Setups: Sean Burns

"I also like my bike to resemble myself a bit... So cant be running anything fat."

27 Jun 2016

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx Portrait

Photos courtesy of Eclat

Sean Burns is a modern day legend, whose name is synonymous with roof drops, riding fast, hard slams, and leather jackets.  Burns has never been one to jump on a trend, nor does shy from calling out corny bullshit.  Both his riding and personal style set him apart, earning him a loyal following and multitude of respect for being unapologetically himself and a madman on a bike.  Let's have a look at what the deadman is riding these days and why...
Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx 1

"Brakes. Cant live without them or i'd be dead. I get hit by too many cars when I ride brakeless."

Frame: BoneDeth Motorbone

Fork: éclat Stream Fork

Bar: BoneDeth Deadman 8.75”

Stem: éclat Burns V2

Headset: éclat Cargo

Grips: éclat Burns signature

Seat: éclat OZ Pivotal Slim

Post: éclat Torch 15mm offset pivotal

Cranks: éclat Tibia 175mm

Bottom Bracket: éclat Mid 22mm

Pedals: éclat Surge CNC Alloy

Sprocket: BoneDeth Speedfreak 28t

Chain: éclat Diesel

Rims: Bonedeth Biodome 48h

Front Hub: Bonedeth PH48

Rear Hub: Bonedeth PH48

Tires: éclat Ridegstone 2.20”

Pegs: Bonedeth Diet Grinders

Brake Lever: Odyssey Monolever

Brake / Cable: éclat Unit Brakeéclat Core Cable

You've been on éclat since the very beginning, how did that all end up happening?

Right as WTP announced the launch of the brand I remember looking at the catalog online and thinking "This looks rad...". A few days later Brian Tunney (The first éclat TM) called me and asked if I would be into riding for éclat. It was the same week the new Metal Bikes DVD came out. I was hyped and ready straight from the start, and it's been my favourite and most honourable sponsor I have ever had. 

What is the most your bike changed in that time? 

That was in 2008... I went from a 34 pound bike with a 45 tooth sprocket to a 28 pound bike with a 33 tooth sprocket. My bike really hasn't changed too much since then. Tibia cranks are still the best crank hands down. I still run mostly the same geometry of parts. My bars went up half and inch high and that’s it ha-ha. 

How bummed are you that you aren’t running a 44t sprocket any more?

I'm not so much bummed, I love my bike now. I just had a hard time letting go of the early midschool look. I loved how burly BMX bikes looked. It looked tough. Someday when I'm older I’ll put together a midschool bike for the fun of it. 

Being a rider who looks for the “bigger” setups rather than riding curbs and flat rails, would you say you are harder on parts than your average rider? How long do parts last you?

I actually ride a lot of curbs and flat rails. I ride everything; I just don't film on everything. But yes I do ride larger sized obstacles more often than a modern street rider that is going higher to flat more often. To be honest I never break bike parts anymore. Just body parts.  It used to be the other way around! I used to be super hard on rims and cranks. I've actually never in my life broken a frame, but probably over 40 pairs of cranks before I got on éclat. 

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx 4

It’s fair to say your grip is something unique. What went into the design process and what features were important to you to have in your own grip?

I originally said I wanted it thin and to feel like old Jive Handles from the mid 90s. I can't remember exactly who designed the grip, but I was handed an email with the design and the diameter and material was all I cared about. The patterns don't matter because they wear in anyways. That is if you ride a lot. 

Do you still melt your grips with a lighter?

Yes most certainly. I roast a grip over an open flame and shave it down so that it appears a month ridden in. 

Your signature Burns stem recently got a revamp. What was important to you to have in a signature stem and what are some of the revisions from the original version?

Importance to me is anti slippage and trust. When I'm jumping anything over head height and beyond, I want to be able to trust that my stem wont slip or break. A revision we made was beefing it up a little more. Initially the first stem (designed in 2009) had to be light due to BMX politics and the "light craze" that had started around that time. So on the new stem we strengthened it up in areas that needed it most. 

You run a topload stem but you’ve always flipped it, what’s the story behind this?

I have done this since 1995... Some of my favourite riders growing up were east coast trail riders from Pennsylvania. They all rode standard topload stems flipped. It looks rad. It steezes the bar turn on tables and honestly it is better for landing to flat. your bars seem less likely to shoot forward if you land front heavy. 

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx Lifestyle
Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx 10

Approximately how many roofs has your current stem been sent off?

That is impossible to answer. I have had this stem currently for close to a year. i would say maybe 100 roofs? But never mind the amount of stair sets and other drops. That is like asking a fat kid how many Peanut Butter cups he's eaten in a year!

Despite doing more drops and gaps than the vast majority of riders, you run our Ridgestone tire in the narrower 2.20” size. Why do you stick with a narrower tire rather than something bigger like a 2.40”?

I was running WTP Grippin and Feelin tires in 1.95 for the longest time. I recently went to the Ridgestone which I like because it still has a thin base. I don't like big tires because they make you bounce. If you jump the gaps I do with fat tires you bounce like a basketball. The base is so wide that you legitimately bounce up or go into a little wheelie. Thin tires are also a lot faster! Fat tires are slow and sluggish with lag. I also like my bike to resemble myself a bit... So cant be running anything fat.

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx 12

You’re part of a dying breed of riders still running metal pedals. Explain your love affair with the Surge alloy pedals? Why do you dig those things so much?

Best metal pedal ever!! I don't trust plastic. I've seen riders snap them. And I hate the flex on gaps. Your pedals flex and to me that is terrifying. Also plastic bike parts are bad for the environment right? 

Explain this strange metal lever and cable pulled device strapped to your bike, is it a throttle?

Brakes. Cant live without them or i'd be dead. I get hit by too many cars when I ride brakeless. 

Weirdest experience your bike has been in?

Probably when this bum filled in all the holes with some type of canned spray cheese. 

Sum your bike up in 3 words.

Metal, fast, and mean. 

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx Victory

éclat Burns V2 Topload Stem

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx Topload 1


- Material: 6061-T6 aluminum, full CNC machined

- Reach: 50mm

- Rise: 23mm

- Stack: 32mm

- Colours: black, high polished, dark blue

- Standover Height: 8.8"

- Features: Unique offset rear for improved clamping / can be ridden flipped

- Weight: 326g

More info

éclat Burns Grips

Sean Burns Setups Dig Bmx Grips 1


- Material: soft kraton rubber

- Hardness: 25°

- Size: 155mm X 29mm

- Colours: black and gum

- Features: includes éclat nylon corkx V2 barends  non-parallel shape designed for hand comfort / subtle contact areas for control / flange removal marking

- Weight: 100g (3.52oz - .22lbs) (per pair without barends)

More info


Sean Burns Playlist

'Sen Buns' gets Down and Dirty

"Metal, fast, and mean."

Sean Burns is supported by Official DIG Partners: éclat


The Dave Voelker Podcast



Ruben Alcantara: The Master Re-Mastered

His etnies Forward and Grounded Parts Reborn

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