You would never design a whole bike build around a handlebar, except for those rare instances where someone hands you a Ti riser bar and leaves you to think about what its best use might be. This is another one of Neil’s projects, and the bar in question wasn’t so much the inspiration for the build, but rather the final piece of a puzzle that had been assembling itself somewhere in the dark recesses of his brain for some time.
He had the frame, acquired at a Seven employee auction a few years back. It had a short life as his every day mountain bike, but he found the geometry left him more upright than he liked to be over root and rock here in our New England woods, so it was in his “parts bin.” Neil’s parts bin is like most people’s garage, just to paint you a picture.
There was also a Forward Components Eccentric Bottom Bracket, an external solution to retrofitting a single-speed drive train from a company that is no longer. These are the sorts of things Neil collects, and of course, because we have a wide assortment of lathes and mills, he and Mike were able to machine the arms of a Deore crank to work with the EBB in this configuration.
Add in a set of Avid mechanical disc brakes and a pair of Schwalbe Big Apple tires, and you have a balloon-tired, throw-back BMX, an over-sized version of the bike many of us cut our dirt-jumping teeth on.
Now this bike lives in our indoor parking lot, and it gets taken out for lunch on the regular. And just like those bikes we all grew up on, it loves to jump curb cuts and bunny hop flower beds on its way to picking up delicious sandwiches or just practicing wheelies in the parking lot.