This year, builder Erik Noren brought his own new bike, a 29+ cargo bike painted and accessorized to resemble a Minneapolis-Moline tractor. Lots of folks have done John Deere imitations, but since PG is based in Minneapolis, this seemed more fitting. While it doesn’t have the brand’s innovative-in-its-time closed cockpit, everything from tow chains to round headlamps make it legit.
Plow past the break, there’s so much more to see…
Note the springy tractor-style saddle.
Lights are powered by a front hub dynamo with mostly hidden wiring. Additional rack mounts boost the cargo capacity when needed.
The rear rack doubles as a tire cowl, keeping large field debris out of the spokes.
While our favorite was the first bike, his Highlander
29er 650b drop bar (gravel?) bike was the one consistently missing from his booth to visit the photo booth.
There can only be one Highlander. And it won President’s Choice.
Nice lug and paint work certainly did make it stand out.
Other customer bikes included this road bike with an octopus theme. The rider wanted to use these wheels and liked eight-legged sea creatures, so the theme carried over with more than just paint.
A chain slap guard was fashioned from a strip of steel and washers to resemble tentacles.
Everyone had to have a fat bike in their booth.
Sliding dropouts let it go single speed with ease.
If you’re thinking WTF, then make sure you have a paint scheme in mind when your bike starts being built. This customer couldn’t decide, so he ended up with Erik’s current “default” paint scheme: Purple with pink polka dots. Sometimes it definitely doesn’t pay to be indecisive.
This project’s been in the works for quite some time, and it’s got Erik pretty excited as a way to grow his company beyond just custom frames.
He’s making his new headsets in house on their own 1982 Hitachi Seikei lathe, a machine he rebuilt to get working. The trick feature is the top cap that integrates the spacers, offering top races with either 0, 5 or 10 millimeters of spacer built in. The under side of it runs all the way down into the bearing, creating a sleeve between the steerer tube and bearing and eliminating any play. Pretty simple, yet very trick.