Back in March, I was walking around MoMA in NYC and I got a call from Marty from Geekhouse Bikes, wanting to know if I would be interested in submitting an entry to the Oregon Manifest competition with him. I guess that I said “yes.”
Marty, Greg, Brad, Robot, and myself sat down in April and started to hash out ideas for different functional details for the bike. Greg had put together a bunch of blank bike templates to draw over, and they had selected their favorite. In the next month or so, Marty and I developed the geometry for the bent tubing in software, and worked out ideas for the custom dropouts and features.
Really nothing happened again on the bike, except brainstorming and sketches, until mid-summer, when we had some dropouts made and I started playing around with some ideas for integrated frame elements using the CAD drawing that we made.
I thought that it would be really cool to use sheet metal to make some non-traditional custom fenders for the bike. I wanted the rear fender to be a single assembly with mounting features for the chain guard - to add some continuity to the overall look of the bike. After the rear fender was designed and styled, I designed a front fender, and eventually a chain guard for the bike. The flat pattern sheet metal parts were tricky to design, due to the geometry of the bike, and my desire to keep the part count low. I used locating holes on the rear fender to indicate where the bends needed to be, since there were no square edges to snap a line off of, once the part was cut. The back end of the bike frame tapers out, so the rear fender, as a flat pattern needed to splay out accordingly.
The chain guard is probably the part with which I am the most satisfied. It is a single sheet metal part that is bent and then the front is rolled onto itself and riveted to a tab. In order to make the gap distance less critical (and avoid having to weld anything) in the region that is concentric with the chain ring on the front side of the chain guard, I turned the gap into an aesthetic feature…which worked out well. All of the sheet metal parts were cut on my CNC router and fabricated in-house. With the exception of one very minor tweak that needed to take place, all of the parts worked out on the first shot at fabrication, which I am very happy about.
Robot sent us some specs for the LEDs and circuitry, and I was at Geekhouse wiring up the bike until 4am on the day that Marty and Brad were leaving for Oregon.
On the Manifest: I really wish that there was more media coverage during the event. Being all the way on the other coast, I was hoping for a little more information on the internet. The competition itself brought out some of the best custom bikes that I have seen. I was/am proud to have been able to show work in the field with the other entries. We didn’t go into the competition thinking that we would win, but it made not winning that much easier seeing the number of really awesome bikes that were in attendance.
Studio shots are from Oregon Manifest and Chris King Cycle Group. We didn’t even get a chance to take a decent picture of this whip before it got packed up.
Marty has a lot of process shots up here.
My media is here - Will update with new shots.
I will post some better shots of the chain guard and some of the details once the boys get back from the wild west. Thanks again to Geekhouse for involving me in this process. Marty and Brad are both super talented and a pleasure to work with.