Retro

You are currently browsing articles tagged Retro.

24? Quadangle Looptail from SE Bikes

Okay, here it is – I’m gonna lay it out for you. Cruisers are the new black, and bike manufacturers seem to be getting the drift – or is it making the drift? This is about the fourth post I’ve made in the past month about a cruiser.

For today’s rider – when you’re not feeling it riding your slammed seat, brakeless bike across town to enjoy a beer, you might want an alternative.

For the older guys – when you don’t want to tear up your childhood dream bike, and you need something to ride to shave off the beer belly, (I’m speaking from intimate knowledge here) it is rad to ride something roomy.

So, maybe I’m stretching it a bit by thinking that your beer bike is this limited-edition Quadangle Looptail from SE, but it is damn clean looking, and would be a classy way to roll. I think the chrome rims are what do it for me, personally.

Here are some specs from Todd Lyons at SE:

  • Limited Edition Retro Cr-Mo Double Downtube Quadangle Frame w/ Looptail Rear End & Retro Dropouts
  • Chrome Alex Double Wall DM24 Rims
  • SE 3-pc 48-Spline CR-MO Cranks
  • Retro Blitz Seat w/ Bottle Opener
  • Fluted Seatpost
  • Quadangle Padset & Grip Donuts Included

Only 250 will be available in the US, so get a hold of your SE dealer now if you want one.

Related:
MacNeil Cruisers Coming Soon
Smitten with the Big Wheels
Knight Cruiser

Thrown-back; Bashguards and Twin-tubes
A little of this, and a lot of that…

A couple of new complete BMX bikes have been hitting the web in the past few days that reference earlier times in freestyle. One from the recent past, and one from the very beginning.

Subrosa Bash Bike

First, Subrosa has released news that they’re going to be doing a bashguard bike that is a modern take on the old Bully bashguard frame of the early 90s. As Ryan Sher, of Subrosa puts it on their site, “I can vividly remember seeing a bike that I only wished I could own, or even knew how to use; that bike was the Bully R.L. Inc”. He goes on to say that it was around this time that he was inspired by the progression of BMX, and the street riding “style” that became so prevalent.

Subrosa Bash Bike Detail

Ultimately, he says that it is about bringing the fun back into BMX. A topic that seems to be popping up in a number of places (Thanks, mcGoo – note I meant “sight”, not “site”, ugh). I’ll keep saying it – remember, this is about riding bikes, and bikes should be fun. If sliding on a plastic bashguard helps to get you there, cool, go for it.

2009 Haro Retro 1st Generation Freestyler Complete Bike

Next, there’s news that the retro Haro Bikes Gen-1 Freestyler is  finally happening. After a couple years of speculation, and a few prototypes (one of which was at last year’s Interbike), there are images of the 2009 Haro Bikes catalog floating around that shows what should be close to the production version of the retro Freestyler, based on Bob Haro’s original Haro Freestyler,the predecesor to the ubiquitous Haro Master. As with the Subrosa Bash Bike, it looks like an integrated headtube and “updated geometry”, as they say in the catalog, are part of the package.

Rumor has it that both of these are going to be limited-edition run. With all of the clamor about the Haro, I have a feeling they’ll go quick, but then become available over the upcoming months. This is the third retro model done by Haro, the first was a Dave Mirra-based Freestyler, the second was the 2005-06 retro Sport. For Subrosa, the bash bike is a continuation of what they started with their Letum cruiser.

I’m down with either of these, but of course, I have a lot of heart for the Haro, just because it has been discussed for SO long in the vintage bmx circles. However, I have to dig the Subrosa because it not only has graphics in the vein of the Bully designs, but also because I was right there, watching RL and Chris Day tear it up on early Bully frames at a mall show in Overland Park, KS, during a summer tour. We snuck our bikes in and rode through the mall – good times…

Knight Performer 24? Retro Cruiser Standing Platform

Seat stay/framestand and bologna-cut top tube detail. Photo: George Yang

Looks like there’s already quite a bit of chatter about the Knight Performer – I’ve seen it pop up on a number of the vintage BMX sites over the past couple of days. One thing that’s been discussed is the geometry of the ride, and how it compares, considering it is overall, a pretty modern ride. I hit George at Knight up for some more information, and he sent over pretty much all you might want to know:

Material: 4130 Chromoly
FRAME
Top tube length: 21.5″
BB height: 12″
Chainstay length: 15.25″
Head angle: 73 degree
Seat tube angle: 70.5 degree
Headtube: Integrated
Bottom Bracket: Mid type
Brakes: 990 mounts
Seat post: 25.4mm
Dropouts: 3/16″ thick
Axle type: 3/8 axles
Extras: Coaster Brake plate like the 20″ version

So, there you have it – the top tube length should keep it roomy, yet quick for a cruiser. With the 3/8″ axles, you might need to hookup a set of the Skyway Graphite TuffWheels to go with the frame. Keep a lookout here for shots of the prototype as it gets built-up.

Related: Knight Retro Performer Prototype

Knight Performer 24? Prototype Frame
Raw and fresh out of the jig. Photo: George Yang

The 24″ Retro Squareback Knight released last year was very well received by those looking for a cruiser with vintage styling. Modeled after the Redline squarebacks of yore, it was a fairly traditional cruiser frame, with some really nice detailing.

