What are the innovations in MTB frame building?
1978/79 First MTB specific Bikes (Breezer I, Ritchey, Pro Cruiser)
Erm...Cooks bros was making cruisers back in 77-78, and while they were considerd "bmx" bikes the geometry was certainly more mountain bike friendly then most anything being produced back in the day. There were other cruisers as well, Champion, Gary LittleJohn, S&S, and SE.
Craig Cook first learned about materials and design from his perfectionist/inventor father, and after graduating from college with an Industrial Arts degree in 1972, began Cook Bros. Racing. The company pioneered. the sport of Bicycle Moto-Cross in Southern California with their Alpine Mountain Bike, which was one of the first mountain bikes in the world. (It is on display in the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in Crested Butte, Colorado.) Other innovative Cook Bros. Products included sealed bearing BMX hubs and the 7075 billet aluminum crank arm. The company is still a holder of two United States Patents for component designs. Continuing the tradition, in 1987 Craig started a new company called C.D. Products producing a line of mountain bike frame sets.
In fact, the first "mountain bike" may have been way earlyer.
Maybe it was John Finley Scott, who was probably the first mountain bike enthusiast in the United States. In 1953 he built what he called a " Woodsie Bike", using a Schwinn World diamond frame, balloon tires, flat handlebars, derailleur gears, and cantilever brakes. John was more than twenty years ahead of his time, and while he remained an off-road cycling enthusiast, at the time there were not many others who shared his passion.