BY John W.
March 31, 2014, 3:16pm
After looking for some time for the Perfect Commuter, I decided to pick up a 2013 Acme at the end of last year (2013). I’ve had it now for a few months and use it for the daily drive. City streets, massive hills, blistering downhills and crawling traffic, rack time on public transpo, etc.
First off, it simply has gotten better with time. After break-in, it is smoother and faster. I was a bit suspicious of the geometry for the intended use, but have zero complaints. It’s got quick steering but it’s not too twitchy, and there’s plenty of room to work (got a 55, and I’m 5’8″). The carbon fork helps smooth things out in San Francisco city driving, but there is a little compliance you have to get used to, particularly in hard braking. The stock tires have been totally up to the job.
The brakes might get some attention down the road. They are very good, but the feel could be better, and there might be some gain in stopping power with an alternative. I’ll be readjusting to see if that changes anything. The Alfine 11 is, overall, really nice. There are a couple of oddities that are probably due to the relative newness of the approach. The gear spread is fine, though I personally could use a slightly smaller 1st (there are some monster hills here!). Shifting is generally a no-brainer, but your thumb has to be deliberate but not too aggressive, there is a small spread between 5-6 that could probably have been skipped, and a few gears in the middle seem to have a bit more drag. But! As far as I’m concerned the chain is dead. Very quiet, clean, great transfer of power. I had a seal problem with the hub I’m getting worked out, but think it’ll just be better when it’s resolved. Yay.
I’ve put on a new, surprisingly good Charge Spoon (the stock saddle looks good, but is not made for me – at all), lightweight fenders (which took some modification), a clever Cateye Hybrid solar headlamp, a slight riser bar and a small under-seat bag. Next are cork handgrips and a rear rack for the occasional pannier. I’m also considering a clearcoat at some point as the finish is sensitive to, well, just about everything. Part of my commute is on a Bay ferry, and it has to coexist for 30 minutes with, sometimes, a ton of recreational riders, and they’re not generally very careful.
So buy one of these, already! It’s well above most bikes in overall performance; it’s a real spoiler. You still can’t find this level of attention to detail and design, technical prowess and just good sense in component choice in this price bracket.
March 29, 2014, 3:31pm
I picked up my Spot Acme at Wheel Life Cyclery in Okotoks, Alberta, Canada this past weekend. The owners, Chris and his wife, were very helpful showing me how to remove the rear wheel, adjust the belt, etc.
I rode the Acme to work this week in -20 to -30 Celsius with some studded tires and everything worked silky smooth. Looking forward to using my new bike to commute throughout the entire year for years to come. Thanks for making such a great bike!
BY Mike Clark
February 18, 2014, 12:59pm
I rode my new Acme today for the first time with my local bike club Green Valley Cyclists in Henderson NV. The bike was great, keep up with the road bikes with just a little more effort. After the ride I had a line of riders looking at the bike, it’s belt drive and Shimano Alfine hub. Really happy and expect to use the bike when riding with my wife and on moderate paced group rides. Try one if you are looking for a quick sporty cycle.
February 5, 2014, 12:41pm
had been looking for a bike with the acme attributes, and my wife got it for me this christmas. big smile in my face. winter in minnesota has been pretty cold this year, so before taking the bike out i mounted some schwalbe marathon winter tires, fenders and out the door. first a couple of 3-4 milers to the grocery store, then commute 14 miles each way, all in single digit temps. the bike behaves great, kept it composure while going over bumpy icy street, and all the road/ice shatter kept under control by the carbon fork. IG shimano hub smooth operating. just thinking all the miles we gonna spent together put a smile in my face. also the spot brand staff was great answering my questions when researching/deciding what model to choose. THANKS MATES!!!
