Search results for: "project 1.2"

Project 1.2 Review: On-One’s convention-challenging $800 Lurcher carbon 29er frame

Catch up on all of our Project 1.2 posts here!

For many of us, there’s no denying carbon fiber’s sex appeal.  Be it the associations with cutting edge, high-end bikes and components (and race cars and fighter jets), the ways in which it can be crafted into seemingly endless combinations of weight, stiffness, vibration damping, and durability, or the way in which is frees designers from the formal constraints of metal construction, the stuff is pretty darn cool.  But carbon fiber components, wheels, and frames have long been out of financial reach for many riders- destined to remain objects of desire, unsullied by contact with everyday riding.

With their 29er Lurcher, rough and tumble 456, ‘cross Dirty Disco, and racy Whippet carbon fiber frames, British brand On-One (which is in the same family as Planet X and more recently Titus) have set out to bring the material to a much broader audience.  Between consumer-direct sales, canny purchasing, and lean margins, each of these frames has an MSRP under US$800 (the Dirty Disco adds a carbon fork for US$900).  It should be noted that, on their website at the time of this writing, not one of these frames is priced at MSRP.  Some are significantly lower.

The Lurcher is On-One’s all-around carbon fiber 29er frame.  At $800, the MSRP is half to one third that of bigger brands’ offerings- and provided inspiration for our Project 1.2 singlespeed‘s “Reasonably-Priced Carbon” theme.  Interchangeable $25 “Swapouts” make for easy geared or singlespeed configuration and the frame is bang up-to-date with a tapered head tube, press-fit bottom bracket, direct-mount front derailleur, and a 31.6mm seatpost.  Advertised at 1,550g, it’s not the lightest frame on the market- but then lightest and least expensive would be a scary combination.  After six months with the Lurcher, is On-One’s latest a price point killer- or a horrific mailorder pigdog?  Hit the jump to find out…

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Project 1.2 Initial Review: Roval’s $1,200 hookless Control Carbon 29 wheelset

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While the benefits of wheels that are lighter and stronger than their aluminum peers are clear, carbon fiber wheels come with a price premium that can be awfully hard to justify.  With a number of perfectly good excellent wheels available in the $600-900 range, dropping 3-4 times for something a bit lighter and stronger is often out of the question.  A large part of the cost for which carbon fiber rims are known comes from their manufacturing complexity. Unlike aluminum rims, which are extruded as a continuous section and then welded or pinned into a hoop- a largely automated process- carbon fiber rims are much more process- and labor- intensive.

Rather than simply accept the high cost of manufacturing carbon fiber rims, the engineers at Specialized’s wheel brand Roval decided to question the function of each and every part of the rim. Realizing that tubeless tires’ snug beads no longer rely on rim bead hooks to stay in place, the company decided to do away with them altogether. With them, the bead hooks took away complex tooling and/or secondary machining processes- and a good deal of expense. How much? Enough that the DT-hub’d Control Carbon 29 wheelset retails for $1,200- the cost of 1 1/2 high-end carbon fiber rims (without hubs or spokes). Revolutionary breakthrough or evolutionary dead-end? Hit the jump to find out!

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Project 1.2 Review: FSA SL-K SB0 seatpost problem solved


Catch up on all of our Project 1.2 posts here!

In last month’s review of FSA’S stiff, sexy SL-K SB0 seatpost, we noted that:

The SL-K’s only demerit an easily-addressed one.  In an effort to shave weight, FSA have carved a hole in the saddle cradle- providing a route for all manner of crap to get into the frame.  A piece of electrical tape easily sealed off the passage- but not until after our Project 1.2 Lurcher sounded like trailgoing maraca.  As anyone who’s tried to tease fine gravel out of a frame will attest, the task is a painful one.

Well, FSA must have heard us coming, as they’ve been in touch with a fix.  Hit the jump for the details!

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Project 1.2 Review: FSA’s stiff, sexy SL-K SB0 seatpost

Catch up on all of our Project 1.2 posts here!

