First Look: Radical Culprit Legend Disc Brake Triathlon Bike Unveiled
Looking for the seatstays? You won’t find them on Culprit’s new disc equipped Legend Triathlon bike. Triathlon is no stranger to crazy looking bikes, all designed in an attempt to cheat the wind while offering as much comfort as possible considering you still have to run a marathon after riding the thing 112 miles. The no-seat-stay concept goes back to at least the Zipp 2001 and 3001 frames, which are still considered some of the fastest tri bikes ever made. Along with various SoftRides, Zipp imitators, and bikes like the single-stayed Quintana Roo, the seat stays seem to be the first thing to go. The Culprit may however, be the first bike without seatstays that employs a somewhat traditional seat post.
In addition to the radical frame design, the Legend also features a host of compatibilities that might just make this bike, well, legendary.
To build the frame, Culprit uses a full carbon monocoque design fabricated from Toray 800 carbon. If you haven’t figured it out already, the Legend is not UCI legal, meaning it is a triathlon specific bike. The Legend was developed in cooperation with Trigon Cycles and Josh (Culprit) has worked closely with them to develop a new stem, aerobar and seatpost. In order to make the Legend as accommodating as possible, it is both rim and disc brake compatible with the front fork able to run discs or TRP TTV rim brakes, and the rear compatible with TRP TTV, Shimano Direct Mount rim brakes, or disc brakes which are mounted via carbon post mounts. Like most of the tri bikes today, the Legend has completely internal cable routing including the ability to run hydraulic hoses inside the frame.
Rear frame spacing is set at 135mm, though it will include alloy adapters to run 130mm spaced wheels. Most tri bikes are equipped with adjustable horizontal dropouts so you can tuck the rear wheel in as close as possible to the frame and accommodate different wheel and tire set ups, and the Legend includes that ability as well. Although the Legend seems to only offer two different offsets, rather than full adjustability.
TRIGON COCKPIT COLLABORATION
To design the front end of the bike, Culprit collaborated with bike and component manufacturer Trigon, to out fit the Legend with a slick aerobar set up. The Trigon aerobar/stem that was developed for the Legend will be available for sale aftermarket at some point, though you can use the Shimano PRO stem/bar on the bike as well.
In order to eliminate the use of a compression plug, or a headset top cap of any kind, the Legend will be speced with Acros’ The Clamp. The Clamp is an upper headset assembly that uses a reverse expanding wedge design to take out the slack in the headset rather than using a standard top cap mounted design.
A COMPLETELY NEW BIKE
Obviously, one of the big design features of the Legend are the disc brakes. The Legend is certainly one of the first to do so, though we just found this Matrix F18 that was supposedly released a year ago with discs, so it’s not the first.
Somehow, the brake hose is making it from the frame, through the fork, and to the front disc brake caliper. Even though that’s not all that difficult to do, it is made even easier since you can bend hydraulic lines however you want without affecting their performance. There were a lot of questions after the original post about the aerodynamics of disc brake on a tri bike – to which it was noted that both Orbea and Cervelo have had promising results with aero testing tri bikes with disc brakes, and it’s only going to get better. Factor in the easier hose routing, better rim designs, and better modulation during braking and you can see why disc brake tri bikes have potential.
HYDRAULIC BRAKES REPURPOSED
Since there aren’t any dedicated tri-bike-disc-brake-levers on the market (we’re not sure if Magura’s RT6TT Hydraulic levers could be hooked to one of their disc brake calipers), Culprit looks to have modified some Ashima PCBs to fit.
The lever mounted to them looks huge, and may offer bigger leverage for better braking. Seeing as how the bike is not available yet, we’re betting the production version will see something different (they certianly don’t look very aero) – we’re told there may be a rideable sample of the Legend
as early as this year’s press camp.
By the end of the year, the Legend should be available in 5 sizes – 49, 52,54,56, 58cm frames.