When he's not busy throwing his bike or intimidating everyone with his stone cold looks, Ohio BMX rider Jonathan Bechtold (AKA "Gremlin") has been busy designing and expanding his new parts company, The Daily Grind. What started out as a website over a year ago featuring videos and photos of team riders, Troy Merkle, Tony Cherry, Nicholas Will and Ryan Howard, has quickly evolved into a legitimate BMX brand. Since May, they've released bar ends, a hub guard and are now in the prototype stages with pedals and hubs. Don't be fooled though, Gremlin still works a full-time job and raises his 6-month-old boy Vander. And he knows all too well about the "daily grind," pun intended. I recently caught up with Gremlin to learn more about his intentions and here's what he had to say.
ESPN.com: Who makes up The Daily Grind crew and what's it all about?
Bechtold: The Daily Grind crew is currently Gremlin, Tony Cherry, Troy Merkle, Nicholas Will (SOCO) and Ryan Howard, but we are currently hooking up a few other great riders that will be in around a lot more in the next few edits.
Do the riders have a lot of input on how on how the parts are made?
The riders definitely have a lot of input on the parts. Ryan Howard especially has a lot of input, and I trust all my riders input they have been riding 10+ years wrecking parts the whole time. Anything that can be improved, we try to make it better and easier to work with. The Daily Grind has a lot of awesome concepts in motion but takes time to work the kinks out.
What made you want to start The Daily Grind?
I have worked construction jobs my whole life, as you may have noticed through some of our spot repairing. I wake up most days dreading going to work. I love riding BMX. And I recently started a family. The best way for me to do both is cutting out the construction, so I started a parts company. I've always had ideas of parts to improve BMX or make working on bike simpler, and I had a little bit of money laying around so I made some contacts and took a leap. Hopefully BMX will catch me!
You use to ride for Season Bikes. Did that have a lot of influence in you starting The Daily Grind?
I loved Season Bikes, we all did. Those were a lot of fun years, riding everyday, traveling city to city, partying harder than you, and all around good times. Season definitely has influenced my decision. Unfortunately Season died in my book, so it was time to start something bigger and better.
What else do you plan on putting out?
I have plans for several different parts, like a hub with quick changing spokes, so when you break a spoke you can fix it in a minute compared to 15 minutes -- and cranks that are easier to install and line up. Then there is the other stuff too, like bars and a bigger seat. It just takes time to put out items that are correct. One part at a time. So keep an eye out!
How are the hubs and pedals coming along and when will they be available?
The polycarb pedals with metal pins are on their way along with a front hub with dual chromoly guards that actually protects your spokes. They should both be available in the beginning of fall, in black, red and purple.
How will The Daily Grind parts different from what's already available?
The Daily Grind takes pride in trying to release quality parts that last, and do exactly what they are supposed to do. We aren't jumping on all the bandwagons just to sell popular parts, I want to test the parts for a long time and work out the kinks so riders don't have to. Sometimes a little weight goes a long way with strength -- we aren't going to worry about two ounces if it makes the part 30 times stronger. We don't want our parts to be the blame of a gnarly rail session getting ruined because of a blown up hub guard or bent bars. Kids don't realize that the mass amount of change in their pocket is way heavier than the tiny weight they save.
What are some of your future plans with The Daily Grind?
Future plans for the Daily Grind, I just want to put out epic stuff whether its web edits, DVDs, parts, jams, anything. I just want the Daily Grind to be a great time.
Where can Daily Grind products be purchased?
Everything can be purchased on most major mail orders or on our online store -- also you can request your local shops to pick up our products.