So there we are having our Morning staff meeting. This always involves a couple cups of coffee and snuggling back into bed to plan such tasks as: who is going to the post office? Or, as we were this morning, working on the big picture themes for the naked Bicycle Empire. This boiled down to an all familiar conversation thread.
What the hell are we going to do for NAHBS this year?!
Every year we look for an interesting angle. Not just stand out in the crowd but really offer something to the conversation. A brief history:
2007 San Jose.
Intro to NAHBS. We took a lot of standard customer bikes. Great Contacts. Felt like our bikes melted into the huge collection of nice bikes.
All our eggs in one basket. Build one bike that encompassed our passion. It was a bit of a risk that paid off.
Over-the-top. Pushing the boundaries of our imagination and craftsmanship to an extreme. Critics hated it, most of the people loved it. Mission accomplished.
Distillation. Picking everything we’ve learned so far, stripping it down to only what is required. Getting back to the essence of what a bike is.
That brings us to now.
NAHBS has become such an event that it no longer can be contained simply within the confines of a three day exhibition. Naked bikes has always been a very transparent and open company with information and enthusiasm. Rather than save up all that excitement for the final curtain drop, we want to invite you into how we work, how we prepare, and present our bicycles. The scale may be different but the process is the same for every bike we build and deliver.
So the plan is:
Over the last month or so we have been working with our various suppliers and friends, assembling our lego box of bits to make a couple of lean, mean touring machines.
In the end all bikes are meant to be RIDDEN. Like a well made tool, a bike should work better as it ages and look its best after some proper patina seasoning. Every year, the bikes that catch my eye are the ones that look like they have a history and have a story to tell. Like Sachs muddy cyclocross bike or DeSalvos first bike on display after all these years. This is a fine line, of course, and we could end up with some dirty old crappy looking bikes in a shabby old booth surrounded by amateur looking holiday snaps. But hey, it isn’t an adventure if it isn’t an adventure!
Next post will be a couple sketches of the overall idea for both bikes and a few build shots of a cool new seat mast if all goes well…….