With its simple two-bolt head and unidirectional carbon fiber finish, FSA’s entry-level SL-K carbon seatpost is an attractive piece of kit that coordinates well with many of FSA’s cranks, bars, and stems.  The company bonds an aluminum head to the full carbon shaft for both cost-effectiveness and peace of mind.  Is this $110 seatpost a good way to get more fiber in your riding diet?  Hit the jump to find out!

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Introducing the Project 1.2 single speed: Reasonably-priced carbon?

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While it’s been in the works for some time (and we leaked early photos on our Facebook page), our Project 1.2 single speed is now complete.  Hardly a plastic wallflower, the Lurcher has been getting lots of dirty time.  But before diving into the reviews, an introduction.

When the opportunity to pick up one of On-One’s Lurcher 29er frames presented itself, we jumped.  Earlier On-One Inbred and Scandal frames handled brilliantly- and the Lurcher looked set to bring the brand’s high performance, high value ethos to life in carbon fiber.  In fact, it’s the democratization of the magic plastic that’s become the theme of this year’s build. Bike shop and online brands are bringing carbon fiber to ever-lower price points as production capacity has grown and the ins and outs of working with the material are sussed.  Light weight, stiffness and vibration damping for all?  Or at some point does it just become carbon fiber for carbon fiber’s sake?

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Project 1.2 Review: Hope’s slick Bolted Seat Clamp

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Some things are just nice.  Take, for example, this Hope Bolted Seat Collar.  Sure, any number of collars will do the job just fine, but Hope’s latest version really is something to see, to hold, and to use.  Along with other Hope components, it matches the Pick ‘n Mix headset on our Project 1.2 singlespeed- and is both reasonably priced and surprisingly light.  Hit the jump for the rest of the details!

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Just In! SpurCycle’s Mix & Match GripRings

SONY DSCHere’s a neat idea for your flat-bar’d townie or mountain bike:  Individual, brightly-colored GripRings that can be mixed to match your ride.  Or mixed to not match.  It’s up to you.  The recently Kickstarted SpurCycle project is a neat one, allowing the purchaser to use the online GripRings Builder to configure the squidgy nesting donuts to their heart’s content.

When our GripRings sampler arrived, we suffered some severe analysis paralysis and wound up playing it safe: coordinating with the black, gray, and white color scheme on our Project 1.2 singlespeed.  Hit the jump to see what happened!

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Review: Specialized’s hookless Control Carbon 29 XC/trail wheelset

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Catch up on all of our Project 1.2 posts here!

With out Project 1.2 singlespeed, we set out to take a look at the world of reasonably priced carbon fiber.  While the benefits of lighter and/or stronger components with improved vibration damping are clear, do those benefits erode as the magic plastic works its way from the ultra-high end to the plain old high end of the price spectrum?

Over the past few years, the mountain bike market has seen an explosion of carbon rim’d wheelsets- and with them a doubling or even tripling of prices at the high end.  Sitting comfortably between the $2,500 wunderwheel and $900 high-end aluminum wheelset, Specialized’s Roval wheel brand has had moderate success with solid and surprisingly light wheels like the $1,650 Control Trail SL.  But they knew that, in order to gain widespread acceptance, they would need to do better.

Enter the $1,200 Control Carbon 29 wheelset.  Built using a freehub borrowed from DT Swiss’ bombproof 350 model and DT Revolution spokes, it’s hard to argue with the Rovals’ foundation.  But the real news is the rim itself.  Realizing that tubeless and tubeless-ready beads were plenty strong to hold tires in place without a bead hook, they decided to go without.  Genius move- or recipe for disaster?  Hit the jump to find out how they’ve fared.

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Review: FSA’s Stout SL-K Stem

FSA SL-K StemCatch up on all of our Project 1.2 posts here!

Stems aren’t the most glamorous of components.  For the most part, they all work- and those that don’t don’t tend to survive on the market long.  While the Reasonably Priced in our Reasonably Priced Carbon Project 1.2 singlespeed build theme ruled out every full-carbon stem on the market, FSA’s SL-K stem does have a carbon fiber face plate and happens to match not only our build’s white fork but also its unidirectional carbon SL-K seatpost and Gravity Light handlebar.  Is its dash of carbon just for show, or is it a key piece of the puzzle?  Hit the jump to find out…

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