Materials

From our lust-worthy Carbon CC frames, to our sustainable packaging, we sweat every detail of making a bike to give you the best riding experience possible.

Santa Cruz Hightower 3 front triangle with the top tube decal visible

CC Level Radness

Working with our exclusive manufacturing partner we are able to make the highest grade of toughest, lightest, best handling carbon fiber frames (what we refer to as "CC Carbon"). But it’s also at the CC level that the wheels, drivetrains and suspension specced on these models are of the highest quality. The frame and components together create the highest performance complete package that delivers the best ride quality.

Santa Cruz Hightower 3 front triangle with the top tube decal visible

CC Level Radness

Working with our exclusive manufacturing partner we are able to make the highest grade of toughest, lightest, best handling carbon fiber frames (what we refer to as "CC Carbon"). But it’s also at the CC level that the wheels, drivetrains and suspension specced on these models are of the highest quality. The frame and components together create the highest performance complete package that delivers the best ride quality.

CC Level Radness

Working with our exclusive manufacturing partner we are able to make the highest grade of toughest, lightest, best handling carbon fiber frames (what we refer to as "CC Carbon"). But it’s also at the CC level that the wheels, drivetrains and suspension specced on these models are of the highest quality. The frame and components together create the highest performance complete package that delivers the best ride quality.

Santa Cruz Hightower 3 front triangle with the top tube decal visible

C Carbon for All

For our "C Carbon" frames we use the same proprietary processes of the highest spec frames in order to retain the same legendary strength and stiffness our CC frames are known for but there is a slight weight penalty. We achieved this by using a different grade of carbon material that results in a minimal weight gain.

Santa Cruz Hightower 3 front triangle with the top tube decal visible

C Carbon for All

For our "C Carbon" frames we use the same proprietary processes of the highest spec frames in order to retain the same legendary strength and stiffness our CC frames are known for but there is a slight weight penalty. We achieved this by using a different grade of carbon material that results in a minimal weight gain.

C Carbon for All

For our "C Carbon" frames we use the same proprietary processes of the highest spec frames in order to retain the same legendary strength and stiffness our CC frames are known for but there is a slight weight penalty. We achieved this by using a different grade of carbon material that results in a minimal weight gain.

Laying up the carbon fiber on a bicycle head tube
Laying up the carbon fiber on a bicycle head tube

The Carbon Lab in California

We really want to get our hands dirty at every step of the way. Not only do we own our own carbon frame manufacturing facility but we have a composites laboratory in California. It's here that our enginerds can test new materials and develop better processes. The team work on layup developments for every bike we make, rapidly build samples for testing, experiment with new materials, prototype wild ideas and test an array of techniques. It's from this lab that the Reserve wheel program, our own carbon bars and the Danny Mac Trials Bike came from.

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

The Carbon Lab in California

An engineer adding pieces of carbon fiber to the rear triangle of a hardtail bicycle frame
An engineer adding pieces of carbon fiber to the rear triangle of a hardtail bicycle frame

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

We were among the very first companies to really specialize in producing carbon fiber MTB frames. We developed new methods of production, quality control and product features that not only proved the material but led the way for the industry to make carbon fiber as the gold standard. Before that few people believed it was strong or reliable enough. But when we showed a bunch of surprised journalists how tough it really was and then followed up with making the first carbon-framed World Cup winning race bike.

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

The Carbon Lab in California

The Tallboy 5 Matte Taube headtube, cables, and fork
The Tallboy 5 Matte Taube headtube, cables, and fork

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

Things that we regard as standard these days like in-molded cable routing tunnels, one-piece construction, continuing fibers around key areas, net shape lay-up, and total fiber compaction were things we pioneered. But to take our expertise to the next level we felt we had to own the means of production. It’s not the easiest, cheapest or some would say smartest thing to do to start your own factory (it's very rare that production isn't outsourced in the bicycle industry), but it’s important to us to be in control, to manage the processes, and just know how it all works. This means we can be constantly improving our products, which means our riders get the very best bike.

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

The Carbon Lab in California

Laying up the carbon fiber on a bicycle head tube
Laying up the carbon fiber on a bicycle head tube

The Carbon Lab in California

We really want to get our hands dirty at every step of the way. Not only do we own our own carbon frame manufacturing facility but we have a composites laboratory in California. It's here that our enginerds can test new materials and develop better processes. The team work on layup developments for every bike we make, rapidly build samples for testing, experiment with new materials, prototype wild ideas and test an array of techniques. It's from this lab that the Reserve wheel program, our own carbon bars and the Danny Mac Trials Bike came from.

