The Origins of DIRT
Notes on DIRT by its creator, Patrick Reed.



9/11/2017

Rolling into fall well stocked, and with a strong release of our new Porcupine Rim! Super proud of this project, and in total awe of how well our new design turned out -- if you've ever worked on a design for something for over a year and actually get to turn around and create and offer it to customers, you know how happy I am right now.

Along with putting out some wheels, we're getting some reviews done with some awesome people, like Dustin at Tec-GNAR's review for Fat-Bike.com:



Fat-bike.com has been great to us, and our OE partners, too! I really just want to get to ride the trails he was out at -- I get to ride the bike in the video here for the next few weeks. I couldn't be happier to get back on a ProudFat from Proudfoot. Full suspension, all steel fat bike. Yeah!

Here's to a great Winter!

Patrick



DIRT Components 3/28/2017
Get some dirt on your bike.
1914 Howard Ln, Suite B
Austin, TX 78728
512-294-2709

It's March! The snow is melting
, but we're still building custom sets! We just signed on 12 ambassadors, that was our goal for '17-'18, sorry if we missed you, but I think you'll enjoy this new crew! The stoke is high here, and we'll be out at races all over the states. All of them, it seems like.

We screwed something up, so our new rims are coming out in June now, I mean, as far as we know it. We'll never release sub-par equipment just because we'll miss the hottest selling month in bicycles
for a new product. We're here to design and make the best wheels you can buy.

This was just a quick update, we have three wheel sets scheduled for builds today, and it's lunch time. Back to it!

Patrick



DIRT Components 1/22/2017

Get some dirt on your bike.
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1914 Howard Ln, Suite B
Austin, TX 78728
512-294-2709

What a ride!

Although we've been working on Dirt since the beginning of 2014, we just hit the 13 months of open doors here. We still have that new bike smell, but the seats are broken in, the radio presets are solid, the tires have been rotated. As of this publication, there are over a hundred wheel sets out in the world, from Finland to Alaska to South Texas. We have a second design in testing and prototyping, a 27.5" mid-fat wheel that we hope will be as successful as the last in delivering ease of use, durability and an awesome weight loss. That option, barring any unforeseen issues, will be out as early as May 17'. I'll be teasing everyone on social media with our prototype sets getting ridden everywhere awesome.

There have been a solid number of dealers opening accounts, and that's been incredible! Thanks to all of you who trust us to treat your customers awesome, we are so lucky to be a part of your cycling scene and can't wait to continue growing these relationships. Being featured as an upgrade option on both Chumba USA here in Austin, and soon Growler Bikes in New York, is a total honor that I believe the whole crew respects. Thanks to them and their customers, glad we could be such a large part of their lives!

Looking forward, check out our event list, it is growing as the events become relevant. You'll see us in CO, TX, WI, VT, NH, UT, OR, CA and NC in the next year, as we will continue to partner and support the events that do so much good for the mountain bike scene.

We're looking forward to another awesome year serving up some awesome gear.

Patrick




DIRT Components 7/29/2016

Get some dirt on your bike.

1914 Howard Ln, Suite B
Austin, TX 78728
512-294-2709<>



Meet Joe Skoda, he'll be lacing up your wheel set for you when you order it.

He is nuts on that kids' bike, even better at building wheels and solving problems.
I'll post some videos of him doing stuff that makes me nervous to watch soon.

Patrick



DIRT Components 5/8/2016

Get some dirt on your bike.
1914 Howard Ln, Suite B
Austin, TX 78728
512-294-2709

I wrote this out in response to a customer's inquiry, and I thought it summed up the work we did eloquently.

"We've had the luxury of buying and trying every wheel on the market when we started our design process over two years ago. We wanted to know what are the ups, what are the downs, how well do they set up tubeless, how easy is it to work on them on the trail, do they accelerate without winding, how responsive is the braking, et cetera. We were looking into how to make the customer's experience with our wheels easy and simple, reducing the mechanical knowledge barrier of entry that a lot of enthusiasts have when it comes to tubeless set ups and different tire interfaces. So what we did was design a wheel that did tubeless easy, where you could still pull the sidewall off if you needed to add sealant or even just change out to summer tires. We made the side walls hookless, thick and rounded to handle hits and abrasion. The hook we placed on the inner face of the rim, so it still pops into place.

