Robert Axle Project Owners Acquire Old Man Mountain Products

Bend, Oregon, August 1, 2019 – The Robert Axle Project, a U.S. manufacturer of thru axles for bikes based in Bend, Oregon, is pleased to announce the purchase of Old Man Mountain Products of Santa Barbara, California. The acquisition of Old Man Mountain will complement the existing product portfolio of The Robert Axle Project and both brands will continue to operate as separate entities. The purchase will support The Robert Axle Project’s mission to provide the highest quality products for cyclists to enjoy traveling by bicycle.

In 1996, Old Man Mountain founder Channing Hammond developed the first bicycle cargo rack to fit on suspension bikes, using the center of the wheel as the main connection point. The company has continued to be a driving force in providing adaptable gear-carrying solutions for all bikes. Similarly, in 2013, The Robert Axle Project was born from a necessity of attaching trailers to thru axle equipped bikes. It is now considered to be the authority on thru axle fitments.

The natural convergence of The Robert Axle Project and Old Man Mountain occurred as a result of the close synergy and trust of both owners, and the shared vision to provide high quality, durable components and racks to fit all bikes. The Robert Axle Project has been supplying Old Man Mountain with thru axles for the past five years.

“We come from a strong history of bike touring and trail building and our first thru axles that we sold were for attaching B.O.B. Trailers to modern bikes. We’ve continued to watch bike touring and bikepacking evolve and we feel that Old Man Mountain makes the most durable, strongest cargo rack that fits nearly any bicycle,” said Robert Axle Project co-owner Chris Kratsch. “And as a side note, we’ve personally used Old Man Mountain racks on our bikes since 2000, including a full summer on the entire Great Divide Mountain Bike Route in 2003. I love the durability and function of the product,” adds Kratsch.

Robert Axle Project co-owner and brand manager Katy Bryce adds that fit, function and customer service is paramount to both brands. “With The Robert Axle Project, we understand that our customers want things to fit their bike perfect, and we’re striving for that model with Old Man Mountain. These racks do not require eyelets on the bike, and they attach to the thru axle, so we’ll be using our extensive thru axle knowledge for Old Man Mountain, as we do with The Robert Axle Project.”

Old Man Mountain products will be available in Fall 2019 at the website www.oldmanmountain.com. The Robert Axle Project can be found at www.robertaxleproject.com.

Derrick Bell – The ReBuilder

We are so honored to have known D-Rock for the last 25 years. He was one of our earliest product testers and Ambassadors for Robert Axles. Watch him ride and you can see how he’s one of the reasons we build our axles to the most durable, strongest quality that we can. He shreds, without and without a B.O.B. Trailer and he is an inspiration to all trail builders. Proud to know you Derrick!

 

5 Uncommon Tips and Tricks for a Most Excellent Weekend Bike Tour

Planning a mini-bike tour is a little like planning dinner – you want it to be great, but you also don’t want to stress out and worry too much about it. Often times, like a good meal, you can pull something together in a fairly short amount of time, with little effort. And like anything, with practice comes perfection, or darn near close. We’re sharing a few things that we’ve learned from our own experiences as well as from others getting after it.

Go Light: But Not Too Light

In our opinion, going light is good. Going so light that you are cold and starving is not so good. Seriously, do you want to eat energy bars for three days—breakfast, lunch and dinner—because you don’t want to bring a camp stove? If that’s your bag, then go for it, but consider bringing real food, real camp gear and real clothes. My weakness – UGG Boots. They’re lightweight and ultra-warm and perfect for dry, cold high desert nights in the backcountry when I’m sitting around camp.

Speaking of Food

Appetizers! Buy some and take them with you so when you get to camp or wherever you are laying your head to rest for the night, you’ve got a quick snack as soon as you stop. It also gives you a little sense of closure on the day. Our favorite appies include Sabritas Sal y Limon peanuts for the salt-lover (found at Mexican markets), peanut butter filled pretzels for the sweet AND salt lover (a.k.a. crack-in-a-bag) or beef jerky for the protein junky.

Be Flexible

So you have the most kick-ass route planned, but maybe you get out there an realize that: a) this is harder than I thought b) the weather forecast said “chance of showers”, not “deluge” or c) I’m just feeling a little more lazy than I hoped to feel. Create your route so you have Plan A and Plan B. If you don’t make Plan A to that sweet camp spot next to the free hot springs and taco stand, then maybe settle for Plan B, that sweet camp spot next to the little creek that you’ve always wanted to check out.

Take Your Kid(s)

No, really. What better thing to do with your kids than take them on an easy, close to home, mini-adventure on bikes? It can be done, you’ll just need to plan a little more and probably pack a little (or a lot) more. Maybe you don’t camp, but you stay in a cabin, B&B or even stay at your brother’s house in the next town over. The point is, bike touring with your kids can create lasting memories and inspire more adventures.

