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.
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.
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.
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.
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.