Nate from Monkey Wrench Cycles’ Hunter Commando Tourer

Nate from Monkey Wrench Cycles’ Hunter Commando Tourer
Photos by Kyle Kelley, words by John Watson

Nate and the entire Monkey Wrench Cycles gang have done a lot for US framebuilders over the years, as evident in their in-house museum where you can find vintage Moots MTBs, alongside Steve Potts’ creations, while a modern Hunter Cycles might be hanging out as well. The thing I can appreciate about what I’ve seen coming from MWC is all their bikes have the same modus operandi: fat tires, practicality and a stance that commands trail time. I mean, honestly, a vintage MTB is still an ideal touring bike and in a lot of ways, the bikes the MWC team are always building up are just “modern” vintage MTBs. Take for instance this Hunter Cycles from 2013 NAHBS in Denver.

Rick reached out to Nate and asked him if he wanted to do a bike. Nate’s always loved Rick’s personal tourer from 2012 NAHBS, so they went down that route. He wanted some vintage components on it, making it a reliable bike, ideal for light duty touring, as well as a general shred sled for mucking about on the local roads and trails. Nate also really loved the vintage Ritchey Commando paint jobs, so he and Rick reached out to Stefani of D&D to do the paint job, identical to the 1985/1986 Commandos. Owning a bike shop like MWC has its perks and one of which was a NOS Chris King brown group just waiting to be put on a bike, along with a grip of NOS Shimano parts.

The result is a bike, that no matter what your favorite form of cycling is, will cause you to vibe hard over it. Amiright?

Thanks to Nate and the MWC gang for opening their doors to Kyle while he was in town. Now I’ve gotta make the trek over there!


Follow Kyle on Instagram and Monkey Wrench on Instagram.

  • Kerry Nordstrom

    Oh, that’s a good one!

  • Kurt Jensen

    Um, that might be my dream bike. It seriously ticks all the boxes. Stunning.

    • Rye Young

      My words exactly

  • AdamBike99

    Those luscious curves make mine straighten out, lol!

  • Smithhammer

    All kinds of bitchin goin’ on there.

    Who makes that rack?

    • RP

      Rick Hunter made the rack. There’s also a matching rear rack that’s not on the bike at the moment.

  • Rye Young

    Is that an available CK color? SO rad! Would look great on the Avery CO frame

  • stric

    I’ve seen this bike at NAHBS 2013 in Denver.

  • Very nice.

  • Ryan Connelly

    This is going to sound weird, but the “warning” sticker color really goes with the bike – haha!

  • Tony Berlin

    Need that bag in my life , who makes it I’m starting a project to turn my singular swift into something like that , need similar rack and basket can’t believe I just said that , I need a basket for my bike I’m soooooo not enduro anymore

    • The bag has a Porcelain Rocket tag on it, but it isn’t currently listed on their site. I’d love one too, fingers crossed they make some again soon.

      • brian

        Porcelain Rocket make them for Monkey Wrench Cycles. Call the shop to get one, they are great bags.

    • Tony Berlin

      Doh just seen porcelain do them

  • Leroy

    Too much!

  • White Mike

    One of my all time favorites. This bike is perfection.

  • Area45

    This is the bike that dream bikes dream of.

  • Richard

    That 1-piece wishbone seat stay! Wow. How come you don’t see more of those?

    What is the cage/toolkit (I assume) in the under-downtube spot? What’s in there? Who makes it?

  • so…why route the shifter cables that way? Is there an actual advantage or is it just owner preference?

    • Tom Macleay

      I presume you’re talking about how the housing sticks out at the drop bar bend. This is the standard way to route bar end shifters. Snaking them around all the bends of the drop bars can create unwanted friction and bad shifting. Some people do it anyway.

      • really? I’ve never seen (or maybe noticed) that before. The bike I bought new with bar ends wasn’t routed that way. I can see what you mean about fewer bends but I’d think it causes more interference issues if you are front loading cargo. Now I’m going to be checking every bar end bike I see LOL.

  • Mark McGrath

    that is an amazing bike!

  • Yann Aubry


    what’s the model of the handlebar ? It seems to be comfortable for touring