Last fall we built up this full suspension Ventana Zeus for Xan, a friend of Cycle Monkey who helped us out part time over the summer and is now in college in Colorado. Chief Monkey Neil coached Xan on the El Cerrito High School Mountain Bike team and watched him progress from a novice cross country rider to an experienced, technical rider favoring all mountain-style terrain.
The Monkey Lab
At Cycle Monkey, we live and breathe bikes—we love to ride them, work on them, and talk about them, from road to mountain and everything in between. We have specialized tools to work on just about anything. When you ask us to service your Rohloff SPEEDHUB, build a new set of wheels, or overhaul your suspension fork, you get the real-world expertise that comes from 20 years of riding, racing, and wrenching on bikes.
Today, our primary focus is technical sales of the Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 and Schlumpf gearing systems as the premier US distributor of these products. We assist individual customers, builders, and bike shops in building or retrofitting bikes for the best low-maintenance, drive trains out there. We offer custom builds, as well as deliver complete packages around these drive trains in order to give customers the best rides with high reliability.
In preparation for the 2008 North American Handbuild Bicycle show in Portland, OR, Neil worked with Moots on this custom 29'er soft-tail as a test bed for the then-recently-launched Gates Carbon Drive belt system. The previous fall, Gates released the belt system, which promised improved durability with comparable efficiency to the tried and proven metal chain.
Fatbikes are known for their wide tires’ ability to provide grip and traction in just about all trail conditions. We've built many of these bikes with Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 gear hubs and several with a Gates Carbon Drive belt system as well, but how would a fatbike be improved if you added a suspension fork to the equation? That was the question we intended to answer with this Surly Pugsley build.
This Moots CoMooter came in to us recently for help with some of the final setup details and was such an appealing bike that we had to get a closer look. The customer had recently purchased this titanium dream commuter from Moots to get around town with style and speed. It features nothing but top-shelf components and is one of the most lust-worthy commuters we’ve seen.
Tyler here at Cycle Monkey has a bit of a fat tire fetish. He also has a bit of a Surly fetish. It sometimes seems as if he has almost as many Surly bikes as he does Surly T-shirts, and he's been known to wear a different Surly tee every day for two weeks straight - with socks to match just to show off.
Sometimes the team here at Cycle Monkey dreams up a project that is not specifically for a customer but rather to satisfy our own curiosity. We chalk it up to product research, but these projects also have a bit of a selfish motivation: we like to build cool bikes! We put together this Surly Krampus to showcase in the Rohloff booth at the Interbike trade show in Las Vegas last September.
This Nirve “Switchblade” chopper, styled after a classic motorcycle, is one of the more unusual bikes we've had in for a Rohloff conversion. We have experience installing Rohloff hubs on almost every type of bike, but this was a new one for us. The goal was to give this extremely relaxed, comfortable bike the low gearing to pedal up and over more hills.The owner of this bike lives in San Francisco and uses it to cruise around the waterfront and flatlands, but he also wanted to be able to pedal up some of the city’s many steep hills.
Matte black Independent Fabrication "Independence" framecustomized with S&S couplers and Rohloff-specific cable routing.Independent Fabrication is known for building beautiful, eye-catching bikes and this matte black touring frame, although understated, is no exception. We built this custom “Independence” model for a customer who lives in Thailand and has done plenty of off road touring throughout Southeast Asia on his trusty mountain bike.
This eye-catching Twenty2 Cycles 29+ is custom-built for adventure touring but is also well suited for fast singletrack.This gorgeous Twenty2 Cycles frame is the latest in a handful of builds we have put together using the new “29+” platform. These bikes use three inch wide 29er tires mounted to 50mm rims, which provide ample float and traction like a fatbike, yet roll fast like a standard 29er.