Ambiente Bikes was started in early 2007. Well actually the thought was around in late 2006 and initial drawings were produced back then. It came about because there appeared to be a void in the market for a freestyle oriented 24 inch bike. Call it a BMX, call it a cruiser, call it whatever you want. There are plenty of race cruisers around, however, they all have v-brake mounts, euro bottom brackets and generally not designed for freestyle riding. Going back to the early days of freestyle and seeing the likes of Bob Haro on a twin top tube Torker and then his own original Haro Freestyler, I decided to run with a similar design. Plus I saw a few people grinding the v-brake mounts off and putting on their own 990 style mounts.
The frame design is a twin top tube and whilst people might think of it as a retro frame, it isn’t. All new school with integrated headset, mid bottom bracket, thick dropouts, removable gyro tabs and up to date geometry. The forks feature a 1 1/8th steerer tube, oversize tubing and thick dropouts. Once again we’ve gone away from the current trends with forks and styled them on the older ones. that said, style was important for the frame and forks, however, function was always the first priority. Witness the threaded cable stops that allow a dual cable system with needing to install a london mod or similar.
I am the first to admit, these frames and forks aren’t cheap. Instead of going overseas and sourcing them out of the same factory that produces BMX companies 1 through 10 products, I have gone with an Australian manufacturer. Raw materials for the frames and forks are sourced from only quality US manufacturers. So if you are looking for a product that doesn’t look the same as every other Joe Kid riding around then perhaps an Ambiente is for you.
So who would have thought I received the technical drawing prize at school in year 10? Looking at the image it’s safe to say it probably wasn’t me, but surprise, surprise I did receive it. Maybe there wasn’t much competition that year. Anyway, that’s the beginnings of the frame and forks and represents the first drawing I sent to the frame builder. Not much changed other than the rear gusset was removed, the front gusset was moved back and once everything was drawn to scale, there was less of a bend in the top tubes through to the seat stays. Oh yeah, it wasn’t originally going to be brakeless either, I just didn’t bother to draw the 990 mounts.
The forks probably changed the most as it wasn’t practical to do the dropouts the way I had hoped. I ended up going with a slightly different design. And before you all say it, no I hadn’t seen the dropouts from the late 80s GT Performer forks. Just a coincidence.