Bikes have been the center of my life since I can remember. I’m not sure at what age but some of my best and earliest memories are of me and my brother going to BMX races. I loved my bikes and if I wasn’t riding, racing or going to school I was working on them
In Jr high I built a mini-bike from scratch in metal shop. Mr. Earl was the teacher and he was the pivotal individual that set me on the path I’m on today. For most of my life I’ve raced bikes and commuted on my bike. In ‘85′ I bought a MTB for commuting and that set the MTB hook. When I was in my late teens and early 20’s I got serious about road racing as well as MTB racing and also tried my hand at a little motorcycle road racing.
I always performed my own mechanical repairs and fabricated parts that weren’t available or I couldn’t afford to buy. Through this I developed a very broad skill-set. When you race anything, you learn to pay attention to details, to be precise and to always be on the technological leading edge. In my early 20’s I moved to Montana and immediately became heavily involved in regional road bike and MTB racing and also tried a little auto and kart racing. During all of this I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. I knew I didn’t want to work for anyone else, but couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do. Sense the only thing I was interested in was riding and working on bikes it made sense to explore frame building.
When I began my pursuit of frame building, the Internet wasn’t around, so learning resources were limited. Fortunately through my racing I understood fabrication, welding, brazing and frame design. With this background I decided to build my next road race frame instead of buying it. I bought a Columbus tubeset and got started. I hand mitered the tubes, fixtured, aligned and tacked the frameset on a plywood workbench and TIG welded it. I raced that frame for several years and soon built a MTB frame and from there I was hooked. I built for anyone and everyone who would pay for material. Pretty soon people were coming out of the woodwork and I had enough orders and experience that I could start charging an honest fee. Well as they say the rest is history. I built and built and built. I built for people, companies and racers. I built road and MTB, singles and tandems. I built coupler frames, suspension frames. I built with steel, Aluminum, titanium and carbon.
Now about 3500 frames later I’m still building and still loving it. I see no end in sight and don’t ever plan to retire. If I’m lucky I’ll be writing new pages for my site and building frames in 30 years. To give you an idea of where I’ve been and what I’m about I’ve put together a little history of Strong Frames. Below is a list of the shops and the stages of development my frame building experience has gone through over the last 18 years. Hopefully it will give you a little insight to why I’m here building frames. Thanks for reading.