I think that the new 24″ jam from Knight will up the retro BMX game – other manufacturers should take note. In fact, it is only retro in styling, as it features all of the modern features of today’s BMX bikes – integrated headset, mid-bottom bracket and 990 brake mounts. However, look closer at the photos of the prototype – a coaster brake tab and a standing platform. Yeah, I said it – a standing platform, just like the GTs of yore – on a 24″ cruiser. Knight is calling it the Knight “Performer”, but I don’t know if they’ll stick with that name. They say it is a tribute to one of the most recognizable early freestyle frames, the GT Performer/World Tour, and Eddie Fiola – who helped make GT so prolific early in the freestyle game. Be sure to hit the link on Eddie’s name – there’s a great story on lifelounge.com, with some of Eddie’s personal photos.

If you want one, get a hold of Knight quickly. They’re going to be made in limited numbers, and available very soon. Damn, just like yesterday’s post – did I find yet ANOTHER bike/frame to obsess over? Check more photos over on the Knight blog.

I’m back. After a long unplanned hiatus (life, work, etc. got crazy for a bit). Enough about that, though…

Knight Bikes Inverted Retro Stems

George at Knight just sent news that he’s got some new inverted Pro-Neck-style stems available, as well as the traditional top-loaders back in stock. Right now, the inverted stems are available in silver and gold, with blue available next week. Check ‘em out and order directly from Knight. So, if you wanna drop your bars a bit, and do so with a clean, simple looking, retro-styled stem, you’re set.

I’m interested to hear what you think of these, compared to the other retro-styled products that are starting to crop up. Drop your opinions over at the Vital BMX Old School Talk forum.

KHE, the German BMX company with roots back to 1988, has a couple of new products out that remind me of how the BMX industry should always look back at its relatively short history for ideas that worked before, and can still work today. Both their Centaur handlebar/stem combo and 1pc seat combo refer back to products that were popular some 20-odd years ago.

KHE Bar/Stem Combo

KHE Centaur circa 2008.

Vector Pro Bars

Vector pro bars circa 1984 – photo by “oldmetal” on the bmxmuseum.

The influence of the Vector bars and Troxel seat are immediately apparent, though with modern geometry, technology and materials, KHE has created something totally new in today’s bmx market. For example, with the seat, by removing the seat guts, they were able to significantly lower the weight and the price will be comparable to a standard saddle alone. With the bars, KHE wants to again create the purest form of a handlebar and stem, again to reduce weight and simplify the number of parts on your bike. The Centaur bar/stem will come in a couple different angles, though the seat will only come in one angle.

KHE Seat/Post Combo

KHE prototype seat/post combo prototype.

Troxel seat

Early ’80s Troxel Comet combo seat/post – photo by “bmxr68″ on the bmxmuseum.

Both of the KHE products should be available in Spring 2008. Will be cool to see how KHE continues to reference the past while offering something new.

Rob and Big on SE bmx bikes

From Todd Lyons at SE Bikes:
If you’ve ever seen the “Rob & Big” TV show on MTV, then you know that Big Black is a very, very big guy. He told us a while ago that he’s really into the whole old-school BMX scene. But his problem was that he couldn’t find a BMX bike that came anywhere close to fitting him. So being the cool guys that we are at SE Bikes, we built him a custom sized PK Ripper Looptail that would fit him like a glove. I went up to Rob’s house & gave it to him a little while ago & they filmed the whole deal for an episode of the “Rob & Big” TV show. I even went to a BMX track & rode with Rob & Big & their whole crew. And man, was it funny watching those guys ride!

Anyways, I’m pretty sure that this stuff will air tonight at 10:30pm ET & PT on MTV. Check it out. And if this segment of the show doesn’t air on the show tonight, then I’m almost positive that it’ll air next Tuesday night.

Click here for more info & other air times & to check out the show in case you don’t have cable:
http://www.mtv.com/ontv/dyn/rob_and_big/series.jhtml

I’ve watched Rob and Big a bunch, and it is a good show, with a bit of “Jackass”-like humor. From the looks of it, good times will be had on the bikes. I appreciate the fact that Todd and SE continue to push their bikes and therefore, bmx, into the public eye, continuously. More exposure leads to more riders, and so on. May the circle be unbroken, or something like that…

SE Aluminum Sign

So, you’ve got your vintage looptail PK Ripper, your retro O.M. Flyer, and all of the latest SE t-shirt designs. Continue to show your love of all things SE with this 47″x14″ aluminum sign. They’re available now through any SE dealer for MSRP of $36.00.

Knight Spider for Profile Racing Cranks

Hot on the heels of their other recent retro/vintage releases, Knight has come out with a vintage-inspired chainwheel spider for Profile Racing Cranks. Made from 6061-T6 alloy, with a 19mm hole, this retro spider keeps it simple and classic. Order it directly from Knight.

Knight Bike Co Retro Stems
Oh, man, I’m drooling over this eye candy…

Knight Bike Co have released their vintage Pro-Neck style stems for all of you who want something truly different for your threadless headset bikes. Featuring an etched Curb Dogs Bulldog logo (courtesy of Maurice Meyer) in place of the old Tuf Neck tiger, and a nice array of classic colors, these would be perfect for a retro-fied modern bike, or even better, on a Knight Squareback – their 24″ throwback frame.

Get on over to Knight and check out their array of vintage-influenced parts, as well as their modern work. Note that George at Knight knows his BMX history – they were one of the primary sponsors of the Tuff Love art show last year.

SE Shirt Design
Shirts from SE – click for a larger image.

Todd Lyons at SE just sent over the news that they have all four of their new shirt designs in stock from sizes small to XXL. The BMX shirts come in the classic blues and browns, and they have one representing their single speed bikes which looks rad as well. You can get them through your local SE shop, now, just in time for gift-giving.

Personally, I’m digging the “number plate design”, and I’m a XL if anyone needs to know, heh.