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Kona Dream Builds: Matty’s Slow Burning Custom Process 153 AL DL

Part-time trail builder and part-time ice cream slinger (and Squamish BC local) Matt Harris had a long time to ponder his 153 Process AL 29 build. He sold his old 27.5 model before we announced the G2 Process, and he spent the last few months waiting for the frame only version to arrive in Canada. Relegated (that’s not a bad thing) to his steel Honzo, Matt was constantly plotting just how rad he could make this bike. The result, as we are sure you’ll agree, was well worth the wait.


The drivetrain is truly custom. Race Face Next SL carbon cranks transfer power to a One Up Switch chainring. Out back, an XTR rear derailleur mates to a One Up’d 45t rear XTR cassette. 

A Rock Shox Lyrik, with its flawless Charger damper, keep things plush up front, while weight is saved with One Up’s toolless front axle. Saint brakes provide ample stopping power while Industry Nine hubs laced to carbon rims keep things rolling fast and smooth.

Bike Yoke’s Revive 185mm dropper post’s are starting to pop up more and more these days. Matt’s inclusion is one of the first we’ve seen on a Process and hot damn it looks nice. The only thing carried over from Matt’s previous build is that well broken in Chromag Trail master saddle.

A little custom detail from one of Matt’s day jobs reminding him that those trails don’t build themselves.

Remmeber those Saint calipers? Well, they are hooked up to these XTR levers for straight-up sex appeal. The levers and Easton Grips are all mounted on a classic Chromag 35mm BZA bar via a sweet Chris King stem and Race Face Atlas 35mm stem.

A sweet gold colored One Up EDC top cap provides a home for Matts EDC tool and rounds of this perfectly executed Kona Dream build.

Kona Dream Builds: Garry’s Satori DL

Garry has a history with Kona and a history with the Satori, when he heard that we were planning on bringing back the model he knew he had to get his hands on one.


Seven years ago he bought the first edition of the Satori, it was on this bike that he completed the 2012 BC Bike Race, a proper bucket list event and a week that Garry will never forget. The bike had a good race career back in Ireland afterwards in local enduro events before being placed aside.

“I remember the bike as a great all-rounder with a suspension set-up that was ideal for Irish riding conditions. I have lots of memories wrapped up in the Satori and couldn’t wait to get my hands on the new one.”

Garry has customized his Satori DL with the same component mix as on many of his previous Kona builds.

The cockpit consists of Kona bars clamped by a Hope Stem paired with the trusty Hope headset to keep out the Irish weather. Ergon grips and saddle complete the contact points along with CrankBrothers Mallet E pedals. The drivetrain is SRAM Eagle 1 x 12 turned by Hope Cranks on a Hope BB.

There’s a CrankBrothers Highline dropper post held in place by a Hope seatclamp.

An RRP front mudguard keeps the worst of the dirt off and he’s tweaked the fork performance with an MRP Ramp Control cartridge.

Braking is done via by Hope tech 3 levers biting on Hope floating rotors. Wheels are Reynolds Black Label rims on i9 Hubs. Maxxis Minion Semi Slick rear tyre and DHF 2.3 front filled with Orange Seal sealant.

Bike Magazine Reviews the Satori DL “This bike snob would be perfectly happy riding the Satori DL full time”

“This bike snob would be perfectly happy riding the Satori DL full time”

Bike Magazine reviewer Ryan Palmer has spent the last little while on board our brand new Satori DL, his review has just gone live online at Bikemag.com. Ryan gave the Satori DL kudos for its geometry “That steep seat angle makes the bike climb so well that I never found myself wishing the frame was carbon.”

You can check out the review on Bikemag.com here and you can check out the new Satori bikes here.

Kona Dream Builds: Travis’ Breathtaking Rove Ltd Custom Build

Travis Peebles’ (Co-owner of Blazing Saddle Cycles in Cleveland) custom Rove Ltd will straight up take your breath away. It did ours. While our stock build of the Rove Ltd is nothing to sniff at with its SRAM Force groupo and plus-sized WTB tires and hoops, what Travis has done with his is next-level-take-your-breath-away-stuff. We asked Travis to outline his motivation for the build and for some juicy details, we’ll let him take it from here.

This do-all demigod was inspired by the need to go anywhere anytime, and over any terrain. While I do appreciate the 650b wheels size, it just doesn’t fit my riding style or my desire to go places quickly, while attacking all and any obstacles with ease. Hence, the retrofitted 700c Reynolds Cycling Carbon Assault wheel-set wrapped in Panaracer Gravel King 43mm gumwalls. This tubeless combination fills up this steel steed very nicely.

The drivetrain consists of Ultegra mechanical 11 speed shifters resting on Salsa Cowbell drop bars (wrapped in Salsa’s Glyph bar tape) mated to an XTR rear derailleur by a Wolftooth Components Tan pan mechanism. This nifty little piece equalizes the cable actuation and smoothly provides all the gearing necessary across the 11-42 XT cassette. Power is applied through a set of FSA Energy cranks linked up with a Wolftooth 44t drop-stop chainring. Stopping power is provided by a sleek and steadying set of TRP Spyre brakes on Shimano XT 160mm rotors.

