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Dan Hannebrink, BMX and MTB Inventor Dead at 79

January 3, 2019 by  

Hutch BMX "Superbike" from 1988
Dan Hannebrink, who was heavily involved in the BMX-offshoot, Gravity-Powered Vehicle racing scene in the late 80s, among bringing-forth many other cycling innovations, died this week at his home in Big Bear Lake, CA. He was 79 years of age.

Dan worked with Hutch Bicycles in 1988 to design the “Superbike,” (above) which had a custom faring and 64-tooth front sprocket to carry it to speeds exceeding 50MPH on the snaky, downhill streets of So. Cal.

Hannebrink had already been innovating on two wheels for a good-long-while before that, developing the “mono-track,” a belt-driven motorcycle, an early rear-suspension Mountain Bike design from 1986, which PinkBike showed in its tribute story by Richard Cunningham (link below), and other choice bits for the unconventional go-fast crowd.

Dan soon moved from the BMX gravity game back to MTB, where he continued innovating and competing 15 years, or more. No question that the cycling world will miss his forward-thinking ideas and contributions to two-wheeled-tech.

Pull magazine editor, gOrk Barrette remembered Dan yesterday, telling Bicycle Retailer and Industry News “Dan Hanebrink was one of those ‘mad scientist’ types, always one to break the mold — no matter what the discipline of cycling.”

—Mike Carruth

Editor’s Note: If you want a little backstory on the BMX Gravity Powered Vehicle space in which Dan innovated, here’s a video from spring of 88, where the BMX community came to Palm Springs to do battle, for fun and profit (at 53 seconds, you get a little interview with gOrk, by some “Max Headroom” type).

Links

Tribute to Dan Hannebrink (on PinkBike.com)

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