21 Oct Canadian BMX Company History: Jason Fisher & Wasted Life Cycles
For the next installment of Canadian BMX company history, I briefly got a hold of an enigmatic and elusive individual from Calgary by the name of Jason Fisher. He was somewhat reluctant to talk about his undertaking, Wasted Life Cycles. However, we managed to exchange a few questions and answers before Jason disappeared off of social media. I would consider this the ethos of an underground BMX brand. Read on for a short interview with Jason.
Jason, let’s start with the “eureka” moment for Wasted Life Cycles. What was the spark that started it all?
I needed a pair of forks that could both A) Run brakes and B) Accept the newer wider tires I was running. Through contacts, I got hooked up with Gabriel Lang over at Altruiste Bicycles and we began working on a prototype.
Does Altruiste have a history of building BMX stuff for Canadian brands or was this a one-off? I know Gabriel does some pretty neat slopestyle/dirt jump MTB builds; not sure where he stands on BMX.
Gabriel has done everything under the sun. He’s a master. You’d need to query him for the complete answer.
What was the first thing you put out? What was the product you were most proud of?
The forks were first. I’d say the two prototype frames I designed and had manufactured in China are the items I’m most proud of. I still ride #2 today. As I write this, #1 is still going strong in Holland.
Why did you make prototype frames? Did you want geometry or features that weren’t available on a typical production frame?
It was a less expensive way to work out the kinks. I always intended to have them built on this side of the ocean.
What made you go to China for the prototypes? Were you unable to find anyone in Canada? Was it too expensive?
When would you say the brand was at its peak? What signified that peak to you?
As a brand, we never really peaked. Fiscal realities left us at a low ebb. We did provide some fairly trick items for the select few that got their hands on them.
What did you make? I see wide forks with brake mounts, the prototype frames, and the leather seats. Anything else to add to that list?
We also made 5 Heavy Horse forks sans mounts, tons of shirts and hoodies, and a smattering of key fobs and bracelets.
What were some of the challenges to manufacturing in Canada?
Almost too many to list.
Do you feel any of your ideas/designs resonated within the BMX industry moving forward?
The bike world potential remains unlimited. I’m uncertain I’ll remain active as a creator, but I’ll certainly be around as a fan.
At what point did the motivation to keep the dream alive start to dwindle? Is there a chance of Wasted Life Cycles making a comeback?
There was no dream, really. I just saw a void and stepped into it. As for a reinvigorated place in the market, nothing is impossible.
Any standout regrets you wished had gone differently while the company was operational?
None. I did what I wanted to do.
Any advice/warning to anyone hoping to succeed in starting a Canadian BMX hardware company?
Buy low, sell high. I think that’s good advice to anyone doing business regardless of the industry.
How does the scene of today compare to when you were younger?
The equipment is better and the opportunity for contacts is incomparable. I can only see both of these factors improving.
Are you still riding to this day? Has BMX remained as big a part of your life now that you’re not doing Wasted Life Cycles stuff?
I’m still riding, yep. I’ve even done a few custom builds in the last year or two.
Find more articles in this series here.