Luke Parslow just signed on with SE Bikes and after recovering from some busted ribs and a punctured lung, he’s already broken in his new Heavy Hitter frame and is shredding dirt on it. Here’s an in-depth look at Luke’s new setup and a few words about getting on SE…
Name: Luke Parslow
Height: 5’ 10”
Current Residence: “I’m out in Perris, California.”
Sponsors: Rockstar Energy Drink, Oakley, SE Bikes, Vans Shoes, 43 Bolts
Frame: SE Heavy Hitter, 21” top tube. “It is Pat’s—AKA Lumpy’s—signature frame!”
Fork: Odyssey Dirt Fork
Bars: SE Power Wing Bars
Stem: Profile Acoustic
Bar ends: ODI
Headset: FSA Impact
Detangler: Odyssey Gyro GTX
Brake lever: Diatech Dirt Harry
Brake cables: SST
Cranks: Fly, 175mm
Bottom bracket: Fly
Sprocket: “Not sure, found it in the garage.” [Editor’s note: Premium, 30-tooth]
Chain: Cult Half Link
Front Tire: Primo Dirt Monster, 20” x 2.20”
Front Rim/hub: Odyssey, Vandero 2 hub, 36-spoke
Rear Tire: Fit White Wall, 20” x 1.95”
Rear Rim/hub: Odyssey, Vandero 2 cassette hub, 9-tooth, 36-spoke
Chain tensioner: “It’s so old I couldn’t even tell you [laughs]!”
Pedals: Sun Ringlé Zuzu
Modifications: “The only special things I do is cut my bars about an inch, and cut my back axles off so they don’t put holes in my legs.
Congrats on your new ride with SE. How’d that come about?
The SE deal came out just talking with Kris Fox one day, and then he ran it past Todd Lyons. It’s a wild team—some badass riders!
New frame with old parts. Do you like to keep your parts as long as possible?
New frame, old past is the way to go. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! And plus, I like the lil’ bends and twicks the old parts have. The Heavy Hitter frame is similar to what I used to ride, so it was no big change—got comfy pretty quick.
You told me you’ve had your brakes for three years. What else have you had for years?
I got my breaks from Biz like three years ago…still running strong. The only other thing that is old would be the chain tensioner—it’s been with me from Gravity Games days till now, all I had to do was change the bolt a few times.
What parts do you go through the fastest?
I don’t really replace that much, just keep it up with some TLC. Unless it’s so jacked I can’t take it, I’ll just leave it be.
What’s up with the pink grips?
[Laughs] Man, the pink grips are all I had in the tool box. I had a new frame and some bars, but no grips. I searched the whole garage even for old ones, but in the end pink won the race! I just look at it like this: I’m supporting breast cancer at the same time!
I take it you don’t care much about how it looks with this mix of colors—function over fashion.
Yeah, at a time all I used to do was black bikes! With chrome wheels or another dark color, so the last few years I’ve just gone with what stickers I’ve had in my backpack and run with it. There’s nothing bad with a lil’ color uncoordinated sticker kit [laughs], and keep the frame in the lighter colors just for a change of fashion. Naaa, I’m about havin’ fun on my bike—don’t care how tight your jeans are or loose they are!
Do you set you bike up any certain way for specific tricks?
I pretty much set my bike up comfortable for me the way it feels good to get on, yeah. I run my gooseneck for you youngsters—that’s a high seat, but that’s ’cause I like to do flip-bars. It don’t matter anyway, lil’ Kyle B. does flip-bars with a two-inch-high seat. Craziness. So it’s just comfort for me.
How do you place your bars?
My bars are normally just a lil’ forward of my forks, but anywhere from in one with the forks to a lil’ forward works.
How do you like your grips—thick, thin, new, or worn-out with holes in them?
I like grips that are fresh, but worn in a lil’ bit. Havin’ holes in my grips won’t last ’cause I’ll just sit there an rip it bigger while I watch people ride.
What’s your seat height rule?
[Laughs] My seat height rule…man, I think that went out the window when kids lowered it to the frame. I keep it just under my crossbar on my handlebars so it flows with the bike, kinda.
How do you like your brakes to feel?
I definitely like my brakes to be touchy so I hit them and they work—not so I have to use two fingers to pull the brake, but with a Gyro you always got to fix them to keep ’em right.
What tire pressure do you run?
Both of my tires are at 75-80psi. Sometimes 70—just depends on my slow leak!
What about that chain tensioner?
Chain tensioner is just a peace of mind really. I know these days you don’t really need it but, I still see people blow their back wheel sideways, where just one lil’ chain tensioner could have stopped it. I guess it’s my younger days staying with me and also being lazy…my wheel never moves.
Do you always use frontload stems?
Frontload stems are the way—it’s not too high or low. If you like a high front end then I’d go with one of them flip ones you can run both ways.
Are you concerned with bike weight?
I was never worried about weight ’til I built my last bike. It felt really good lighter, so really that’s another reason for not changing parts—it feels the same when you ride a new frame.
Do you build and do all the work on your bikes?
Yes, I do all the work these days. My bike store shut down, so I learned how to mess around and fix everything my own ways.
Any thanks you want to give to anyone?
I just wanna thank Rockstar Energy Drink, Oakley, Vans, SE Bikes, my parents for all the help and support over the years! And everybody I’ve ever ridden at your trails—thanks for opening up your spot!
In case you missed Luke’s recent “Welcome to SE” edit, here you go…