It's been a lot of years. And even more questions. These are the ones I remember being asked the most. The answers are a moving target.
How'd ya' get into frame building?
That’s a story I’m still telling. Some of it lives on the ABOUT page. But to explore the depths of it, read through the many entries in ARRANGE DISORDER. It’s a running commentary that describes the path I’m on.
What does a bicycle cost?
In 2018 dollars the cost of entry for a Richard Sachs frame set is around $6,000, and assembled bicycles are in the $10,000 range.
On average, how much do these weigh?
Do you make carbon forks?
Is the red and white scheme still available?
By 2012, I asked House Industries to do a brand identity makeover for me. And since that time, everything from the metal out is different from what came before it. I can still paint a bicycle red (and white), but the result since the transition won’t remind anyone of anything I produced in the ’80s, ’90s, or the aughts.
How long is the wait?
You mean the wait discussed on forum threads and in unauthorized articles on the internet, or the truth?
By 2008 I decided to remove my Signature Frame from the menu and left a 6 week window for folks interested in this model. The queue swelled. By 2010 I thought the best method for (my) business was to accept orders only in the first two weeks of each year. That left the other fifty to focus. Then there was a year or two when I only took orders from military, educators, and clergy.
The demand for my work ballooned in 2012 (after 40 years of making bicycles). I’ve systematically been working down the list. By 2015 I stopped taking orders to concentrate on the ones I had. That was also the year I canvassed my entire book and asked clients if they were still as interested as when they first ponied up. I gave all the opportunity to get their deposit back, no questions asked. That act relieved me of some 60 names. I wrote about $20,000 in checks – and my load was lightened.
As of summer 2018, there are fewer than a dozen commissions left. Note: I haven’t said a public word about my backlog since 2009, one exception being an interview I did with Bill Strickland in 2016. Otherwise, what people know, or talk or write about regarding my work – that’s their energy not mine.
When I reach the end of my book, I’ll take a week off, go to the Electric Beach and get some color, and then start over. I’ll continue as a full-time bicycle maker. I don’t expect to return to a queue system as I knew it. I’ll make more bicycles on spec than I did when I was overcommitted. Maybe I’ll do a series and try to get a gallery show. Maybe. Maybe. The architecture for what’s next isn’t drawn. It will be soon. I’ll post on the NEWS page when I’m ready.
If you have a question, please ask!
I may even add it to this page.