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

The Carbon Lab in California

An engineer adding pieces of carbon fiber to the rear triangle of a hardtail bicycle frame
An engineer adding pieces of carbon fiber to the rear triangle of a hardtail bicycle frame

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

We were among the very first companies to really specialize in producing carbon fiber MTB frames. We developed new methods of production, quality control and product features that not only proved the material but led the way for the industry to make carbon fiber as the gold standard. Before that few people believed it was strong or reliable enough. But when we showed a bunch of surprised journalists how tough it really was and then followed up with making the first carbon-framed World Cup winning race bike.

We've been doing this long enough to know what works

Skybox: our exclusive carbon frame manufacturing facility

The Carbon Lab in California

The Danny Bike

Danny Mac does things that no human or bicycle should be capable of. So we put our carbon lab to use to build one of the most advanced carbon bicycles ever constructed. The story of Danny MacAskill’s custom trials bike is the perfect example of how we use our in-house carbon lab to experiment with advanced materials and new construction techniques, to build prototypes and eventually integrate into our production series bicycles.

Danny MacAskill riding off a ledge on his Santa Cruz carbon trials bike
Danny MacAskill riding off a ledge on his Santa Cruz carbon trials bike
Carbon Fiber channels inside a mountain bike frame cutout
Carbon Fiber channels inside a mountain bike frame cutout

Totally Tubular

Things that are regarded as standard these days like in-molded cable routing tunnels, one-piece construction, continuing fibers around key areas, net shape lay-up and total fiber compaction were things we pioneered. See that tube that runs down the inside of the frame? It's something we pioneered a few years back to take the PIA factor out of internal cable routing. It's a little thing, but it illustrates our rider (or their mechanic) focused attention to detail.

Beautiful Inside and Out

Totally Tubular

An engineer inspecting the rear triangle on a hardtail mountain bike frame
An engineer inspecting the rear triangle on a hardtail mountain bike frame

Beautiful Inside and Out

The cutaway frame you're looking at is a standard frame pulled right off the production line. Note how clean and smooth all the plies lay and how it's free of resin globs and filler material—it's this kind of flawless construction that makes us confident that you should be confident in our bicycles, and what separates our frames from everyone else's. We may be known for our paint jobs but rest assured our frames look just just as good on the inside as they do on the outside.

Beautiful Inside and Out

Totally Tubular

Carbon Fiber channels inside a mountain bike frame cutout
Carbon Fiber channels inside a mountain bike frame cutout

Totally Tubular

Things that are regarded as standard these days like in-molded cable routing tunnels, one-piece construction, continuing fibers around key areas, net shape lay-up and total fiber compaction were things we pioneered. See that tube that runs down the inside of the frame? It's something we pioneered a few years back to take the PIA factor out of internal cable routing. It's a little thing, but it illustrates our rider (or their mechanic) focused attention to detail.

Beautiful Inside and Out

Totally Tubular

An engineer inspecting the rear triangle on a hardtail mountain bike frame
An engineer inspecting the rear triangle on a hardtail mountain bike frame

Beautiful Inside and Out

The cutaway frame you're looking at is a standard frame pulled right off the production line. Note how clean and smooth all the plies lay and how it's free of resin globs and filler material—it's this kind of flawless construction that makes us confident that you should be confident in our bicycles, and what separates our frames from everyone else's. We may be known for our paint jobs but rest assured our frames look just just as good on the inside as they do on the outside.

Beautiful Inside and Out

Totally Tubular

Metal Ain't Dead

While carbon gets all the talk these days, we still have a soft spot for aluminum bikes. With our alloy bikes, you get all the ride performance of our other bikes but at a lower price point. The full suspension models still feature the legendary VPP™ platform, meaning incredible capabilities off-road, bombproof one-piece front and rear triangles and serviceable links and axles.

An Aluminum Chameleon Mountain Bike Frame in a repair stand
An Aluminum Chameleon Mountain Bike Frame in a repair stand

Cardboard

All the bikes we sell in North America are built right here in our Santa Cruz, Calif. factory that’s powered by a massive solar panel array on the building’s roof and over our parking lot. What’s more, we eschew as much plastic and foam packing materials as possible in favor of more easily recycled paper and cardboard—we have been doing so since we started making bikes in 1994, and are constantly iterating to this day. These are little things to be sure, but they all add up.

A stack of Santa Cruz cardboard Boxes
A stack of Santa Cruz cardboard Boxes

Reserve wheels

Reserve rims are the most durable, highest strength-to-weight carbon bicycle wheels on the market.