Our Bikes Have Stories: Virginia Tech Hokie Custom Paint

You hear this story all the time, a new cyclist spends $20 on a raffle ticket and wins a custom painted carbon road bike…. Yea right! But, that’s exactly what happened to one lucky rider. For most of us, there is an unwritten journey of getting into cycling. We borrowed a friend’s bike, rode our parent’s bike that was too big, or bought something that sort-of resembled a bicycle. We were happy with what we had, but eyed the next purchase — something much nicer. This post is about being new to the sport on a $135 Craigslist Special to being set for life on a $5,000 high mod carbon fiber Jack Kane.

Every September, New Bern, NC plays host to the Bike MS: Historic New Bern ride. It pulls over 2,000 participants and raises a lot of funds for a fantastic cause. The past two years I displayed our bikes and lent a hand to one of the local shops. However, this year was slightly different. We partnered with TeamCBC (Carolina Brewing Company), who I met earlier this year at their first annual swap meet. We partnered to raffle off a complete Jack Kane bike with the raffle proceeds going to MS. After talking for two straight days, barely sleeping, and raising over $4,000, we raffled off the sweet prize.

Bueller? Bueller?

Bueller? Bueller?

When the winner’s name was announced, it was answered with…. silence. I heard a few disappointed sighs of those who didn’t win, but no scream of exuberance. Not exactly the reaction we were hoping for. So, we went back down into the crowd and continued on with the ceremony. A few minutes later, a man asked for me and said his friend just called him, ecstatic that he won a bike. His name was Dan and he was in disbelief. Wouldn’t you be? We exchanged contact information and I told him he was in for a real treat and to start thinking of custom paint designs!

Dan had been riding for only a couple years, so he’s new to the sport. Nevertheless, he loves riding and has big aspirations. Goals like Cycle North Carolina “Mountains to the Coast”, multiple MS150 rides, back to back Centuries, and more! His first bike was a $135 Craigslist bike dating back to 80s. Once he realized how great the sport was, he upgraded to a new bike from a larger bike retailer. He was happy with it, but not thrilled. Oh, how his situation quickly changed for $20.

Designing the Hokie Custom Paint Job

Dan is a Virgina Tech alumni. He wanted a Hokie themed custom paint job. As he and I were talking about designs, he told me that all over Virginia Tech’s campus the buildings are built with Hokie Stone. We have a paint that looks like marble/stone so we decided to incorporate that into the design. Next, the colors! Orange and maroon. We went through a few design drafts, and he was a big fan of an orange to maroon fade with exposed carbon fiber accents. Below is the gallery of the bike. It’s clean, has some pop, and has special meaning.


I will never stop pointing out our sizing and fit process. For riders that have their fit dialed in, they simply provide us with fit coordinates. For riders, that aren’t sure, we ask a lot of questions because a comfortable bike is a ridden bike! When Dan and I were exchanging emails about his fit, issues like hand numbness and neck pain were discussed. When he provided his current bike configuration, we knew immediately why: He was on the wrong size bike and wrong stem.

Upgrading to a new bike is always an exciting experience. However, we bring even more to the table by allowing you to work with us and having components specifically selected for your riding goals. If you’re still young in the sport, want help, or simply want something different, this is greatly beneficial. You have such freedom when it comes to your bicycle, why ride just anything? Generic bikes come and go, but a bike that brings special meaning stays with you.

Be sure to check out the Carolina Brewing Company MS team. They made it possible for us to create a dream bike for one lucky rider: Team CBC