We're calling this our show bike.
What does it show? Although intended to be showy, that is, turn heads and attract attention, what it really shows is what happens when you combine the cream of the crop in the bicycle world with a cargo bike.
Who is the Cream of the Crop?
Bullitt: We're biased of course. We believe Bullitt is the world's best front-loading cargo bike. From the design of the frame, materials, and workmanship, we don't know of a cargo bike that's more capable or more fun to ride.
Matt Cardinal Design: Matt Cardinal of Signal Cycles fame designed the paint scheme. We've been a fan of Matt's art for a long time, both on canvas (he's a fine artist too) and on bikes. His sense of color and design are well-suited to the bicycle frame, including this Bullitt.
Coat Custom Paint Shop: What's a great design idea without great execution? Coat, Vanilla Bicycles' own custom paint shop here in Portland, certainly has the experience with producing beautiful bikes and in this case they've exceeded expectations.
Shimano: Shimano is leading the way in component technology and their new ZEE component group and Saint pedals, although designed with mountain bikes in mind, are a great match for a cargo bike. More details below about the Zee gruppo.
Chris King Precision Components: The pride of Portland. Hands down Chris King not only produces the best headsets and hubs in the...yes, we'll say it...THE WORLD, they're also a company with great integrity and we're proud to display their workmanship on this beauty of a bike. And...what's cool about a front-loader? It has two headsets and that's twice the cool of a regular bike!
What are we thinking putting hard-core downhill mountain bike components on a cargo bike?
We're thinking it's truly a great match because of the toughness and the performance features of the downhill mountain bike parts. From the ZEE gruppo we've selected brakes, shifters, crankset, and rear derailleur.
If you've talked to us or followed our posts you know that Splendid Cycles is an advocate for modern braking systems on cargo bikes. Mountain bike brakes are a logical place to turn. In the case of ZEE, we've got a heavy-duty, all-weather, hydraulic disc brake. Simply said, that means you S.T.O.P. in all conditions. The dual ceramic pistons and heat dissapating fins mean that you can depend on these brakes on long descents. Control on descents is never over-rated on cargo bikes. Hence the ZEE brakeset.
We also like the 1 x 10 gear set-up of the ZEE drivetrain. The 11-36 cassette gives this bike the range of gears that allows the rider hammer on the flats or spin up a steep hill. These cranks are stiff and light so when you're standing on the pedals and riding with a big load, all of the power from your massive quads goes directly to propelling the bicycle. The chainring also includes a bash guard, which for the cargo biker serves to keep pant legs away from the chain. How handy!
Saint Pedals - a low-profile, durable flat pedal with lots of style.
Overall, we've got a gorgeous bike that's only 50 lbs but ready to haul, in every sense of the word!
That's a 50-pound front-loader without compromise! All the components selected are heavy-duty, durable, and engineered to perform in rough conditions. Not only did we spec tough mountain bike parts but we also added some other goodies:
Schwalbe Marathon Supreme tires. Light, fast, puncture-resistant and all with outstanding grip on wet roads. Most cargo bikes are pretty sure-footed but with the Marathon Supreme's grippiness you'll have confidence on even the sketchiest of days.
Ergon GS- 1 Grips - We love the comfort of Ergon grips. With great support, reduced numbness, and a great feel, you'll be able to ride all day if you want to. And you will want to.
This is our dream bike. What does yours look like?
This bike was hatched through the dream of building what we think is the ultimate cargo bike. Perhaps you have a similar vision, but have a few favorite parts and features of your own. Maybe you'd like a Portland Timbers themed bike. Or, a dynamo hub along with a 300 lumen LED headlight from SuperNova is your preference. We can do that. We can do just about anything you can dream up...or at least we'll consider trying. Tell us about your dream bike and let's see if we can make it a reality.