Of Passion . . .
With a week off from the day job and a trip to southern California on the books, I managed to convince the wife to stop by the Turner headquarters in Murrieta so I could check out the operation and meet the people who make it happen. I had been in email contact prior to dropping in and had received the OK to visit, though a time had not been specified. Despite the demands of running the business, Dave Turner graciously took the time to give me a tour of their operation. Initially, I was given a history behind the bikes on display in lobby, the design philosophy behind them and challenges associated with developing riding platforms. Next up was a tour of the back end. The elegance and beauty of Turner bikes is a reflection of the work place . . . functional and organized. Anyone with any experience in a bike shop knows how fast parts and tools spiral out of control, yet the Turner shop was totally devoid of even excessive dust. Frames hung evenly spaced on racks, every tool hung from appropriate wall space above a wide, long work bench. While the site was far from large, organization and efficiency create a surprisingly spacious work environment. I was treated to a break down on their implementation of the DW-Link and the development of the 650b Burner. As end users we can be exacting in our demands for that 1 degree change in geo, the extra few mm of rear travel, shaving grams and of course, we want it all at a price within reach. The tour gave me a new appreciation of the manufacturing challenges both stateside and abroad, the chaos that ensues when a supplier drops key parts completely out spec for your demo fleet days before a major journo event . . . the passion to innovate a better ride. If were to take one thing away from the tour of Turner Bikes, I would say it is PASSION. Every employee I spoke with is a serious rider, whether spending time to build local trails, make an annual pilgrimage to BC or hammer at the races, these people live & breathe 2 wheels and all that surrounds them. Their passion and values are clearly reflected in product. While many other boutique brands have long since thrown in the towel, moved fabrication overseas and financially profited from the decision to do so, Turner remains one of the select few companies maintaining is operations Stateside. This affords their exacting attention to detail that many may not even appreciate in media hype of today's market. But for me, it was this intangible dedication that spoke to me quietly the first time I laid eyes on a Turner. Now I just need to figure out if my next ride will be a 5-Spot or Burner . . .
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Thread: Factory Visit
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