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September 12, 2018

Profile Racing’s Legacy: Week 35, 2003.

Back in late 2001, Profile Racing released the Mini Hub. It’s purpose was to take the place of the Classic, High Flange Profile cassette hub.

In the beginning, given the name (“Mini”), this style hub was interpreted solely for use on younger racer’s bikes. At this point in time, even though cranks and drive trains had been downsized, the idea of a bigger hub shell remained the standard: Higher flanger, shorter spoke = more rigid.

But in April of 2003, Roots Jam went down in Orlando Florida (on the freestyle side of things). Here, the 10t driver was released into bmx freestyle, dropping drive trains from 36t down to 28t.

And when we came back from Roots, our designers went to work to see if it was possible to produce something smaller. And within days, a prototype of the 9t chromo cassette driver (using the same, existing driver bearings and spring/pawl pocket interface) was made.

On the left, the standard 9t driver. On the right, the 13t cog carrier it evolved from.

On the left, the standard 9t driver. On the right, the 13t cog carrier it evolved from.

Testing went into effect immediately, using a shrunken down version of the classic Profile Imperial, and by late 2003, the beginning of the shift to a 25/9 gear ratio was taking off.

This also marked the end of the “Mid-School” period.

In 2003, our three staple colors: Black, high polished, and Anodized Gold.

In 2003, our three staple colors: Black, high polished, and Anodized Gold.

With reduced driver and sprocket weight, in addition to a lot less chain being used, bmx freestyle started to shift to lighter bikes. And this is where Profile Mini Hubs took off:

— The Front Mini Hub came with an aluminum axle. Good for use at the parks, trails and light street riding. Titanium bolts were an addition, perfect for those who didn’t ride pegs.

–The Rear Mini Hub was already substantially lighter than the Profile High Flange hub. We soon added a 14mm titanium axle and 9t titanium driver option to the mix, making, at the time, the lightest cassette hub set on the market.

–In 2003, we added Gold to our inventory in addition to classic black and polished. These three colors would remain, for the next 15 years, our three staples.

To this day, though we’ve gone through many slight improvements (updated/improved shell material, updated flange direction for spoke tension, updated internals), the Profile Mini hub, with a large percentage being built with 9t drivers, remains solidly, as our staple.

Little has changed over the past 17 years: Our three staple colors of the Mini Hub.

Little has changed over the past 17 years: Our three staple colors of the Mini Hub.

September 12, 2018