Not one, but two Open Cycles U.P. frames came through the dojo recently. The owners are two friends, one of whom happens to be the man behind Velo Speak, a cycling blog, and his friend who is returning to cycling after a long break.
Alex, the blogger, took it upon himself to pick the parts for both bikes, choosing to outfit his with Shimano RS785 Di2 shifters and an XTR M9050 derailleur for the extra range, 3T Discus wheels, Easton carbon bars and über light boutique German stem and post from MCFK. Being the bike obsessed guy that he is Alex put together a parts package for Will’s bike that included SRAM 1X road hydraulic levers and Force X1 derailleur, some killer Boyd wheels, and 3T everything else. Alex chose the same Easton EC90SL crank and SQ Lab saddle for both bikes, which were new to us and were quite impressive in their own rights.
One thing we’d really like to mention is how smart these bikes are. We had been reading about the Open U.P. for a few months, and seen the pictures on all the cool kid blogs, but had not yet had the opportunity to play with one, let alone two. The guys at Open really did a great job designing a bike that is easy to work with, a rare thing these days. From the little notes on the bike about axle to crown clearance for the fork, what size tires in each wheel size the bike was designed for to the little window that allows one to see how far their seat post should be inserted. We loved every little bit of detail designed into these bikes, they are truly well thought out and supported. Not only were we able to get direct contact with the designers when we had questions, but they do other little things like include extra hardware for the difficult to find and easily lost small bolt that holds the cable guide in place, we really like that stuff.
Both bikes look and ride great, we still want to see what one would feel like with 650b wheels and big fat tires, but as built with 700c wheels and 35mm tires the ride was great.