Winning at NAHBS 2019

There were so many beautifully made bikes at NAHBS from builders of all sizes, that we were honored and humbled to walk away with the awards for Best Road Bike and Best Gravel Bike as well as being named a finalist for Best Mountain Bike.
Why did our bikes win?
For the judges, it seemed, everything came down to technology. Among the carefully made bikes at the show, the lion’s share of the titanium models were straight gauge bikes with off-the-shelf dropouts. Most had stunning paint jobs. They all looked great, but as bikes, they weren’t necessarily difficult to execute and didn’t always express an ability to customize deeply.
Our winning road bike, the Ultimate Axiom Disc, improved on the simpler builds at the show in three key ways. First, the level of tube butting was beyond many other builder’s capabilities. We butt our own tubing, in-house, based on rider profile and customize down to one-thousandth of an inch.
For the show bike, we also butted the custom Ti seatpost, chainstays and seatstays. Our XX upgrade package also modifies the standard tubeset in about a dozen ways that other builders aren’t yet able to replicate. The mix of one-inch chainstays and Moto seat stays comprise the sort of purpose-built modifications that go beyond looks, deep into technological improvements that make the bike faster, make it handle better, and improve its traction.
Finally, the bike is finished beautifully using a method, MCT (or Multimedia Color Technique), developed in-house at Seven. MCT is a layered finish system that uses bead-blasting, dry stenciling, other materials and methods, clear coat and matte finish, as well as regular wet paint and other surface effects, depending on the design.
For the gravel category we built a one-of-a-kind Evergreen PRO SL, another bike that showcased our ability to design and execute a bike deeply refined for its purpose. For this bike, a fast-riding, packed-dirt rider, we incorporated a one-inch Chopped chainstay into a classic Seven Ti/carbon frame. The blend of materials, which produces stiffness in all the right places and compliance everywhere else, is perfect for going fast off-road.
The Chopped chainstay, which had show-goers gasping for three straight days, shortens the rear of the bike, which boosts traction, acceleration, and agility. We finished that bike with another eclectic MCT design with matching wheels, headset and hubs.
Our takeaway from NAHBS is that technology matters. Show bikes need to look great, but there has to be more beneath the surface. The judges responded to our work in exactly the way we hoped they would, but riders also recognized what was going on with each bike and appreciated it.
The good news for you, our riders, is that Seven doesn’t really build show bikes. Every bike we had at NAHBS can be ordered by any rider at any time and delivered on our standard timelines.
Email us to find out more.

It’s Not Art. Unless It Is.

People sometimes say our bikes are art, and that they should be hung on a wall. We very much appreciate the sentiment, but emphatically disagree with the practice. Bikes are for riding, and we hope every one of our riders is out on the road or trail at every opportunity.

We met Kevin W at NAHBS last month, and his wife, after teasing him about how much he loves his bike, went one step further and turned his Seven into actual art. This seems, to us, like a solid compromise.

The Six Day Race: The Story of Major Taylor

In 1899, Major Taylor, the first African-American sports star, was the sprint champion of the world. That’s only 36 short years after the Emancipation Proclamation, which makes what he did all the more remarkable. Luckily, through a series of books and videos, more riders are aware of the contribution Taylor made to our sport than only a few years back, when his story had drifted into the mists of time.

We are proud to share this short video with you, to highlight some of the inspiring riders keeping Taylor’s story alive and pushing it forward with their own contributions to cycling.

Omar B at the Etape du Tour – Axiom SL

We had a nice note from Omar B, who has just been in France for the Etape du Tour, on his Axiom SL. This year’s route, based on Tour Stage 10, took the riders around Lake Annecy and packed in more than 4,000 meters of climbing. But, one thing we noticed in the photos Omar sent was the big smile on his face. Regardless of how fast you’re going (and he looks pretty fast), that’s the right look.

Omar said:

Just finished my first Etape du Tour ( de France) on 8 July on my Seven Axiom Sl. Bike did great. A big thanks for a great bike.

Rarely of What They Had Seen – Bob W

Bob came to visit us last week, as many of our riders do. But he didn’t drive up in a car, fresh from the airport. Instead, he rode his bike here, a heavily loaded Expat SL he got from our friends at Sabino Cycles in Tuscon.

He came, indirectly, from Santa Monica. Setting out from California, the Pacific Ocean swelling and rising behind him, he took Route 66 through California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, and Illinois. Moving forward about 50 miles a day, he commented to us that he could have come faster, but he prefers to eat at all the diners, to talk to all the people.

From the end of 66, he rode north along the shore of Lake Erie to Niagra Falls, then the Erie Canal Path to Albany. He rolled through Western Mass, and on into Boston, where he stopped in to have his picture take with Tim, who welded his bike. He left us after a few photos and a good chat, and continued on to the Atlantic Ocean.

We got a thank you note from him a day later, which closed with a quote from the iconic writer of Western novels Louis L’Amour: “Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen.”

Thanks for coming, Bob, and thanks for stopping to talk.