We knew it had to happen at some point. But due to circumstances beyond our control, Bantam Bicycle Works will be raising our prices soon. Not a ginormous increase, $50-$100 on framesets and $25 on racks and stems, just enough to cover the increases in our manufacturing costs.
The reasons why for this is happening is mostly due to the closures of a couple of long standing manufacturing businesses here in Portland. The chrome plating place that I had been using closed it's doors after quite a long run. Not sure how long it had been around, but there were pics of the place from back in the fifties hanging on the walls. Kind of a bummer. They were located in the Inner Southeast Industrial Area of PDX, right near to where Bantam Bicycle Works is. And I feel like a lot of the reason that they closed is because the City changed a the zoning laws around the area. I guess tech offices, fancy scmancy restaurants, and condos bring in a lot more tax $$$ than working class dudes dipping chunks of metal in baths of acid. Go figure.
Also, and far more somber, is that the powder coating biz that was handling most of my color changed hands a month ago. Del, the guy doing most of the spraying and co-owner of the shop, developed a pretty serious health condition and thought it better to not continue working. My heart goes out to him and his family. Good guy. So they sold the biz. I guess the guy who bought it has a lot of powder coating experience. But not with bike frames. Supposedly he's going to continue doing bicycle work, but I'm going to wait a spell until I send anything of any import to him. Give him a chance to brush up on his skills.
I've found replacements for both of these processes. However they are going to cost me a bit more than I had previously been paying. Nothing ever gets cheaper does it? And these increases get passed on down to my customers. Boo. Anyway, I'm going to give everyone a fair warning. All of you fence sitters out there have a month to get in on pre-increase pricing before prices go up on September 1st. Give us a call, we'd be happy to hear from you.