Volagi Ups The Game with a Hydraulic Disc Brake Equipped Road Bike
Not one to rest on the laurels of having the world’s first full production disc brake road bike, Volagi is already working up a hydraulic disc brake road bike. Even better, it’s not just a concept, it’s planned for production with the goal of having it available at retail by late spring/early summer 2012.
It’ll come with the TRP Parabox mechanical-to-hydraulic converter and carry a modest (TBD) price increase over their current mechanical version.
They’ve modified the frame slightly to provide a smoother housing run, and they’re considering making the same changes across the board so that they have one frame that’ll work perfectly for both mechanical and hydraulic brakes. If so, and supposing component manufacturers drag their feet on making hydraulic road levers, you could get the mechanical version and not worry about upgrade compatibility down the road.
We should have some pics of the new rig at Interbike soon -pic here is mechanical model- but more info after the break for now…
The plan is to stock it with the TRP brakes that come with the Parabox, which has dual action calipers that move the
rotors pads in from both sides simultaneously. Volagi co-owner Barley Forsman says this reduces or eliminates any brake flutter versus the Avid mechanical brakes coming on their current bikes. He says it also comes out lighter even with the converter, lining it up to drop even more weight (and look cleaner) when SRAM, Shimano or Campagnolo come out with a hydraulic road bike shift lever.
On top of all that, they’re building up a frame without any cable stops that’s made specifically for Di2. Combine that with their internal brake cable routing and their swoopy frame and you’ll have one really sleek, swoopy bike. At present, the plan is to offer the Di2 frame as an additional option, but they’re testing a few prototypes to see if they can get their production down to a single frame design that would accommodate any combination of mechanical (disk, shifting), hydraulic or electronic.
For current (and future frames), they’ve redesigned their seatpost clamp to reduce any creaking. This was one of the small issues we had during our review, and Forsman says the new design eliminates the problem and that they’ll be sending them out to existing customers to replace the original ones.