We’re here en route to the 2022 Sea Otter Classic after what feels like eons, and on our way to the event, we have been hanging out in Santa Cruz, California, at Caletti Cycles and the Chris King Guest House. This unique showcase features several framebuilders’ creations, all donning the new Chris King Wheelsets in road, gravel, and MTB. There’s a great mix of bikes from steel full suspensions, road bikes, a few tasty 29ers and a few surprises, so let’s check out the offerings below and a hefty gallery of the bikes and the hangs from the event…
In an ongoing series of beautiful bicycle builds coming out of The Cub House in San Marino, CA, Abbie Bender walks us through her custom Stinner Frameworks Gibraltar road bike build with supporting photography from Sean Talkington…
A few weeks ago, we shared a Certified Pre-Owned Santa Cruz Stigmata MASH edition as the first post in an ongoing series where we’ll curate some of the bikes rolling into The Pro’s Closet queue. Longtime readers of this website will immediately recognize this bike, which was built for the Mavic booth at the 2015 Sea Otter. While Sean is holding onto his bike, Chad has sold his custom hardtail to TPC. This bike is in immaculate condition (see their photos) and fits a 27.5×2.4″ tire with a complete XTR build. The retail is set at $3,599.99…
See this bike in detail at The Pro’s Closet.
Friday is payday! Spend $10 of your hard earned money for the chance to win a balleur custom bike from Mosaic Cycles, Stinner Frameworks, Argonaut Cycles, Sklar Bikes, and McGovern Cycles! Today is the last day – the fundraiser ends at Noon PST – so head on over to the Builders for Builders fundraiser for more information and check out these dream builds in our Reportage!
Once again, the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship is the beneficiary of Builders for Builders. Bicycle frame builders for bicycle trail builders. The formula is simple and effective! This year at the 2019 Lost and Found gravel race in Portola, California, the Builders for Builders raffle and fundraiser returned, bringing in the five builders offering up the winner of the raffle a decked-out, custom frame of their choice. You have from now until June 7th to donate $10. This donation enters you to win a custom bicycle from your pick of builder: Mosaic Cycles, Stinner Frameworks, Argonaut Cycles, Sklar Bikes, and McGovern Cycles.
Fire is nature’s way of redesigning. A way to rewrite the present landscape and while the process is painful, oftentimes, the landscape is rejuvenated. Coastal California is tricky though due to its chapparal ground cover along the mountainsides. You see, chapparal – a coastal low-lying shrub – is old growth and when it’s burnt, the soil loses its stability, causing horrific mudslides. Once the chapparal is gone, there’s nothing else to hold all that dirt together. There aren’t really trees or forests like in other parts of the country along these hills and mountainsides, rather the trees find refuge in the canyons, where they can be more protected, although, with the past few years in California, there seems to be no refuge from fires.
Like many of the local riding areas in Santa Barbara, Refugio burnt a few years ago in the Serpa Fire, engulfing the fire road and hillsides, charring it to the ground. As with most fires, mudslides followed, wiping out El Capitan Ranch in the process. Local efforts have brought the area back, making this epic dirt climb ridable again. Many people say it’s better than ever. Perhaps it was the rebirth of Santa Barbara’s trails and roads that prompted Stinner Frameworks to update their Refugio all road model. Or maybe that’s just a correlation I came up with, either way, a redesign, and improvement is always good when it comes to a bicycle frame, especially one that stays close to its roots, post-burn.
NAHBS is back in Sacramento this year and having only walked around the hall during setup yesterday, I can already tell the convention center is jam-packed with builders and brands from all over the US, yet it’s hard to deny the strong California presence. While Stinner Frameworks is not showing this year, Team Dream and Mavic Cycling are.
For the past few years, Chris King has opened their doors to the public as part of an entire weekend of events dubbed the Chris King Open House. This event’s intent is to be coordinated with a product launch of their new colors for the year, as well as to showcase what makes their operations tick, and to display a selection of custom bikes, built by some of their best builder customers.
the two new colors for this year: matte turqoise and matte mango.
This year, they sent out an open invite to 30 of their best builder accounts, offering up discounted pricing to them to build a bike for the show, passing on the discount to their customers. Out of those 30 builders, 17 showed up, and they were displayed alongside a Pegoretti bike, which we looked at on Friday. These bikes lined the halls of the Chris King factory, where visitors could look at their features in great detail, chat with the builders about their process, and if they were so inclined, purchase their dream bike.
I was invited up to the Open House to document these bikes for the builders and for Chris King, as well as offering up an ultimate dream bike gallery for you, the readers of this website. Please enjoy! Which bike do you like the best and why? Oh and if you’re interested in one of the bikes showcased here, be sure to reach out to the builders, who are linked in the bike descriptions below.
This year, I’ll be covering the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship’s Triple Crown events: Lost & Found, Grinduro, and the Downieville Classic. My intent with this is to grow the Stweardship’s presence, help them raise money and spread the stoke for the Lost Sierra. Jumping on board with this project is just the icing on the dirt cake!
