Jonathon Welsh and Mylene Lefebvre inside the new shop for ION2 Progression Suspension, located on 10th Street across from the Invermere Medical Clinic. Photo submitted

Suspension ascension

ION2 Progression Suspension moves into downtown commercial space

Jonathan Welsh and Mylene Lefebvre own ION2 Progression Suspension, a business dedicated solely to the expert repair, maintenance, upgrades, and custom tuning of suspensions for mountain bikes and motorized toys.

The couple have been running the specialized business out of their home for the past two years. That was a good launching ground as they worked to grow the business from the safety of a cost-effective location while working at other jobs. Almost all their work was shipped in, thanks to a solid internet presence and a niche service so rare they have had suspensions shipped to them from as far away as the Yukon and Manitoba. At least half their business comes from bicycle retailers, who will send them customer bikes with suspension issues to fix.

The company has now grown to the point where Mr. Welsh was ready to leave other employment to commit full-time to ION2, and they opened a commercial space in downtown Invermere just over two months ago.

The new space not only gave room for ION2 to continue servicing bicycle suspensions and invite drop-in business, but also to expand into motor sports. They can work on dirt bikes, sleds, quads, motorbikes and more.

At ION2, owners can book in same-day service, and they keep inventory on-site to get bikes back to their riders as soon as possible.

“We know how important it is, that people don’t want to be left without their bikes,” said Ms. Lefebvre.

Mr. Welsh and Ms. Lefebvre know first-hand the importance of keeping up with repairs and maintenance on bikes and motorized equipment.

“We’re really into mountain biking ourselves, and we used to do a lot of motorbike as well,” said Mr. Welsh.

Mr. Welsh and Ms. Lefebvre were both part of the original membership that started the Columbia Valley Cycling Society, and helped sanction many of the trails in the area. They also used to race. Mr. Welsh has been in the bike maintenance business for more than 20 years, and helped to build many of the bike trails at Panorama Mountain Resort when he worked there. Ms. Lefebvre works as a Union Cyclist International Commissaire – a referee for UCI bike races, overseeing registration checks, course inspection, monitoring incidents, verifying results, and more.

They are fully committed to providing the best suspension service they can. Mr. Welsh attends workshops and travels to the companies they service to keep up to date on the best techniques to service each type of suspensions.

“I just took it on my own and went to visit all the main brands that I service,” said Mr. Welsh. “There’s a way to just fix suspension. But to do it to the level I do it, it needs to be taught by the guys that actually built it.”

So, what are the biggest issues the couple sees when it comes to bike and motorized equipment suspensions?

“Lack of preventative maintenance is mostly the main issue,” said Mr. Welsh. Especially for motorbikes, they find every time they touch a suspension, it’s way past due the recommended service schedule.

ION2 is located at 1A – 1005 7th Ave. Invermere (around the corner from the old Bicycle Works shop). They are typically open Monday to Friday by appointment. But starting this Saturday, June 29th until August 24th, they will also be open Saturdays from 9-12 p.m.

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