History and Biography
by David Kirk
I've been working in the bike industry since I was in high school and I always wanted to be a frame builder. I've worked in shops and raced BMX, road and mountain bikes over the years.
When I was about 14, I built my first bike frame with my grandfather Ernie King. It was a suspension BMX frame. It broke.
In 1989 I was recruited by Serotta to help expand their manufacturing operation. I worked in all aspects of production and was fortunate to apprentice under master builder, Kelly Bedford.
I moved into Serotta's custom shop after 3 years of working in the production shop. While working in the custom shop I built around 120 frames per year, start to finish. The work was diverse and included road, mountain, track, cyclocross, touring, tandem, and Softride frames. Customers ranged from well-known professional teams to individuals. During this time I also built prototypes and show bikes.
After approximately 3 1/2 years as Serotta's custom framebuilder, I was promoted to head of research and development for Serotta. In this position I developed new products, and the tooling and methods to build them. It was at this time that I developed some of the products that Serotta is known for, such as the F1 carbon fork, the STS Ti stem, 3D dropouts, the Colorado CST, the 20th and 25th Anniversary frames and the DKS system used on the Hors Categorie frames. The DKS design was awarded patent number 6,109,637 in August, 2000.
In 1999 my wife Karin and I moved to Bozeman, MT to live in the mountains and try out a change of pace. Shortly after our arrival in Bozeman I met framebuilder Carl Strong. I have worked with Carl a good bit over the past 11 years and I call him one of my best friends.
During the winter of 2003 I decided the time was right to introduce a new level of craftsmanship and customer service in the bicycle business. In keeping with one of my long-held goals, Kirk Frameworks Company was created in June 2003.
I'd like to thank Ben Serotta for providing me with the opportunity to grow, both as a person and as a framebuilder. Ben continues to be one of my most valued friends.
I would also like to thank Carl Strong for his wholehearted support of my framebuilding venture.