Last year, Paul Components was asked to build a custom bike for Sierra Nevada Brewery so they could show it off at the Sea Otter Classic. This year, they’ve been tasked with creating another brewery themed bike, so Paul looked to the past for inspiration and came up with the beautifully detailed Sierra Klunker.
After the bike is shown at NAHBS and the Sea Otter Classic, Sierra Nevada’s founder Ken Grossman is going to personally take it for a spin in Bidwell Park. Then, some lucky contest winner will be bringing it home!
As Paul and his employees are huge Sierra Nevada beer lovers they delighted in creating last year’s ultimate beer run bike, which they named the Sierra Shredder. This year they decided to honor their hometown’s early history in MTB: Bidwell Park in Chico, California, hosted the first MTB race in the USA. The city was also home to both Mountain Goat and Retrotec, two early-era frame builders.
In a salute to the early days, Paul decided a Klunker was the way to go for this project. The Sierra Klunker’s rigid frame and fork were built by Curtis Inglis, who gained his frame building expertise as an employee of Retrotec (later taking control of the brand).
The bike bears an impressive paint job featuring hop vines creeping around the frame’s front end and down the fork legs. Retrotec, Paul Component Engineering, and Sierra Nevada logos are also featured, not to mention a large Retrotec head tube badge. While the bike is aesthetically somewhat period accurate with its curvy twin top tube (and that extra middle tube), the frame was built ready to shred and is adorned with modern components.
Paul supplies most of their own components for this build, but some bits and pieces were sourced from other American manufacturers. As they did with last year’s bike, all of the aluminum parts were anodized in the signature green hue found on Sierra Nevada’s Pale Ale beer labels and packaging.
The Sierra Klunker’s extra wide moto style handlebar is a full custom job made by Oddity Cycles. Apparently the company takes the term ‘crossbar’ quite literally, and this little detail really emphasizes the retro look of this bike. Oury’s flanged grips also hark back to mountain biking’s early years.
White Industries joined the fun again this year and provided the cranks, headset and freewheel for the Sierra Klunker. The wide, green anodized rims were supplied by Velocity USA and laced up with Wheelsmith spokes. Maxxis’ skinwall Ardent tires add another retro touch to the bike’s wheelset.
In the absence of slotted dropouts, the bike uses an eccentric bottom bracket from Oner to ensure proper chain tension. Another modern upgrade is a pair of Paul’s mechanical disc brakes, which are a tad more functional than a coaster brake setup!
Of course no klunker would be complete without a Brooks saddle!
Perhaps the most impressive component on this bike is the custom made beer rack. The rack is based on a frame from Oakland’s Pass and Stow, and the upper brackets were made from copper to match the kettles at Sierra Nevada brewery.
The wood panels are cut from Chinese Pistachio trees, which are common in Chico, CA. As the photos show, the rack fits two 12 packs of beer perfectly!
While most of us will only see the Sierra Klunker in these photos, one lucky contest winner gets to bring this beauty of a bike home! Klunker aficionados can visit select retailers of Sierra Nevada beer and Total Wine locations in Sacramento, Reno and the Bay Area, and enter the contest via text message.