Scotty 2 Hotty and His MUSA Nishiki

Scotty 2 Hotty is a local staple here in Los Angeles. He’s what I like to call an autodidactic raconteur or a self-taught man with lots of informative ramblings. For those of you who have ventured into Golden Saddle Cyclery, you’ll probably recognize him as a patron of the bike shop and literal sponge of knowledge. While Scotty is a farmer and a consultant for soil nutrition, his passions in life exist far beyond the liveliness of plants. His favorite subjects include but are not limited to fishing, gliders, obscure bicycle parts, firearms, fishing, boating, Shimano, both reels, and bicycles.

When a bicycle rolls in the doors at GSC, Scotty’s brain begins to analyze it, no matter the type, and can pick out the idiosyncratic details faster than even the grumpiest of bike wrenches. The main difference being, Scotty is there for the love and the interaction with human beings of all race, creed or gender identity. This same thoughtfulness goes into his own creations – his bikes – and it is these bikes that have always intrigued me. The problem is when something is so accessible, so familiar, oftentimes you pass on documenting it. Or at least for me anyway.

Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but when one’s gaze is as wide as Scotty’s it’s intoxicating. His Nishiki Ariel is from the early 90’s – you can tell from the 1 1/8″ head tube. These Richard Cunningham-designed – yes, the same Cunningham as Mantis fame – bikes were made in the USA by one of the many production houses found here Stateside during that time period. All my research, or at least patience, couldn’t find who made these frames, or where, so your guess is as good as mine.

What I can tell you about this bike is, it has a Direct Drive Specialized fork, painted red so Scotty can find this bike in case of a house fire, is filled with MUSA parts ranging from old MUSA Salsa skewers to an OG Phil Wood front hub, PAUL touring cantis, White Industries cranks and other tidbits. Because Scotty loves Shimano, he used a long cage derailleur to make this bike pedal with ease up the mountains which he loves so much. Inside his bags are staples of a wandering bicycle operator. Including a spare chain, chain tool, snacks, pump, layers for the LA winter and sometimes even sleeping equipment for a quick overnighter in the San Gabriel Mountains. When the cold weather rolls around, Scotty breaks out his magic bear suit which acts as camouflage for bandit camping, as well as supplies him with warmth. As far as his Bedrock Sandals and socks, well, he doesn’t like wearing heavy-soled shoes around small animals like Campy the GSC shop dog.

Yes, Scotty is an amazing soul and one that I’ve greatly come to appreciate over time. Shooting these photos were a complete joy and I hope to document his others bikes this year. Follow Scotty on Instagram and feel free to dive right into conversation with him the next time you’re at Golden Saddle Cyclery.

  • you may now safely delete your blog.

  • Matt Jacobs

    Surely Grant Peterson is weeping silently somewhere…are you sure the MB1 ever came with a unicrown fork? It was my understanding that anything above an MB3 got the investment-cast crown.

    • DarinM

      MB-1’s only came with a crown in ’93 and ’94

    • Jens Palmer

      it’s a Specialized Direct Drive fork, not a Bridgestone

      • Really? Scotty told me it was a Bridgestone. He doesn’t seem like the person who would forget. EDIT. I see it’s DD not B. Editing the post now, thanks!

    • Daniel M

      Unicrown until 1992, I believe. Here’s an example, hopefully:

      1993’s and 1994’s have the biplane crown fork. It is rather stunning, but my understanding is the because the lug points face directly downward along the front and back of the fork and are not filed or thinned, they create a stress riser and can fail there. Newer versions of that (Pacenti?) crown (on older Rawlands and custom frames and the like) use curled lug points as an improvement.
      I bought a 1993 MB-1 to convert to drop bars (like the 1987) and try out the 26″ Compass extralight tires. I should probably file those lugs down, but since I’m using it as an allroad rather than a full-time mountain bike, I suspect the fork will hold up just fine.

      Not that anyone asked…

    • Austin Taylor



    That IS a cool bike.

  • Peter Hedman

    So weird, but somehow comforting at the same time. Not often that I experience a “warm chuckle” when visiting this site, but now that has changed.

  • Justin Scoltock

    Hell yeah! This bike is the perfect example of Scotty’s genuinely unique/kind/rad outlook on life. Stoked!

  • John B.

    Love the ewok helmet!

  • Andy-bmore

    Humble request for as many bikes like this as possible on the blog pls

  • Kirsten Geer Wilcox

    Does anyone know how that cable arrangement for the rear brake works out? I acquired a Miyata with the same setup – I worry about the cable rubbing and fraying.

    • Scott Sackmann

      Hi Kirsten. I’m glad you pointed this out. When running the rear brake cable through that little tube, use an approx. 4″ piece of 2mm or 2.5mm Teflon tubing to protect the brake cable from chafing and fraying. Teflon tubing is often used in electronics, aerospace and model aviation applications and a little sleuthing around will usually lead to success. I’ve also seen a small piece of shrink tubing of same length and diameter (un-shrunken of course) used for this purpose. Hope this helps!

      • Kirsten Geer Wilcox

        Cool, thanks!

  • Dave Pelletier

    The vest, the Corona shorts, the elevated chainstays… its all outstanding! Easily one of my favorite builds you’ve posted. Great rig!

  • Ryan

    Fat Franks are under appreciated; I have three sets.

    • Scott Sackmann

      Agreed. Lots of people think they’re “too heavy”. For timed eventing in particular (official brevets for instance) I can see the validity of this because lots of the courses are serious-style hilly over a huge range of surface types and textures. With the Franks, I was aiming for sort of a middle ground. The Ariel is more a cross, a hybrid…. between oh, say a long distance randonneur and a front loaded camping design, with a little classic US MTB history thrown in. I did the same in terms of tire choice; seeking middle ground between say a Rat Trap Pass on one end (wonderful, floaty, soft tire but they do not do well around shale, glass, and basalt) and Schwalbe’s gnarliest, “beast-mode” touring tires (such as the Marathon Extreme or Dureme lines) that are Just. So. Heavy. So far so good….

