Any Nontragers out there?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Any Nontragers out there?

    It would be fun to see one if anyone has one to post. If anyone's selling, I would be interested.

    Take it easy all.

  2. #2
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    rock lobster nontragers

    one was for sale two years ago on ebay for $250 and that is waht it went for, i wish i would have bought it, green and all it was with yellow decals. rock lobster logo on the back side of the seat tube and all. very rad.

    over and out
    nate

  3. #3
    Witty McWitterson
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    I've seen a few of them here in Minneapolis. And I know the owners aren't that willing to sell. They're pretty nice rigs. A close freind has one set up as a SS. He didn't get the Nontrager stickers though. Something about Trek not liking what Paul was doing with the rest of the tube sets that Keith left behind.

  4. #4
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    Rock Lobster built Bontragers

    Got one here and its pretty much as described in the above post. Green with yellow Rock Lobster decals. Also the seattube had a Bontrager decal to signify these were built using left over Bontrager Race/Race Lite tubesets at Rock Lobster. This one appeared to be built at one time but barely ridden. Also had 1 1/8" headtube which was a nice touch. Other than that this was signature Bonty construction with gussets at all the tube intersections.

    Lets put it this way, if I were to sell this it would not be for the insanely low price as the last listing. Somebody obviously didn't know they had a piece of history.

  5. #5
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    Post 'em

    Yeah, I figured that no one was looking to sell any. It was worth a shot none the less. A few years ago, it seemed that there was little collectability in rare bikes and parts but it finally seems that people are taking interest. Does anyone know how many Nontragers were made? I've seen a couple around Santa Cruz but that's it.

    Another odd one that I have seen is a cross bike built cross-lite tubes that was brazed by the owner. He said he bought the tubes from Bontrager after the shop stopped making frames along with tubes to make a few more. The frame was unpainted and sported brake bosses for 26" and 700c wheels. Pretty slick. It had a sweet mix of old nd new components including high-flange campy hubs and mafac brakes.

    Take it easy all.

  6. #6
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    Although I'm sure the Nonrangers are nice - Rock Lobster has a good local following - it seems odd to me that they'd be sought after. Bontragers ride great, and there is a certain mystique associated with KB and his bikes. If someone else builds the exact same bike from the same materials, to me it looses that mystique.

    In theory the Privateers are as good as a Race, but not many people are trying hard to buy one. A Nontranger is nicer in that it's hand-built, but it's still an imitation of the original IMO.

  7. #7
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    I think its more the novelty and rarity of the Nontrager that makes it sought after, as opposed to a Bontrager that is a well made cool bike hand made by a real smart bike guy.

    And the fact that Trek probably didnt like those Nontragers being built probably adds to the coolness of the nontrager.

  8. #8
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    It's the esotericness of the Nontragers that draws me in. I've owned a handfull of Bontragers and two 'Lobsters and like both makes for different reasons. All in all, I think a Nontrager is nothing more than the equivalent race or racelite with a nice story behind it which gives it a coolness factor.

    I would disagree on the privateers being equal to the race. The craftsmanship and tubesets were both lower in quality. There's nothing wrong with them, they're just not quite as good.

    Fillet got it right, quirky, rare, sort of an inside joke that probably irked Trek.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boy named SSue
    It would be fun to see one if anyone has one to post. If anyone's selling, I would be interested.
    There's a Nontranger on eBay:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...tem=7109141148
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  10. #10
    Who turned out the lights
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    FYI, I'm fairly certain that Paul still has enough Bontrager tubing to build you a brand new Nontrager, if you really want one. Same kitsch value of an older Nontrager, but brand new. And Paul does pretty darn nice work.

    He just finished building me a new 29"er mtb, so I've been talking to him quite a bit lately.

  11. #11
    clueless
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    ... a nice example off what we are talking about, photo found somewhere when searching for info about rock lobster team tigs..

    labeled as rock lobster but definetely a bontrager (typical gussets all over, rear triangle) except the crimped chainstays, i couldn't remember any bontragers with these.

    ciao
    flo
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by floibex
    ... a nice example off what we are talking about, photo found somewhere when searching for info about rock lobster team tigs..

    labeled as rock lobster but definetely a bontrager (typical gussets all over, rear triangle) except the crimped chainstays, i couldn't remember any bontragers with these.

    ciao
    flo
    yup, it also looks like Paul joined the seatstay to the seat tube a little lower than a normal bontrager. Thanks for posting.

