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Mantis Cycles

Richard Cunningham started making bikes in 1981 and founded Mantis Cycles a year later in 1982 1), creating many unusual bike designs.

He was also a long time editor of both Mountain Bike Action and pinkbike.

I did all the welding on those frames, often while speaking on the telephone with customers. Richard Cunningham theproscloset

Ranchita Verde
R.C. in the “Ranchita Verde”, the Mantis delivery vehicle.

1982 Mantis Sherpa

Beautifully fillet brazed, with an very nice double crowned fork, it looked like a Ritchey from a distance. The filed fillets, custom stems and dishless rear wheels set it apart as uniquely Mantis.

Mantis also produced a TIG welded version of the Sherpa called the Overland.

1982 Sherpa
1982 Sherpa secondspincycles

1983 Mantis XCR

Fillet brazed XCR, one of only a few made.

1983 XCR
1983 XCR secondspincycles

1984 XCR

In 1984, Mantis introduced “composite” frames, with an aluminum main frame and a CroMo screwed and glued rear triangle. This was the beginning of many unusual frame designs which became Mantis' true trademark.

1984 XCR
1984 XCR secondspincycles

1985 XCR

Composite frame.

1985 XCR
1985 XCR mtbr

1987 Valkyrie

The Mantis Valkyrie. Simply stunning.

1987 Valkyrie
1987 Valkyrie secondspincycles

1988 Valkyrie

The first elevated chainstay bicycle. This was quickly followed by the Yeti Ultimate and the Nishiki Alien2)

1988 Valkyrie
1988 Valkyrie flickr

1989 Valkyrie

Non-original, upgraded parts which work well. And a great paint job.

1988 Valkyrie
1989 Valkyrie mombat

1990 Valkyrie

Cool bike - but check out that Hite-Rite dropper post with an IRD remote.

1990 Valkyrie
1990 Valkyrie theproscloset

More Mantii

A bit beyond the current timeline. Some of Mantis' most famous creations.

1992 Valkyrie
1992 Valkyrie EC mombat
EC := elevated chainstay

1993 Pro Floater
1993 Pro Floater mombat

1996 Screaming V
1996 Screaming V mombat

Production Notes

[1]. Early production numbers unknown. They are not extremely rare, but all are very collectible. Only 10 1983 fillet XCRs made. secondspincycles

[2]. Produced 500 frames per year in the late 1980's. pinkbike

Richard Cunningham was a design consultant to Nishiki and had “Cunningham Design” stickers attached to many of their models, allowing his ideas to become mass produced.
mantis/start.txt · Last modified: 2022/08/18 17:05 by mtbtimeline