After snapping a steel fork this spring…
and breaking two production steel 29er frames in less than 6 months I decided to start looking for something different….
I had been following the blog of Brendan Collier of Siren Bicycles for some time, admiring his craftmanship… For those of you not in the know, Brendan handcrafts what he calls “Performance Art”, 29ers catering to the endurance racing crowd, epic adventurers or just those wanting a kick ass ride to take you from here to there. Up until this spring Siren was only producing custom aluminium frames, but with the announcement in July of the production steel frame, called John Henry, I knew I had to have one.
Fast forward, it’s the end of October and I’m getting ready for an all day epic called the “Enchilada Buffet” (a self-supported 80 mile race of every legal trail in Austin), what should show up at my door but my shinny new John Henry. So two days before the buffet, I switch all the parts from my current ride (backup Surly KM) over to my new John Henry “Brown Shugga”.
Why “Brown Shugga” you ask, because of the sweet custom chocolate-brown powder with a gold sparkle clear coat Brendan did for me.
Only one word comes to mind, awesome! Second ride and 9.75 hrs in the saddle and the John Henry rode superb… perfectly balanced, fit was spot on, no lower back soreness (even though I was carrying a pack) and the bike climbed and craved better than any other hardtail I have ever ridden! Even looks great dirty…
For a production handmade steel 29er the John Henry is hard to beat, Paragon Machine Works SS/geared sliders and bottom bracket, lightweight steel tubeset, big tire clearance (currently running 2.3’s with room to spare) and excellent customer service.
So if you are looking for quality, handmade 29er, definitely give Brendan a shout, you won’t be disappointed!