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Snek x Salt Air collaborate on killer modern bi-lam lugged steel CX & gravel bike

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt
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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

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.) 

Snek x Salt Air CX bike special collaboration limited edition bi-lam lugged custom steel CX cross cyclocross bike gravel bike Salt Lake Hand Built #SaltLakeHandBuilt

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.”

SaltAirCycles.com & SnekCycling.com 

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edgardo reyes
edgardo reyes
4 years ago

what is a Bi-lam Lug?

OriginalMV
OriginalMV
4 years ago
Reply to  edgardo reyes

Bi-laminated means that the steel tubes are brazed into lugs that are themselves fabricated from tubes rather than being from a stamp/forging or casting. This has typically been done when an existing lug, which are pre-made to typical frame angles and tube diameters, cannot be manipulated far enough to accommodate the desired frame design. A classic example would be the quirky Galibier frame from Paris Cycles. Bi-laminate construction was more of a thing in the past, when lugs were the norm and welding was for boats and bridges. As far as I know, the bi-laminate joint is brazed all at once, not the lug and then the tubes into it (too much heat for too long otherwise and a mess to jig). I don’t braze, but I work for a framebuilder (who incidentally doesn’t believe in bi-laminate construction).

black cat bikes
black cat bikes
4 years ago
Reply to  OriginalMV

very close. on this bike, the seat cluster uses a “bi-laminate” joint, while the bb cluster appears to be a traditional lug. a “bi-laminate” joint is basically a sleeve over one of the tubes at the joint. it can be all brazed at once, or the sleeve can be tacked or brazed first. it allows the sleeved tube to be reinforced at the joint. it can work very well if the sleeve is correctly shaped to not introduce a stress riser. the technique has been utilized by dozens of frame builders for decades to good effect.

AK_Ben
AK_Ben
4 years ago
Reply to  edgardo reyes

Was wondering the exact same thing, even re-read the article to see if I missed the explanation of what a bi-laminate lug actually is and what the benefits are. Thank you to @OriginalMV for the explanation .

Craig
Craig
4 years ago

Virtually everything about that bike looks stunning… with the exception of the fork. The size at the crown just does not match at all and ruins the lines of the bikes front end, and looks out of proportion with everything else on the bike. When will frame builders stop using the Enve-Chris King combo that looks terrible and match up a fork and headset that maintains otherwise beautiful looks on the rest of the bike.

Toffee
Toffee
4 years ago
Reply to  Craig

Agreed.

Ron
Ron
4 years ago
Reply to  Craig

Agreed. While the frame itself looks to be masterfully made and the paint scheme is a good combo, the build spec completely ruins the bikes. Silver headset, color matched stem, raw carbon seatpost, silver bb, black hubs, enve stickers on rims, tan sidewall tires and black bar tape. Yikes! Hideous.

Velo Kitty
Velo Kitty
4 years ago

Squint your eyes, and it’s a Wilier logo.

joe
joe
4 years ago

wow- that is sweet. Looks like steel is coming back. Stopped a guy this weekend riding a sweet motobecane gravel bike whipshot made of reynolds 853. His wasn’t 9k though, more like 1700

Cheese
Cheese
4 years ago
Reply to  joe

His wasn’t US made. More like China. $2k for an American made partially brazed frame with internal cables is a steal.

Greg Keefer
Greg Keefer
4 years ago

Steel will never go out of style, IMO.

“Today’s hip is tomorrow’s hype, kid.”
– George W. Hayduke

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