  • Magnificent.

  • Tony Clifton

    “All my research, or at least patience, couldn’t find who made these frames, or where, so your guess is as good as mine.” The likeliest bet is Jeff Lindsay’s (of Mountain Goat) frame shop in Chico. For a period of time in the 1990’s, Lindsay’s shop was doing contract building for larger manufacturers like Kona and Voodoo, back when they had USA made steel frames at the top of their lines. This is all from memory and I can’t find any trace of this on the Googles. Lindsay is totally out of bikes now and is doing glass blowing or something.

    • arlcyclist

      Right you are about the glass blowing.

      From here:
      Jeff Lindsay established Cutting Edge Products, bringing more than twenty years of experience in the industrial arts to his company. He began working with glass in 1977 at Orient & Flume Art Glass. Inspired, he started making tools for glass artists under the name Random Specialties. Random Specialties was, indeed, random. Besides making tools, Jeff had commissions for kinetic metal sculptures and produced a line of decorative wrought iron. Because bicycle riding was his passion, he built a few bicycle frames. Later he designed and built bikes for off-road riding. In 1980, Jeff was one of three frame builders to debut a mountain bike at the International Bicycle Dealer Trade Show. Mountain bikes were the hit of the show, and he had more orders for his “Mountain Goats” than he could fill. Jeff turned his efforts to bicycle manufacturing. Over the years, he won awards for innovative frame design and artistic paint finishes. His reputation with Mountain Goat owners all over the world was built on quality craftsmanship. In 1989, Jeff was inducted into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame. Eventually, Mountain Goat Cycles evolved into Altitude Cycle Technologies. As general manager, Jeff supervised the production of frames for Schwinn, Kona, K-2, and other well-known companies. While this was exciting, he missed the actual hands-on fabrication and design process. During the bicycle manufacturing years, Jeff had many requests for his glass tools. In 1998, he established Cutting Edge Products and has dedicated himself to the evolution and production of tools for the glass artist. It is Jeff’s experience and our commitment to excellence that enable us to confidently say—our tools are the best.

      • Rye Young

        This all fits Scotty to a T. Its all coming together.

  • Adam Leddin

    That is one freaky Nishiki

  • This man has had as much to do with Golden Saddle Cyclery’s existence as the three people that started it.

  • Brian Richard Walbergh

    Those tubes connecting the “chainstays” to the seatstays are incredible. This makes me really mad I missed out on a similar elevated chainstay frame that would have made a great cycle truck conversion.

  • barry mcwilliams

    Awesome sauce. Scotty’s totally rad.

  • Ryan Flynn

    fucking legend

  • Rick

    Warm and fuzzies all round, this is wonderful.

  • Avuncular

    Love a good raconteur. Listening to one with a funny, furry hat would be a hoot. Seeing him then ride a bike with such an eclectic mix of USA’s finest would be worth pushing for beatification.

  • Very Rainbow powered.

  • I’m so grateful that, despite not owning a Rohloff Speedhub, Scotty had read and memorized the manual cover-to-cover (no small feat) ‘just in case’ and was able to fill me in on everything I needed to know when I got mine, freeing up time for eating burritos. Scotty is the best!

  • stoke mooching on 100. not stoke bogarting. scotty is such an inspiration.

  • Rye Young

    “Autodidactic raconteur” is perfect

  • Scott Sackmann

    John, that front fork totally looks like the old skool MB1 from I think 1990. Truly a dead ringer for the Bridgestone piece — and yet, the fork is actually a Specialized direct drive model, with the 1.125″ steerer, that came off a Gen 1 M2 Stumpjumper they were throwing out at UCLA. Somehow a previous owner had just toasted the rear dropouts but the front end and lots of parts were ok. Reduce, repurpose, re-home and reuse….frame went to a fabricator-artist from my old Ventura days and some of the original Deore parts are still chilling it in the bin. Fun stuff!!

  • John Nolan

    What’s the back rack?

    • Scott Sackmann

      Good question. That’s a Tubus “Cosmo”, the stainless version of the “Cargo” back rack. Strikes a nice balance between function and a clean look. The CrMo version, though stronger, is powder coated black which against the white frame is too distracting. I may eventually fit a Nitto rear rack to match what’s up front……but it’s not an immediate necessity as the Tubus works great.

      • John Nolan

        Thanks. Looks great to me.

      • Rob Sens

        I like this rack. Any idea if it would hold a child seat?

        • Scott Sackmann

          Good question Rob. If this is possible (think so but need to check) I’d go for the CrMo version (Cargo or Ergo or something like that) for added strength. Again, just check for compatibility with your seat of choice. Good luck!

          • Rob Sens

            Thanks Scott!

          • Rob Sens

            I’m going to give this another try :-)

            anybody any experience with a Tubus (Cosmo) rack in combination with a clamp child seat?

  • AngryBikeWrench

    Rad bike, and Scotty sounds like my kind of people for sure. Can we get a shout out for CR-18s? Where would we be without them? Cheap, strong enough, cheap, available in every size and drilling including 27″, and cheap. Many a bike has been economically resurrected thanks to a rebuild with CR-18s.

  • I’ve got a Nishiki Kodiak MTB from 1999/2000 that I still use occasionally (I can’t bring myself to sell it or get rid of it). Nishiki were originally a Japanese brand that went bust after the Kobe earthquake in 1995. I was talking to a bike shop owner here in Japan and apparently they sold off their bicycle brand and now make wheelchairs.