For Janek Petersen-Jessen from Helsinki, Finland Kona, is a very special brand. His first proper mountain bike was a black Kona Stuff. “I remember browsing the Kona website for days, every day after school I looked at the bikes. Then for my 12th birthday, I woke up and I had a new Kona stuff, 2007 model, on the side of my bed – My mother had bought me the bike.”
So to this Unit – I have also a 2015 Unit and I love it. It feels super nice and is one of the best single speed MTB’s on the market. I then started searching for the 2013 model for almost a year – cause it is just the best looking one in my opinion.
I managed to find a 2013 Unit that was in quite rough shape. I took it apart, cleaned it, and built it up. Now I have been riding it hard on the trails. A single-speed MTB really does add something extra to the same old trails. You have to find different solutions to get over the same obstacles. It is hard but really fun. Also, I think it does make you a better rider in general, more skilled because you have just one gear to play with and don’t have an ability to drop to a 50 tooth rear sprocket when things get tough.
Shimano’s 2006 edition of the XTR 970 cranks still remains a firm favorite among XTR fans. Finding a home on a classy single speed like Janek’s Unit is just the perfect match. The orange from the Unit decals has been echoed in the 32t Race Face narrow wide chainring, the cranks spin on an XTR BB.
The cockpit is a mostly Thomson affair, with the X4 stem, Trail bar, and Inline seatpost all coming from the legendary USA brand. Braking is taken care of with a set of Shimano XT stoppers. Oh and those grips? That’s ODI’s answer to ESI’s silicon grips and is their single lock-on F-1 series Silicon foam grip.
Once upon a time (not that long ago) every dream build in the world would have featured a Thomson stem or seat post, times have changed a little but these parts are still the cream of the crop.