I met Don Sheff, Coefficient Cycling’s Founder and CEO, for the first time at the 2016 Sea Otter Classic. At a table in the beer tent, he opened his backpack and pulled out a very early version of the Wave. After an hour of listening to why cyclists needed a Wave on their bike, I was hooked on the concept and offered to be on his advisory board.
A Bar Walks Into A Cyclist
Over the next two years, there were lots of conversations, and in April 2018 I held a pre-production Wave in my hands. With no industry background, while juggling a demanding day job, Don had secured a manufacturing partner, completed fatigue/impact testing, and delivered a handlebar to my front door. I was impressed.
I installed the pre-production Wave and rode it for a few weeks. It definitely delivered on the promise of a better position in the bar tops, but still needed some work before it was going to be ready. It was at this point Don asked me to take on a more active role, helping him move Coefficient Cycling and the Wave handlebar from an after-hours concept to a lights-on, rider-ready business reality.
Next up was a comprehensive review of the entire business. We restarted many aspects of the business from scratch, so that they were better equipped to scale, and better equipped to take care of future customers. Key players were added to the team. Damon Campbell, our Technical Lead, created the handlebar we are riding and you can purchase today. Ginger and Tony Snell worked with Damon and a bevy of test riders to finalize the shape. Friends and trusted advisors, including Chris Matthews, Bev Connelly, Dave Smith, and Christopher Keiser all shared their creativity to help us launch wavehandlebar.com, plus aiding with myriad other details, including packaging, instruction sheets, eCommerce, handlebar graphics, and social media. They all put up with my goofy ideas and pestering nudges. Saints one and all.
Riding the Wave!
So here we are, April 2019, and the end of our three-year pre-production journey. I’ll conclude this very first Wave blog post with a few of my favorite photos from the journey. One photo is a pile of pre-production bar bones; some 3D printed, some molded carbon. The other two pics are my Felt road bike, and Santa Cruz Stigmata, both equipped with Wave, the handlebar we are certain will increase the joy derived from riding a bicycle comfortably fast.
A heartfelt thanks to everyone involved.
~ Rick Sutton, COO and Cofounder
Some of the proof that this wasn't a straight line: just a few of our prototypes and test bars.
One of my Wave-equipped bikes out for a ride in the nearby hills