How It Started
Haro has been a recognized name in the BMX world since 1977 when they first began making number plates and accessories. In fact, Bob Haro started making number plates free of charge for BMX racers initially. These plates became so popular that he had to start charging for them. And his number plate sales soon led to Haro mouth guards and visors paving the way for an important product niche in the BMX community. This specialty company would soon be known as Haro Designs.
The Man Behind The Company
Bob Haro was born in 1958 in Pasadena, California. He excelled at motocross racing in his teenage years and brought home over fifty trophies. Eventually the motorcycles were put aside, which gave Bob an opportunity to try his hand at BMX. Bob discovered the fun of BMX riding on skateboard ramps in Stockton, California. And he turned skateboard tricks into BMX tricks and slowly a new type of cycling took shape.
He then put together the first freestyle team and designed and manufactured the first freestyle BMX bike. And today, Bob Haro is known as the inventor of BMX trick riding or freestyling.
The Rebel Company
Haro hit a milestone in 1982 when they produced the first ever freestyle BMX frame and fork: The Haro Freestyler (click image to enlarge). This rebellious, independent mentality that forged both a new bicycle and a new style of riding continues today at the Haro headquarters in Vista, California. And as the company will tell you, "There’s nothing wrong with demanding something different. In the spirit of a true rebel, don’t settle for the boring norm. Demand more."
A Full Line-Up
Haro now produces a full line of BMX, mountain, commuter and kids' bikes so there's a Haro bicycle for you however you ride. And, all the designs are tested and perfected by the best riders in the industry. Plus, top-quality materials and components go into every model. And, Haro works hard to keep costs down so that you can get a beautiful bicycle at an affordable price, too.
Founded in 1996 by Jon Byers and Mike Corley, Eastern Bikes is a rider-owned BMX company that’s passionate about the bikes they design and the people who ride them. This North Carolina based company not only designs a full range of bikes from beginner to professional, but they also fabricate all the components as well. You get a bike that’s built strong, built for the job and that looks great too.
What’s so special about an Eastern frame? For starters, Eastern’s exclusive Lightning rod tubing has better dent resistance, 20% less weight, and remarkably, is stronger too. For example, the rigorously tested down tube is offset butted and butted end to end and then bulge butted at the head tube until it's slightly ovalized! This dramatically increases the strength of the head tube/down tube junction and makes for a bike that inspires bold riding.
The Beginner, Intermediate, Expert, Pro and Team lines are each specifically designed and spec'd with consideration to strength, weight, and the ability level/demands of the rider. Such attention to detail allows these amazing BMX bikes to be cost-competitive and ride with absolute brilliance just the way you need them too.
Bottom line: Eastern is a rider-owned company, they are a rider-staffed company, and they care about you. Whether it’s your first bike or your last, Eastern has the perfect ride to meet your needs — swing by the shop and take a look!
Zack Phillips started riding when he was 12 years old. He got pretty good, pretty fast, and by the time he was 16, was breaking axles and grinding flat spots in pegs. Fortunately for us, he just happened to be working in a hardware store in Rochester, New York and had connections to a local engineering workshop. Deciding that the current gear was inferior, he made some beefier stuff.
The story might have ended there if it wasn’t for a side job Zack also had. He was working as a photographer at BMX competitions on the weekends. He’d see kids break a peg, bend a sprocket or snap an axle at the event, and he decided to start selling extra ones he had made to them. That was back in 1995 and Kink Bike Co. was born.
A year later, they brought out a chain twice as thick as standard ones that could handle the punishment of core BMXers. Then it was onto frames. In 1998, they dropped the Empire, and it was pretty much THE frame of the late 90’s. Big, oversize tubes, clean lines, 6mm dropouts and the pierced top tube, sick. Today, they make a full line of parts and completes, from entry-level to pro-worthy.
Where Kink stands out, is their quality and attention to detail. As a small, rider-owned company, they design and extensively test each and every product they put their name on. Their warehouse, in fact, is in the same building as Coalition and right next door to the famous Forward warehouse. They’ve got 15,000 square feet of space, a good bit of which houses a sick ramp setup of their very own. Not bad for a company that was started by a 16-year-old out of a backpack, eh?
When we first saw them, we knew we had to carry them. Stop by The Kickstand and check out our line-up. We’ll help you get your Kink on right.