Come along and experience the journey of a designer/entrepreneur and a grassroots start up. After designing bicycle parts over the past 30 years, I have written a book to describe my experiences in the bicycle industry which have taken me from working by myself in my parents’ basement to partnering with major US and foreign companies who used my designs.
Originally driven by my ambition to build a company and my own brand “Vivo”, I dreamed of having my product designs manufactured on a large scale. My first goal was just to get into the industry full time and out of my 9 to 5 job. I knew nothing about bike components when I started, only that I had a passion for designing them and enjoyed the challenge. As a result, I was able to maintain enough innovation to last over 30 years and sell some patents to the biggest players along the way.
I tell my stories of the behind-the-scenes events when dealing with cycling companies and creating partnerships. I outline all the successes, failures and challenges that happened to me over the years.
This book is a historical pictorial portfolio of everything I have designed for the cycling industry over the past 30 years. It contains over 300 color images of products, prototypes, designs and sketches which, are really the main characters of this story. I describe my raw design method, how I came up with the designs, the product development process and the process of obtaining patents. I tell how I approached companies such as Shimano and FOX to take on my designs. I share all the unexpected outcomes, obstacles and successes that occurred along the way. I describe the thrill of having my first product on Mountain Bike Hall-of-Famer and six time national champion, Ned Overend’s bike and the achievement of having my current designs being raced by Aaron Gwin, a five-time World Cup overall champion in Downhill mountain biking.
Included are products that made it into production as well as designs that never should have seen the light of day. Inserted throughout the book are two recurring commentaries; “The Vivo design process” where I describe my design method, how I motivate myself and my philosophy of design, and “My lesson learned” where I state pieces of wisdom that I learned throughout the years of actual business experiences.
This is a story from the little guy’s perspective of how, through trial and error, I eventually made my way into this competitive segment of the market. This is my venture, out on my own looking for and creating business opportunities, self-taught and self-financed along the way.