Friday, September 11, 2009
The 'Slabtown Cycle Works' name and its various logo's appear on a multitude of Icon jackets. We've never really described what this name means or why we use it. So for those of you who stay up at night wondering wtf is Slabtown - read on.
Specifically Slabtown refers to a geographical location in northwest Portland. It's a mixed use/light industrial area north of Lovejoy running out to around Vaughn. The area got its name due to the 'Slabs' of wood that were often stored in the yards of it's poor immigrant inhabitants. A 'Slab' is the scrap of wood that remains when a log is trimmed down from a cylinder shape into rectangle. Nowadays the slab is turned into sheet product such as OSB or MDF, but back in the day they were coveted as cheap firewood.
So why does Icon use this name? Simple - our office is located in the heart of Slabtown - a mere block away from the Slabtown bar and discotheque. Slabtown Cycle Works is the custom bike building arm of Icon consisting of a group of Icon employees that comes together on nights and weekends to fabricate custom motorcycles. Though the Icon brand is most commonly associated with sportbikes - any genre of bike is fair game at Slabtown. We work on everything from sportbikes to street trackers to rat fighters to frisco chops. But really - Slabtown is a more a mentality than a location. A DIY low-dollar busted-knuckle approach to custom bike building. Anybody can be Slabtown. Anyplace can be Slabtown. Build whatever bike you can with whatever tools you've got. The result will be your child and in the end that is what counts.
So next time you see the Slabtown patch on the chest of an Icon jacket you'll be in the know. That knowledge and a $1.80 will get you a coffee at Starbucks.