This year marks the 40th Anniversary of Chris King. They dropped the official word this year at NAHBS, but we’ve known the iconic brand has had something up their sleeve to celebrate for awhile. Rather than a single option however, Chris King has a sprawling collection of ‘Olive Crate’ components to you to choose from. There’s even an olive green Santa Cruz 5010 loaded with the 40th anniversary components you might be able to get your hands on. While the parts are beautiful, and sure to be a conversation starter, if you want to land one of the 40 collector’s kits (technically 160), you had better bring your wallet…
The way Chris King has the sale set up, it appears the only way to get any headset other than a standard 1 1/8″ NoThreadSet or any bottom bracket, you’ll have to buy one of their Collector’s Kits. These kits will be sold in 4 different configurations with only 40 kits of each style available. The four kits available include R45 road, R45 Centerlock Disc (100×12 and 142×12), ISO, and ISO-B (Boost), with your choice of bottom bracket and headset standards to match your frame. Limited to one kit per person, the prices are set at $1,976 which includes a ceramic hubset, ceramic bottom bracket, headset, a 58mm espresso tamper, a headset spacer kit, BB conversion kit, a timeline booklet and letter of authenticity with the full kit individually numbered. Curious, we ran the numbers on the prices we could find for the R45 kit to see what standard Chris King parts would run – with the same parts, it worked out to just under $1500 , so there is a substantial premium for the limited edition parts which isn’t surprising.
Along with the kits, customers have the option of having their hubs from that same kit built into a complete wheelset for an additional charge. A number of rim options are available depending on the the kit, and the pricing for the wheel upgrade seems pretty reasonable. However, if you don’t want to buy the whole kit but still want a set of wheels with the Olive Crate hubs, Chris King has 15 options with Stan’s, ENVE, and HED rims. Prices start at $1,180 for Stan’s Flow wheels, and each wheelset has CK 40th Anniversary decals, while the ENVE wheels have the option for additional color matched decals.
Then there are four single options which may be the best choice if you just want something small to celebrate Chris King’s 40 years. In typical fashion there are salt and pepper shakers ($149) and a 58mm espresso tamper ($100). You also have the choice of the original 2Nut headset or 1 1/8″ NoThreadset on collector’s stands. Whether you leave it on its pedestal or put it on your bike, it’s one pricy showpiece at $276. These standalone items are limited to 100 pieces each.
Everything is available for preoder online, directly through Chris King’s website, with product shipping 60 days after the order. As of writing this, there were still Collector’s Kits in all four configurations available, but they probably won’t last long.