BY Larry D. White
October 16, 2013, 8:59pm
What a great commuter, my Acme. I am writing this review to thank first Ian Sallee for helping me to see that there are ways to get a great bike even though there might not be any in my area. And secondly I want to thank Ed Wagar from Touring Gear out of Michigan. With his help I was able to get a bike from Spot via Colorado, Michigan, Ohio and finally ending uup here in South Korea. It has been a long process, but the people at Spot and those that distribute are the best. True professionals. Anyway, the bike is great. A smooth quiet ride with great Shimano gearing and a sleek, eye turning look. I installed fenders, a kick stand and back rack to complete my commuter. I have not regretted one choice I made. Thank you everyone
BY Kenley Lawton
September 11, 2013, 10:46am
I saw an Acme on the back of a car in Grand Junction, and I told myself that I had to have one. I have had mine for two months, and I have put about 300 miles on it. It is very hilly in my part of town, with some long, steep climbs, and the gearing is perfect. It rides like a dream; like no other that I have had. It’s so fast that at times I imagine that it can coast uphill. Changed out the stem for a longer one for a more upright ride. I have a rack with one pannier for running errands. I thought about swapping out the pedals, but I decided that they are just fine as they are. This bike is definitely a keeper.
August 5, 2013, 4:51pm
Purchased my Spot-ACME yesterday and rode a bit last nite then took it out for a 20 miler in the dark of night this evening. I bought mine slightly used but very well taken care of and outfitted with ErgonGP5 grips (high rest), Supernova triple-E (3E) LED’s on front and back, brooks leather seat, and Shimano clip(less) pedals. The lights worked great to illuminate the night and there was minimal sound other than the tires on the road. Also installed was an axiom rear rack with removable clip-on saddle bags, the second from top-of-line Lasalle DLX Panatier. I took the bags off after last nights ride because they were not placed well and there was much wheel rub, just need a bit of adjustment. This bike is fast, quiet, comfortable, smooth shifting, and provides the most enjoyable ride I have had on a bicycle. I have only ridden it the 2 times mentioned, but support all of the above comments 100 percent, especially with the Ergon high ride grips. It’s a stealthy Chuck Norris Cheetah if I ever met one.
BY Ian Hill
August 1, 2013, 8:16pm
My commitment to commute everyday no matter what the weather has combined perfectly with a new all weather commuter! I fear no rain imposed chain cleaning regime and love the silent aspect of the bike in motion – either pedalling or coasting.
I’m probably the only Acme rider in my city of Perth, Western Australia and definitely haven’t seen any other belt drive bikes, let alone a Spot Brand.
I’ve got the hang of the Alfine 11 and it is changing beautifully. I added racks, mudguards, lights, panniers and clip pedals, plus my trusty air horn and I’m listening to all the badly adjusted derailleurs, dry and rusty chains and slipping gear noises as others pass me by or I pass them. Definitely puts a smile on my face.
June 20, 2013, 4:10pm
I picked up my Acme at Ride Bicycles in Seattle and I’m loving it. I’ve had a blast fitting it out with saddle/fenders/rack/bag/lights/computer/pedals of my choice. It’s filling all the roles I’d hoped for. It’s a great commuter in hilly Seattle and the belt drive + no mess is worry-free as advertised. I was a bit concerned with having 11 gears but haven’t been left wanting at all. I’ve had no issues with the top/bottom or the ratio in between. In addition to serving me well on my commute, I’ve taken it on a couple longer rides of 45 & 50 miles and been happy.
BY Ian Price Hamby
June 13, 2013, 12:20pm
I was looking for a solid commuter and I found it. 11 speeds are plenty, the belt drive is awesome, so stealth. The frame, especially the welds have drawn praise.
Now I’m looking for a trailer to haul my lazy dog with…so ready to quit driving.
February 19, 2013, 9:34pm
If a Gorilla, a Ninja, a Cheeta, and Chuck Norris were able to have a baby, they would name that baby Spot Acme Norris.
