If you’re a fan of street riding that is more about the setup and less about the trick—with a heavy emphasis on the grinds—than look no further than Ryan Howard. Ryan’s bike is set up specifically for his brand of riding, which includes four 4.5″ metal Animal pegs, a taller BB on his frame (for crook clearance) skinny tires, and more… If you want to one day achieve the level of grind master like Howard, than take notes on his bike set up.
Weight: 170 pounds
Location: Springfield, OH
Frame: BSD Raider V3, 21"
Fork: Animal Street Fork, 26mm offset
Bars: Animal Foursome, cut down to 27"
Stem: Animal OG Jump Off
Barends: Animal alloy
Seatpost: Animal Wedge
Seat: Animal Cush—the old big A version.
Pedals: Animal Steven Hamilton, sealed, aluminum
Cranks: Animal Akimbo, 170mm
Sprocket: Animal Sprocky Balboa, 27T
Chain: Cult 510
Front Tire: Animal GLH, 2.1"
Front Wheel: Animal RS rim with Gsport alloy hex taper nipples laced to an Elcat Teck hub, with two Eclat alloy guards.
Rear Tire: Animal, TWW 2"
Rear Wheel: Animal RS rim with Gsport alloy hex taper nipples laced an Odyssey Antigram cassette hub with 9-tooth driver.
Pegs: Animal Lino, 4.5" (the back pegs are ready to be retired).
We shot your last bike check in February 2017, and other than your frame, pedals, and sprocket, your bike looks the same. How many parts do you think you’re still riding from your last bike check?
I've replaced the frame, fork, sprocket, pedals, tires and the back rim in that time span, but I think otherwise it's still the same. I actually just built up a fresh bike when I got home from California, but it's the same as both bikes before it just with worn out stuff replaced/new frame. I know what I like so I stick to it.
If you had the option to build up a fresh bike every eight months, or maybe even once a year, would you? If not, why?
The last time I had a fully new bike was when Skavenger was still a thing, but I tend to ride stuff that lasts and I like how my bike feels worn in. I replace stuff when needed, but it's never all at once. If it ain't broke don't fix it.
What are some specifics to your personal setup? What makes this your ride?
I need to have sealed metal pedals and bars with lots of up sweep. I hate the rattle of a loose bearing pedal and minimal upsweep hurts my wrists. I'm pretty picky about having a frame with a higher BB for crooks and a little longer back end. I run about 100psi in my tires—which everyone who rides my bike seems to hate. I ride smaller sized tires than most people do these days, too.
How often do you find a setup that requires you to switch out a metal peg for plastic?
It really just depends. I might go on a trip and need a plastic for majority of the spots or I might not need any plastic pegs for a month. If I can help it I try to just use a brick rub, wax and pedal more instead of switching pegs, but I'm not above using a plastic peg if I need to.
Are there any parts that you're currently riding that are becoming hard to find replacements for?
Animal 1.95" GLH tires is about the only thing. I just put on new tires and had to use a 2.1" in the rear. Not that big of a deal but I'd much rather the smaller size still be made.
Front load stem with spacers… have you considered a top load without spacers? Or do you just prefer the look of a front load?
I just really like how the Jump Off stem looks and I can get a full turn on the Allen wrench when I have to mess with the bolts. If I rode a top load I'd want to cut my forks down and in the off chance that I had to run Big Four bars instead of Foursomes I'd be pissed I couldn't put spacers back under my stem to keep the same height.
Short twitchy frame, fat squishy tires, plastic pedals, plastic pegs, freecoaster… have you given any of them much of a shot, or not even going there?
I've tried all those things either on my own bike or when riding other peoples bikes. All of those set ups or parts have their advantages, but I don't really do many tricks, what I'm riding is usually the trick so I've settled on what works for me a long time ago.