About Us

Cycle Source, to some, it’s a world in itself; a mere idea that developed into far more than ever imagined. Within these pages of a grassroots publication is a union of real bikers with above average dreams, gathered together to share ideas and adventure. They are writers, photographers, builders, musicians, electricians, mechanics, and artists recording a lifestyle that controls every one of us and sets us free. Over its now twenty-year history, Cycle Source Magazine has found the potential in unknown writers and made them journalists, it has taken the unappreciated artists that capture our culture from behind a lens and has given them a face and a name. Cycle Source has shared millions of miles with hundreds of riders, delivering their story to its readers thirty days at a time. It has remained current, it has seen the face of an industry change more than once, and it has always stayed loyal to the ones that have been there to open the pages and experience the stories inside. It’s more than an American success story, it’s a testament to passion and persistence. Cycle Source is a magazine for the average blue collar worker written by the average blue collar worker. Not one of us is here because we have to be, we are here because we want to be. And on behalf of everyone past and present that has been part of the 20-year history of Cycle Source Magazine, thank you for that opportunity.

It’s been twenty years now since a twenty-four-page newsprint publication first saw the light of day. Born of a need to tell the story within a sixty-mile radius of the Blue Collar city of Pittsburgh, Cycle Source was a free publication found nestled on the shelves of its advertisers waiting to be discovered by every garage mechanic and street carving V-Twin juggernaut. At the time, Chris owned Fat Cat Cycle Accessories.Motorcycles and the lifestyle that surrounded them had always held a place in Chris’ heart. He felt that while there was always attention to the scenes on the right and left coasts there was a void in the coverage in the rust belt that he had always called home. Other magazines almost had what he needed to feed that literary itch, but there was nothing, to his knowledge, that related to the average man and the sheer drive that the working class builder and rider possessed.

“I had to decide whether I was gonna sit behind the counter and watch the world ride by or if I was going to join them.” – Chris Callen

It’s not just a good-looking statement on the cover of every issue of the magazine, it’s the Cycle Source mantra. While you may not read about an event for two or three months after they occur in most magazines, Cycle Source has a three-week turnaround. No cushion, no safety net, 20 years of the seat of your pants journalism. Headquarters isn’t an office secluded in a back lot of motorcycle wisdom, it’s anywhere it needs to be. Chris and his partner in crime, Heather handle every aspect of the company from new subscriptions to making sure all the bikes are represented in true Cycle Source tradition. Three weeks to fill 116 pages and get it to the printer. The duo spends most of the year slamming on miles, zig-zagging the continental United States in order to represent the magazine and scout new features. With a 30-day turnaround, headquarters is anywhere that provides decent Wi-Fi and hopefully coffee. The office is streamlined to pack up into the van and is cautiously configured wherever it’s needed. In most cases, long after the last bike pulls away from an event and the brooms have scoured the streets the two are harbored up in some hotel room mainlining caffeine in order to make a deadline.

It’s this commitment to a product that has allowed for 20 years of success. One man has seen it through for its flawless consistency, bending to the harshest storm without breaking. But the biggest advantage is being part of a community that is willing to step into the fire to help one another out. There has been and always will be an endless number of contributors to Cycle Source. It’s their love for the culture that feeds the pages each month. The easy road would be for a magazine to answer to a committee that analyzes profit margins and risk assessment in order to properly invest in a guaranteed future quarterly profit margin. The safer road would be to stay home and farm out stories to overqualified college graduates with impeccable hair and limited street smarts. It might be easier to just not care about the quality within its pages or the reader that buys the magazine. But that’s just not the case and it never will be. For 20 years, this magazine has been printed on a foundation of desire, not economic security. Its staff has learned how to produce a better product each and every month. The monster grew every year, throwing roadblocks in its wake but never failing to be reborn by a deadline. Persistence and a love for a culture gave winds to the sails and here we are at the beginning of another 20 years. You either sink or swim during feast or famine, you can either sit at your desk and watch the world ride by, or you can collect your thoughts and go ride with them. Few of us get to choose our path in life, even fewer have an epiphany while standing at the crossroad. But after 20 years it still remains Cycle Source, a simple monthly offering to the motorcycle gods from……………..real bikers

– Jimmy Frizzell

 

8 thoughts on “About Us

  1. I bought your magazine and read it I really love it because it’s not just an Ad magazine like most magazines out there thanks gonna subscribe soon

  2. My heyday with bikes was in the 70’s-80’s… rode choppers, no front fender or brake, extended springer, rigid frame, etc. Heck of a time. I did have a 91 fatboy with a blower i put on it because stock it would not go over 80 mph. Lots of rides, lots of fun. Then life caught up to me… my own (real) brother got killed on his bike, my best female friend got killed on her bike. I sold the fatboy but did end up building a like mid-90’s bike from the ground up… 95 c.i., all aftermarket h-d stuff… axtel, std, typhoon carb, aluminum softail-type frame which i locked into a rigid, added a massive wheelie bar if you would want to call it that, for the reason of mounting a rocketdyne lr-101 rocket motor, propane and other weapons and parts from surplus fighters, etc. took it on one ride. it had no business being on the road… slick dragstrip tires, suicide shifter, etc. scared me so bad that after i got to my destination 6 miles away, i had it towed home.it has now been parked for about 15 years in an old horse trailer. forgot about riding but would never sell the bike… times went by me… idiotic wide rear car tires, 150 c..i. motors, yuppies out of the rear acting bad, argueing about which factory pinstriping was best, strutting around the dealership, made me sick. i left the scene for about 15 years or so and moved to texas, bringing my bike with me and working on it, no intent to ride or use except maybe to use it as a working prop in a real-life movie with Wile E. Coyote, I wrote the script. I call the maker of the bile “ACME”, got all kinds of weapons doomed to fail on it. then i picked up a copy of cycle source and read it, saw a bunch of the old stuff there, the magazine woke up something inside of me… is there still folks like me that detest the new stuff and want to live in the past? when life was great with choppers? apparantly so. So i took off the cover on the bike, blew off about an inch off of it, and back to work on it… it still runs, needs a few very minor things to get back on the road. thanks for have a magazine for the type of bikes and people I used to have, otherwise it and i would have sat still until I was truly dead. your magazine and writers/contributers basically saved my life. not an exaggeration. it breathed life into me once again and i felt the call of the open free air that i have not felt in decades. THANK YOU… mike

    thankss… mike

  3. You guys have George The Painter working with you now? If so I will be ordering a subscription today.

  4. Hello CycleSource,
    I just read your about us page and up until now I have not read anything related to motorcycles that hit straight to what I’m about since I started riding in 06. I’m convinced and I have to subscribe since I can’t enjoy the new looking at magazines or catalogs online. Just doesn’t do it for me, I need the actual pleasure of holding a book/magazine in my hands and having it to refer to it anytime I want. I had so much pleasure in just looking and reading a few articles online I didn’t even realize I had gone through over 100 pages. Totally awesome, and you guys covered a slew of subjects related to bikes and being a biker. Thank you very much and sign me up for a subscription.
    Sincerely, George S. Demetrtios
    AKA: Demetrios “The Machine”

  5. Awsome looking magazine which I found looking at bikes I’ve spent my whole life admiring on Instagram.Looking at past cover issues decided to see how to subscribe,which lead me to read the about us article.Must have.

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