Ryan Foote has worked here longer than any other employee besides Hanz and Alan. Ten years to be exact! He’s worked all over customer service and production. At one time, when we had a separate line to build the tandems, he pretty much did it all himself, including all aspects of production and assembly. He has taken pretty much the entire series of classes at the United Bicycle Institute and is an incredibly adept mechanic and fabricator.

Despite this, he’s an elusive character and one that few Bike Friday owners have had the joy of meeting. When you do, you’re faced with an exceptionally tall and intense guy, his arms and legs intricately adorned in tattoos, often wearing some punk rock t-shirt. His appearance may be deceiving to some, though, as Ryan is a personally unassuming and very genuine person who is well worth knowing if you run into him.

Ryan’s also a very creative person, having designed many of his tattoos and being the publisher of a few zines. One is called Night Jaunts and is blogged about here and here— both reviews of #3 which features an article by Danny from Speak in Tongues, which was one of my absolute favourite places in Cleveland or anywhere else for that matter, further proving the point that we do live in a small world. Ryan’s also a staff member of Zine World, a homebrewer, an avid gardener, and of course, a very creative bicycle builder.

Ryan’s worked on many special projects since he’s been here and even did a 20″ wheel version of the original SatRDay. He’s working on some new recumbent project, but I couldn’t get him to elaborate on the details. He’s apparently waiting until he has something worked out before he lets the cat out of the bag and gets everyone too excited! The fork you see on the frame below was so inspirational to Alan that he made it the standard fork on the New World Tourist and Pocket Crusoe if that gives you any idea how creative he is. If you want further proof, now is the time. Ryan is offering two of his personally created Bike Friday inventions to the public at large.

epson19990921-0001.jpgThe first is a Pocket Rocket Pro frame with a few modifications. The rear end and front fork are made like the Pocket Crusoe, but it’s got 451mm wheels just like the Pro. Like the Crusoe, it’s got v-brakes in the front. It’s also got a mechanical disc brake in the rear. No drop bars here, either: it’s got h-bars with the levers and shifters mounted to the extensions. It’s got a more standard 1-1/8″ headset and check out the paint job: double fade from Ink Black to Deep Purple to Midnight Blue to Ink Black! Though it’s an 18 speed, it’s geared to pull a trailer full of groceries uphill and will also work for recreational riding. Equipped with fenders and sealed bearings for winter commuting. It’s only a year old and is being sold for a mere $1499 or best offer. Ryan will happily make a new stem to fit the individual rider, recable the thing, and go over it to make sure everything is in tip top shape.

epson19990921-0001-1.jpgMore unique, however, is the 406mm wheeled frame he built. Built with a traditional double diamond frame similar to the Classic Bike Friday or, more appropriately, the captain’s section on our tandems, since it was built by the tandem master on one of the tandem jigs, this is a great bike for the heavier rider. It’s got a folding rear end and a telescoping seat tube, not unlike the Tandem Two’s Day. The top tube is actually two tubes that wrap around the seat tube and end in forks that interact with the forks on the rear end. There’s a cool water bottle boss bridge between the two tubes made out of a wrench and there’s a screw in pump peg on the down tube. There’s also water bottle bosses on the stem that goes into another 1-1/8″ headset. Being sold as a frame with the stem, wheels, rear brake and derailleur for a mere $399. Ryan will also happily source parts from our inventory if you would like him to build the bike for you. Or you can send your own parts in and he’ll build it up. He’ll also repaint it, if you like (obviously not for free) and he’ll help with resizing as needed. Oh, and he’s going to make a Pocket Llama fork so the whole thing has clearance for big tires. Heck, you could use it as a mountain bike with that little change!

Both of these bikes should work for someone about 5’6″-6’4″ and will certainly work for people under about 200#. In the case of the frame, it should easily handle someone 275# or so. You might also be wondering about the warranty, since such things do not usually transfer with new ownership except through our own pre-owned bike program. Ryan, however, has offered a personal guarantee as long as he works here. Given the decade he’s been around, there’s likely no end in sight, so let’s call it a “limited lifetime” warranty. 🙂

If you have further questions or comments about these bikes, please make sure to check out the photo gallery and then leave a comment here and I’ll try to answer it for everyone. You can also email me or contact Ryan directly by phone at +1-541-685-0924 or by e-mail at mishapzine@yahoo.com.