Nice looking bike, almost my size
1 point. I think you may have trouble fitting a carbon seat to that topper. It's not just the Bonty style clamp. That can be amended but the set back for your current fit would be outside the allowable clamp zone for carbon rails. Do you have your cleats all the way back?
Shifting works perfectly. Re braking, this is my first time on ZG, so not as solid as Chorus/SR, but I doubt the cables are to blame. Theoretically they should work better as there are fewer bends(see attachment).
Re structural integrity, I'd rather have the holes in the front of the head tube than the top tube and down tube. When cable goes through the side at an angle, you have to cut a long oval hole in the tube (it's actually huge when you take off the screwed-on cable stop). Imagine a 1-inch long hole right in the middle of your top tube (I'd go WTF). The hole in the front, however, is not even a quarter of an inch. Structurally this has to be better.
Re aero benefits, the cables going into the headtube makes a smaller and more compact "egg beater" than otherwise. Shorter cable housing is used, the rear shifting cable is also slightly shorter (I haven't weighed but probably in the 10g range). Downside is the slightly stiffer handling due to less cables in the front. If you ride no-handed, then it does feel a bit weird and getting cable length just right is a bit harder for the mechanic.
Maintenance and repaires should be the same. If anything, you might be able to recycle some otherwise useless old cable housing as you don't need very long cables for this bike.
The topper is different from the Woodmans and Tunes, in the following ways:
1. I feel a bit uneasy about the "scale" type clamp so went with the Bontrager style. This is probably 40g weight penalty right there. That said, the weight still compares favorably to a Trek ISP topper, for example, by a modest margin. Of course I can build one with the same top clamp as Tune and come to 80g-ish (thinking about that right now).
2. Construction is harder due to the shape and design of the carbon piece. So like every aero seatpost out there, the oval shape is the challenge (didn't Scott delay the delivery dates by several months due to this?)
3. I like the clean looks of an internal topper v. external. This is the main reason I am doing this over Tune/Woodman etc.
4. The expander is pretty puny because its role is basically to prevent the unit from being pulled out. The vertical support is from the spacers or the mast itself. The tune/woodmans must clamp harder to also hold vertical position, hence more stress on the mast.
I am trying not to model after a major brand, because when I first started talking to the factories, one of the first questions asked was: "which one do you want to knock off? The R5 or the EPS? We think R5 is promising" that sort of thing... so I am pretty fed up with that.
Strangely, my decal maker (who also makes the "C50" "C24" decals for SHIMANO) borrowed my bike for their booth at the Taipei Show recently and got some favorable comments on the paintjob from "white guys". But let me do some more research and thinking on the graphics. One thing is certain -- I know very little about fonts and it shows.
But the good thing is, there is always room for improvement, and improvement will come.
Fourthbook wrote:Can you elaborate a bit on the internal cable routing: cost, weight, shifting/braking performance, maintenance/replacement of cables implications as well as any effect on structural integrity of the frame caused by the various routing holes?
How is your topper working versus off-the-shelf versions (Tune, Woodman, etc.)?
I echo the dislike of the graphics. Maybe pick a frame w/graphics you most admire and pattern yours after it...
Here is a picture of it in ridable mode at Tour de Taiwan. I am indeed at a loss right now as my lovely carbon-railed SLR is sitting there collecting dust.
Also attachment for last post is here.
I by no means am an expert on anything but when it comes to graphics, and life/bikes in general, I certainly like things to flow. What I think might look great would be to mimic the flow/curve of the fork with the seat tube. So how the back of the fork flows from the dropout to the crown do the same with the seat tube to the top tube. Also, make the Spike logo much much smaller and put it down by the dropout. Then add your falcon logo to the top of the fork. Remove it from the down tube. Use a slash to cross the A in Falco that is the same color blue. Make it an abstract slash like a quick brush stroke or something. Falco on the top tube might look better towards the front (also wont get covered by the rider). However, you might consider the top tube a better place for Peregrine and put Falco on the seat tube.
this is just the musing of a former art student with too much time.
