We found Connor Wood Bikes at NAHBS last year, where his kevlar-reinforced ash wood commuter bicycle caught our eye.
Now, he’s really got our attention with this Leadville 100 race finishing DURT mountain bike. The name is an acronym for Denver Urban Reclaimed Tree – the source of the wood being an ash tree damaged by a car accident and a walnut tree that died of disease. Robert Brudenell, owner of Denver-based tree care company A Natural Way, found the trees and brought them to builder Chris Connor. The result was a belt-driven, internally geared hub mountain bike for Brudenell to race in the legendary endurance challenge.
Check the build spec and more below…
Complete bike weight is just under 30 pounds. No, wood’s not the lightest frame material, but neither is the 14-speed Rohloff rear hub. The frames are made of reclaimed or local wood in Denver, CO, and use layers of kevlar to reinforce the rear triangle and handlebar. Yes, handlebar. He raced on a Connor wooden handlebar, and wooden rims from Ghisallo.
Build spec for the race bike included:
- FSA K-Force Light cockpit (Stem, seatpost, cranks)
- DT Swiss 110mm suspension fork
- Magura MT8 Carbon Disc Brakes
- 29er wheels with Ghisallo wood rims & Continental tires
- Fourteen-speed Rholoff internal gearhub
- Gates carbon belt drive
The idea was more than to just make a wood mountain bike. It was to help prove the materials’ resiliency for use as a bicycle frame material. Reportedly, the only damage through all 100 miles of the Leadville course was to someone’s pocket book. Approximate price of the bike is $13,000.