  13. #13
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    Here's a really nice Nontrager at the First-Flight MTB Museum...

    http://www.firstflightbikes.com/2007_Nontrager.htm

  14. #14
    VRC Illuminati
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    Whats First Flight?
    -eric-

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  15. #15
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    First Flight Bicycles is a shop in North Carolina that has an extensive museum collection of bicycles, especially vintage MTBs:

    See

    http://firstflightbikes.com/

    and

    http://www.firstflightbikes.com/FFB_History.htm

  16. #16
    Exaggerated member
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    Oh dear, oh dear.........

    Never heard of First Flight Bikes either. Must be a bunch of wackos smoking too much grass wit' all dem silly old bikes hangin' 'round.....
    Alex

  17. #17
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    They have a mailing list devoted to vintage MTBs as well...

    http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/firstflight28677/

  18. #18
    'Calm Down'
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    I think they're pulling your leg. First Flight is well known around here and I think most that frequent VRC are on the First Flight list.

    jw

    Quote Originally Posted by jimgskoop
    They have a mailing list devoted to vintage MTBs as well...

    http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/firstflight28677/
    -

    "And single-speeding 29ers are mountain biking's equivalent of Scientologists..." - Captain Dondo

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexk
    Oh dear, oh dear.........

    Never heard of First Flight Bikes either. Must be a bunch of wackos smoking too much grass wit' all dem silly old bikes hangin' 'round.....
    Who??

  20. #20
    bonked
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    These guys?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Quote Originally Posted by banks
    That is one big f'n dude!
    Yes I am!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyOne
    I think they're pulling your leg. First Flight is well known around here and I think most that frequent VRC are on the First Flight list.

    jw

    Geez, and here's lil' old me just tryin' to be HELPFUL.


  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimgskoop
    Geez, and here's lil' old me just tryin' to be HELPFUL.


    Ah, we're just joshin' with ya.

    Jeff and Wes and an integral part of our community. They're pretty much the first stop for all things vintage mtb related.
    -eric-

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  23. #23

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    Nontrager back on the trail

    Hi All,

    just thought I'd post this picture of my Nontrager, now fully built up and retro styled for the UK trails.....

    I checked its authenticity with Paul at Rock Lobster and he sent me some Nontrager decals to replace the RL ones.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  24. #24
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    That seat post and saddle are a crime.

    Looks trail friendly otherwise.
    -eric-

    http://www.rumpfy.com
    Wanted: NDS Suntour XC Pro Microdrive 175mm Crank Arm.

  25. #25

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    yeah, my local bike shop loaned me that post while they ordered in a Thomson post in the correct size.

    I was too ashamed to ride it.

  26. #26
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    Nontrager Singlespeed

    Nontrager (stamped N41), original green powder coat. Size M (too small but good for a guest ss) - built mostly from parts in the garage a few winters back. King HS, 1" head tube - note Rock Shox ready for canti, v brake or disc - cat head added for guidance and wisdom. Phil Wood rear hub w ACS BMX freewheel - White Industries front hub - radial laced since the day it was built. Thomson seat post (26.8), Race Face cranks, Surly SS chainring, Avid brakes - IRD seatpost clamp, Easton Monkey Lite Bar, NOS Bontrager Race Grip c. 1993, Titec 1" stem, WTB saddle from my LBS, as are the tires.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Any Nontragers out there?-l1010715.jpg  

    Any Nontragers out there?-l1010716.jpg  

    Any Nontragers out there?-l1010720.jpg  

    Any Nontragers out there?-l1010718.jpg  

    Any Nontragers out there?-l1010717.jpg  


  27. #27
    Suspension? We don't....
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    Ooh! Just noticed the horizontal drops. I wonder if you can get one with rigid geometry?

  28. #28
    Schipperkes are cool.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee
    Better suited to non-aggressive 125# gals named Russell.
    I ride so slow, your Garmin will shut off.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by banks View Post
    Steal of the week. Did you get that Banks?

