Interbike 2018: Just nod if you can hear me

Another of the reasons I kinda-sorta wish I was at Interbike is this: Rivendell’s Grant Petersen is bringing a new not-a-mountain-bike bike to the show on Tuesday.

Yes, it’s that time of year again.

He mentioned it in his Blahg a while back (scroll down a bit) and I forgot to check back for the deets.

This morning the old 20-watt bulb flickers to life so off I go and hey presto! There it is (scroll down a bit some more). Before you do, take a moment to appreciate the permalink.

So why would I want to go all the way to Reno to clap my peepers upon the Rivendell Gus Boots-Willsen? Because, sez Grant: “We won’t submit it to magazines for review. Their standard isn’t ours.”

I think he’s mostly talking about the racing mags here, but you never know until you ask, and I haven’t asked. Yet.

But the Gus sounds like it’s right up my alley. Trail. Whatever. Again, Grant:

The Gus Boots-Willsen is NOT a mountain bike. It’s a HILL bike, which is just a mountain bike stripped of the technology necessary for survival during super aggressive riding. … Boots is for fun, travel, exploring, so it doesn’t need the spring, hinges, and hydraulics.

If you’re at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center, swing by the Rivendell booth (2467) and say to Gus and Grant for me.

• Next: This is not how I am.

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17 Responses to “Interbike 2018: Just nod if you can hear me”

  1. Pat OI'Brien Says:

    A ride anywhere bike should be named Gus. Perfect.

  2. larryatcycleitalia Says:

    Gawd, is that thing ugly! But nobody would steal it I’d bet. Some of the contraptions this fellow creates look like junkyard projects done by a guy without a junkyard. Reminds me of the old joke “Give an Englishman a piece of metal and he’ll do something funny with it very time.” Perhaps the recipient of the Golden Toiddy “Self Appointed Guru” award has some British ancestors?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      See, now, this is why I like Grant and Jeff Jones. They get a notion, born of experience, say “Why the hell not?” and give it a go.

      Not every notion is for everybody, of course. For example, I wouldn’t ride this to a dogfight, even if I thought it had a chance to win.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        That Trek is butt ugly. But, that 1×12 drivetrain on the Gus looks completely out of place.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        The 1x surprises me too, Pat. But there are at least nine changes contemplated, and perhaps that’s one of them.

        • Pat O'Brien Says:

          Good morning! I took a second look at the Gus and the caption on the photo. He does say to imagine it with a different crankset and a front derailleur. So, it seems a good bet that the production version will have a double in the front and a different cassette in the back. I replaced the SRAM X9 triple drivetrain on my Niner MCR with a SLX 2×11, and after a few months of riding it, I am glad I did not go with the 1×12 XT. When I rode one of the shop owner’s bikes, a Niner with a XT 1×12, the jumps between gears on it are just too big. And I agree with JD’s comment further down. The Gus with an upright riding position and a Brooks saddle on a rocky trail, even at a leisurely pace, would beat up your ass in short order. Horses don’t have to be pedaled.

  3. JG Says:

    Geez ‘o Pete – so now I’ll have to deal with customers wanting a Hill Bike? “But can I ride gravel on it?” “What if I ride only on paved bike trails??” “Will this still work in the mountains?” “Can you put a motor on it? F*ck… arrgh

    • larryatcycleitalia Says:

      JG- I call this the “Evel Kneivel” syndrome. Evel wasn’t very good at motorcycle (flat, dirt track) racing back in the day so he invented something very specific he could be the best at – jumping his motorcycle over school buses with a giant set of ramps.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Those dern customers. The bane of every successful bidness. We have ’em in my line, too. We call ’em “readers.” Sonsabitches want everything for free and then call you an asshole when you give it to ’em.

      It would have been funny if Grant had dubbed the bike the Hill Able.

      • larryatcycleitalia Says:

        For some reason your photo made me think of an e-bike I saw the other day on our local bike trail. Guy whizzed past me on a downhill but I just assumed he was coasting. I was riding my single speed shopping bike, a real junkyard thing with 700 X 23 tires. I roll up to a part of the trail they’re tearing out and here’s the guy on what I now see is an electric MTB, walking gingerly around the construction while pushing the bike. I ride up on him through the grass/dirt and ask, “Geez, you can’t ride that thing over this?” He turns around, cigarette jauntily dangling from his lips, smiles and speeds away….pedals are just foot rests, he’s zooming along sitting perfectly still. So much for the claims that one must pedal these things to go anywhere – this guy would probably have keeled over in 50 meters if he’d had to pedal the thing! And so much for any riding skills one might think they folks have!

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        I have to admit I haven’t delved into the e-bike thing too deeply. I’m just not all that interested, probably because I still like pedaling.

        Frankly, that’s one reason the Vespa doesn’t get ridden as much as it deserves. If I have a free hour to spend on two wheels, I usually spend it pedaling instead of twisting a throttle.

        The e-bike has a bunch of different subsets that must make retail even more painful than it already is: Class 1, pedal assist; Class 2, throttle; Class 3, speed pedelec. Hub motors, mid-drive motors, little thunder-thighed, EPO-soaked genies that live in your water bottle, etc., et al., and so on and so forth.

        You can get ’em at Walmart for around five hundy. Once the price comes down a little further they’ll corner the third-DUI market for sure.

  4. JD Dallager Says:

    The Gus actually looks pretty good to me. 1×12; flat pedals, etc. BUT, that saddle and the nose up position on it (thought maybe it was a downhill or slope-style bike) had me starting to wanna stand up and tear up. Ouch!!

    Some real creativity and handiwork there.

  5. mooremediaone Says:

    I can’t figure out why Grant has ventured into the lions den.

    Aren’t these InterBike ilk same folks that tout the very aspects of mountain bike design and riding that he rejects?

    That being said, the “Gus” looks good to me too. As I’ve noted here before, I’ve been doing some knarly riding with my old B’stone rigid frame and the Gus seems to be a modern version of that. The platform performs just fine.

    Good on ya, Grant. I hope you and Gus make it back to the shop in one piece.

    Best from So Cal,
    doug moore

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Doug, if I were to venture a guess, it would be that Grant wants to get the bike in front of some media eyeballs without actually having to ship them product for evaluation. That shit has to get stupid expensive really quick, and according to his Blahg he only has four samples on hand with about nine changes already contemplated.

      Plus you know how we media mutts are. Bite the hand that feeds ’em, every time.

      Boy, is he ever right about the looks of the Shimano stuff, too. Ugggggleeeee. It works, sure, but still, damn.

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