20130426

Moots Demo at Palo Alto Bicycles

Unfortunately I'm all but useless today stuck in bed with some sort of weird bug and a high fever, so there's not too much I can do other than watch cartoons and sniffle while dosing in and out of fever dreams.

Speaking of dreaming...
However, while I have a moment of consciousness, I wanted to write about a pretty cool event hosted last night at Palo Alto Bicycles: a demo and presentation from Moots of titanium bicycle fame.  One of my cycling crazed coworkers was kind enough to invite me along to what turned out to be a pretty exclusive event (I almost didn't get in, but thankfully for me there was a last minute cancellation) and we oogled over the titanium lovlies on display.

Looks like we're in the right place!
For those of you not familiar with Moots, they make custom titanium bikes for just about any cycling appetite - road, cross, mountain, touring, even fat bikes. They'll actually make just about whatever you can imagine, and they're constantly trying out new designs and techniques, such as this trail bike they demoed at NAHBS and had on display last night.


Chainsaw AND a six pack rack?  I'm sold.
The presentation itself featured photos of the Moots facility and frame building process, along with a Q and A session.  Moots itself is a very small company that takes great pride in their people and their work.  Titanium is not an easy material to work with, so their welders have to have quite a bit of experience before they start work on actual bikes.  The process of welding Ti involved filling the tubes with argon, since oxygen can't be present in the welding environment - but let me back up a bit.  


One of the display bikes.  Stronger than steel and almost as light at carbon, these bikes are stunning in person.
Each Moots frame is made exactly to the specification of the rider, and therefore they are very picky about who their dealers are, as shops such as Palo Alto Bicycles have to have someone on hand who is proficient at taking fit measurements and figuring out what sort of frame a rider needs.  As such, each Moots is unique and all of their bikes and components are just about guaranteed for life.  

Moots itself began using titanium when they were looking for a solution to steel weakening when used in a full suspension frame.  They tried titanium...and haven't looked back sense.  It's nearly impossible to break, light, strong, and when finished with Moots' signature bead blasting, looks classy and stands up to the elements.  They also make seat posts, stems, and a few other components, all titanium.  Aside from making cool frames, they do a lot for their employees and community - that trail bike on display is getting donated for use in trail maintenance, and their employees get a dollar for each day they commute to work by bike.  Pretty cool!


Apologies for the photo quality!  I only had my phone with me.  This is the fork on the Moots CX bike.
The main event of the night was a raffle - there were quite a few Palo Alto Bicycles and Moots goodies, including shirts, kits, bottle openers, and olive oil (which Moots also makes...who knew?) But the prize that everyone was there for was the chance to win a fully custom Moots frame!  And while neither I nor my coworker won a fully custom Moots frame, I have to give a shout out to the lucky guy who did, and had to chuckle when he asked the audience "So...who wants to buy a Serotta?"  


Such nice welds...
Palo Alto Bicycles does a lot of cool events like this, and the shop itself is run by pretty cool people who just want to share their passion for bikes.  There's a ride next Thursday with a Giro demonstration afterwards, and I highly recommend checking it out!

Apologies if parts of this post are feverish and incoherent.  I honestly can't remember when I started writing it.  I'll come back later and edit any weird parts, if I remember.  

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