NAHBS 2017 - Day 1
It's been a full year, and the last month of waiting for NAHBS made it feel like two. But, we've finally made it, and we dove right in by hitting up a number of booths that maybe don't get the love of a builder like Mosaic or Breadwinner. Unlike flashy builders with fancy paint (which we absolutely love, by the way), component and tool makers are a bit under the radar though are no less innovative.
These guys always have a little something new to show off, though after spending a bunch of time chatting about production and ideas in Portland at the last bike show, we didn't really expect much new. Of course, there's no sense in coming to a show like NAHBS without a surprise or two, so Abbey worked with The Vanilla Workshop and Bicycle Crumbs to make up this wildly fancy tool box. Why do you need it? You don't. But you do want it. You could buy shit allen wrenches and a garbage cassette tool, but if you've already dropped $10k on a bike do you really want to hack it up with garbage tools? Thought so. Outside was paint finished to the same high-quality that knocks socks off of people when they see a Speedvagen, but long-term it's the precision (and MUSA!) tools that keep your bike in check. We're not sure if they're making these available to the public, we were in awe staring, but we'd encourage you beat down the door of booth Vanilla and Abbey to get a set for yourself.
We were taken back the first time we met Paul a few years ago, for some reason we had decided he was a grumpy old man. Nope, dead wrong. Paul's a rider, a solid 20 years younger than we thought he'd be, and married to one hell of a bad-ass trail builder and advocate for the trails. These two are making for quite a little power couple in the MTB industry, yet are both so chill that you probably have never met them or wouldn't know it if you had.
Paul brought a Klamper cutaway mixed in purple, gold, and orange and while he's very modest, he was proud to say he thinks it's the best mechanical disc brake on the market. We'd be hard-pressed to argue for two reasons: first, mechanical disc brakes aren't super rad in general, and second and most importantly, these things are bonkers! Paul doesn't make shit parts, the Klamper is certainly one of his best parts, and that's saying a lot.
Other new bits were an adjustable thru-axle for Fox and RockShox forks, a new QR seatpost collar that matches his axle levers, colors for days, a brake lever pivoting on a bearing rather than cheap bushings, and his classic lineup of brakes for just about any frame that clamps the rims to stop.