The Bumblebee gets a little more press....
from the most credible of the 'mountain biking 'zines
Dirt Rag Magazine review of the second-generation Bumblebee dual slalom bike. Dirt Rag is the kind of 'zine, you can't buy your way into. You gotta have the goods.
Reprinted by permission
if you look at the 2001 line-up from many of the big bike companies, you'll see that they are offering hardtail frames that run a little small, with long-travel forks and burly components. They are trying to meet the needs of riders that like big drops, slalom racing or just plain trail riding and jumping. These needs have been met for a while though, by smaller, specialty frame manufactures like Thursday Custom Bicycles in Window Rock, Arizona. I got this bike, the BumbleBee, about a year ago, and it has been through some pretty nasty stuff: slalom races, urban as- saults, BMX track runs and sessions at some local trails. So far the bike has held up great, with only some slightly tweaked wheels and a broken bottom bracket. (As far as I'm concemed, BB spindles are still the weakest link in many of today's bikes, but I digress.)
Sure, you might be saying, "But ]Dave, you're so smooth, of course you don't break much." But alas, if you saw me casing doubles, crashing down stairs and otherwise trying to force 20-inch style' on a 26-inch bike, you'd know that ain't the case. I suppose then, credit needs to go to the frame. The BumbleBee uses nice Reynolds 525 steel tubing with a long sloping top tube (21.25"). The seat tube comes in at 13.5" and the rear end is adjustable (via slotted dropouts, a sliding derailleur hanger and two sets of brake mounts) from 16.25' to 17.75".
Rather than TIG welding, Thursday also utilizes oxyacetylene welding, which is sort of a lost art that requires greater attention to detail. Custom painting is done in-house too. Welds are clean, the lines are clean and the bike looks great. Jon Norstog, the owner/builder of Thursday uses his experience as BMX racer, welder and all-around bike junkie and has been designing and building bikes for a long time. His background in BMX shines through in his attention to strength and handling, then a focus on weight. Jon is also a tribal official on his Navajo Reservation.
My test bike is built up with a White Brothers DS90 dual crown fork with Moto- Mounts and a White Brothers Ti bar, FSA Afterburner cranks, Black Spire chain guide system, Odyssey Twisted pedals, Trico PWR saddle, WTB wheels with Tioga DH tires and a mix of Shimano LX/XT for the shifter, derailleur, chain and cassette. Different kits and packages are available.
I really like the BumbleBee's feel. First I spent about two weeks finding the perfect spot for the rear wheel, now I've got it so that manuals and wheelies are a snap, but the length still feels stable on the ground and in the air. You can easily change the position for different rides, but I got what I liked and', haven't moved it since. Riding this bike is a blast, and if you come from a BMX background, you'll definitely notice a difference between riding a bike designed to be ridden like this as opposed to slapping DH components on a small XC hardtail.
I did mention that I've had this bike for a little over a year, so there are some changes coming up for the next round of BumbleBee frames: Thursday has perfected his frame mounted chain guide/chain tensioner and will be offering that as a lighter, simpler alternative to MRPs and the like. Newer frames will have larger chainstays because they are getting spread a bit to accommodate wider rear tires, like the WTB Motoraptors.
Future frames will have a skip-welded gusset to further strengthen the front end. Because even though he hasn't had problems yet, as riding progresses further and further, you've got to be prepared. The seat tube is moving to a larger diameter tube, probably 1.25", for added strength and stiffness.
As an option, you'll be able to get a frame with a 2" bottom bracket shell, so that you can run BMX cranks. If you can snap a set of Profile or GT cranks, you need to take up golf. Once the sliding mount gets dialed-in, the bikes will come with a disc brake option. A full suspension version is in the works. The standard BumbleBee frame will be going for around $490, and packages are available with White Brothers dual crown forks, Manitou Xvert DC forks (Marzocchi will be offered soon, too) and other components. The sky's the limit and custom frame sizing is available too, contact Thursday for pricing on all that stuff.
How time flies! pricing and contact info absolutely expired! Contact:
624 Young St
Pocaello ID 83204-2706