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Portland Trail Blazer Joel Przybilla's new bike (Slideshow)

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on October 19th, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Joel Pryzbilla's new bike-8
A bike fit for a 7-ft NBA center.
-Slideshow below-
(Photos © J. Maus)

7-foot 1-inch backup center Joel Przybilla of the NBA's Portland Trail Blazers is the proud new owner of a fully-custom, 29-inch wheeled steel mountain bike made by Signal Cycles (a small, two-man shop based in a residential neighborhood in North Portland). I got a peek at the bike last week before it left the Lake Oswego Bike Gallery store.

The first thing I noticed when Assistant Manager Rian Lasley rolled it out was the very tastefully executed team color paint job (I'd expect nothing less from builders/artists Nate Meschke and Matt Cardinal). And then, there's the size. It's big!

Joel Pryzbilla's new bike-3
Joel Pryzbilla's new bike-7

Usually bikes for seven-footers tend to look a bit awkward, but this beauty is very well-proportioned. In fact, the 29-inch wheels — which, to me always look big regular-sized bikes — don't look big at all in proportion to this frame.

As for measurements...

  • Top tube length - 68 cm
  • Fork steerer tube (special order from White Bros.) - 20 in
  • Center of bottom bracket to top tube - 76 cm
  • Head tube - 25 cm

Despite the bike's size, a mix of high-end components (Race Face carbon, Avid, SRAM, etc...) helps it weight in at a mere 31.8 pounds. Not bad for a front-suspension, off-road ready mountain bike made for a 7-1, 245 pound rider.

I'm scheduling a sit-down interview with Przybilla out at the Blazers' practice facility in the coming week. I'll ask him more about his plans for this bike and about biking in general. Until then, check more photos in the slideshow below...

UPDATE: Kelly from Bike Gallery in Lake Oswego just sent me some photos of Joel picking up his bike...

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Comments
  • Matt Haughey October 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    I'd love to see him out at PIR short track events next summer when basketball season is over!

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  • f5 October 19, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    I'm guessing you'll ask, but I'm curious how much his player contract dictates how much freedom (if any) he'll have to ride off road.

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  • Steve October 19, 2010 at 2:30 pm

    That's freakin' awesome...welcome to the 29er club Joe. Is that a 0 offset fork...won't that be a tad twitchy?
    go Blazers.

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  • Elliot October 19, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    So tall... looks like it'd be good for jousting.

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  • Kelly-Bike Gallery October 19, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    The frame was built around the Magic 110 29er, 20mm thru-axle fork. White Brothers was the only company that could supply the custom steerer tube length that we needed for the bike (we have worked with them before on a previous project for another NBA player) . Joel picked it up today, and he was REALLY excited- like a kid with their first new bike.

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  • Whyat October 19, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    That is a beast. Way cool!

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  • Tall Mike October 19, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Finally, a builder that can make a real "tall" bike. Not like those wanna be tall freak bikes with 2 frames welded together for those with Napoleon complexes.

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  • Brian October 19, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    No Vanilla for the Vanilla Gorilla?

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  • sam October 19, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    I wish the photo had an average-sized person with an average-sized bike in it, for scale. And because it would be funny.

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  • Rizzo Sharp October 19, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    Kelly did a great job setting up this very custom bike. This is not the first big bike he has set up for current and former pro athletes. He is a pro at custom bikes of all shapes and sizes.

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  • John Smtih October 20, 2010 at 7:04 am

    The BFT reported he has been riding 20 miles a day and is in great shape!

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  • Evan October 20, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Those brake rotors look so small!

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  • jv October 20, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Wow, that bike does look like it has the right proportions when Joel is standing next to it, but looks huge when on the showroom floor. I can only image how awkward this would have looked if designed 5 years ago, before 29er wheels were so readily available. I wonder what crank arm length he put on there?

    Good taste in motorized vehicles as well, if that is Przybilla's Benz Geländewagen in the background.

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  • Matt October 21, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Thanks for the write up Jonathan. I'll be anxiously awaiting your follow up interview with Joel!
    And a bug thanks to Kelly at the Lake Oswego Bike Gallery for giving us the chance to build this bike. It was a lot of fun.

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  • sam October 26, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    @ Steve,

    Steve, the offset is in the suspension lowers, at the dropouts.

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