“Custom frame makers Sklar, Stinner, Mosaic, and McGovern have teamed up with world-class component makers ENVE, Chris King, SRAM and WTB to create four unique and beautiful custom bicycles that will be raffled after the gun goes off for the Lost and Found Gravel race. All proceeds will benefit the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship.
Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship is a non-profit organization that builds and maintains multi-use trails in the Sierra Buttes, Tahoe, Plumas and Lassen national forests. Their mission is building sustainable recreation-based communities through stewardship, job creation and hosting world-class events. SBTS has donated an estimated 72,000 hours of volunteer labor, maintained over 800 miles of shared use trails and created nearly 80 miles of new trails since 2003.
The bikes will be exhibited at the Lost and Found gravel race and the raffle will be live, with $20 tickets, from June 2nd through June 15th, hosted by The Pro’s Closet. All donations and raffle ticket purchases are tax deductible.”
Check out more details on these bikes and how to buy a raffle ticket below!
The team from Stinner Frameworks brought one of their most outrageous paint jobs to this year’s NAHBS. I always find it ironic that disruptive patterning attracts so much attention, but that’s what happens when you cover a single speed mountain frame entirely with Splittermuster 31-inspired graphics. It was an all-hands-on-deck situation leading up to NAHBS at Stinner, with the paint job alone taking four days to complete. Each layer of patterning took 5 hours to just peel and apply the mask. I’m not usually one for fancy paint jobs on a mountain bike, but this bike is complete insanity. Then, to up the ante, the same pattern was used in the custom Yanco bags.
Let’s not get too caught up on the finish, however. Even though this bike is shown with a rigid fork, it can be converted to a hardtail configuration with the Cane Creek Angleset headset, which adjusts the head tube angle between .5º and 1.5º, enough to allow the use of an appropriate travel fork. For now, however, the Whisky fork and cockpit, Whisky rims, Chris King hubs, along with the Thomson dropper makes this a lightweight and completely capable single track assault vehicle.
If you bid on this bike, thank you! If you read the post, thank you! If you took the time to send Edie positive energy, THANK YOU! All companies involved would like to thank you for helping us raise $5,600 for our friend Edie Perkins. Thanks to SRAM, Zipp, Brooks, Industry Nine and Chris King for donating everything needed to build the bike at Golden Saddle Cyclery, and to top it off, thanks to Stinner Frameworks for color-matching components!
“Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.” – Jack Kerouac, On the Road
We all have our favorite authors, our favorite books, and our favorite quotes. Many of these anecdotes for travel or life’s great lessons can be applied to cycling. For Mason, he was drawn to the writing of Jack Kerouac. Particularly, On the Road. This quote became his mantra for his new Stinner Gibraltar road bike. Mason selected one of Stinner’s “Vault” paint options, Paradise, and requested the Team Dream Team Chubby Bobcat to be added to the wild paint scheme. This little detail, along with his Kerouac quote really brought the whole build together. Not to mention the SRAM Red eTap, Boyd Wheels and Quarq power meter cranks. The whole package was assembled by Simon at the Cub House.
Straight up road bikes still do it for me, especially when they’re this clean, this light and this local. I love seeing all the Stinners on the roads of Los Angeles, both paved and unpaved.
Enjoy this bike, Mason!
We Built a Stinner Romero to Raise Money for Our Friend Edie Perkins
Photos by John Watson, words by Jonathan Neve
In April of 2017, while on a morning bike ride, our friend Edie Perkins was hit head-on by an SUV. She survived but is now paralyzed from the chest down. The day before the accident, Edie had taken delivery of a 50cm Stinner Frameworks Romero, custom built and painted in Santa Barbara, CA.
The frame ended up at Golden Saddle Cyclery in Los Angeles, and we had an idea: Build the bike up and auction it off, with 100% of the sale going to Edie’s recovery fund. We originally envisioned a “parts bin” build to help keep the costs low, but within a few hours of sharing the idea, a handful of companies stepped up and offered their help.
SRAM, Zipp, Industry Nine and Chris King donated everything needed to build the bike, and to top it off, Stinner Frameworks offered to paint the cockpit to match their frame and fork. None of these companies hesitated in offering their help; there were no questions, and nothing asked in return – just a genuine desire to help a fellow cyclist in need. A friend at SRAM said it best in an email: “When things like this happen, it really hits close to home for each and every one of us, regardless of direct association or not.”
While Golden Saddle may have a world-class parts bin, the generosity of these companies helped this build massively exceed our initial plans and expectations.
The crew at Golden Saddle built the bike, and we think it turned out pretty darn beautiful…
Zipp bars, stem, and seatpost have been custom painted by Stinner Frameworks to match the Romero’s frame and fork. Shifting and braking are handled by SRAM Force Hydro, and the Industry Nine AR25 wheels are wrapped with WTB Nano 40 TCS tires. A Chris King headset and bottom bracket in Mango are a perfect match for the Stinner’s custom paint, and will likely survive decades of abuse.