  30. #30
    velocipede technician
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    a couple funky details



    looking for 20-21" P team

  31. #31
    Stokeless Asshat
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    Internal brake routing, sleeved mono stay, really big.

    Quote Originally Posted by hollister View Post
    a couple funky details



    Zip ties? Not on my bike!

    Want:
    650B rims or wheel set. 80's vintage 32 or 36 x 135mm

  32. #32
    I picked two too many
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  33. #33
    Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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    Thanks for the link!
    *** --- *** --- ***

  34. #34
    Relax. I'm a pro.
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    Paul Sadoff is the fvcking best:

    can't we just get along ?: Thanks, but no thanks.
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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by IF52 View Post
    These guys?
    Been there done that only ca 85 years later...
    No points to garage queens!

    "Mum it's not a bike - it's a Yeti" (my daughter explaining things)

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by vlad View Post
    paul sadoff is the fvcking best:

    can't we just get along ?: Thanks, but no thanks.
    +1.

  37. #37
    Stokeless Asshat
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    And to think. I was going to send him a mail and ask him to repair my CX. Why? Broken Chain stay.
    Zip ties? Not on my bike!

    Want:
    650B rims or wheel set. 80's vintage 32 or 36 x 135mm

  38. #38
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    A good read for sure - Paul's musings are always on point, in my opinion. He's one of the last of the old guard independent builders who's making a living actually building bicycles. He's not a trust fund weekend warrior builder, or a guy building show bikes that take 400 hours to complete, with no willing buyer on the other end - he's building bikes to be ridden - a novel concept it seems.

    But please - as to the Nontrager thing - it's a nice footnote to a period here in Santa Cruz where you had some legitimate options in town for bikes not made in Taiwan. Trek bailed out Bontrager and Klein and a bunch of other smaller maybe not too profitable companies in the 90s thinking they could tap into some sort of fake authenticity and repackage it to the masses while builders like Paul just kept plugging along, producing a product that's still made to an individual rider's specifications/needs/wants. That business model is legit - see Hunter, Sycip, Soulcraft et al. - and if anything has sustained itself into the 21st century. The Nontrager was just a simple, somewhat subversive reaction to what, at the time, seemed like rampant corporate influence/takeover within mountain biking. This is not to fault Keith or his accomplishments. He built a brand that deserved the attention it garnered, and deserved the $$$ Trek plopped down for it. If any of us had built that monster, we surely would have sold it too once Trek came knocking.

    But really, it's poor form to call Paul asking him to build you a Nontrager - or to do anything, for that matter, from whatever stash of tubing recovered from Bronson St - chain stays not withstanding - I mean if he has time, I'm sure he'd replace any tube on any decent frame, but if you want a bike from Paul, make it an actual Lobster, I promise you won't be disappointed. Take advantage of the 20 years of technological advancement and the 2500 or whatever number of frames Paul's produced since the close of Bontrager. You wouldn't call Santa Cruz Bicycles and ask them to build you a first generation Heckler. Why, because there's absolutely no doubt you'd be much better off with a Blur TRc, or whatever the latest toast of the MTB world is this week.

    There were 100 Nontrager's produced. I know where a few reside. I know of a few that were hammered and retired/recycled. I bet between the the older geometry, the occasional 1" head tube, and the over all style of the frames lead to the early demise of a few dozen more. That's more than enough to perpetuate the mythology, and few enough where eventually, the cult status of these particular frames will actually be warranted.

  39. #39
    Relax. I'm a pro.
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    I dig the ornate bikes that builders show off at NAHBS, but I can't see myself riding any of them, even if I could afford them. I like light, simple bikes that are designed and built to be ridden hard. My daily rider is a Curtlo. My SS, whenever I have the money, will likely be a Coconino or a Rock Lobster.
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  40. #40
    Relax. I'm a pro.
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    Ahhh, nothing like finding posts you don't remember making less than 24 hours before. Grammar is good, too.
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  41. #41
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    Is he as whiny irl? Love his bikes but his blog makes him sound bitter.

  42. #42
    Relax. I'm a pro.
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    He has personality. Personality goes a long way*, in my book.

    *Quentin Tarantino, Pulp Fiction, blah blah blah....
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