A picture may be worth a thousand words but what they can’t express is how imposing a 29er MTB can be when you’re actually standing next to it. It’s all very well drooling over studio shot photographs but I’m dying to see this bike railing a berm in a tight section of single trail in an Oregon forest, sending up a rooster tail of dirt over the lip. Only then will I be able to understand the function behind the form.
Tony Periera is the sculptor behind this work of art, and the man behind Periera Cycles of Portland, Oregon. There’s an interesting story behind this bike. A very good friend of Tony’s was diagnosed with skin cancer (who thankfully recovered) and everyone rallied around to raise funds for medical costs. A raffle was organized, Tony donated a frame, to be designed and built to the winner’s specifications. Well, Justin won the frame but wanted it built for his star employee, Andrew. Turns out Andrew has never ridden a single speed or a 29er, but they worked together to come up with the amazing creation you see here. To tell you the truth, I’ve never laid eyes on a more svelte bike in my life. It’s probably the matte black paint (I’m loathe to use the term ‘murdered out’) with the turquoise accents (note matching nipples), but it’s also the girth of the frame tubes and the diameter of the wheels. A bit like the Hublot watch of mountain bikes.
But don’t let the slim frame put you off, this bike is all business. Avid Elixir CR brakes on Chris King hubs, laced to DT Swiss X470 rims. Thomson extensions, Edge Composite bars, Middleburn cranks and XTR pedals, Chris King headset — all class. But the real star of the show is the frame, and a true testament to Tony’s superb skill as a frame builder. Perfectly fillet brazed, internal cable routing, Paragon Slider dropouts and a gorgeous seat tube cluster.
But while a bike can have the most impressive spec sheet, there is no greater credit than a rider’s testimonial. Here’s what Andrew wrote to Tony about his new ride: “”Rode the beast for the first time today…and all i can say is holy S#%$. It climbs like a mountain goat and descends like a rocket ship. This was my first ride ever on a single speed and a 29er so not only was I impressed with the bike but also found I had more strength than I had ever known. I guess you don’t really know what you are capable of until you have to put it all on the line. One thing is for sure my full suspension probably won’t even get ridden this summer. Going uphill the way the bike is designed, I hardly ever felt the back tire slip. On my full suspension bike, when I’m out of the saddle with the rear shock locked off I get slippage. Oh, and down the bobsled this bike was a rocket ship on a rail. I had more grip, speed, and confidence than I have ever had, period. I love the simplicity of it all. This bike is the cat’s ass. Bravo Tony Pereira. First ride and I am truly converted.”
Massive thanks to Tony Pereira, have a look at the Pereira Cycles flickr stream for more of Tony’s creations.