BIKERUMOR: Scenario: NAHBS introduces a new category called Mashups, pairing two completely different builders to make one bike. Who’s the yin to your yang, and what kind of bike do you think you’d build?
INGLIS: I think I would really enjoy building a bike with Oscar Camarena from Simple Bicycle Company. I think it would be fun to build a dirt-jumping bike with him. I would love to see him do a few big jumps on what we came up with. That guy can JUMP.