Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Shop Visit: Rivendell Bicycle Works

Rivendell bikes embody the quote "steel is real". Located in my hometown of Walnut Creek, they are only a stones throw away from where I live.  Rivendell has been creating steel works of art since 1994, and is showing no signs of slowing down.  In my time before work, I decided to take a ride down to the shop and check out what the guys were up to, and hopefully ride some bikes!

The crew at Rivendell are all really good dudes, who are passionate about their bikes, and above all, love to ride the machines they produce every day.  Each of the bikes Rivendell puts out all have a different job, and various purposes.  However, every one of these bikes was made for one thing: getting dirty.  Even the raciest model, the Roadeo, has an ability to fit a 35c tire.  

Once I walked into the showroom, located right next to the main workshop, I instantly gravitated to the Roadeo.  This bike is Rivendell's answer to the race bike, while maintaining the Rivendell "attitude" that is present in every one of their bikes.  

The Roadeo. Fast, Comfortable, and overwhelmingly fun.

After oogling at the Roadeo for long enough, I was able to take it out for a spin.  Lightweight steel: check, Sram Force: Check, Brooks Saddle? Oh hell yeah. It's a Rivendell baby. Riding this bike around the town for a few miles, I saw what they wanted this bike to embody.  The Roadeo was fast enough to give carbon race bikes a run for their money, while giving the rider a platform that they could ride all day without any hint of discomfort. Above all, the Roadeo looks spectacular!

      Hailing from the Dub-C. Hell yeah. 
So Good!

Post-Ride coffee was in order as I sat down to talk with the owner of Rivendell, Grant for a bit about the company, craft beers (we share a love for Oregon breweries), and of course, going too fast and doing dumb things on the dirt. Before he let me tour the shop, Grant had to pull my leg and made me try out one more bike.  The bike I took for a ride was the Hillborne.  

The Hillborne was designed to be an all-around dirt-touring ride.  Drop bars, MTB frame, and 2.2 tires, Rivendell made this bike to do it all.  Personally, I couldn't see myself owning one of these bikes, but I can't deny the awesome-ness that this bike possessed.  Beyond looking super unique, this machine was a blast to ride around on various terrain.  Sure, it's a tad heavy, but come on, this thing is solid steel!  If you're looking for a bike that you could ride on any fire road in the area and turn heads at the same time, this bike is for you! As on any Rivendell, the lugs are beautiful, and really bring a new level of cool to every bike.

This bike impressed me. Both cool to ride, and damn good to look at! 

My tour around the shop was shorter than I wanted, but another shop that I have obligations to was calling my name.  The Rivendell workshop was filled with steel works of art in each stand.  The guys let me wander around a bit and take some photos, but I was too enamored with the sweet rides in the stands to really think about photos.

 The Showroom

Great year. 

More awesomeness

Huge thanks to the Rivendell crew and Grant for letting me hang out at the shop for a bit, and of course, riding some incredible bikes! 

Of course, I couldn't leave out this glorious bike. Get 'Crossed. 

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