Caleb Smith

Kona Dream Builds: Orange is the New Black, Junya’s Process 153 CR DL 29

Recently we showed you Japanese downhill and enduro racer Naoki Idegawa’s stunning 27.5 wheeled Process. Well, today we get to show you his friend and teammate’s bike. Over the weekend Junya Nagata rode his 29″ wheeled Process to second place in the latest round of the Japanese National Enduro Series(his worst result in recent weeks), beating World Enduro number 8 Mark Scott, as well as Loose Dog Lewis and Craig Evans in the process, he was unable to beat 50to01 rider Sam Dale.

At first glance, Junya Nagata’s Process looks to share a pretty similar build to that of his teammates, there is the Fox Shox, Shimano and Mavic love, but it is by no means a carbon copy of  Naoki’s build. Let’s dive in and check it all out in more detail.

Smooth lines. An 11 spd Shimano XTR drivetrain mated to an XT cassette keeps shifting a smooth affair.

Fox’s ever-popular Float X2 rear shock looks after suspension duties out the back…

…While the 170mm Fox 36 Float Factory fork takes care of things up front. The wheels are Mavics Dee Max Pro’s (the ones Sam Hill helped design) and feature an internal width of 28mm and the pair weigh in at a paltry 1895 grams.

Keeping the Shimano theme going with the powerful Saint stoppers.

A Race Face Turbine R 35mm stem holds a Next R35 bar in place and the Chris King headset, K Edge Garmin mount and One Up EDC add just the right amount of flair!

The 125mm Fox Transfer post is topped off with SDG’s legendary Circuit saddle.

What Dream Build Process would be complete without a Marshguard?

Oh almost forgot about the tires. Out back you’ll find a 2.3″ Minion DHR II 3C Maxxterra and up front a DHF 2.5 3C Maxxterra.

The Kona Ute Makes Bycling Magazine’s “15 Best Cargo Bikes for Ditching Your Minivan”

Bicycling Magazine has just published a “15 Best Cargo Bikes for Ditching Your Minivan” list online and our classic Ute made the cut. This is what they had to say. New for 2019the Kona Ute now also comes in an eBike option the Kona Electric Ute.

“The Kona Ute is an affordable and elegant cargo bike that you wouldn’t mind riding without cargo, either, thanks to its modest 42-pound weight. There’s a 9-speed Shimano Acera drivetrain (with a Deore rear derailleur) to get you going, and the 1,273mm wheelbase makes it a little more difficult to maneuver than a standard bike. The panniers and wooden rack platform come as standard, and Kona recommends the Portland-based accessory manufacturer Super Knuckle for add-on panniers, seats, and footrests. The bike comes in small and large sizes, and although its midtail cousin (the minUte) was discontinued in 2016, the Ute is still one of the lighter and more manageable longtails on the market.” Reviews The Super Jake “Precise, predictable handling makes the Super Jake one of the most intuitive cyclocross bikes around”

“When I learned to trust the front-end grip, I began riding the Super Jake more like a mountain bike, hanging by body off the frame around tight turns and generally shifting my weight more forcefully than I’ve had the cajones to do on other cyclocross rigs.” – Dan Roe

It seems Bicycling’s Dan Roe felt at one with the Super Jake we sent for review, he’s just posted up a rather favourable review of the bike and it’s very clear that he well and truly understands this bike.

Click here to read the review in full on

Kona Dream Builds: Ted Lincoln’s Kona Big Unit

I should probably start this Dream Build post with an apology. You see, Ted submitted his very custom 2012 Big Unit months ago but then it got lost in my inbox. He sent me a friendly reminder last week and I’ve dug up the images and now you get to see Ted’s Big Unit Dream Build. Sorry Ted and to Kona Dream Build Fans that this extremely custom Kona Unit took so long to make it to you!

Ted’s 29er Big Unit is from 2012 and is made from Kona Scandium 69 butted tubing and is set up to run both 27.5″ plus and 29″ x 2.4″. He’s painted the bike himself in Black Chrome and he even made up the custom gold Kona Cog head badge just for this build.

The fork is a carbon Whiskey No.9 with 100mm spacing and 15mm thru-axle. The cockpit consists of a Chris King InSet 2, our in-house Kona XC/BC DLX 31.8mm x 80mm stem with a Niner Flat Top Carbon 720mm bar. Deity Enoki grips finish it off complete with OG OID lock-on end-caps.

The one geared Unit is propelled by a Shimano XTR M960 crankset from 2003 (the one with three different bolt patterns), Ted has “customized” it, cutting the big chainring tabs cut off, and then sanding and polishing them to a mirror finish. The chainring is a 32T Blackspire Super Pro (4 bolt x 102bcd).

