So when I say bike shop, I’m not talking about your average LBS, although CycleTronix is very much local; this is a shop. This is where the good shit is built.
Right in our backyard, Glendale to be exact, a couple of guys are building impressive custom bikes. Yesterday I had the pleasure of visiting CycleTronix and meeting Sam Davis and Ti Cutter.
Sam, CycleTronix owner, is a former aerospace welder and worked for Titus Cycles and FORM Cycles before starting CycleTronix with Shawn Morra. CycleTronix opened about three years ago. They started building BMX bikes only, but they now build road and mountain bikes as well.
Want to see how a titanium mountain bike is built? Yeah you do!
It all starts with Ti, a whiteprint and a bucket.
Ti works with a print of the bike he will be working on. All the tubes he needs for this bike are waiting for him in one bucket. That bucket of tubes will soon be a bike frame.
Ti then adjusts this hardcore machine to cut the tubes in the correct geometry. Depending on the type of bike, he may have to bend the tubes a certain shape. For example, road bikes are easier because the tubes are straight. A mountain bike is a bit more complex because of the bends in the tubes.
Once all the tubes are cut and ready to go, the bucket is passed on to Sam who takes all the parts and puts them together on this jig. Almost like building a puzzle, he takes all the parts and pieces and arranges them in the correct order to create something that will make you say “hell yeah!”
Sometimes the pieces need a little adjustment… and after some tweaking…
… they fit together nicely!
At this point the frame is only clamped in place and needs welding. This is where Sam shines! Sam Davis is a welding badass. He’s known as The Robot and he’s basically a titanium-welding master. And I got to weld with him! That’s right, Sam “The Robot” Davis, welder extraordinaire, gave me a quick lesson. No, I did not weld this beautiful bike, but we had some fun with scrap.
How much does a 29″ titanium mountain bike frame weigh? Just over 3 lbs! I couldn’t believe how light it was when I picked one up. Made me drool a little for sure!
So next time you are in the market for a bike, check out these guys. They will build your dream bike and have it ready for you in four to eight weeks… all right here in AZ!
Thanks Sam and Ti for having me over and being so hospitable! It was so much fun to see the shop and have a chance to see you guys at work!
I leave you with a few more pictures.