The Process

Contact me when you decide what type of bike is of interest. We will discuss generally what your needs and desires are. After you decide to move forward with a design, $500 is necessary to begin. This gets you on the schedule and commits us both. The deposit is fully refundable any time before construction starts.

The design process starts with discussing your needs and wants followed by the fitting process below. I will have questions relating to your riding style and goals for compliance (comfort) vs. stiffness. I like to personally fit every client and see them ride their personal bicycle. Experienced cyclists usually have firm opinions about bike fit but still, I prefer to perform a fit session, take measurements, and make recommendations on possible fitting improvements. This is an opportunity for you to obsess over details that relate to bike handling and comfort. Working together we can obtain the fit you have always wanted or make improvements on things that were not right on past bikes.

Fitting Process

• Go for a bike ride together
• Document body type information, fit information, and goals
• Complete a draft frame design
• Complete a spin session on a Serotta Fit Cycle set to the draft frame design
• The fit is optimized to enable the final frame design to complete.

If for some reason we cannot meet in person during the design process there are still suitable alternatives to the fitting process.

If you’re a competitive cyclist it’s important to consider how stiff you want the frame at the head tube and bottom bracket. I can tune the framebut need input. For example, if your road riding style includes high speed cornering I will stiffen the frame at the head tube area to provide more precise steering. Most cyclists today, myself included, desire a stiff bottom bracket area but this can compromise ride quality if it’s needlessly overdone. A bike optimized for competitive use might feel harsh on slower 3-5 hour rides. Of course we can work on a good all around bike also. It really depends on your goals.

I use high quality butted steel tubing from the US and Europe and often mix brands to meet design goals. If you have a favorite brand let me know. I tend to lean towards Reynolds tubes because of theirextensive product line and the nostalgia associated with their 100+ year history in the bicycle industry. Heat treated tubes are used when an improvement in fatigue life is necessary. Frames designed for strong riders or competitive events will almost always use heat treated tubes.

I prefer to design the frame and fork together and supply a frameset to the client. Steel forks tend to look better on steel frames and of course they are painted to match. If you choose to source a fork elsewhere I must know the some details of the fork because of design interdependencies between frame and fork.

I personally test each of my fork designs and stick with these established designs which include a Cyclocross disk fork and road forks with Reynolds 853 and 953 blades. Reynolds 953 is a high strength heat treated stainless steel and results in a sub 700 gram fork that rivals the ride quality of high end carbon fiber forks.

When the frame design is complete I will send you the final specification with a quote and completion date. At this point another $500 is needed to move into construction. The two $500 payments are non-refundable once construction begins.

Before the frame ships, the final payment is needed which will include the price of any extras we decided on during the process.

I don’t expect the client to decide on painting details early in the process but will provide information to think about. Bicycle painting is one of those things that you get what you pay for. My standard paint system is a high-quality liquid paint done by artisan painters in the Pacific Northwest. To help anyone suffering from analysis-paralysis I can suggest colors that have been successful in the past. There are many options available with custom paint so the final look can very much depend on the customer’s desires and imagination.

© mahall bikeworks 2016