Readers’ Rides: Cub House Builds – Daniel’s Dirt Drop Dirt Shark

This Friday, we have a very special Readers’ Rides, supplied by our friends at The Cub House in San Marino, California. This is a good one so let’s get to it!

Words By Simon Kovara. Simon is the head mechanic at The Cub House, has an eye for building up beautiful bikes, and has a knack for fixing wacky problems, among his many talents. Photos by Thibault Linossier

In the nearly decade that I’ve known Daniel, I’ve learned that he has an affinity for just about anything that resides in the center of the extreme/wacky Venn diagram. While this is overtly apparent in other aspects of his life, his bike builds generally focus more on detail and careful restraint over excess, but clearly, those days are behind us!

On December 1, 2023, at 5:30 pm I received a text from Daniel with the words “I can’t be stopped” accompanied by a picture of him holding a very colorful Land Shark Dirt Shark 26er frame and knew the dirt-drop basket build idea we had been kicking around was finally materializing, but I couldn’t have predicted the ensuing precipitous descent into utter madness.

December 1, 2023, 10:30 pm just five hours after the first text revealing the frame, I receive another message, this time linking me to an eBay listing with a set of wildly anodized Paul Component Motolite V-brakes and matching levers and QR skewers along with a jokingly critical quip about both his level of intelligence and amount of newfound credit card debt.

The next few days are a manic blizzard of texting and ordering, the details of which I will not bore you with but it is from this point we radiate outward with our parts selection.

Operating the whole ensemble is a pair of Shimano’s venerable Dura Ace 7703 levers via SimWorks “Talking Parts” housing and a trick cable pull adapter from JTek Engineering lets the Shimano XTR M950 drivetrain play nicely with the shifters. A Shimano XT cassette and gold KMC X9 TiN chain round out the shifty bits.

Rolling duty is handled by a Chris King Classic/SON Deluxe hub combo laced to NOS Mavic SUP 217 Ceramic rims with Sapim Laser spokes and eight colors of Sapim nipples, all wrapped in some chunky Ultradynamico Mars tires.

Steering is accomplished via a Magic Components “90’s ATB Fork” fork spinning through a vintage “unmarked cup” turquoise Chris King headset, topped with a Velo Orange Cigne stem clamping a Velo Orange/Dajia Cycleworks Far Bar wrapped in Blue Lug’s “Guruguru” bar tape.

Other touchpoints include MKS Gamma pedals and a gorgeous Gilles Berthoud saddle held aloft by a Thomson Elite seatpost finished in “Glacier”.

Numerous other bits of gilt adorning this Faberge egg include matching brown anodized Sinewave Beacon dynamo head and Blue Lug Koma tail lights, a hand-dyed Dark Realm basket bag in a Wald basket on a Nitto Mark’s front rack, and a Blue Lug tie-dye triangle reflector.

A Velo Orange Mojave bottle cage provides the luxury of a Nalgene bottle, and every cable tip is neatly capped with Forager Cycles Cable Cherries.

That’s the build list, a lot of which I’d normally gloss over, but there is nothing normal about this bike; every single component is special and was agonized over for literal days. Days!

At any rate, this shark was built to be jumped, and Daniel intends to do that, so if you see this apex predator on your local trail or at that place you like to get tacos, give it a wide berth. Or don’t; Daniel is a very friendly, and you should have no reason to be afraid to approach him.



We’d like to thank all of you who submitted Readers Rides builds to be shared here at The Radavist. The response has been incredible and we have so many to share over the next few months. Feel free to submit your bike, listing details, components, and other information. You can also include a portrait of yourself with your bike and your Instagram account! Please, shoot landscape-orientation photos, not portrait. Thanks!