We reduced the shelf that holds that hook down to 12mm, and then we pushed the channel deep to allow for a tool-less tire install and removal. We use internal and external interfaced nipples so it gets built without scratching the black finish, but you can do quick trues without pulling the tire (your mechanic will thank us). The outside wall that interfaces with the nipple head is reinforced with 2mm carbon weave to handle the abrasion at the spoke nipple, protecting the rim. We know carbon and metal aren't friends, so you have to give the metal nipple something non-structural to move against. The inside wall is also very close at the center to the outside wall of the rim. This is so we can sport regular spoke lengths that gives the wheel a proper mountain bike feel and response in rough terrain. This means stiff, but not beat you up stiff. It allows the spoke to do more work, taking the pressure off the rim in those tough situations. We lace them properly with thought to torsional forces against the hub, placing pulling spokes against pulling forces so brake forces and drive forces have stiff, equal tension at the optimum angles. The hub features enduro bearings you're likely to find in stock or just a few days away at your LBS, and I'll have them on the website when we finishing launching the service interface.

After we build your wheel just like you wanted it, we take individual spoke measurements on our Mahr displacement gauge and software for each serialized wheel. This is our final check as to the quality of manufacturing of the rim and the ability of our builder, Joe. This step assures that each spoke is exactly at the tension we designed the rim for with a minimal of variance for a strong build and lasting durability. We will send your tension sheet on request so that you can have your DT Swiss authorized shop check it against their readings after some wear and regular break-in.

Every inch of the Thumper rim and wheel set was designed here in Austin with specific purpose. We wanted a wheel that we'd be happy to work on, that mechanics everywhere would know how to help service and that the customer would ultimately enjoy for many years because they could easily keep up with maintenance and be able to talk to us on their time if they needed anything done.

Tadashi (the mechanical drafter here) and I are continuing to expand our catalogue of drawings of potential product to enter the prototyping phase with some plus-sized wheels here soon. We're here to stay. I keep overhead low, and we have 30 years of bike shop customer service and mechanical skills under our belts, so we're ready for anything and are particularly picky when it comes to product."

Patrick




DIRT Components 10/3/2015
Get some dirt on your bike.
1914 Howard Ln, Suite B
Austin, TX 78728
512-294-2709

Why? Why did we do this!? Did we go into this knowing we'd be working long hours and doing business for very little return? Why would anyone want to get into the cycling world with its businesses that are controlled by the giants? Didn't I work in bike shops enough to know that it can ever only be a hobby? A labor of love?

Yes.

I love doing this.
I can't see myself doing anything else. This is my hobby and my labor of love. Investment banking was never my calling (no offense if you're an investment banker).

In Texas, 2011, I bought a fat bike. I did it to have something ridiculous to ride around everywhere and start conversations with outgoing strangers. This is Texas, I thought. There is no place for fat bikes in Texas, I thought.

I was so wrong.

One day, I jokingly took it off-road. I was hooked. The control, the ability, the lack of going over the bars and it climbed like mad! I fell in love! I wouldn't shut up about it! When we rode Thumper (the local secret trail that's not so secret, but no one wants to ride it because it's really difficult so it might as well be a secret), that's when I knew that I only needed one bike ever again. It was time to go big and never go back.

So, in March 2014, I broke my leg, married my beautiful wife Allison and started a fat bike components company. Broke the leg at Hotel Vegas during a Spanish punk show three days before tying the knot and a week after filling out the first of many business-type forms for Dirt. Dirt Components came about because I knew I could design something people wanted I worked with those people 40 hours a day at a bike shop for more than ten years. I knew what they wanted and it wasn't out there. Something easy to use, durable as hell, light as it needs to be, and it can't be a million bucks.

And thank heavens I'm not alone in this endeavor. Our crew is amazing, all industry veterans and master mechanics, and I couldn't be luckier to call them friends and colleagues. Without their decades of experience guiding our creative team there would be no way I could have finally designed a product that is so functional and beautiful at the same time. Joe, Tadashi, Aaron, Billy, and all the rest of you who keep us rolling, thank you for your years of listening to me talk about this, and your invaluable feedback and insight.

Being surrounded by an amazing think-tank of mechanics and designers, an extremely exciting "new" chapter in cycling and a unique approach to solving many problems at once, I feel that we've put our best foot forward with our upcoming launch. May you enjoy our products as much as we do!

Patrick