Edit: Jeff Jones replied that this wasn’t his bike and wasn’t his build. Apologies to Jones for any mis-information put out. So much for journalistic integrity. Shoulda checked my sources. Below post has been edited to reflect.
Last week my roommate Paul went mountain biking in Bend, Oregon. At the mercantile in Oakridge they met this guy Jeff. Enamored with his bike, Paul took a few pictures and talked with him some. Guy said it was an old prototype and was out for a spin.
Later that they thought that Jeff was probably Jeff Jones of www.jonesbikes.com. Check out that fork. Too similar? Guess not. Two different builders apparently.
Jeff Jones Bicycle – Titanium Spaceframe. I took this at the Manifest Hand Built Bike Show in Portland, 2008
He told Paul that the prototype he was riding was one of his first, and that he was just sorta goofing around with it, out bike camping. He also mentioned the prototype had to have a load on the front or it to feel right – in fact his camping gear was as you see here
+ 2 front panniers. Hard to say but points to a low-trail setup which is kinda cool.
Other details. I like the shifters on the top tube. Have always thought it was a smart idea – there and on the stem. I know, it’s dorky. (Edit: and Denny’s right, you’d hit your knees. Still…)
Okay well it’s come to light that Jeff Jones didn’t do the above bike, but I still dig his bikes so the rest of the post stands:
Jones makes some pretty great bikes, but maybe his most popular contribution to cycling has been his creation of the H-Bar, as produced by Titec. I love this handlebar and have used it on both my 29ers.
Jones does lot’s of interesting and unusual things, the handlebars are not the only thing.
Evidently Jeff doesn’t like suspension bikes, and with that in mind his approach to designing mountain bikes is (necessarily) different. Maybe moreso than other bikes, his frames rely materials flex to deliver a different riding experience. His site has more detail behind this than I could provide here – you should go check it out: http://jonesbikes.com
When I saw his bikes at the Manifest Hand Built Bike Show in 2008, they were stunning to see, but also pricey. The titanium frames on display were running in the $8~$10k range. I’m sure they’re worth it… I’m just not that dude, yano?
I was happy to see he is now offering a more basic model called the Diamond Frame for $750, frame and fork. Complete with eccentric bottom bracket, derailleur hanger and 135mm spacing front and rear this frame will do both single speed and gears, and the forks all have clearance for 29 X 2.55 and 26 X 3.7” fat tires. And because I am very much this dude, my biggest problem is not buying and building this thing up.
I do not need another bike. I do not need another bike. I do not need another bike….
Why this bike?
It’s a high performance non-suspension bicycle… instead of designing the bike for XC-racing like so many unsuspended bikes I wanted this bike to be better for technical and distance riding… Since this bike is not designed around a suspension fork I’m able to do much more to improve the handling. By designing the frame and fork together and considering the larger wheels I’m able to make a bike that rides very differently to a ‘normal’ rigid bike (be it 26 or 29er) with a short rake fork.
My bike has a slacker seat-tube and a shorter top-tube than ‘normal’ bikes… the head angle and rake with this wheel size (more rake, slacker head-tube-angle and bigger wheel) determines the trail which helps determine the handling. Slacker angles keep the rider’s weight off the hands and makes the front end easy to lift; the center of gravity is moved back and down for more control, with less shock to the upper body, more traction under braking, and a bike that is much harder to endo. This bike feels quick but also has a laid back feel. It’s the best handling bike I’ve designed.
Interesting to be sure.