Director of Engineering
ENGINEERING BROUGHT BACK TO ITS ROOTS
Meet Sam Pickman. He’s obsessed with bikes. He was the kid you’d see racing his bike through the neighborhood every day, the kid at the local bike shop who’d wrench to trade for bike parts, and the kid who grew up to earn a degree in mechanical engineering so he could keep working with bicycles as an adult.
After graduating from the University of Rhode Island in 2004, Sam was hired by Specialized. Moving quickly through the ranks from technician to manager, he learned product development, 3D models, shapes, fits and clearances — everything that readies a bike for manufacturability.
But over the years of rapid growth and company expansion, Sam experienced the segmentation of jobs, along with massive outsourcing of projects. Personal touch was diminished and the process became more like an assembly line than an employment of craftsmanship.
When offered an opportunity to work with HIA Velo, Sam felt the project was right in line with his personal goal to return to hands-on bike engineering. Involvement from start to finish aligned with Sam’s belief that designing bikes is an evolution best studied in-house, by one team.
Sam’s target for engineering a bike MADE HERE. “Ultimately a bike that’s FUN to ride, totally rips, corners well, sprints well – has overall performance. The bike you immediately feel comfortable on but still feels like a race bike. It needs to be stiff, it needs to track; but when you get up close, it has the look and feel of something higher quality than ever before – a bike that stands the test of time.”