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Factory Visit: Lezyne, San Luis Obispo, California

A few words come to mind when thinking back to my visit with Lezyne. Clean. Orderly. Slick. Almost the exact opposite of what I think about mountain biking. What makes it work then?

A quick bit on Lezyne, how they got started, and where they’re going. Micki Kozuschek, founder of Truvativ, wanted to take a break from the bike industry after selling that company to SRAM. After a few years away, it was time to get back in. (Probably drove his wife crazy.) At the time of founding Lezyne, Kozuschek felt that inexpensive, plastic, not designed very well accessories that also didn’t work very well were the norm. He set out to change that, matching the design and construction of high end bikes. Today, Lezyne creates floor and hand pumps, lights, and other accessories with certain goals in mind-exquisite design, intelligent engineering, and functional completion.

You won’t find Lezyne sponsoring every Joe on the street who needs race entries covered. They pick only a few well known, well spoken and highly respected athletes to represent them. In fact, Danny MacAskill, notoriously picky about sponsors, come to Lezyne and asked to be part of their team, as he liked their products so much. Angie Hohenwarter says this about her favorite sponsor, “I’m stoked to be with Lezyne now. Lezyne always was such an eye catcher for me. I love the simple and strong design, and function of their products and I can’t imagine a better partner to take with me on my travels.”

As an athlete, and working journalist with Type 1 diabetes, I’m a huge fan of Blind Bobby McMullen, who is no longer diabetic after multiple organ transplants, but lived and thrived with the disease for much of his career. Upon learning that McMullen is one Lezyne’s athletes, they immediately went up a couple notches in my book. McMullen is an example of someone living life. Speaking of cycling. “It’s that good of a sport. What inspires me is people who love it.” Simple wise words.

I have received a few pieces of gear from Lezyne for review, after letting them know that I wasn’t really familiar with their products. The one I’m most excited about is the Classic Dirt Floor Drive, in the High Volume (HV) model. I’m testing a lot of bikes, a lot of tires, and much of this happens on the road, out of the back of my car. Also, as an environmentally conscious guy, I drive a small car, and just don’t have room for an air compressor in my rig. I’m hoping this pump is going to solve that problem of inflating tubeless tires, where you always need that big, initial rush of air to seat the tire. I’ll get back to you on that one, but I can confirm this pump inflates my tires in about half the strokes as my other pump. So far, so good.

A familiar design asthetic runs throughout the offices and warehouse of Lezyne in California, Taiwan, and their entire product line.

A familiar design asthetic runs throughout the offices and warehouse of Lezyne in California, Taiwan, and their entire product line.

Seen again and again in the bike biz is good coffee, prepared well. Sure, beer and dogs are always around, but the bike industry runs on coffee.

Seen again and again in the bike biz is good coffee, prepared well. Sure, beer and dogs are always around, but the bike industry runs on coffee.

Lezyne has a really cool line up of bike components and accessories, ranging from high volume pumps, to smart lights, to awesome little carbon multi-tools.

Lezyne has a really cool line up of bike components and accessories, ranging from high volume pumps, to smart lights, to awesome little carbon multi-tools.

Whether you're in the marketing and administrative area, the design room, or even the warehouse, everything at Lezyne is spotless. They like it clean and crisp.

Whether you’re in the marketing and administrative area, the design room, or even the warehouse, everything at Lezyne is spotless. They like it clean and crisp.

Lezyne was started on principles of creating good looking, sharp, and classy products that perform exceedingly well.

Lezyne was started on principles of creating good looking, sharp, and classy products that perform exceedingly well.

Lezyne does all of it's design and testing in house. Sure, they also have phenomenal riding right out the door in gorgeous San Luis Obispo. They also sponsor top name riders like Cedric Gracia, Angie Hohenwarter, and Danny MacAskill.

Lezyne does all of it’s design and testing in house. Sure, they also have phenomenal riding right out the door in gorgeous San Luis Obispo. They also sponsor top name riders like Cedric Gracia, Angie Hohenwarter, and Danny MacAskill.

Lezyne produces premium quality accessories in hopes of meeting their goal of "Engineered Design". Chris does a lot of the work on bags.

Lezyne produces premium quality accessories in hopes of meeting their goal of “Engineered Design”. Chris does a lot of the work on bags.

I do think they cleaned up the shop a little bit for our visit, but I get a very strong impression that it usually looks pretty close to this.

I do think they cleaned up the shop a little bit for our visit, but I get a very strong impression that it usually looks pretty close to this.

The bling! Lezyne products are always recognizable out in the field, but especially here in their showroom, with not a speck of dust to be found, and grouped together, they have a strong sex appeal. Not for everyone, but wow, the stuff looks nice!

The bling! Lezyne products are always recognizable out in the field, but especially here in their showroom, with not a speck of dust to be found, and grouped together, they have a strong sex appeal. Not for everyone, but wow, the stuff looks nice!

Lezyne has pushed the standards in bicycle lighting. In what appears to be a commuter style package, the Mega Drive puts out 1200 lumens, enough to race with.

Lezyne has pushed the standards in bicycle lighting. In what appears to be a commuter style package, the Mega Drive puts out 1200 lumens, enough to race with.

Shipping manager Brad takes on a lot of roles, including that of in house tester for many products. He commutes 300 miles weekly by bike, in all weather conditions.

Shipping manager Brad takes on a lot of roles, including that of in house tester for many products. He commutes 300 miles weekly by bike, in all weather conditions.

You knew there was one guy at Lezyne with cool facial hair and tattoos. This is a company made up of cyclists, plain and simple.

You knew there was one guy at Lezyne with cool facial hair and tattoos. This is a company made up of cyclists, plain and simple.

The Lezyne crew cutting loose.

The Lezyne crew cutting loose.

Words, Photos: Daniel Dunn

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