I’ve been riding bikes, well, for my whole life. I have a little wisdom so that’s a pretty long time now. I’ve been tinkering with bikes for a long time too. I remember wanting one of my bikes to have a custom paint job. I was probably 8 when I tried that. I finally completed a custom paint job on the first bike I built, a SS, last Fall. Let me clarify. I didn’t build the frame, but I did build the wheels and assembled all the components with a little help from my friend Bern.

My second build was a Pugsley. Again I assembled all the components, but this time I had the Large Marge wheels built. I was also adding an Alfine 11. I love my Puglsey, and haven’t been on my old mtb since.

I’ve begun my third build, something between a road bike and a mountain bike, I guess. I don’t cyclocross but maybe a montercross bike.  It’s for long gravel and dirt roads. I’m planning for that gravel grinder I’m going to do one day. Have you guessed the frame yet? Yes, a Salsa Vaya.  I’m really excited by this bike.  Everyone seems to love theirs, and remarks on how comfortable they are even after hours in the saddle.  Here it is in “Super Orange!”

But now, here’s the crux of this post.  When the frames leave the factory they still need to be chased and faced by the consumer. I just think that’s wrong! I’ve invested in the tools and equipment to transform a frame into a complete bike. How much harder would it be to fully prep these frames for the end user; a token of customer service to the loyal cyclist? Now maybe this is just Salsa, I’m not sure. When I purchased my Surly frame, the bike store said it was all prepped. OK, ranting done.


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