At 6’4″ and 250 lbs, the Acme has been my daily ride for the last 2 years and has performed above expectations in all weather conditions. Being a big guy, I break stuff. I only had one minor problem with the internal Hub that resulted in Spot replacing it at no cost or unreasonable effort on my part (These folks are great). Other than that, I have wiped down the rotors once and she has been running like a champ since.
Nice work! Can’t wait to buy my next bike from you.
February 19, 2013, 9:34pm
I am thrilled to say I just took possession of my Spot Acme yesterday in Vancouver BC from Kissing Crows Cyclery. ( what a bike ) I must say both Drew Patterson – Sales at Spot and Josh – Owner Kissing Crows, were both fantastic to deal with. I originally contacted Drew thru Spot’s web site to ask for advice and delivery of an Acme, he could not have been more helpful we exchanged emails well beyond business hours.He then contacted Kissing Crows to let them know I would be calling and to ready to expedite my order. Within a little over 1 week I had my Acme. Josh was absolutely great with fitting my bike. I can highly recommend both with confidence to anyone, Spot and Kissing Crows, amazing customer service and what a great product, a winning combination.
Thank you to both!!!
BY Ian Price
February 19, 2013, 9:32pm
What a great bike. For a year or so I’ve been thinking of putting together a bike like this one. But there’s no need. You’ve already done it. My only quibble is that it’s too pretty, but I can overlook that.
The gear ratios (roughly 25 to 100 gear inches I think) are spot on. It’s light enough to overtake the occasional road bike too, if you don’t mind the puzzled looks. The Acme could also be a pretty good light tourer.
Had a ride this Vancouver morning at 4 deg. C with an occasional drizzle. Brakes and Shimano shifter are easy to operate with winter gloves. No worries about grit on the rim brakes, chain and derailleur with this bike. A quick hose off at the end of the ride, and it’s like new.
Thanks also to Kissing Crows Cyclery. Very helpful. They stock lots of goodies. And I was surprised that there is virtually no Canadian price “adjustment”.
Thanks for putting together the right bike.
BY Chris P Hill
October 19, 2012, 11:40am
How can you honestly describe riding a near silent bike ?
After the first 25 miles, replacing the handlebars with ones with a higher riding position was required to ease my back. Ergon GP1 handlebar grips are a wise choice too, as are Schwalbe Marathon Plus, thorns are not the problem with these tyres. The bike has performed well over the last few weeks since taking delivery from Tim Johnson at Sideways Cycles. The ride is crisp, slightly hard on farm gravel tracks but smooth on tarmac and cycle paths. The silence means that wildlife can be a problem, it just doesn’t hear you, a bell is an essential to ensure a clear path !
Admiring comments on the polished aluminium frame and interest in the belt drive – still a rarity here in the UK. The choice of the Shimano 11 speed is better in this case than the more expensive Rohloff.
So am I pleased with the bike ? The answer is an unequivocal YES !
(Pardon some of the spellings but I am on this side of the pond !)
Chris P Hill
August 23, 2012, 9:34am
I wanted to thank you for helping me to get back into a Spot Acme
after my 2011 was stolen on 36th & Hawthorne. Spot has been terrific
since I got it. The very first ride was the WNBR celebration, and I’ve
been using it almost everyday since on my commute to work. It’s light,
agile, and has the fastest stopping distance of any bike I’ve ever
had. Again, this has been the best inner city urban cycle and I can’t
say enough about its riding position and ease of maneuvering through
everyday commute traffic. The belt drive really catches the most
casual observer’s eyes. Spot does a great job with amazing style!
June 1, 2012, 1:16pm
This is one fun bike! I’m a lifelong mountain biker (XC & downhill) and started road riding a few years ago. While my solo street bike is a full carbon rig, I wanted an all-purpose pavement & bike path rig to ride around town, dirt roads @ camp, and most importantly, tow our toddlers around on their Weehoo trailer bikes.
