Global? Is that too strong of a word? I don't think so. Two years ago we visited Industry Nine and toured their facility. You have to be living under a log if you haven't heard of them. It's a fantastic company making amazing uber terrific product staffed by the friendliest folks around.
Cycling midget, magazine article writer and industry insider Dicky hooked us up with Industry Nine and with a bribe of Canadian maple syrup, fresh water and free medicare he was able to connect us with Eric at Cane Creek last year for a visit and tour.
|Cane Creek world headquarters.|
|Anyone who has ever ridden or owned a mountain bike probably had a Cane Creek headset at one point in time or another.|
|They also make some schweeet rear suspension shocks like this DBAir (which is in mid production in this photo)|
|Like the AngleSet - this will change the way you ride your bike.|
|With AngleSet the head angle of a mountain bike can be transformed with ease, as the low-stack-height AngleSet offers up to six offset angle adjustments. With steeper or slacker adjustments from 0.5 to 1.5 degrees, dialing in the perfect geometry to attack the trail is a breeze. The design of AngleSet is head-tube length independent and fits most popular head-tube standards. A self-aligning feature between the bearings and the steerer-tube ensures a perfect fit and makes fork installation a snap.|
|I don't think I've ever been to a business where people were so friendly and eager to talk to us (though I9 were equally cool). Maybe it was because we were Canadians packing fresh water and unlimited medicare. Above is Judy - she's been working at Cane Creek before it was even called Cane Creek. You wouldn't think that someone like Judy influenced the cycling industry, but she has. She was working on the Thudbuster seatpost when we spoke to her. She had more knowledge of suspension in her itty bitty finger than I have in my whole head. Every staff member that we saw (they keep the means one locked away on tours) were uber friendly, happy and appeared to be very content with their jobs.|
|There were more machines and tools that I've never seen before. I think they were secretly making homemade wine - looks like a corking machine if you ask me. No one 'appeared' to be drunk during our tour - they were, however, all very super friendly. I guess Cane Creek employees are happy drunks. If they weren't they might have been called Surly.|
|And come out here. . . .|
|And look like this. Headset cups magically appeared before my eyes!|
|This is the extent of my testing products. It smelled good. They didn't ask me to submit a resume.|
Huge thanks to Eric Smith and the Cane Creek staff for allowing us to visit, for their hospitality and generosity!
**Almost a year later and I finally get a semi-useful blog post up about our visit. My apologies to Eric and Cane Creek for dropping the ball - they never asked me to write a thing - but after their kindness and southern hospitality I wanted to put something up. Last year got busy for me and over the fall/winter I was in a state of blog-writer's block-depression. Better late than never.