Welcome to the first installation in our “What We Ride” series. A series that will feature an employee’s bike and the story behind it.
To kick off the series we are featuring TPC Founder Nick Martin and his vintage Yeti Fro. Nick might be a minimalist but he is also a collector, an oxymoron that makes more sense when you see the spaces he creates. Whether it’s vintage mountain bikes, vinyl records or mid-century artifacts, each piece has all been carefully curated with a purpose.
To the untrained eye this bike looks just like any another old Yeti… until you start looking closer. At 6’4″, it is nearly impossible for Nick to find a vintage bike in his size. Lucky enough for him, Chris Herting, Yeti’s original R&D man, stands equally as tall.
In 1985 when Chris Herting joined John Parker at Yeti, he became one of the head welders responsible for the infamous SoCal race machines. In the beginning, he rode bikes of his own design, called American Iron. The story goes that Parker hassled him for months about riding a Yeti, so he finally welded up a FRO for himself.
Since Herting was a bit taller than your average rider, he made himself a custom frame with a longer 23.5″ seat-tube, a longer top tube of 23″ and a 6.5″head-tube instead of 6″. To top it off, Chris used his initials (CH) in place of a stock Yeti serial number.
Stem: Tioga T-Bone
Handlebar: True Temper
Grips: Tomac ODI Mushrooms
Seatpost: Shimano Deore XT
Brakes: Shimano Deore XT
Brake Levers: Shimano SLR BL-M733
Shifters: Shimano Deore XT SIS 7s thumb
Front Derailleur: ShimanoDeore XT
Rear Derailleur: Shimano Deore XT
Cassette: Shimano Deore XT
Crankset: 184mm Bullseye
Pedals: Shimano Deore XT PD-M797
Headset: King BMX 1″
Rear Wheel: Tioga Disk / XTR HUB / Mavic 261 Rim
Hub Front: Shimano Deore XT / RM-20 Rim
Tires: Tioga Farmer John’s Cousin
Saddle: Perforated Turbo
“There will always be something newer and shinier out there, for me it is the vintage stuff that really gets me excited. Things that have history, integrity and a story to tell. Riding this bike brings me back to the early days when I fell in love with the sport of mountain biking. Back then I couldn’t afford a bike like this, I would simply drool over issues of Mountain Bike Action. ” – TPC Founder Nick Martin.
Because of the unique nature of The Pro’s Closet’s business model, we are lucky enough to see bikes from all makes, models and eras. Over the years, we have carefully curated pieces of cycling history, like this old Yeti. These pieces will soon be on display to the public in The Pro’s Closet’s Museum.