Scott Colosimo loves designing cool motorcycles. When he and his partner Jarrod Streng were laid off from their industrial design jobs in 2009, they decided to chase their dream and created Cleveland CycleWerks
. (Fresh Water featured him in this article
CycleWerks bikes feature 250cc engines, are lightweight, simply designed, inexpensive to maintain and get 100 miles to the gallon. They are quite the opposite of America’s typical love of larger, more complicated bikes. “America has typically been home to the philosophy that bigger is better,” explains Colosimo. “But the bigger bikes are not great for riding around town. We’ve actually seen a ton of people who want a smaller bike.”
Colosimo describes his designs as “retro-futuristic,” combining vintage looks with the new age. “From afar, they look like perfectly restored old bikes,” he says. “Then you get close and see a little bit of a surprise.”
After having manufactured the bikes in China for the past few years, Colosimo and Streng are in the process of moving operations to Cleveland. They bought a 100-year-old warehouse on W. 65th Street and are in the “cleanup phase” of transitioning the building into the new CycleWerks digs.
Colosimo plans to do things incrementally. “We’re going to have a balance of manufacturing in Cleveland and manufacturing overseas,” he says. “We’re going to start with assembly and then eventually get into manufacturing.”
Colosimo is now turning to Cleveland companies for his manufacturing needs. He’s hired a general contractor to source out the work, but they plan to ramp up slowly. “We want to do it slowly because pitfalls can develop doing it all at once,” he says. “We can collaborate a lot easier locally.”
Colosimo has hired two part-time warehouse employees, a part-time technical liaison, as well as a part-time designer and an engineer.
Source: Scott Colosimo
Writer: Karin Connelly