Brought together back when NAHBS was in town a couple of years ago, Salt Lake bike builder Salt Air Cycles & local clothing maker Snēk Cycling found common ground first partnering on a team kit last summer. Now the two are back with a deeper collaboration, a race-ready cyclocross bike with enough room to fit fatter tires for off-season gravel riding.
Snēk x Salt Air bi-lam lugged steel cyclocross bike
Developed to give Jonny Hintze founder of Snēk (pronounced: sneak) a bike he could race cross on, then slap fatter 40mm gravel tires on for longer off-season, off-road adventure riding, Matt Nelson of Salt Air Cycles is the one to craft the hybrid cyclocross & gravel bike.
With his frame building expertise, Matt dialed in the geometry and frame detailing, while Jonny leaned on his graphic design background to bring the classic look together. “It’s not every day that you get to do a custom paint job on a bike for yourself. I knew it had to be something special. I wanted to do something classy. After numerous concepts, I came up with a design and color scheme that walked the line of traditional and modern. I choose a classic chevron stripe layout and a few earth tone colors, then added the bright red accent stripe to give it a modern pop of color.”
Snek x Salt Air steel cyclocross bike – Tech Details
The custom hand-made steel Snek x Salt Air cross bike uses a mixed premium steel tubeset with traditional lugs like at the bottom bracket, and custom crafted bi-laminate lugs like the seat cluster.
Carved and filed by hand the bi-lam lugs and the tapered headtube with custom reinforcement rings mix classic & modern construction with a clean, contemporary looks.
Modern touches continue with a 12x142mm rear thru-axle and flat mount disc brakes, matched with the full carbon Enve fork, and of course room for 40mm gravel tires on the wide carbon rims.
The bike features full length housing, internally routed through the main triangle, plus a custom integrated seatpost binder clamp bridging the seatstays.
Snek x Salt Air steel cyclocross bike – Pricing & Availability
Even though the Snek x Salt Air cross bike started out as the personal ride of Snek founder Jonny Hintze, it is meant to be available in a limited edition. Salt Air Cycles is a custom frame shop, and there is a lot of custom fabrication in the bike, so don’t expect a discount pricetag. Salt Air won best new builder at NAHBS 2017, so you are getting a premium handmade steel bike, and with it the possibility for customization as far as your wallet allows.
The special edition frameset on its own sells for $2500 with Snek x Salt Air frame, Enve fork & King headset and including full-custom geometry (a $500 upcharge over Salt Air’s standard steel cross bike.)
Jonny’s bike is built up with a 1x Shimano Ultegra mechanical shifting & hydraulic brakes mixed with a cable pull ratio adjusted XTR derailleur to get a wide gearing setup. A set of ENVE G-series wheels & cockpit round out the complete build, together with Chris King hubs & bearings. The complete bike as shown here would retail for around $9000. Current delivery time is about 8-10 weeks.
Jonny praised working with Matt to promote each other’s hand crafted in Utah brands. “We’ve coined the term Salt Lake City Hand Built since our products are both made here in Salt Lake City, Utah. What’s been even better is working on this collaboration bike with him.”