Last Friday, after a week of slinging bike parts (and accessories) to all you lovely folks, I repaired to the tidy industrial confines of the Zen Bicycle Fabrication workshop for their open house party.
For those of you not familiar with Zen, they are a local Portland frame building factory whose claim to fame has been building OEM frames for some of the industry’s big players. This little fiesta was set to mark their expansion beyond hustling only other brand’s frames, and to kick off their own Zen branded and designed bikes.
Normally the folks at Zen are about as secretive as it gets. This unprecedented look inside their workshop was filled with a full tour of the factory floor, complete with neatly sorted tubular bits, shiny machinery and a show room full of the new line up.
Zen’s new road, adventure road, cyclocross, 29er and expidition frames will make their public debut at NAHBS in March. Frame and fork are expected to retail for $1,250 to $1,399.
Maybe it was the copious amounts of HUB’s Abominable Winter Ale on offer, but the AR45 Adventure road had me drooling all night. Built from True Temper tubing with wide (up to 45mm) tire clearance thanks to a tricked out machined chainstay.The AR45 looks like the perfect back road assault vehicle for this guy.
For the embrocation crowd, the CX version is a svelte alloy frame (738grams!) built to shred the mud and crud of your local race series, and boasts Zen’s proprietary MOD dropouts designed to accept a wide range of axles.
Zen will be selling the frames consumer direct as well as supplying dealers with the full line up, at 2 levels. For more info contact the guys at Zen Bicycle Fabrications.