COOL HUNTING

show nav

COOL HUNTING

Alien Bikes

by Doug Black in Tech on 21 August 2008

alien_bikes.JPG

There's two different camps in cycling. The first seeks out every new, high-tech toy they can attach to their carbon fiber frame, while the other takes the opposite approach, stripping off anything that's not vital to its performance. These fixed-gear purists shun derailleurs, brakes and anything else that obscures the clean geometry of the bicycle frame.

alien_bikes4.JPG

The latter group is the target audience of Alien Bikes. Based out of Tjøme, Norway, Alien is essentially a one-man business operated by Joseph Santaniello. He sells the most pared-down bike components imaginable, not far removed from the rudimentary bike technology of centuries past. The all-steel products favor durability and low cost over advanced materials and newfangled technologies. Don't expect a frame with any attachments for brakes or — God forbid — a water bottle holder. Alien products are almost completely anonymous with no branding or other markings. This creates the sleek, unassuming rides preferred by urban cyclists who don't need any eye-catching embellishments to help get them stolen.

alien_bikes3.JPG

I recently had a chance to take a spin on an Alien wheelset and was impressed with the smooth ride and solid construction. The silver, non-machined rims are very attractive, which is a big selling point to appearance-obsessed single-speed riders. They aren't designed to work well with conventional brakes, but I gather most Alien riders aren't too fond of them anyway.

Better still, Alien makes a point of selling the most affordable products. Frames are a reasonable $350 and wheelsets go for $170. Take a look at their complete catalog, or check out some of their previous builds.

Get Cool Hunting delivered to your inbox every weekday morning