Lost Bikes Prototype LP29 DH Machine 1

Handmade, steel 29er DH prototypes from the PNW just because they can. Lost Bikes and their journey with big wheels and downhill.

Lost Bikes Prototype LP29 DH Machine

Lost Bikes is a home-grown brand out of Belllingham, Washington, creating specialty mountain bikes. Eric Evans, Brian Davison and Nick Ryser started building their own bikes five years ago and have turned that tinkering and passion into a budding young business. Beginning with steel hardtails, the crew has ventured into the full-suspension realm and their head-turners are prototype downhill bikes that have been a staple of the PNW race scene. Discussing 29er DH bikes is all the rage these days, but Lost has been experimenting with the wheel size for a year. - by Zach Faulkner

Brian Davison with the Lost LP29 and Nick Ryser with the LP275.

Making bikes by hand means the Lost crew can try out ideas they think would benefit their riding, and they experiment with proportional bikes. A bigger rider gets a bigger bike all around, not just in the reach department. If speed is what you're after, they lean toward the 29er, if a fun, playful, whip-able bike is your jam, hit the 27.5.

27.5 vs 29er on the DH track?

The design is in the prototype phase and is inspired by the suspension designs of an Iron Horse Sunday and Giant Glory. Since the Lost crew is just DIY'ing these bikes in the name of testing, they claim there are no real issues with patent infringement. Should they go to production, they realize something may have to change.


The riding and testing that's been done over the last year has led the Lost boys to the conclusion that 7 inches of travel is the sweet spot for a DH bike with 29-inch wheels. Originally, they were running 7.5 inches of travel, but trimmed it back to what they believe is the most "usable" amount of travel with the wagon wheels.

Stock FOX 40 that's been modified (don't try this at home, kids)

The 4130 steel frames use machined aluminum links and have been ridden under riders they know and trust. Could you get one for yourself? You never know until you ask, but don't hold your breath.

Is production in the future?

They're rolling with the 27.5 and 29-inch DH bikes and have a 140mm trail bike designed. If you like what they're doing, hit up them up on Instagram and Facebook to keep tabs, talk shop and encourage this dedicated crew of MTB pioneers.


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