• Recovered Cycling

    My name is Jason Moore. I am a one-man shop who runs Recovered Cycling. I live in Dallas TX.

    I have been riding seriously since 2001. I have had many bikes but currently ride a 2013 tig’d Bedford. It has pretty much cured me of any bike lust. But a custom ti-gravel bike could make me rethink that.

    In 2007 I was on business in South Africa and wandered into Queens Cycle in Praetoria. They were a known Merckx shop and I was DEEP into my Merckx lust phase. I wanted to see what they had since I was in the market for an MX Leader. They had the mother load of NOS steel frames hanging on the wall, at least 60 framesets. I searched through the racks and found a 60cm MX Leader and a 61cm Strada OS and bought them both. I asked the owner for a list of everything he had available and put together a group buy through RBR and we pretty much cleaned him out.

    I built up the MX Leader and turned to the Strada OS. I had purchased some tan elk hide sew-on bar tape from Velo Orange and wanted a saddle to match. There were none, so I grabbed an old Flite and stripped it down and figured out how to recover it. It turned out pretty well and I posted the bike on RBR. Everyone liked it and a few people commented specifically on the saddle and asked if I’d do one for them. So I took in a few and recovered them. They were OK, so I took in a few more. They were OK-ish. I put out the call for test saddles and got about a dozen in and did them. They were better. I decided there might be a market for this and I could maybe make some money to pay for my hunting lease. I stood up an awful website and named the company Recovered Saddle. I thought I’d get one saddle per month for the first year. I got 5 the first week or so and it was off to the races. During this period I found Ray at Handlebra and we agreed that we had some synergy. I did some test saddles with his leather and he began supplying me the leather I use for saddles. I still use his leather nearly exclusively.

    In the meantime, I was looking for a product that would not take as much hand work as a saddle. Something I could design, have manufactured and then sell from stock. I have always loved gloves of all types, so I decided to remake leather cycling gloves with modern materials. There were lots of similar gloves available online that would work with just some tweaks. How hard can it be to tweak an existing design and have them made? Damn hard.

    Long story short, it took me nearly 4 years to find a vendor who was willing to take this on and could produce to the quality I wanted. Not one glove company in the US would touch the project, and I talked to them all. I found a company from Montreal, named Veeka, making crochet back gloves. I contacted them and we agreed to partner on a premium version of their gloves. Their vendor was unable to do it. We tested several other vendors and landed on one who could produce them and we went into prototypes. This took over 2 years and 7 iterations of design, build, produce, test, refine, build, test, etc. We finally landed on a good design with the proper quality so I ordered a full production batch. When they arrived, I started the examination process and they were awful. Terrible. They had outsourced the sewing and I rejected the whole batch. The vendor would not remake them and would not refund me, so I ate the whole batch.

    Veeka and I started back at the beginning looking for vendors. We found 4 and began the same process with all of them at the same time. Veeka was making progress with some new products and we mutually agreed to end our partnership. During the prototype process with 4 vendors it became clear that 2 stood out. 1 in Pakistan, the other in the US. The US pricing and minimums were 3-4x higher and their quality was about equal, so I went with my vendor in Pakistan. I ordered another production batch and paid in full, up front as requested. Luckily the gloves arrived in good shape and I’ve been selling them for about a year. I renamed the company Recovered Cycling.

    I have had numerous requests for black gloves, so now I am offering short finger gloves in black. I am also in round 4 of prototypes for leather long finger gloves, along with extending the gloves into other markets.

    Thanks for reading.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Recovered Cycling started by jmoore View original post