2012 Bianchi Highlights – 29er Mountain Bikes, Anniversary Pista & More
Bianchi’s Interbike booth focused on road and track bikes and, as usual, featured some gorgeous fixed gear rides. Above is the Super Pista decked out in Italian colors to celebrate the country’s 150th anniversary of their unification as a single country. Even the chain, spokes and bar tap get in on the party.
Quit yo’ trackstandin’ and sprint past the page break for a close up on the very carbon fiber-looking triple hydroforming of the Impulso and their first ever 29er mountain bikes from Europe…
The Pista Sei Giorno (6-day bike) continues on with matching white tires, rims, chain, post, stem and bar.
The Impulso joined the lineup earlier this year as a 2012 model. The top and head tubes are hydroformed separately, welded together then hydroformed again as a single piece. The result, Bianchi says, is a stiffer overall bike. Visually, it makes the front end of the bike look very much like carbon fiber with smooth shaping and no visible welds at that junction.
The other tubes are welded together normally.
Rear stays are curved to keep it laterally rigid while soaking up some of the bumps. Their carbon fork has an 1-1/8″ straight alloy steerer.
Their Dama women’s versions are now available in the Infinito and Via Nerone models.
Bianchi has finally entered the 29er category with two new hardtails for 2012. The Methanol SL 29 above is the carbon fiber top end model. The frame has quite an interesting mix of construction techniques. First, it has a mix of 40T, 30T and T700 Toray carbon fibers. All that’s woven and formed using TWT (Triple Wall Technology) where three separate walls are molded together, creating a tube with a central wall running lengthwise to stiffen it up.
From there, they run external carbon reinforcement tubes around the headtube and along the top- and downtubes to further reinforce the structure. Bianchi says this makes the frame incredibly laterally stiff and efficient.
Just visible here at the top is the Ti-Net titanium mesh that’s bonded to the bottom of the downtube to improve impact resistance. The Methanol uses an integrated seatmast, but it’s perfectly round and maintains a 31.6mm inside diameter so you can always cut it down and insert a standard seatpost if you want.
The seatstays and chainstays are shaped to provide a bit of suspension without weaking the lateral stability. They’re woven with glass fibers in the carbon to reduce vibrations. The chainstays are asymmetrical to help keep a tight wheelbase and accommodate smaller gears typically run with 29ers. Dropouts are full carbon fiber with post mount brakes. Build specs are no joke, either, and two different frames are available (click to enlarge):
The Jab 29 is the alloy version and no less shapely. The frame is a triple butted, hydroformed 7005-series aluminum with a tapered headtube and race geometry.
The brake mounts are formed directly into the dropouts as one piece, which should keep things pretty rigid.
The Jab’s geometry is pretty close to the Methanol, with 5mm longer chainstays and a slightly shorter ETT and 0.5º slacker seat angle on the M and L sizes: