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$20K will buy 40-year-old brand

Published April 26, 2013
Hi-E high-flange track hubs

NASHVILLE, TN (BRAIN) — John Meyer is putting all the remaining inventory, parts and prototypes of Hi-E up for sale. His father, Harlan Meyer, launched the brand with an 80-gram front hub in 1971. Harlan died last November at age 89.

“My main interest is in seeing the business in sympathetic hands.  I'm only asking $20,000 for it now so I don't have to move it out of his old house in Nashville, which will probably be sold in a month or so,” Meyer said.

Meyer and his brother Clyde worked with their father at Hi-E, though John’s full-time job was at Harper’s Schwinn Cyclery in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Most of the inventory is unassembled hub parts—undrilled flanges, hub bodies and axles. There also are water bottle cages and a variety of other Hi-E components. Harlan is unsure about what to do with two of his father’s Cosmopolitan frames he made in the early ‘70s.

“They were referenced by Cannondale in their fight with Klein over fat aluminum tube technology. Cosmopolitan frame tubes are made from rolled aluminum sheet riveted together,” he said.

“And they have oversize press-fit bottom brackets and headsets, low-profile cranks and the low-profile pedals. Remember, this is the early ’70s. My dad was so creative and the Cosmopolitan showcases so many of his innovations,” Meyer said.

He has fielded some interest from the Smithsonian in adding one or both Cosmopolitans to its collections, but nothing has been finalized. He would like them to end up in a museum rather than in a private collection.

Interested parties can reach Meyer at (865) 696-4880 or


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