In a year of riding street, dirt roads, and in between it’s needed a single adjustment to the shifter (cables, they stretch..) Other maintenance has been near zero.
When I set out to find the Acme, I was looking for an upright road bike with disc brakes, AL frame/fork of reasonably light weight, and a zero-maintenance drivetrain. Most similar bikes are either far heavier or low volume(expensive) and lack either discs or a well engineered drivetrain.
This was the perfect feature set.
I love the Gates Belt Drive/Alfine combo. The shifting isn’t quite as crisp as what I’m used to on a Rohloff Speedhub, but the trigger style interface and smooth silent belt drive make each ride a joy. I’m a tall & heavy (215#) the belt never skips a beat.
The light weight is perfect for solo road rides, and the upright position make it more comfortable than most pure road rigs. I’ve done 20+ hilly miles hauling a napping Weehoo-bound 4 year old. If you’ve multiple road and mountain bikes around you’ll probably be riding this most of the time.
Spot was great in helping me source the Acme in my size and connected me with a dealer that stocked just what I needed when no local dealers could be found.
My wife is looking for something just like the Acme too.
Thanks for making a great product!
BY Jason Van Driesche
April 24, 2012, 12:10pm
Wow! Just got on the road this past weekend on my new Acme. Hands down, it’s the fastest and most responsive bike I’ve ever ridden. (Granted, I’m not a carbon fiber racing bike kind of guy, but still.) I somehow feel stronger when I am on this bike. Even with panniers with 15 pounds of gear in them, I press on the pedals and the bike leaps forward. So much fun!
I upgraded to a front generator hub and added some Supernova lights, plus a rack and fenders. I’m also going to change out the pedals for some of those ones with angled straps on them (Power Grips, I think they’re called). This is to address my one complaint with the bike: the pedals. They’re slippery and clunky, and they’re the only thing on this bike that makes me hesitate.
Otherwise, it’s a joy. Worth every penny.
December 7, 2011, 1:54pm
Just wanted to let you know the bike turned up yesterday and I put it together last night and rode to work today.
Wow, what a awesome bike, I’ve ridden and owned heaps of bikes including 6kg carbon weight weenies but this is by far the sweetest ride, the combo of the belt and the alfine 11 is very very nice perfect commuter. And the finish on the bike is excellent very high quality.
Also the packaging was amazing Ive never seen so much care taken in packing a bike, needless to say it turned up in perfect condition and was a breeze to assemble (even at 7pm at night after a beers…) once again very impressed.
Thank you so much for organising this and going to all the trouble, you have one very very happy ozzie customer, look forward to being a customer for some time.
BY Jerad Harbaugh
September 26, 2011, 4:31pm
I’m the type of person that researches everything to the point of nauseam. My goal was to find the perfect urban bike that would allow me the opportunity to ride in style while tugging my one year old in a Chariot. My average bike ride is roughly seven miles, but occasionally will go for ~20 miles rides. I wanted a bike that I could ride in flip-flops, have a comfortable upright posture, yet still not be weighed down by a 40 pound beach cruiser.
I decided to go with the Spot Brand Acme over other vintage urban bikes because of the performance gains from having higher end components – can’t beat the belt drive and disc brakes, let alone the reflective tires and the lightweight frame. That said, I did update the bike with some of my own special touches – bells and whistles so to speak. The brown leather of my Flyer Aged Brooks Saddle compliments the Ergon GP1 BioKork grips. The Bamboo of my Portland Design Works Payload Rear Mount Rack absolutely compliments my Bamboo Reflective Kleen Kantine water bottles which are dually mounted (and featured) on the handle bars. I can’t forget to mention the flask and flask holder mounted in the standard water bottle holder inner-frame location. I still need to update the lights (front and rear) and perhaps a saddle bag for my toolkit, but all in all the bike looks unreal.
I ride this bike with immense pride. I’ve yet to see a cooler and more unique urban bike. I highly recommend buying this frame.