Probably one of the most well known bicycle frame builders in the world, (Not just for his work, but for his dramatic life and most recently, lack of work), Matt Chester, or "mc" as he likes to refer to himself as, has re-emerged with typically understated dramatic flair.
Making his announcement at midnight Monday morning on his live journal page, it appears that Matt is going to rebate his old customers their money, and still build their frames. Great news if you've been a patient Matt Chester customer. (And those folks earn a high rank for patience, I might add) Their is still some typical mc weirdness going on; however, and as always it's cloaked in some mystery.
Making references to money problems, mental issues, and lifestyle changes, Matt leaves us with more questions than answers and then says he's moving to Canada! Ontario Canada to be specific. Well, I suppose it shouldn't be a surprise, since mc hasn't been a paragon of loyalty to one geographic location, and the fact that he mentions marriage and a "significant other" perhaps are clues to the shift.
So, you may be asking yourself, "why pay any attention at all to a frame builder that is somewhat on the flaky side" Fair enough. The thing is, for as many pitfalls and social dysfunctions that mc has gone through, the guy is an influential builder. He has specifically honed in on drop bars for off roading and has excellent historical perspective on the subject. He's just a wee bit talented and his aesthetic, while not everyone's cup of tea, is admired by many for it's functional austerity. Let's put it this way, if you are into bicycles and frame building, you probably have at least a passing respect for mc and his work. Well..........probably just for his work. (Although many can not seem to separate the man from his work on both sides of the aisle)
The naysayers will say he's running away across the border like a card burning draft dodger. I say, let's wait and see what happens. One things for sure, if mc is involved it will be an interesting tale, if nothing else. I know I'll be tuning in.
Bikepacking Rant Pt. 1
3 hours ago