Editors note: This post is written in future tense because we are at the very end of our R&D journey; we have not yet begun production, but soon will!
One of the most common questions we hear from people at rallies, expos, and shows is, “Where will this trailer be made?” The question always comes with a slight concerned look, like they’re pretty sure they know what the answer will be, and they aren’t going to like it. It’s clear they expect the answer to be somewhere in Asia or perhaps south of the US border. Where it will be built is a question we love to get because the answer is always a pleasant surprise to the asker.
Here’s the first clue…
And here is your second clue…
the Pasq ADV1 Will be Built in CHICAGO!
Pasq is based in the Ravenswood neighborhood of Chicago—from the beginning of our journey to bring the best single-wheel adventure-motorcycle trailer to market, we have always planned to make our products in the city we call home. And due to restrictions on where manufacturing can take place within the city (it seems no one wants a noisy factory with delivery trucks coming and going next to their home…), we are currently looking for a place to assemble the ADV1 within the city. But that location will be somewhere in the Chicago area.
Where Are the ADV1’s Components From?
In the map above, you’ll note that there is one big pin for Chicago, and three smaller pins in the map. The big pin is there to represent not only that Chicago is our home, but also where the vast majority of the components for the ADV1 will be made; most are from about an 80 mile radius of Chicago. Many of the frame components will be made in Blackstone, IL by our amazing partners at Alloy Specialties. Other CNC parts (suspension linkages, trapezoid hinge arms, etc.), powder coating, anodizing, and more will be supplied by vendors in greater Chicago.
But unfortunately not all the components can come from the Chicago area. Our first challenge was to find a wheel maker we wanted to work with. The western-most pin in the map is in the gorgeous state of Utah, where Warp9 Wheels are headquartered and made. Our ADV-specific, 17″ x 2.5″ wheel is going to be made there.
Traveling east from Utah, you will see a pin to the north and west of Chicago, in the Land of 10,000 Lakes: Minnesota. Northern Minnesota is the home of TeamFAST Suspensions. And that is where our insanely high-quality, M-10 Assault shock will be made.
Finally, all the way out on the East coast of the US is a pin stuck in the smallest US state: Rhode Island, which is the home of Denali Electronics. The wonderful people at Denali basically adopted us at a BMW MOA Rally when they realized we didn’t have a wiring harness on our prototype. They told us they’d love to be a part of the Pasq team, and they offered to design and build our wiring harnesses. And given that we knew we would need help, we were thrilled!
The ADV1 Will Be Largely made in the USA
In today’s global economy, it’s nearly impossible to make a 100% American product of any complexity. Leading ADV trainer and thought leader Bret Tkacs drives this point home in one of his recent videos, where he lays out how many countries’ products are in bike brands like KTMs, BMWs and Harley Davidsons (The answer is many, many more than Austria, Germany, and the US, respectively).
For example, we don’t know where our fasteners will be coming from. The ADV1 will be screwed together (not welded) for strength, lightweight-ness, ease of repair, and ease of assembly. We will use a lot of bolts and nuts. It’s unlikely they will all be from the US.
Also, the tire we’ve selected to ship on the ADV1 is the Bridgestone Battlax BT46, which is made in Japan. We selected it for it’s amazing pneumatic trail properties that were explained much better than we ever could by Ryan Fortnine. And I have no idea where our inner tube will come from, but I am nearly certain it will not be from Chicago.
Manufacturing with the Environment in Mind
Why did we choose to have so many of the components for the ADV1 made in the Chicago area? The answer is pretty obvious in the wake of the collapse of so many companies’ supply chains during the COVID pandemic. We want to be able to jump in the pickup and go get the parts if need be. We want to be able to know and visit the people who make the parts that make up the ADV1.
But a second, equally important reason why we are keeping our supply chain close to home is to try to keep our carbon footprint, waste, and water usage as low as possible. The shorter the supply chain is, the less diesel is needed to move our stuff around and less packaging is needed. We have made a commitment to the environment through the 1% for the Planet organization, and we have our eye on becoming a Benefit Corporation as well.
Sweet Home Chicago
Like most people, we are proud of our hometown. Chicago is often the butt of jokes and low opinions, but generally from people who have never set foot in any of its diverse 77 neighborhoods. Despite the jokes/opinions, Chicago is at the top of many “best city” lists. With nearly 200 years as an industrial hub, it’s the perfect place for Pasq to make its trailers. Come visit us some time!