Dave Weagle, inventor of the DW link, the critically acclaimed suspension system used on Turner and Ibis bikes, amongst others, has just been awarded the US patent for the Split Pivot, the worldâ€™s first patented Concentric Drop Out Pivot Suspension system. It’s all very technical but the basics theory is that the rear axle of the bike works as the rear pivot. This allows the separation of the acceleration and braking forces in the suspension as well as giving a very flexible suspension system that can be applied to a wide range of designs. This suspension system is very similar to the Trek ABP system, although it doesn’t seem that this patent is going to affect them at the moment.
More information on the Split Pivot System and a comment from Trek after the break…
Trek told Singletrack magazine “â€œWeâ€™re aware of the patent, and congratulate Dave. Weâ€™ve been making ABP bikes since â€˜07 and we will continue to refine and evolve ABP like we did this year with the introduction of ABP Convert. Weâ€™ll continue to offer a full range of ABP-equipped bikes through our global retail network.â€”
From Dave Weagle: â€œWow, what a trip this one has been. Since I launched the existence of this design publicly in May of 2007, Iâ€™ve been inundated by requests from bike brands interested in partnering up to develop new Split Pivot frames. I feel like Iâ€™ve chosen some great brands to welcome into the Split Pivot family, brands that have their own individual flavor and ideas, and who really complement each other. Itâ€™s been a crazy ride getting the Split Pivot design to this point, and Iâ€™m thrilled for my partners to finally be able to show off that patent number proudly on their bikes. Weâ€™ve been testing prototypes from different brands for some time, and I know the member companies of the Split Pivot family are excited for the world to see the benefits of our collaborations and hard work. Weâ€™ve discussed, designed, tested, and refined, and we feel like the bikes that weâ€™ll be bringing to the market with Split Pivot technology showcase a level of suspension refinement that riders of any skill level can appreciate on the trail. Itâ€™s has been so difficult keeping the existence of new prototype models secret for so long so I am glad that part is nearly over and that itâ€™s time for the world to see how good this design can really be when dialed in. I think that riders are really going to enjoy this system. It allows for atypical main pivot placement that works great for acceleration and bump absorption, and the concentric dropout pivot lets me tune braking forces and leverage ratios to a high degree at the same time. Basically the Split Pivot design helps us to make bikes that are a lot of fun to ride.â€
What is SPLIT PIVOT?
Split Pivot is a patented suspension system for high performance bicycles, where traction, efficiency, maneuverability, and frame stiffness are important factors on the track and trail. Split Pivotâ€™s [concentric dropout pivot], a pivot at the rear wheel axle joining the seatstays and chainstays on a bicycle, is the heart of this new design. Shaped by Dave Weagleâ€™s competition proven engineering and testing process, each unique Spilt Pivot frame is engineered to combine the best performance traits of single pivot and long arm linkage suspensions. Split Pivot is all about having fun on the trail, and each unique suspension layout is designed to offer a ride that will make you smile no matter what your riding style or ability level.
How does it work?
Split Pivotâ€™s [concentric dropout pivot] design separates acceleration forces from braking forces in the suspension. The system reduces excess suspension reaction to acceleration forces, and at the same time reduces excess reaction to braking forces. Braking neutrality can be tuned independently of acceleration characteristics, and suspension feel can be tuned by varying leverage ratio curves in a wide range of options. Itâ€™s no secret that mountain bikers like individuality, and the Split Pivot design lends itself to a wide range of different looking and performing designs. With so many possible mechanical layouts, not every Split Pivot bike looks or performs the same. Shock layout can be vertical, horizontal, floating, or even driven by a rate modifier link. This variability lets Dave tune the suspension performance and feel to each manufacturing partnerâ€™s preference, giving each Split Pivot bike its own personality unique to each brand.
Split Pivot bikes are tools for having fun, and each is carefully engineered to offer a ride that will make you want to be on your bike more often.
Currently there are six licensees of the patented Split Pivot technology worldwide. 2011 Split Pivot models will be available in late 2010 from four USA and International brands. Two of the six brands have already announced their collaboration with Dave Weagle and Split Pivot.
Seven Cycles, one of the worldâ€™s premier custom fabricators, will be offering a full line of Split Pivot suspension frames, including the worldâ€™s first ever custom suspension kinematics. A product of Sevenâ€™s leadership in custom bike fit and design and Daveâ€™s work in human ergonomics and suspension tuning, each Seven Split Pivot frame is custom tuned to accentuate an individualâ€™s specific riding style, ability level, and body type.
Legendary East Coast brand Spooky Cycles will be offering two models in 2011, a downhill race model reviving the Project X moniker and a 145mm trail bike for aggressive XC called Mothership.
Eurobike and the UCI World Championships will see the launch of full Split Pivot MTB lines from two highly respected International mountain bike brands that have yet to be announced.
Weagle to date has designed some of the most race proven bicycle suspensions on the market, and it is expected that Split Pivot will see the same pedigreed success as its predecessors. Riders can learn more about the Split Pivot design, and those with too much time on their hands can download and read the Split Pivot 7,717,212 patent, at www.split-pivot.com.