Many fans of artistic bicycles were intrigued with photo’s from this years Handbuilt bike show in Austin. In our booth an entirely wood wheel was on display. Huh?
This odd and beautiful structure is the brainchild of my Montana based younger brother, Jon. He’s been woodworking in Whitefish since Wheelsmith days and couldn’t resist replacing the hub and spokes with wood.
The world took notice. Blog posts and images were seen around the globe. Movers and shakers stopped by. “What has a Hjertberg brought us this time?” was the chorus. I think.
UPDATE: Some improvements were made, Ghisallo Sport clincher rims are still used, a rear was built, and a bicycle was born. This late ’70′s Italian steel frame is now trucking one-speed around Whitefish.
Jon still claims no intention to widely commercialize these wheels. Bamboo laminated spokes, teak hubs, beech rims. Artisan assembly, good bracing and joinery, but no where near the stiffness or integrity of wire wheels. Still, a fun ride.
Jon has equipped these with SOMA white tires (that we’re now selling). Hard to imagine a more distracting sight this Summer.
More news to follow!