Photos by Jared Harber
Based in Bentonville, Arkansas, Merman Bicycles is a new bicycle brand founded by Tyler Siems and Taylor Weichman, two hardtail fanatics set on creating “fun-forward” bikes. Their goal was to create a mountain bike optimized for almost any terrain–not too slack, twitchy, or rowdy, without being too tame. Earlier this year, they began teasing their prototype frames, which were tested all over Arkansas throughout the last two years. The final product is the Merman Unholy Diver, a hardtail mountain bike that they describe as “a shreddy hardtail with the desire to blast when pointed down, and still conquer even the techiest climbs. You make your own rules, Unholy Diver won’t tell you how to live your life!”
The Merman Bicycles Unholy Diver is offered in both Chromoly steel and titanium. It’s designed around 130-150mm suspension, 29”, 27.5”, or even mullet wheel setups, and short-ish chainstays. The frame features a 64° headtube angle, sliding dropouts (425-437mm chainstays) that accommodate single-speed setups, fully sleeved internal cable routing, and hidden dropper post routing. According to Merman, the frame has clearance for 29 x 2.6″ or 27.5 x 2.8” tires, but can also fit some 29 x 2.8” with the dropouts in the rear position. They say a 140mm travel fork and 29 x 2.6” tires are the sweet spot for most riders, but it can be optimized for your personal ride style and the terrain you ride.
The initial “Founder’s Run” of Unholy Diver frames has nearly sold out, but a few frames are currently in-stock on the website, and they’re priced at $999 USD. Small batch orders will soon be available. You can purchase directly from Merman Bicycles, or if you have a favorite local shop, they will also be stoked to work with that shop to curate your dream build. As they put it, “The Merman Bicycles founders are lifetime bike shop rats, and want to make sure that independent bike shops continue to be a gateway to community, culture and adventure.”
The Unholy Diver is the introductory flagship model for Merman Bicycles, but there are other frame designs currently in development. Find everything you need to know at MermanBicycles.com.
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