IB13: New Van Dessel Aloominator Alloy Cyclocross Bike & Lighter WTF Steel Bike
The Van Dessel Aloominator is an all new model that’s made in Portland by Zen Fabrications.
It’s a butted 6061 aluminum tube set that comes in around 1350g. It’s today’s aluminum, not the ultra stiff straight tube stuff you might be thinking of. The middle sections of the tubes are really thin, so it’ll take a bit of the edge off.
Founder Edwin Bull says he likes the springy ride quality of modern alloy frames, and this one suits that just fine, particularly with the new carbon FSA Vision Metron wheels and low pressure in the tires. They’re not shown there, but will be available as part of their custom build options.
Check all the details and actual bike weights below, plus the completely revised Whiskey Tango Foxtrot…
It’s hand polished where the logo goes, then masked and blasted before being anodized. That gives it a sweet matte finish with semi glossy logos. There are no decals other than the ‘Made in Portland” sticker on the seat tube.
The seat tube tapers to a narrower tube for a 27.2 seatpost, but a 34.9 (outside) at the bottom to improve BB stiffness.
A CNC’d chainstay yoke gives clearance for a 44tooth inner chainring while still letting you cram up to a 40c wide tire in the frame. The cable guide has both slots, but only needs to handle the front derailleur’s cable. That means no pulley wheel required on the back of the seat tube to redirect a top run cable.
It’ll run a PFBB30 bottom bracket. Rear brake and derailleur hose/cable both run along the top of the top tube and down the seatstays.
It’s $1,599 with frame, fork and headset. The cantilever version will come with the ENVE fork. Bull spec’d the disc brake frame with the Easton carbon disc brake cyclocross fork because he says it’s a bit lighter and he really likes the way it rides.
The new WTF gets wider tire clearance, up to 2.1 with ample space on either side. They used a new CNC’d yoke to gain most of the extra room.
They switched from an EBB to a PFBB30, letting you run a normal geared setup or order it with the Beer Components EBB and run it singlespeed or belt drive (there’s a break at the dropout).
The twin top tubes got a bit narrower, going from 19mm diameter down to 16mm.
Overall, the changes dropped more than a pound from the frame. It’s a 4130 double butted tubeset that comes in at $699 for frame, fork and headset. They looked at doing stainless steel, but it would have added a grand to the price with little functional improvement.
Front center is about 3cm longer than their racy cross bikes, giving a bit more toe overlap clearance for fatter tires. This thing is meant to be super versatile, from monster cross to gravel grinder to just a fun city bruiser.
Also check out the recently updated Ramble Tamble mountain bike from DealerCamp.