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Top ten of 2012

31 12 2012

Well, here we are.

Another year gone by.

Before we all head out to celebrate New Year’s Eve, let’s take a look at the top ten things that went down in 2012.

10. Skyway started off the year with news that they were releasing a 24″ version of their classic T/A frame and fork…but only in limited quantities.  The frame & fork sold out in record time. Although there was some delay in getting it into customers hands, most will agree it was worth the wait.

9.  The 22″ wheel movement took an interesting turn in February with the news that S&M was testing a prototype frame and tires.  When this prototype turned into a bona fide offering from S&M later in the year, the 22″ option really started to take on some serious momentum.

22

8. The Gunslinger  adjustable frame.  This smaller company caught our attention this year with an innovative frame design that featured 3-position adjustable rear dropouts.  Riders can tune the frame head angle and bottom bracket height to match their riding style.

7.  Chromoly made a comeback to the race scene. More race companies started offering chromoly forks that were stiffer and lighter than the more expensive carbon fiber forks on the market.  SSquared also put out a limited run of cro-mo frames.

6. Prophecy kept things interesting  with news that they would be bringing a 24″ carbon frame to the market. (Perhaps more surprising was that Redline didn’t leverage what they had learned from Project 79 to make a 24″ version.)

6. DK parts at Wal-Mart. On a roadtrip to Ray’s MTB , I stopped in at a Walmart along the way and I was shocked to stumble on an aisle endcap stocked with DK parts and accessories.  A little strange, but cool, that you can walk into a Walmart (in the U.S.) and pick up a DK Random Wrench.

5. After much anticipation, S&M unveiled its new Speedwagon race frame. Dropping the mono stay and putting the dropouts “on a diet.” They also got rid of the cable split cable stops and went with three guides. While sticking with the tried and true 38 Special geometry, they also introduced a 22″ top tube option, along with a sexy Trans Red finish.

4.  MTB companies blurred the lines between MTB and BMX cruisers with offerings like the Transition Klunker and the DMR wrath. Will there be more convergence between the two disciplines in the future? My guess is yes but we’ll have to wait and see if the future bears that out.

3. Jim Cielencki put in work this year promoting 24 inch riding. Whether it was a shot of him riding a tight setup on his Sunday Wave-C or talking about it in an interview, Jim was out there spreading the word.

Jim C House Park

2.  There was more choice than ever this year to find a bike to match your build and riding style. Whether you wanted to step up from a 20″ to a 22″, ride a dialed 24″ complete, build a custom 26″, or even bust out on a 29″ Big Ripper. There were options to help you make that happen.

1.  Video really brought to the forefront how cruiser riders are pushing the envelope these days. Whether it was Joe Cicman and Danny Sirkin tearing things up with a 26″ Sledgehammer or doing deathtrucks on a 24″ Wave-C, Jon Faure taking on the MegaRamp (technically 2011 but discussed in 2012), Buddy Sardenga dirt jumping, or Gundar Osis and Kaspars Garda putting out one of the best race edits..ever.. In 2012, there was a video made to capture the action, whatever the type of riding you’re into.

What will we see in 2013?

I dunno,  but I can’t wait to find out.

Happy New Year!

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Cro-mo continues its racing comeback

27 07 2012

Back in March, we talked about the comeback that chromoly race forks were experiencing in the race community. Now with more and more people switching to chromoly forks, it seems like the a trend is starting to develop towards chromoly race frames.

Sure, chromoly frames have always been available from the industry stalwarts, S&M and Standard. But beyond those two companies the choices for “steel is real” advocates was noticeably slim.

That’s beginning to change.

In a recent Vintage BMX forum thread, a reader was showing off his SSquared chromoly cruiser prototype frame and said,

Now that they made this first cromo frame for me; I think it has reenergized their desire to do a full cromo run.

Which is pretty compelling when you consider that SSquared is one of the more popular race companies at the moment…they obviously think there is a market for these frames.

Other big names in the race community, like Supercross and MCS have also had cromo frames in their lineups for some time now  (the Bolt and Speedfreak respectively) despite the widespread use of aluminum frames in the race community.

And as further evidence of the chromoly trend, there are rumblings that GT and Mongoose are also testing out Chromoly race bikes.

Looks like we might have a cro-mo resurgence on our hands in the next few years. I for one am kinda looking forward to it.