The bike is up for auction at eBay, with 100% of the proceeds going to our friend Edie. This is a great opportunity to purchase a beautiful, custom built cyclocross/gravel/touring bike while contributing to a worthy cause.
Crank: Force 1 GXP 170mm
Cassette: XG-1195 10-42
Bottom bracket: Chris King Threaded
Rear derailleur: Force 1 long cage
Shifters/brakes: Force 1 HRD
Brake rotors: 160mm Shimano Centerlock
Handlebar: Service Course SL-70 40cm
Stem: Zipp SL Speed 100mm
Seatpost: Zipp SL Speed 27.2 0 offset
Third bottle cage under downtube
Wheels: Industry Nine AR25 Tubeless Road/Cross wheels
Tires: WTB Nano gumwall tubeless 700 x 40mm tires
Headset: Chris King InSet 7 headset
Our thoughts go out to everyone in California who have lost their homes, their businesses and their local trails to these ravenous fires. The boys down in Goleta, a small town outside of Santa Barbara, at Stinner Frameworks were lucky. Real lucky. I don’t think anyone needs to remind them of that. With the Thomas fire reigning in heat, as California’s second largest fire on record, the shop at Stinner was busy preparing their own fire. This Romero frameset was hand-delivered to the Cub House last Friday so that Eric would be able to spend his Holiday break riding the mountains of Los Angeles.
As part of Stinner’s “The Collection,” this magenta and cyan coat was done in-house at Stinner, at no additional charge. These “stock” paint options usually offer a bright, colorful option, paired with a more subdued variant. This year’s other option is a matte desert tan and grey paint job, similar to the livery on the Stinner Hardtail I reviewed earlier this year.
Eric’s choice in build kit on this stock-sizing Romero features a Deda F-64 DB fork, which offered me something different to document, in what is usually a sea of ENVE forks. He also chose a KMC chain to match the paint, along with a combination of silver and gunmetal components like Onyx Hubs and a Chris King Headset, with a Paul stem. My favorite, perhaps unintended matching bit is the SRAM Force protective film on the rear derailleur. I couldn’t bring myself to pulling that off, though.
If you’re looking for a way to spice up your cockpit, then check out Stinner Frameworks’ new painted top caps. Each is designed and painted in-house at their shop in Santa Barbara, feature four designs and are $15 a piece. Head over to Stinner to scoop one up.
Things don’t always go as planned. That’s what I have to tell myself all the time. Last winter, Clayton from WTB and I planned on doing the Tahoe Rim Trail, the week of Interbike, not with any political agenda in mind, just that it worked for both of our schedules. It was the only week where neither of us had anything penned in our calendars.
While you can do the TRT on a rigid bike, you’ll probably have more fun on at least a hardtail. Clayton’s route includes a lot of singletrack on the eastern side of the lake and like everything up there, it can be rowdy at times. I planned on bringing my Stinner Frameworks, with a few component upgrades, which would make the long days and high elevation gain a bit easier. All I needed were some bags.
I’ve been using Porcelain Rocket bags for quite a while now and while my trusty frame bag fits my road or cross bikes, even my 44 UTE quite well, it wouldn’t cram into my hardtail. Around the time I was planning for this, Scott from Porcelain Rocket launched his sealed waterproof bags, with the first special color offering being “Prolly Gold,” or Coyote as the rest of the world calls it. I was honored and slightly amused at the playful nod to my obsession with various shades of tan, so I reached out to Scott, with the emphasis on the byline: nothing special, just want to buy a bag.
I’m not sure how many of you caught this in the gallery showcasing my Stinner hardtail but we ran into an issue when building the bike up. I wanted to run Klampers on this bike, since I’m using it for some bikepacking trips in the near future and I really liked the way the Retrotec I rode at Paul Camp’s Klamper brakes felt with the short pull lever. So, when I bought the frame from Stinner, we began building it and ran into a problem. It’s a common issue, when a frame is designed to run modern hydraulic disc brakes and you try to run a cable actuated brake like the Klamper, with its high cable entry point. Basically, if we ran the cable through the braze-on and into the Klamper, it wouldn’t work; the bend was too abrupt for the cable.
When I brought it up to Aaron at Stinner, he suggested using a V-Brake noodle, so I passed the idea off to Mike at Golden Saddle Cyclery. This is what he worked up. A simple noodle, with rubber heat shrink tubing around the metal part, so it won’t scratch the seatstay. Personally, I think this is an elegant solution.
Hello, my name is John and I’m a hardtail addict. I’m not sure when or where it began, but when framebuilders send me bikes to review, specifically hardtail mountain bikes, I tend to want to buy the framesets from them. Most recently, this Stinner Frameworks Tunnel 27.5+ bike, which I reviewed a little while back when it was built with Box Components and Magura products.
Coming from my stout and solid Retrotec, the Stinner offered a much lighter, zippier feel. It wasn’t necessarily a better ride, just a different one. One that I liked a lot, save for one major – to me at least – flaw: it only had one water bottle mount on the inside triangle.