Sklar Bikes: Best Mountain Bike at NAHBS 2017

Adam Sklar with his NAHBS-winning bike (photo: ECHOS Communications)
Adam Sklar with his NAHBS-winning bike (photo: ECHOS Communications)

The twelfth edition of the North American Handmade Bicycle Show (NAHBS) just wrapped up in Salt Lake City, Utah. Since 2005, NAHBS has showcased custom frame builders from around the country, and now the world. Awards are given out for a variety of categories including: Best in Show, Best Theme, Best Utility Bike, etc. But since this is Singletracks, we really only care about one category–the Best Mountain Bike.

photo: Adam Sklar
All photos courtesy Adam Sklar, unless noted otherwise

This year, that award went to Adam Sklar, of Sklar Bikes for his rigid, singlespeed, 27.5+ trail bike. We caught up with Adam on his way home from Utah to ask him a few questions about the winning build.

Singletracks: Let’s start with some basic info: who are you, where are you from, and how many bikes do you build each year?

Adam Sklar: Adam Sklar, 23 years old, currently in Bozeman, MT, building since 2011, 30-35 bikes a year.

S: Was this your first time at NAHBS?

AS: This was my second NAHBS.

S: What does it mean to you to win Best Mountain Bike at NAHBS?

AS: It means a lot! As a relatively new builder, it was a huge honor to win the award, especially in a room full of amazing bikes by builders that I have so much respect for.


S: Tell us about your build – frame material, wheel size, component spec, intended use, etc.

AS: {The bike has a] steel frame and fork, [and is] compatible with 27.5+ or 29″ wheels. Industry Nine wheelset, White Industries new M30 cranks, RockShox Reverb, Paul Components brakes, stem and skewers, Hunter Smooth Move bar, Chris King headset, and Maxxis rubber.

[This bike is intended for] everything from daily trail use to bikepacking. It’s a super fun trail machine. The frameset is suspension-corrected so that a 130mm fork could be swapped out. Adding gears is also super easy with a Paragon Machine Works sliding dropout swap and stealthy internal routing.

S: Is this a personal bike or one for a customer?

AS: This is for a customer currently located in Minnesota, but designed more for when he moves to Montana this summer.

S: How long did it take to build?

AS: From deposit to shipment, about four and a half months on this project. As far as actual work put into the bike – with the fork and internal routing work which add quite a bit of time – about 40 hours went into everything. Some builders like to brag about how much time they spend on a project. I prefer to get my customers the highest quality bikes in the shortest timeframe possible. After all, bikes are for riding.

S: If someone is interested in ordering a custom frame from you, how should they get in touch?

AS: The first step in the ordering process is to place a deposit to reserve your place in line. From there we begin design work and getting everything in place for the build. Folks can place a deposit on my website or call me on the phone, or shoot me an email.

I am always happy to chat with potential customers or anyone who has questions about the process, so please do not hesitate to drop me a line.
Industry Nine hubs and rims; Paul Components mechanical disc brakes and quick release
Paul stem and brake levers; Chris King headset; Hunter Smooth Move handlebar
White Industries M30 crankset; Maxxis plus tires
The rigid fork can be swapped out for a 130mm travel suspension fork to give your wrists a break

Thanks to Adam for his time answering our questions and sending over pictures of this trophy-worthy bike!