Take Your Dog

Don’t have the human variety of kids, but instead have the fur baby? We’re dog lovers, so we think life is pretty awesome with a dog. And our dog wants NOTHING more than to run around in the woods looking for sticks or swimming in a lake. There are several good blogs about bike touring with your pup, but our favorite is Long Haul Trekkers. Check them out!

Do you have any amazing or quirky tips for bike touring? We’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below to share!

Take Your Toddler on a Bike Tour

You’re a cyclist. You love your Wednesday evening rides with the buddies and you geek out on gear and maybe you’ve gone on a few bike tours in your lifetime. You’re also a Mom or a Dad, so you want to infect your kids with the joy of cycling that has made your life that much more wonderful.

The great thing is that it IS possible to take your toddler on a bike tour. It just takes a little planning and flexibility. Using a child specific trailer such as a Thule Chariot, Burley Bee or a Croozer allows you to bring your kiddo with you on the microadventure of your choice. We’ve pulled together 8 tips to successfully take your toddler with you on a bike touring adventure.

  1. Start Small. If you are a seasoned bike tourist, but new to bike touring with a kid, cut yourself some slack and start off with an easy trip. You just aren’t going to get in a 50 mile day—think more like 15 miles. You can even start by taking your child in the trailer and having a friend or spouse drive to the camp spot with the gear. This allows you to have a fun ride while not having to worry as much about the gear. Check out Adventure Cycling’s Bike Overnights or Alastair Humphrey’s Microadventures website for inspiration.
  2. Go light. This is a tricky one, especially when you think you might “need” everything. Just bring the basics—camping and cooking gear, safety items and only the clothing that you’ll need. For multi-day tours, plan your route to hit civilization as much as possible so you can do laundry and resupply whenever possible.
  3. Choose quiet routes. Your lunchtime road biking hammerfest might not be the optimal route. Look for a route that includes bike paths or quiet country roads. And don’t forget that gravel and dirt roads provide some of the best scenery and solitude. Just watch for rough tread or heavily washboarded roads—remember you have a passenger behind you!
  4. It’s the journey, not the destination. What we mean is—take breaks! Time off the bike is just as important as time on the bike. Kids can’t sit for hours on end, so try to take a break every 15 minutes, half hour or every hour, depending on how long your day will be. Go so far as to set your phone or watch on a timer so you make sure you stick to the plan.
  5. Transform the trailer into a home. If you rode in a little cocoon, wouldn’t you want to personalize it and make it into a cozy spot? For little ones, be sure to include their favorite stuffed animal or an extra pillow they can cozy up to. For older kids, add some coloring books and crayons. One cyclist I talked to used a mini-speaker and iPod to provide fun music for the ride.
  6. Stop and smell the roses—and the cows. Does your kid get excited to see a roadside cow or a red tailed hawk soaring high in the sky? Then pull those brakes, pull over and stop to check it out. Take this opportunity to bond with your kid, give an impromptu science lesson or just enjoy the wonders of the natural world.
  7. Snacks, snacks and snacks. Grab the gummies, juices and other favorite foods for your kiddo and be sure to stop often to snack. You’ll teach your mini-me about how to keep fueled while on a bike ride. And it’s a good excuse to stop and take a break and avoid any low blood sugar meltdowns. They happen to the best of us.
  8. Remember why YOU ride a bike. There’s a good chance it’s because it is FUN. So make sure that your mini-adventure is fun for you and your traveling companion. The more fun it is for your kids, the more they will want to go and continue cycling as they get older.

Need inspiration and additional tips?

Check out While Out Riding’s family outings. Cass Gilbert appears to be the master of bike touring with his son, both in the US and out of the country.

Traveling Two’s Friedel and Andrew are a Canadian couple who kept bike touring, even after the arrival of their two sons. Watch their video, 15 Ways to Entertain a Toddler on a Bike Tour.

Adventure Cycling ran a superb article in the May 2015 issue, Touring with A Toddler.

Have you bike toured with your little one? We’d love to hear your story and see photos! Share with us by sending photos to katy@robertaxleproject.com

 

Bring Your Kids Biking with a Robert Axle Thru Axle

The Kid Trailer Axles are easy to install and use, so you can bring your kids biking with you. Child carriers, such as Burley, Thule, Chariot, provide a great way to share your adventures with those you love. With our 12mm Thru Axles for Kid Trailers, you can attach “hitch style” trailer to any bike with a rear 12mm thru axle—mountain, road, fat, cross, e-bike and everything in between.

Our Kid Trailer Axles are designed for maximum strength and ease of use in attaching your trailer. The Robert Axle has a stainless steel 10x1mm threaded stud to attach the hitch supplied by your trailer manufacturer.