Posts Tagged ‘bicycle frame design’

Canali: Complete Build

February 28th, 2011


Here’s a a brief edit of Saturday afternoon’s tour along the northern-most part of Taiwan’s north coast (北海岸). 100km reduced to around 55 seconds. It’s a great training ride with a lot of flat sections, several kilometers of undulating coastal hills. The halfway point is on the East coast and involves an overall moderate climb. It includes, however, a wickedly steep section of 23% in one part. The weather can be quite fickle in this part of Taiwan at this time of the year, so we really lucked out. It is a miserable ride on showery or drizzly days. On days like these, though, it is pure cycling pleasure.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

This is the first build incorporating the Canali frameset. The weight, minus pedals, comes in at 7.9kg. The key components, seat post, stem, and HBs are all alloy. Only the fork is carbon. The wheelset is Primavera Azzo, weighing in at around 1550 gm.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

The challenge with this frame was achieving interesting, OS tubes without unduly adding weight. We have achieved this through employing precision-butted tubing formed from AL-7046.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

This same model will be on display at Taipei Cycle 2011 coming up the week after next. Joining it within the next 2 or 3 days will be the second version of blue Rondone, and Cesena VL. All the bikes are due to go off to the photographers on Wednesday for the new catalogue and for updating www.primavera-cycles.com.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

What is not so clear in these photographs is the grey ghosted decaling, particularly the underside of the down tube’s “PRIMAVERA”. The effect is also visible on the stays and the top tube.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

Underexposure.

taiwan high end bicycle frame component carbon alloy

“Correct” exposure.

Canali Frame Components Ready; Festino Frame Design Minor Modification

November 16th, 2010

We are not quite there with the Canali whole-frame prototype just yet. But it’s not far away. We decided to modify the initial top tube prototype since the lateral channels were way too pronounced.

high end bicycle frame components carbon alloy

You can see the original here on the left although the photo does not do justice to the depth of that channel. Its way-too-deep impression shouts “overkill” very loudly indeed. The tube supplier provided us with a re-worked prototype, visible on the left. The channel has been reduced to half the depth of the original and dials into the vision that we were looking for with that. It involves a deft manipulation and adjustment of the jig to achieve this affect, a technique we hope to provide some coverage of in the near future.

high end bicycle frame components carbon alloy

These are the definitive final versions of the seat stay (top) and chain stay.

high end bicycle frame components carbon alloy

The front triangle will look something like this, except without the pronounced channel on the top tube’s underside. You can say that half the battle is now over with basic geometries having been decided upon. However, the decal design and color combination is yet to be finalized. We have not been all that impressed with tentative presentations from our designer as yet. He designed Rondone whilst working within a small design company. He is now freelance and has much more scope to explore possibilities. We are moving in the right direction there but are still a good deal short of the mark.

high end bicycle frame components carbon alloy

This is a prototype for the candidate fork. The finished model will be 3k, but we have still to make a final decision on whether or not we go with this model.

We have just finished a new production of Festino. The more popular color/size combinations were getting very low, so a new production was necessary. This went against the trend which was towards the downside as we move into the slow season. It’s been a counterintuitive year actually, with January and February, traditionally quiet months, breaking all records for us. And then we experienced one of the quietest Julys ever.

high end bicycle frame components carbon alloy

This is one of the new production. It has just arrived back from a local painting workshop where each frame has been treated in preparation for painting. We do not have our frames painted at that workshop since the quality does not qualify. They do a very good job, actually, but not consistently good enough: applying decals requires a fine eye and a steady hand and a fiercely dedicated commitment to the elimination of air bubbles whilst retaining the decal’s integrity. Any shortfall in this dedication means when we QC each production, our rejection rate will be a lot higher and the frames will have to be reprocessed before being moved into stock. Clear-coat imperfections are virtually unavoidable, but decal problems mean delays. Anyhow, the preparation is a fairly straightforward process and each is now ready to go.

One frame design modification for this new batch of Festino has been a repositioning of the water drain-holes. During production it is necessary to cool frames and the water needs to be able drain away freely during drying. Previous models had this located just forward of the weld on the inside of the seat and chain stays. Shifting the drain-hole as such eliminates any potential weakness at this point.

Even on her Sunday rides — when she’s not out being the shutter bug at cycling events or training rides — the boss is rarely not on the job. Here a bike shop is canvassing various build options for a customer who is in the market for a Festino or a Cesena.

New Frame Design Rethink plus New Model Cesena and Rondone Mk II

September 10th, 2010

New Frame

There has been a major rethink of a number of factors concerning the new frame. It’s not that change is the only constant, but things have re-entered a fluid stage again. We almost had it in focus, but have retraced our steps a little. That’s the way it goes  in the evolution of possibilities, a constant interchange between the actual and the possible.

frame design, frame manufacturing

This was the original design. But after extensive discussions with two engineers (and the polite and fruitful “interchange” of ideas between them [they're brothers]) extensive modifications are coming. Firstly the head tube. It needs fine tuning to be more distinctive. At the moment it’s just an (OS) head tube. It needs to be more: a statement about the bike as a whole and the brand.

Design is holistic, and although the approach appears to be piecemeal ie. discreetly focused on the down tube, then the head tube then the chain stays and so forth, the final effect will be — must be! — appreciated as a whole. It’s a little like a painting. You know. . . when you step back after being up close and losing the integrity of the overall message in a closeup look in which you see the brush-strokes. Stepping back you can survey the work as a whole–that’s when it really comes together. And, of course, the dynamic performance of the frame is in terms of the whole frame-in-motion (in concert with the critical COM of the rider).

That’s what we were doing today with various frames that incorporated some interesting elements. The elements on their own are important; but their meaning changes depending on the context of the other elements. Of course, strength and durability are essential properties. Given that these are built into the design, the range of possibilities that are enabled, predicated on basic structural integrity, is large.

frame design manufacturing chain stays

Holism rules. But here is the piecemeal approach which is also important — Sabinna is checking out chain stay possibilities. There are  few options available that had been put to one side earlier, but which are now back under consideration. Anyhow, one element that has been locked in is the decision to go with Al 7046 as the grade of aluminum that will be used.

frame design down-tube design frame manufacturing

The down tube musings : there is the hint of a moebius strip about this, with a transverse movement of the ellipse from a vertical orientation to a lateral one.

The fork design will be unique. It will be full carbon with the steerer connecting into the fork crown male to female respectively. Previous designs featured male fork crown to female steerer. The new design will be stronger. It also features a broad blade from the OS crown, on the rearward edge tapering down whilst curving forwards to the dropout — the leading edge drops vertically from the crown. There is something baroque about it — we’ll post a photo in good time and let viewers make up their own minds about that.

This is not an early prototype of the Terminator’s tibia, as far as we are aware. It’s the likely candidate for the seatpost with its convenient seat-clamp arrangement.

Anyhow, these issues should all be settled within two weeks and we are still on track to have a prototype by November or early December at the latest. The complete bike will be ready to go before Taipei Cycle 2011, although it’s there it will have its official launch.

Cesena

This will be re-realized with a completely new color and decal design. The carbon seat stays may remain. We envisage that the seat post may be integrated, to a degree anyway. The carbon fork will be similar to that of the new design discussed above — still searching for and contemplating the appropriate  name for that design..hmm.

Rondone “Mk II”

Same geometry and range of frames. New color (variation on blue)  and fork and handlebar / stem combinations — no integrated HB/stem with this. It will bridge the gap between the new alloy model and the current Rondone which will remain in the product range well into next year.