The Gold KMC X9L Ti chain drives an 18T Surly cog. The seat post is a Thomson Elite setback with a Selle Italia Flite OG ’90s saddle and a King stainless steel bottle cage. Shimano XT RT86 6 Bolt Ice-Tech 160mm rotors and matching levers slow things down.

As pictured the bike is set up in its 27.5 guise. The rear wheel is built around a 135mm Chris King hub with Funbolts (the OG version with the removable disc rotor adaptor), the rim is a 322 hole DT Swiss FR 570 with three-cross lacing and features 33mm outer 29mm inner width.  Spokes are DT Swiss Competition with DT Swiss alloy nipples. They are set up tubeless with 3.5oz Orange sealant 1tbls gold glitter. The front wheel is a 24 hole Roval Traverse alloy also laced three-cross/radial lacing, to a 15mm Roval hub.  Both tires are set up with Schwalbe Nobby Nic’s 27.5″ x 2.8″, with Ted’s “customized” nob trimming on the rear.

When the bike is set up in 29″ (not pictured) the Wheel details are as follows.
Hubs: Shimano XT M8000 Centerlock , Rear XTR M988 Ti Freehub, 135mm, Halo XL Hex-Key skewer, Front 15mm thru-alex
Rims: Stan’s Arch 32 hole Three-cross lacing, 24.4mm outer 19mm inner width
Spokes: DT Swiss Competition, Dt Swiss alloy nipples
Tubeless Setup: Stan’s NoTubes rim tape, 3.5oz Stan’s sealant 1tlbs red glitter
Tires: WTB TrailBoss 29″ x 2.4″

Kona Dream Build: Fun and Games, Kate’s Hope Tech Equipped Process 153 CR

Yesterday we introduced you to Kate Meyer. Now it’s time to meet her bike a matte black Process 153 CR. Kate rides for Hope Tech Women and those CNC manufacturing wizards have helped Kate build a dream Process, it’s a bike she says is “Hands down the funnest bike I’ve ever ridden!”

Aside from the Deity Components cockpit, everything that can be swapped to Hope has been. Hope’s spiderless chainring is mated perfectly with a set of CNC’d Hope Cranks.

Black Hope Pro4 Hubs are laced to…

… Hope Enduro wheels with black Sapim spokes and brass nipples.

Slowing down, not that Kate does much of that, is done via a set of Hope Tech3 E4 stoppers. These four piston stoppers have a caliper that is cnc’d out of a single piece of aluminum and feature 4x16mm phenolic pistons to give more usable power. The Tech 3 lever also features tool-less bite point and reach adjustment.

And they are kinda sexy!

Photos: Roo Fowler / Hope Tech Women

Warning: Velo De Route’s Initial Report From Madeira Might Make You a Little Jealous

Amaël Donnet from French magazine Velo De Route has just posted up the first post in their coverage from our European gravel launch in Madeira for the new Libre and our Rove line of bikes. Be warned though, there is not much in the way of bike info, just the perfect amount of photos to make you realize that your life might not be complete, well not until you have visited Madeira it seems. You can check out the story here and standby for his first impressions of the bikes coming soon.


Kona Dream Builds: Double Impact Naoki Idegawa’s Process 153 CR DL 27.5

Japanese Kona rider Naoki Idegawa’s Process 27.5 CR DL pulls double duty as both an enduro race bike and a lightweight DH rig. The bike is well and truly dreamy in both configurations. His motivation for building the DH version? Well, some of the short courses on Japan’s DH circuit don’t really warrant a full DH bike so Naoki transforms his Process to DH mode for the occasional race.

This is the Process in DH Guise. Magic Mary’s mounted up on Mavic Deemax hoops with a full XTR/Saint groupset and no dropper post.
Outback he’s opted for a short cage Saint rear mech and a DH cassette. The rear damping is looked after by the ever-popular Fox Float X2 Factory rear shock.
SDG’s Sam Hill pro-model seat is attached to the rigid post. Up front, Naoki is rocking a 35mm Renthal Carbon Fatbar mounted to an Apex stem.
Fox Factory 36’s to match the Float rear.

Now, these little green bolts attached to the Saint brakes and shifter are Ti, Naoki has a thing for Ti bolts as you are about to see.
Saint calipers and floating Shimano rotors… and Ti bolts.
More Ti Bolts.
Cane Creeks deluxe 110 headset and… More Ti Bolts.
Even the XTR cranks didn’t escape the ti bolt retrofitting.

