About every two years or so I get a new bike. Being a photographer, a sucker for nostalgia, and of course a lover of all things BMX, I always managed to take a picture of my different bikes. I recently went through my archives and found one photo of each of my bikes so I could take a look back at what I have been pedaling around on throughout the past 16 years of my life…
I’ve only owned one BMX bike over the course of my life that I didn’t take a picture of, and that was my first “real” bike ever. It was a black and purple splash-painted Mongoose Menace that I got for Christmas. (Probably around 1994.) That bike ended up getting stolen out of my friend’s garage, and there was a few weeks time where I actually contemplated not buying another bike and just saving up to get a car. What was I thinking?
It was probably some time in 1996 that I ended up buying this Schwinn Predator Pro for about $250, and since my last bike had been stolen my mom made me keep a lock on it for a while. I eventually put Jad three-piece cranks on this bike and upgraded a few of the other parts before I bought a more legit setup.
I bought my next bike sometime around 1998 and it was a complete DK Legend. A kid at my school owed another dude some money and didn’t have it, so I was able to scoop up this $600 bike for around $200 and buddy was able to pay off his debt.
By the end of 1998 I had stopped racing and was running pegs on my DK Legend. I was pretty much a full-on street rider by this point and eventually had to swap out the race frame for something a little more fitting so I got the second generation DK General Lee… Check out that gnarly seat! I had socks under all that duct tape to make it more comfortable to pinch with my knees to sling barspins. (On flat ground only, of course. Haha.)
In 2001/2002 during my first year of college I felt like the General Lee had run its course and I bought a slightly used Volume Compton from my friend who owned a bike shop. This thing was by far the heaviest bike I ever owned…an absolute tank. 48 hole wheels with 14mm axles, 44t sprocket (at one time I even had guard sprocket on it), ACS Fat freewheel, Kink fat chain, four pegs…the works. It was probably weighed 40 pounds or more.
At the end of my second year of college I sold my show car to focus more on traveling, filming, and riding. It was the summer of 2003 and I bought a new bike with some of the money I made off the car. I dropped well over $1,000 on the bike. It was my first fully custom bike that I built from the ground up…a Kink Cielencki. Every other bike I owned was put together with used or spare parts, but this one was brand new and made up of every part I circled in the catalog. It was my absolute dream bike at the time. I pulled out all the stops, didn’t worry about the price tag, and simply got exactly what I wanted. And I couldn’t have been happier with it.
After replacing a few parts here and there and giving it a few paint jobs, the Kink lasted me nearly four years. I didn’t get a new bike until 2007, and because I had loved building up my dream bike so much I did the same thing again. I couldn’t go back to just replacing certain parts and building up used bikes… By that time I had been working at Ride for about six months and had some great connections with some wonderful people in the BMX industry and Chris Moeller at S&M gave me a custom Metal Rebel Contender. I had asked that the dropouts were left solid without making the lightning bolt cutout, that a cable guide be welded onto the frame, and that the frame be painted a custom color of my choice. Moeller hooked it up perfectly and it came out amazing.
In 2009 I decided it was time for another fresh build and the guys at Tip Plus hooked me up with a Federal Notorious frame. I was super picky about how I wanted the bike to look—teal frame with all white parts. It’s no secret that I’m completely anal about a lot of things, and I was definitely anal about how this bike came out. I couldn’t rest until I had all the right parts to pull off the color scheme I wanted.
(Click here to see the bike check on my old Transworld blog from my Federal Notorious.)
Now it’s 2011 and I just built up my latest ride. This may be my best looking bike ever!
(Click here if you missed my bike check of this bike that I posted a few days ago…)
[NOTE: I also had two old flatland bikes that were hand me downs from Terry Adams and Justin Miller that I don’t have photos of. I do currently have a dialed Colony Cube flatland bike and you can click here to see that one. I also have a Supercross race bike right now, but I don’t have a photo of that one either. I figured this blog post was good enough with all the bikes I ride most often.]