Q&A – GRANT SMITH AND THE BSD PASSENGER FRAME

Another week, another exclusive BSD interview up on The Merged. Kriss Kyle’s much anticipated new signature frame ‘The Passenger‘ from BSD is now available worldwide. To coincide with the release of this incredible promo video filmed and edited by Dave Sowerby, this week we hit up main man Grant Smith to find out what went into making Kriss’ new frame a reality. Put the kettle one, and take a seat.

Click through to read the full Q&A…

Click for a closer look.
Click for a closer look.

So your latest Frame, The Passenger just came out. This is Kriss Kyle’s second signature frame with you guys, what are the main changes over his first frame the Trailorpark?
Kriss loved the geometry of the Trailorpark and has been riding that frame since he got the first chrome prototype back in 2009 (it’s crazy to think that was over 4 years ago now). On the Passenger the rear end length, BB height and seat angle are the same as on the Trailorpark however there are a few changes, namely a steeper 75 degree headtube which is a bit taller, higher standover, wider rear end for super fat tyres, all new tube set and new gussets.

How long did the Frame take from the design stages to the final prototype?
We’ve been talking about this one for a while. Probably around 9 months. The hardest part was coming up with the name, hahaha.

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BSD now use a slightly taller headtube on their frames, care to explain the advantages of this versus a standard headtube?
There are lots of reasons to do with the aesthetics of the frame but the main advantage is that you don’t need to use so many spacers under your stem. It looks much cleaner.

Many riders are running larger tires now, does The Passenger accommodate for this?
The rear end on the frame is extra wide nearer to the BB giving much more room for tyre clearance, we did this by designing the frame around using a 28t sprocket as the maximum size. Most people use 9t on the rear these days anyway and either 25t or 28t on the front. You can run a 2.4″ tyre on the rear of this frame with plenty of clearance.

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The 11.5” Bottom Bracket is a bit lower than most frames and the other in your lineup, is this something Kriss requested? For those who don’t understand BB heights, can you briefly explain the differences and how they effect the feeling of the frame?
The reason is that the 11.5″ BB height feels more stable due to the lower centre of gravity, it’s really a personal preference though and this is what Kriss likes best.

The graphics on the frame look amazing, especially when teamed up with that translucent Gold or Matte Red paint finishes. Care to explain a bit more about who designed them and the inspiration behind them?
Kriss is always on a trip somewhere around the globe, that’s where the name ‘The Passenger’ came from. Dave Sowerby designed the graphics based on the name with a nod to the 1970s.

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Talking of the paint, are we going to see matching BSD Bars and Forks any time soon? I can imagine an all Trans Gold bike would look amazing…
There are matching Ghetto forks and Highlander bars for the flat red and black versions but not for gold, Kriss didn’t want those so we didn’t make them (yet…)

The Passenger also comes in an 18 Inch version for the little guys, with a matching Ghetto Fork also available. How did that come about?
There are a few young riders at Unit 23 who ride 18″ bikes as they are just too small for 20″ yet, we made an 18″ Trailorpark frame earlier in the year and got Anthony Duffy to test it out. Since we stopped making the Trailorpark we decided to make an 18″ version of the Passenger.

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The latest delivery of BSD products should now be available worldwide. Along with re-stocks of all your best selling items, what else is new for this drop?
There are new 2014 colours for the WZA and Beverage frames, dark red and brown Kriss Kyle ‘Live Life’ seats, dark brown Beverage seat and new colours for the Forever grips including dark red to match the new seats.

The team have been pretty much all around the globe this year, with some spectacular web videos as a result. Where will the team be heading next year? China? Australia?
Thanks man, we have a lot of ideas for filming in 2014 but nothing set in stone just yet, just watch this space…

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You’re always working on new products. What can we expect to see from you in 2014? I’ve seen a few sneak peeks of Tires and a new 14mm Cassette hub…
The tyres are Alex D’s signature ones which come out in March as does the new 14mm female Back Street Pro hub and a whole slew of new hubguards, there will be more new product later in 2014 too.

Anything else you would like to add?
That’s all folks, check the edit out then go out on your bike…

Click on the images to get a closer look.

Frame Specs
Toptube lengths: 20.2″, 20.5″, 20.8″ and 21.1″
Headtube angle: 75°
Seattube angle: 69°
Rear end length: 13.2″ – 13.625″
BB height: 11.5″
Standover height: 9″
Weight:4.9 lbs
Colours:Trans Gold, Flat Red and Black

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The Passenger Frame is available now from BSD dealers worldwide, head over to the website to check it out in more detail.

Be sure to follow BSD and Kriss up on Instagram to keep up with what they’re riding and what they’re up to. And while you’re at it, give us a follow @themerged if you haven’t already.

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  1. Pingback: The Passenger… | BSD Forever
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