How Independent Fabrication got to Newmarket is a story that actually began in Fat City. After 12 years of business, the pioneering, but insolvent, mountain bike manufacturer Fat City Cycles was sold off in 1994. The company closed its Somerville, Massachusetts doors leaving behind an empty factory and a handful of workers. But what kind of story would this be if it ended here? A group of former employees still had the itch to design and build custom bikes. So they dusted off their work boots, brought out the drawing board, and started their own company. An independent company. A company that would make bikes the way they knew they should be made.
In 1995, Independent Fabrication was formed. What they lacked in adequate workspace, they compensated with elbow grease. Would they treat each build as if it were their own? Yes. Would they allow a customer to paint their bike whatever colors they wanted, even if it was ugly? Why the hell not? Would they continue to build high-end, precise, handcrafted frames? Absolutely.
In the first years, Indy Fab designed to its strengths – forging the best steel mountain bike frames the industry had ever seen. Riders agreed, and IF’s cult following began to grow. The Deluxe and Special mountain bike frames hit the bike show circuit and found success. The following year, the IF team called on their lifelong experience of riding city streets and love of racing to develop several new models: the Crown Jewel – a road bike, the Planet Cross – a Cyclocross race frame, and the Roadster – a cruiser. IF quickly emerged from the woods to become a complete cycling manufacturer.
In 2011, IF moved and began a whole new chapter that continues today. Housed in a renovated 150+ year old mill building in Newmarket, NH, IF’s team of artists and fabricators continue to push the envelope by using the newest materials technologies. For some, IF is an outlet for creative expression. For others, it’s about mechanics and the technical aspects of fabricating a precision machine. As production methods become more sophisticated, the IF team continues to make bikes by hand and respects the craftsmanship of the old way. Every member of the team regards bike-building as an honorable profession and opportunity to work with other like-minded individuals. Together, they are joined in the common goal of building the best custom bikes that they can.