Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Putting the "X" in BMX

You know you're in trouble when there's news of a 'new' bike on both RideBMX and Hypebeast. If a bike appears on Hypebeast, you can automatically assume the following: a) it's a collaboration of some sort, b) it's going to be 'limited edition' in this case, less than 500) and c) the whole is going to cost more than the sum of its parts. Probably a lot more. (Hypebeast really did their homework on the project, too: "DC Shoe and SE Bikes will once again join hands to release a new Bike called the Quadangle." Just shoot me.)

Meet the DC x SE Quadangle 24. (The "x" is really important amongst streetwear/hypebeast types. Without that, they'd need to knock off a couple hundred bucks off the retail price. But DC? Do hypebeasts wear DC? In fact, who DOES wear DC?)


This is a bike that never was. There was a looptail Quadangle, but never a 24. Not an official one, anyway. (There was a "skunkworks" Quad cruiser knockoff a couple years ago, but it wasn't an SE product.) SE Racing was the brainchild of Scot Breithaupt (the SE stands for "Scot Enterprises"), an early BMX brand that brought us the Landing Gear fork and the "PK Ripper" as well as the Quadangle, the Floval Flyer 24" and the OM Flyer 26". Seminal BMX products all. It's now a division of Fuji that sells cheap cookie-cutter single-speed flatbar roadbikes by the metric ton.

What they're selling here is nostalgia. Well, pseudo nostalgia. And shockingly, I have a couple of problems with it.

1) Why not go all-out and make the 24" Quad with a 1" threaded headset and a quill stem? Was it that important to make it race-worthy? It's a collaboration, for God's sake. People are just going to buy them in order to re-sell them on eBay, or stash them in their attic for 25 years to pay for their kid's college education. I'm sure a few of them will be ridden, but not by people who will care whether it has an Aheadset or not.

2) This could be 1)a, I suppose, but the v-brake ruins the whole bike, IMO. Doesn't anyone make calipers anymore?

3) Flat black? Great for a modern street bike, not so much for a retro project. The frameset—baby blue with a brown fork—is much better. Those are classic SE colors. Do the complete in those colors with chrome rims, bars, cranks and seatpost—and a camo padset—and you'd have something. Oh well, at least they got the skinwalls right. (Also, a retro-style number plate would have added a HUGE space for more branding. Fail.)

4) Actually, the whole parts kit just looks booty. Sweet generic Taiwanese stuff, fellas. Way to make things special.

5) It would have been nice if the collaboration was with Vans, who actually sponsored SE riders back in the day, rather than DC, who remains primarily a skate shoe company. Vans would have brought a better historical perspective to the project, I'd think (and they probably wouldn't have spelled Stu Thomsen's name wrong on the official history page). But I shouldn't be so critical. At least DC stepped to the plate (this is their second collaboration with SE following last year's looptail PK retro). I guess Vans is too busy courting other, more appropriate partners like geriatric British metal bands and obscure Japanese streetwear brands.

Oh well. Anything that gets hipsters off fixed gears is a good thing, I suppose.

17 comments:

DBZ said...

Booty!

Anonymous said...

Vans is a subsidiary of VF. VF also owns The North Face, Lee, Jansport, Nautica, Wrangler, Intimate Apparel, Reef, Eastpak, Lily of France and Red Kap. They are based in Greensboro, North Carolina and are the second largest apparel company in the US after Nike. VF's main shareholder is Barbey John followed by AXA and Capital Research and Management Inc. Just in case you didn't know. DC is owned by Quiksilver. Quiksilver's more prominent brands are Roxy, Bent Metal, Gnu, Gotcha and Rossignol. Quiksilver's main shareholder is Fidelity Investments followed by Barclays PLC and Rothschild Asset Management.

Russ said...

Gotcha still exists???

Anonymous said...

that bike's shit, DC and Vans are shit, Hypebeast is shit.

Anonymous said...

dbz wears DC

Stephen said...

that bike is uglier than a mud fence.

Anonymous said...

So vans are even more awesome since Red Kap and Wrangler are the large majority of my pants collection.

Anonymous said...

You're right about the color scheme,baby blue frame and brown forks would have looked nice.

Guav said...

Not that its an important part of the post or changes any of the valid points raised, but Vans didn't court Iron Maiden, it wasnt an "x collab" thing.

The merchandising company that does Maiden's merch/licensing initiated the production deal with Vans (as they had previously done with Motorhead) and takes care of all the marketing and distribution--its just a manufacturing deal.

nick said...

I used to buy (well my mom) Gotcha all the time at marshall's along with stussy, I was cooler in 6th grade than I am now.

g. edward jones, jr said...

So, what you're sayin is the 2007 OM Flyer was closer to right?

http://ratrodbikes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=2304

Because, if that's what you're saying I will not disagree (even though flat black > all, in this application, not so much)

Anonymous said...

you suck, iron maiden doesn't. true story

Brien said...

they made a red/gold looptail floval flyer as well, which looks rad.
http://www.sebmx.com/2008/bike-detail.asp?id=49

g. edward jones, jr. said...

Yeah, that red/gold one has a classic car vibe to it that I really like. Really, I guess the biggest problem with the Quad Cruiser is that their normal cruisers look cooler. Even the cream and brown 24" Flyer

http://sebmx.com/2008/bike-detail.asp?id=41

Anonymous said...

nowt wrong with fixed gear.....

or is it specifically if you're a hipster?

what about bike messengers?

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