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It has the H2 geo......one step racier than a hybrid bike
billspreston wrote:Quick and dirty... Keep the type bold and simple, the frame has promise. Let me know if you'd like some help...
Looks great. I'll also do some mock-ups if you and Elviento don't mind me throwing my graphic two cents in as well.
BTW, a little hickup last week on this issue--I paid a designer a deposit for some graphics work and then she's been giving me BS (everything costs extra now). Imagine BAUM charging you another $800 for 1 1/8 headtube, after you already paid the deposit. At this point I will just need to consider that a write-off. But in Asia it's often hit and miss. This goes back to the point I was making on the time it took to track down a proper factory.
Hasbeen, thanks for the description, pls feel free to attached a rendition as Bill did. I am still trying to get a grasp of the idea but vaguely I sense something quite nice indeed.
Ergott, let's also keep that test ride idea alive. I don't run into 53cm Nag rider everyday:-)
Bill, thanks for your drawings. This is consistent with revelation over the last 2 days -- the letters need to have more coherence as if they anticipate movement, fitting for narrow tubes and anticipate movement. Like the current "SCOTT" logo on their FOIL. The font I used seems to have an ancient Egyptian flavor. Let me chew on this a bit more.
Brian, love to hear your thoughts as well.
billspreston redid my logo and I'm very happy with his work.
I still need to get a few things done (including testing at that certain lab in Germany), and make moulds for 4 more sizes. I will need to do my home work on geometries for those. Good thing is I can probably run the Evo/A2J rear brake cable on size 55 and above. For commercial reasons, I will have to reconsider ISP, tall headtube, and whether I can keep the cable routing if I lose ISP (a regular seatpost will not allow cable to go through). It's pretty messy.
Re business model, here are some of the options:
1. The Chinarello model or the Dengfu/Hongfu/Pedal Force model -- there is simply NO way I can compete on pricing -- it will be suicide. If I use really cheap carbon cloth and other materials and make lots and lots of them, then I can possbily get close. To give you an idea, the best quality decals I can find costs roughly 17 times more than the cheapest I can find, just to set up the "mould" if that's the word.
2. The modest branding model but online sales only -- need to run some ads, try to set up some test rides with a few magazines here and there, give out a few free samples, maybe sponsor a smaller local team, at least get some racing feedback and local exposure. This model, I can probably manage. Pricing will probably be similar to Ritte and NEO, etc., if not slightly higher. I believe Canyon started this way although they are one of the big boys now.
3. The intermediary branding model -- make a reasonably big push for international publicity, build a proper staff of a dozen employees, register trademarks worldwide, set up distributor network and possibly dealerships. This is going to require some capital injection. Pricing will have to be $3K+.
4. The Neilpryde model -- just throw money around and pray for great things to happen. Word in the industry is that over the past two years, they have actually sold (at retail prices) a ridiculously small number of frames. Won't work for me.
5. The big boys' model, -- sponsor a proper Div 1 team, go all out, and pricing will have to be high to support this. Say I sponsor Cavendish today, this thing will go on shelves at $5K tomorrow. Need big investor. And big risks.
6. The boutique model -- Crumpton, Sachs, etc., since we don't have a master craftsman image to back it up, it wont really happen either.
The bottom line is, if I make 1000+ frames, my cost per frame will be close to Pinarello/Ridley/Wilier/Cervelo/Scott models using similar carbon fibers. If I make 50,000 frames like Giant, etc., costs will be lower, and SRAM will then be able to sell me Red groups at $800 (just saying...). So business model will have a bigger impact on pricing than manufacturing for sure.
PS: I am in the legal/financial field and if money is the sole priority there are a lot other opportunities. So it's important to keep this thing fun.
MajorMantra wrote:BrianAllan wrote:Looks great.
+1. With the altered graphics it's fantastic. Roughly my size too - if you ever came to market this, do you know what sort of business model you'd be looking at?
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