Exclusive First Look! 3T Luteus Full Carbon Disc Brake Cyclocross Fork!

2011 3t cycling luteus full carbon fiber disc brake cyclocross fork

Our conversation with 3T started when we published our tech article on using carbon handlebars for cyclocross. They replied that they had a ‘cross specific carbon handlebar coming out (shown after the break) and, oh by the way, a full carbon disc fork, too.

And here we are: An exclusive first look at the all-new 3T Cycling Luteus full carbon fiber disc brake cyclocross fork and Ergoterra carbon cyclocross handlebar.

Jump on past the break for all the details and photos (UPDATE: and pricing!)…

2011 3t cycling luteus full carbon fiber disc brake cyclocross fork schematic

The Luteus Team fork is a dedicated ‘cross fork, purpose built to take advantage of the UCI’s relatively recent discovery of common sense. The construction is full carbon, including the steerer, with alloy faced dropouts for better durability on the surface that’s likely to see some abrasion.

Despite the schematic above, the only option listed with an actual part number for both Team (aftermarket) and OEM models has a tapered 1-1/8″ to 1-1/2″ steerer tube, but this hints at options down the road. The picture at the top of the post shows the taper.

2011 3t cycling luteus full carbon fiber disc brake cyclocross fork

The Luteus has post mount brake mounts and an integrated brake hose channel indented into the left leg. The channel even has integrated loops for zip tying the hose in place, giving it a clean appearance and keeping it somewhat out of harm’s way.

The left leg is reinforced at the mount posts to better handle braking stresses, and we’re guessing the forward facing dropouts are designed to reduce the likelihood that braking forces push the wheel out of them (not a likely scenario, but technically possible).

Wheel clearance is good. Running a 34C tire (UCI max is 33mm wide) there’s a minimum of 17mm of space between the tire and the crown at any point.

3T says the fork is designed to work with a 160mm rotor. Other measurements you’ll need are:

  • Rake – 47mm
  • Axle to Crown – 395mm
  • Weight – 470g

It’ll be available in April 2011, price TBD is $595 USD.

2011 3t cycling ergoterra full carbon fiber cyclocross handlebar

The Ergoterra Team handlebar is a “dedicated, expert level carbon cyclocross handlebar” and is based on the Ergosum road bar, but designed specifically for cyclocross racing. It has the same compact reach and drop as the Ergosum, but is wider at the drops to give you more leverage over rough terrain (from above, it flares out, shown below).

2011 3t cycling ergoterra carbon fiber cyclocross handlebar schematic

The curve from the hoods to the drops remains at 90º from the uppers long enough to keep brake/shifter levers in line, then bends outward 6º to widen your grip in the drops by 30mm (3cm) total. This also provides more clearance for your forearms, which is good when you’re bouncing around over rough patches, which helps you stay in the drops longer to chase down that punk in front of you.

The bar has an extended oversized central clamp area that’s reinforced for mounting crosstop brake levers. It’s made strong, but is designed to provide some shock absorption, too. Available in March, here’s the other numbers:

  • Drop – 127mm
  • Reach – 89mm
  • Widths (tops/drops) – 42/45 or 44/47cm
  • Weight – 192g

Price will be $325 USD.


20 thoughts on “Exclusive First Look! 3T Luteus Full Carbon Disc Brake Cyclocross Fork!

  1. Is anyone else out there more intrigued by the fact this is a hydraulic brake? Is there a possibility of 2012 SRAM Red/Force/Rival hydraulic road brakes?

  2. my 2 cents:

    On the fork: given the number of times I’ve crashed or dropped my cx bike, or mtb, the last place I would run my brake housing is to the outside of the fork. I could also see those zip ties scrapping my arm when lifting or dropping the bike (that’s just me). I’d rather run it along the trailing edge of the fork or on the inside with an attachment point on the front to keep it out of the tire, like on my Fox.

    On the h-bars: my only comment is on the flared drops. From the diagram it looks like it is only significant at the tips…where it isn’t very useful. I could be wrong on this though.

  3. I suspect this isn’t an indication that they are using it with a SRAM prototype lever, but maybe. I’d guess they would use something a little more up-to-date than a old Juicy 7 if that was the case.

  4. Gillis: Exactly. CX is slippery. Down the back of the fork leg would protect it from mud and look for more elegant without the risk of the hose snagging or losing some skin to a zip tie. 3T seems to have a pretty good eye when it comes to their products appearance and graphics etc. I can’t imagine them putting the guides into production in those locations.

  5. About the brakes, at the moment the only thing we’ve seen for using standard components is to run an Avid or Tektro cable-actuated (mechanical) disc brake. Of course, there’s also some contraptions and hacks out there for getting around that and running hydraulic brakes with standard road levers.

    We’re aware of some “unannounced” disc forks from major manufacturers coming this year, so it’s hard to imagine there won’t be an option from someone by year’s end.

  6. I have to agree with the others here. It is a total miss for 3T if they actually run the hose down the outside of the blade! I have to laugh at any mountain biker that runs their brake hoses like this. There’s no reason to do it, it looks bad and you risk damage to the hose. Maybe we’ll have to leave it to Easton to get it right.

  7. @crossy – These are the first “production” disc cyclocross wheels we’ve seen, but you’ll likely see a lot of stuff coming this year. There’s buzz in the industry about this, and given cyclocross’s growth over the last two years, it’s a market that’s begging for innovation:


  8. This is the first fork I’ve seen that even comes close to giving us something to run with the new UCI regs. Its NOT an MTB fork and the requirements of CX are very different. I can’t believe 3T have done this without consulting some pros. As for the hydraulic hose down the outside of the leg, it looks pretty buried to me, it keeps the wheel/tire clearance maximised on the inside. I carry my bike on my left shoulder so a couple of tie wraps don’t scare me. Any way wont the proximity of the disc on that side mean everybody will carrythe bike on their left shoulder? It makes the whole assembly easy to remove without disconecting the hose. And as for damage what about all the other cable external to the frame when you crash you only hit the fork? The fork is carbon–try using a composite anvil and a rock to puncture a hydraulic hose, I bet the anvil goes first! Jeez haven’t any of you guys thought this thru?

    And as for Easton yeah its easy to be a follower!!!!

  9. Why not route the hydraluic disc brake hose internally through the fork then it would be super clean aerodynamically and you would not have to worry about damaging the hose?

  10. @ alloycowboy: If there was internal routing on the hose it would need to be sealed incredibly well for a cross bike and I don’t see that as a real possibility.

  11. Cam: Because you could just route it down the back of the fork leg and it would be out of the way for mud clearance, and it would be much cleaner looking. As per my point above, I’d say running the hose vertical down the leg there could be a chance of snagging on something if you went down or through some brush. That chance is far less in other areas of the bike where cables run parallel to frame tubes. Jeez.

  12. Actually down the back of the fork leg might look better but I see there’s a greater risk of it geting swiped off, any clips on the trailing edge could be pretty vulnerable, (see the whyte bike pics). At least where it is if it does come adrift it cannot go into the wheel. I can see an issue routing at the top end as well, if it runs up the rear of the leg when does it break out to cross the bike? You’ll need some extra length to make sure the steering is not restricted, or that you have a loop of hose that you catch picking the bike up. It might be ugly but I agree with Cam it looks like maybe 3T have thought about it afterall….

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