IB13: New Van Dessel Aloominator Alloy Cyclocross Bike & Lighter WTF Steel Bike

2014 Van Dessel Aloominator alloy cyclocross 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…

2014 Van Dessel Aloominator alloy cyclocross bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel Aloominator alloy cyclocross bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel Aloominator alloy cyclocross bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel Aloominator alloy cyclocross bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel WTF Whiskey Tango Foxtrot steel adventure bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel WTF Whiskey Tango Foxtrot steel adventure bike

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).

2014 Van Dessel WTF Whiskey Tango Foxtrot steel adventure bike

The twin top tubes got a bit narrower, going from 19mm diameter down to 16mm.

2014 Van Dessel WTF Whiskey Tango Foxtrot steel adventure bike

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.

2014 Van Dessel WTF Whiskey Tango Foxtrot steel adventure bike

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.

VanDessel.com

Comments

Chris - 09/24/13 - 5:21pm

Sweet bikes. Love the alloy frame. Aluminum got a really bad rap thanks to a generation to young to have experienced the Vitus/Alan rolling sofa frames. For the money, a well designed alloy frame is a great way to go. Cheaper than carbon, lighter than steel.

MulletRacer - 09/24/13 - 8:02pm

I would totally buy a WTF if it wasnt so fugly.

tom - 09/25/13 - 4:53am

Nice saddle on the wtf…brooks flammin’red…yuk.
there must be something better to put on such a bike.

MS - 09/25/13 - 10:43am

That machined drive-side chainstay is cool, but who in the world uses a 44T inner ring on anything, much less a cyclocross bike? In college, I used to run a 42 on the road, but there’s no way I’d do that now.

Zen Bike Fab - 09/25/13 - 11:52am

@ MS
44T ring clearance is for single ring configuration with best chainline. (not inside of double)
Single ring racers are crushing larger gears these days..ouch
~DW

Erich - 09/25/13 - 8:48pm

The WTF frame is sweet!

Generalcuz - 09/26/13 - 11:11am

Looks like Van Dessel has done it again. :) I love his bikes and have put a ton of miles on them. Initially, it wasn’t the cross line up that attracted me but the Jersey Devil HT drew me in with it’s slightly less slack head tube and tight chain stays. I could fly back east, race tight wooded singletrack, then return home to Colorado and hammer long climbs without any reservations that the bike was holding me back. I have ridden my Van Dessel at five Leadville 100′s, Xterra World Championships, several different states, two bike packing trips, and so many rides that I can’t keep track.

I am building up a 2014 Van Dessel Ramble Tamble with belt drive. If it doesn’t break the bank, I could see the commuter being replaced by a WTF. Ride inspired!

K11 - 09/26/13 - 1:25pm

made in usa cx frame, good decision. MY knock about the frame would be, why pf30? A traditional threaded shell is more durable and reliable.

Frame finish – less logos/graphics good. But a black satin/matte style finish, when there is a flood of raw carbon frames with that look. Doesn’t look good to me.

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