On Enduro days, the wheels are swapped out for a set with Minions front and rear and a wider range cassette. The derailleur is upgraded to an XTR version and the rigid post gets swapped out for a Fox Transfer post.
Japenese riders (and all those who drive on the left side of the road) love the ability to run the rear brake line on the right of the frame, clean cable routing is important when building a dream bike.

Kona 30th Birthday Anniversary Headbadges are available now!

Oh yes! We’ve just added these super rad Kona 30th birthday headbadges to our Canadian and USA web stores. Previously only available attached to our Honzo Birthday bike you can now add them to your own current (and future) Kona. The flexible adhesive-backed badge will fit bikes with tapered and straight steerers (although they are better suited to tapered).

For International and USA Orders Follow this LINK

For Canadian Orders follow this LINK

Bike Packing Reviews the Libre DL “Climbs extremely well, and feels exceptionally fast on gravel and pavement.”

“Nice geometry that hits a sweet spot between comfort and performance—surprisingly nimble, climbs extremely well, and feels exceptionally fast on gravel and pavement.” – Logan Watts,

Logan Watts at has been putting a whole bunch of time on our new multi-surface and super capable light touring bike, the Libre DL. In typical fashion, he has gone pretty darn deep with this review and tested the bike in multiple configurations and on varying terrain ranging from smooth gravel to full-blown MTB trails.

Check out their very thorough review here.

Kona Dream Builds: Purple Haze, Graeme’s Process 153 CR 29

Graeme‘s Process CR 29 is the first one we have seen customized since they hit stores a few months ago and damn it looks hawt! Most of the parts on this build have moved sideways from Graeme’s previous build, the purple anodized parts just work so damn well with the Seafoam cyan of the Process. Scroll down for more photos and the full story.

I actually built these wheels and spec’d these brakes for my last bike, a 2018 Process 153 29, but thought they’d look amazing on this Seafoam colored CR 29, and they do! So I swapped the brakes and wheels off my old bike onto this – I do like the serviceability and durability of Hope brakes and hubs. I build wheels with stainless steel spokes (silver colored) because that’s what bicycle wheels should be built with, and because they always look incredible when the sun catches them! I quite like the Velocity Blunt rims, they look really subtle, give a nice big volume and take knocks well.

I’m running stock suspension, with three tokens in the Lyric. So impressed with how supple it is at the top of the stroke and it’s such a beast in the big stuff. The bike handles so well, it really does truck over gnarly terrain and it’s so easy to handle when things get slow and techy – it’s an incredible bike.

All in, with my Shimano XT trail pedals and bottle cage, set up tubeless, the build comes to 15.25kg (33.6lbs, for you US types). It’s actually a touch heavier than the stock build, but I love the look and set-up, so I can live with a few hundred grams. I could get it crazy light with lots of carbon finishing kit, but I couldn’t justify it. Really looking forward to riding this and doing a few rounds of the Scottish Enduro Series next year.

Graeme Hart owns Hart’s Cyclery in Edinburgh, Scotland and they are our Kona dealer there. “We’re really proud of our association with Kona and love the bikes and the vybe!” They were nominated amongst the top 20 IBDs in the UK in 2018 by Bikebiz magazine. “We just keep doing our thing and doing our best to keep our customers happy and if they ride Konas that’s extra cool!”

Build as follows:
Frame: Kona DH Carbon with 6061 alu chainstays and Rockshox Super Deluxe RCT.
Fork: Rockshox Lyric RC Charger 2, 160mm.
Drivetrain: SRAM GX/NX Eagle mix.
Brakes: Hope Tech 3 V4, front; Tech 3 X2, rear. Shimano rotors 203/180.
Seatpost: Rockshox Reverb 1x lever, 170mm drop.
Wheels: Velocity Blunt P35s on Hope Pro4s with Sapim Race spokes, 32/3, hand-built.
Tyres: Maxxis Minion DHF Exo TR 3C, 2.5/2.3, set up tubeless, with Vittoria Air Liner in rear.
Bar/stem/grips: Kona.
Saddle: WTB KOM Trail TCS.

French Magazine Big Bike Reviews the Process CR DL 29 “Globalement on a pris beaucoup de plaisir au guidon de ce Kona Process 153 CR/DL 29”

Globalement on a pris beaucoup de plaisir au guidon de ce Kona Process 153 CR/DL 29. Il est rapide et hyper stable tout en restant joueur et maniable dans les portions plus techniques.

Legendary French publication Big Bike have published their review of our new Process 153 CR DL 29 and it seems, like most people, they are rather fond of it. With the help of some French-speaking (and reading staff) and a little Google translate I can tell you that they had this to say, among other things “Overall we took a lot of pleasure riding this Kona Process 153 CR / DL 29”

All you French speakers (and readers) head here to check out a high res PDF of the review in full.