As an added bonus the left Shimano Ultegra shifter was overhauled and modified (by mechanical WIZARD James Rychak A.K.A Jimmy Whistletip in Instaworld) to actuate the 100mm KS Lev dropper post to help get the Prologo Zero II CPC PAS saddle out of the way in tight situations. This allowed us to use most of the bikes original braze-ons, just in a little different fashion. This avoided too much unsightly housing on the frame.

This build was a culmination of work and mechanical genius from all of the staff at our shop, Blazing Saddle Cycle in Cleveland, Ohio. I surely could not have done this on my own. We are extremely proud of the work that goes into each and every bike we send out the door and this is no exception. We love being ambassadors of the Kona name and technology. This build clearly shows why.

Video: Ice Fishing with Aggy POV

Back in early January, Aggy headed out to The Farm in Kamloops. It was the first snow ride of the season and a solid crew showed up to shuttle laps in The Farm‘s winter ‘Burb (an old 4×4 Chevy Suburban with full chains and an internal wood stove!). Aggy was riding his custom painted Trout bike, a 2015 26″ carbon Operator, built up with Maxxis beavers (in the Exo sidewall) with custom studs, up on Novatec demon wheels and hubs. The bike is kitted with SRAM and RockShox head to toe as well and has a Kore cockpit, Sensus grips and HT pedals.

Aggy sets up the studded Maxxis Beavers himself. After drilling holes from the outside in, various length sheet metal screws are then inserted from the inside out of the tire. A standard tube pumped to 60 PSI then provides solid traction, flats are rare and Aggy says that these studded tires still weigh less than his summertime DH setup.

The Trout bike in all its Rainbow glory, painted by Vancouver legend Painthouse Customs

That paint though… If Aggy keeps repurposing his old 26″ bikes like this, then #26aintdead.

Ti Tuesday: Alan’s zippy Single Speed Ti Raijin

Alan’s Ti Raijin isn’t a big showy head turner of a bike. It’s been built up as durable zippy single speed for Alan’s local trails at Sports Swap in Toronto. Closer inspection reveals a thoughtful parts selection that will truly go the distance and perhaps last as long as this Raijin Ti frame will. The Stan’s Crest wheels laced to Paul Components hubs are a case in point. The Cane Creek 110 headset and Spank Subrosa bars are another.  The smattering of SRAM and Avid bits and pieces show their age, but also an element of if it ain’t broke… The carbon Truvative XO cranks (with North Shore Billet spider and ring), Avid Juicy Ultimates and 100m Reba forks are all super solid and reliable choices that round out this solid single speed steed.

Fat-Bike.com Reviews the Kona Wozo “Kona has proven once again that they have some of the most capable and enabling bikes”

“It is capable of handling some of the most aggressive trails with its burly spec and near perfect geometry taken from its skinny brother, Honzo.” – Aristotle Peters

Aristotle Peters from Fat-Bike.com has spent the last few months riding our Kona Wozo around his snow-covered Wisconsin trails. To say he gets the bike would be a bit of an understatement, with a Kona Honzo as his personal bike, Aristotle found the transition to the Wozo seamless and could not help but get playful on it.

“The short chainstays had me wanting to bring the front end up and pop off of everything.  Hopping on the Wozo is easier than any fat-bike I have ridden and will give any rider more confidence in their abilities.”

You can read Aristotle’s full review on Fat-Bike.com here.

Kona Dream Builds: Chuck Passe’s Radient Big Honzo

Chuck Passe’s luminous orange Big Honzo is hard to miss. The 2017 Big Honzo frame was custom painted* in Rockstar Sparkle Orange by Josh Putnam at Coating Source, with the emphasis heavy on the sparkle. All the Kona logos and branding are knocked out and show the raw alloy under the paint. The build itself turns just as many heads as the finish, with the blue and orange theme resonating throughout. Being the general manager at Blue Line Bike Lab in Houston, Texas meant Chuck cut zero corners in spec’ing this beauty up.

Photos: Chad Mcclain Check him out on Instagram here.


The wheels are WTB Scraper I40 rims laced to Hope Pro 4 Hubs, The large burly hoops are shod with Maxxis Rekon+ 2.8 tires and the front end is suspended on Manitou’s Magnum Pro 27.5+.


Clearly, a bunch of thought has gone into this drivetrain, a Shimano XTR Shifter and rear derailleur handle shifting duties while a Wolf Tooth Components GC45 Range Extender has been added to the cassette. Race Face Next SL cranks combined with an Absolute Black Boost Oval chainring and Blue KMC X11SL chain transfer the power and you can’t see that it runs on possibly the best BB in the world from Enduro.


HT’s T1 pedals in blue.


Magura’s MT8 Next brakes and a whole bunch of Ti bolts take care of slowing this rig down.


Even in the age of droppers, nothing beats the pure sex appeal of a Thomson Masterpiece seatpost, this one is finished off with a WTB Volt Team 135 saddle and Hope seatpost clamp.


More blue and even more CNC alloy from the UK! Race Face’s Next 35 Carbon Bar attaches to the bike via the always rad Hope Freeride 35mm Stem, and Hope headset. Ergon GD1 Grips are finished off with more goodnes in the way of Hope Grip Doctor Bar Plugs.

*Unless your repainting is done by an authorized Kona painter you will lose your lifetime coverage.