Gravel Grinder News: Wilde Bicycle Co. Debuts

Gravel Grinder News: Wilde Bicycle Co. Debuts – by Guitar Ted

Today a new U.S. based company has been announced called Wilde Bicycle Co. The company is headed up by former All City Bikes founder and leader for 11 years, Jeff Frane. He is joined in the venture by Minneapolis bike shop founders of the Angry Catfish shop, Josh Klauk and Andy Tesh.

The titanium Wilde Bicycle co. Earth Ship in a desert setting.
The Wilde Bicycle Co. titanium Earth Ship model will also be available in steel in standard or customized versions.

Wilde Bicycle co. will feature hand-made frames in steel, titanium, and aluminum, all U.S. made, along with parts and soft goods. To start out things Wilde has offered the “Earth Ship” gravel bike and the “Yo-Jeffy” mountain bike hard tail. With an aim to focus on the gravel, bikepacking, and mountain biking markets, Wilde Bicycle Company hopes to promote and capture in their products the feelings from where Wilde says is where they have the most fun. This is exemplified in a quote from their website where Frane states, “….our happiest riding moments tend to take place with dirt under our tires.

Bicycles will be made available in stock sizes and a customized option will also be provided. These will be “…customs for riders who’s fit needs are not met by off the peg models, unique feature wishes, or who simply desire to have their creative inputs reflected in the outcome.“, as stated in the company’s press release. This will be possible because Wilde will be working with several US based builders/vendors. Frane is quoted from their website as saying, “Being domestically produced allows us to iterate very quickly to keep up to date on the latest trends while supporting American workers and small business’. All important stuff. Our handmade in the USA bikes represent the cream of the bicycle crop, the lightest, strongest, tubing, the fanciest frame parts, the ability to customize. These are truly the finest that money can buy.” Wilde’s site also states, “The opportunity to work with you to co-create the bike of your dreams is something that we take very seriously, it’s an honor. Whether you have fit needs that aren’t being met by production bicycles, a wild idea, specific feature requirements, or just want something that reflects your creative inputs, we’d love to make your vision a reality.

The Wilde Bicycle Co Earth Ship in steel in a rural setting.
An example of the steel Earth Ship. Both Earth Ship models feature an Enve Adventure fork for now.

The new Earth Ship gravel bike will be based upon 700c wheels, but can be fitted with 650B X 2.2″ tires as well. The bike will have clearance for up to 700 X 50mm tires. Braze-ons include fender mounts, three bottle mounts, and braze-ons for a top-tube bag. Interestingly Wilde does not publish detailed geometry for their bikes saying that “We don’t care to make it easy for others to copy our work“. That said, in an early video made before the branding was complete, Jeff Frane stated that he likes a “low bottom bracket” and longer chain stays than what many think are ‘good”. He followed that up by stating that he kept the handling quick with the head angle choice. The website gives other clues by saying that the head angle and seat tube angles are “fairly traditional”. The Earth Ship also has an extended head tube above the top tube junction for comfort. The website stating that, “One of our goals with the Earth Ship was to create a bike that looked as aesthetically pleasing as possible with high handlebars. When it comes to big days, we believe that “comfortable is fast!”

Flat mount brakes, a 68mm bottom bracket shell, and a tapered steer tube compatible head tube which will accept external cup head sets are all standard. Through axles are in the standard 100mm X 12mm and 142mm X 12mm. Cables are managed using Paragon modular cable stops and loops for the rear brake. Frane saying that he doesn’t like to see his bikes with cable ties securing the cable housings and brake lines.

Earth Ship steel models start at $2500.00. The titanium model is $3900.00. Bikes can be ordered through the website and through their established dealer network.

The “Yo-Jeffy” mountain bike is currently their only other model, but the website does hint at another model dubbed the “Dream Machine” which is a drop bar concept that will be aimed at bike packing and is set to use 700c plus-sized rubber. Fully custom bike frames can be ordered also with a $1000.00 deposit. Soft goods like t-shirts and frame bags made by Cedaero are also offered by Wilde.

For more information see the Wilde Bicycle Co website here: https://www.wildebikes.com

Note: Images and information provided by Wilde Bicycle Co.

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Author: Guitar Ted

Guitar Ted hails from Iowa. Home of over 70,000 miles of gravel and back roads. An inaugural member of the Gravel Cycling Hall of Fame and Co-creator of Trans Iowa in late 2004- Guitar Ted has been at the forefront of the growth of gravel events and riding since then. Creator of Gravel Grinder News in 2008, he produced the premier calendar of gravel and back road events. GT joined forces with Riding Gravel in late 2014.

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